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Old 08-05-2016, 12:45 PM   #1
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Is US Surveyors Assoc a Legit Credential?

I'm still looking for someone to complete an insurance survey of my boat. A dock mate recently sold a boat and passed along then name of the surveyor that his buyer used. I contacted them for information and received their certificate from the US Surveyors Association (USSA). His membership number is the same as his MMSAI (not sure what that stands for) number. I've called my broker and they said that the surveyor should be NAMS or SAMS certified, but I don't see that anywhere on their paperwork.

I just want insurance. Can anyone explain the difference in these accreditation and is USSA well respected? Should I be able to push back if they don't want me to use this guy?

Thanks.
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Old 08-05-2016, 01:03 PM   #2
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I can't answer your question but the surveyor may also be a member of SAMS/NAMS. You can check here:


Find a Member |


Membership Roster: Full List
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Old 08-05-2016, 01:44 PM   #3
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USSA is basically a course diploma from Navtech. It means they scored 80% or better on a surveyors course through Navtech. Then it means they also join their association. I would still want them to be a member of SAMS or NAMS. However, no membership guarantees competency or integrity, so references and an interview are very important.

Here is info on USSA.

US Surveyors Association. Approved marine surveyor training and education

You can also check their roster there.
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Old 08-05-2016, 01:56 PM   #4
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Here is info on USSA.

US Surveyors Association. Approved marine surveyor training and education

You can also check their roster there.
Yeah, unfortunately I saw their website and their aol email address. I then google mapped (street view) the Navtech address, which is a house with two tables in front of it for sale for $20 and a truck in the yard...not that there's anything wrong with that.

On a positive note, the certificate looked good
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Old 08-05-2016, 01:57 PM   #5
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Send them a few hundred dollars and they will send you a manual. Fill out the answers in the test in the back of the manual and send it back to them .... Shazam ! you are now a Master Marine Surveyor.

From their website ......

TAKE OUR FREE ONLINE COURSE NOW AND EARN YOUR FIRST CERTIFICATE IN
FOUNDATIONS OF VESSEL MARINE SURVEYING


Sounds like a legitimate outfit to me
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Old 08-05-2016, 01:58 PM   #6
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I can't answer your question but the surveyor may also be a member of SAMS/NAMS. You can check here:


Find a Member |


Membership Roster: Full List
I did a search for his name on both sites, but no dice.
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Old 08-05-2016, 03:41 PM   #7
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I'm still looking for someone to complete an insurance survey of my boat. A dock mate recently sold a boat and passed along then name of the surveyor that his buyer used. I contacted them for information and received their certificate from the US Surveyors Association (USSA). His membership number is the same as his MMSAI (not sure what that stands for) number. I've called my broker and they said that the surveyor should be NAMS or SAMS certified, but I don't see that anywhere on their paperwork.

I just want insurance. Can anyone explain the difference in these accreditation and is USSA well respected? Should I be able to push back if they don't want me to use this guy?

Thanks.
If all you want is insurance couldn't you just call your insurance company and ask them for the name of an approved surveyor?
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Old 08-05-2016, 03:42 PM   #8
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Whether you learn anything or just use them as a diploma mill is likely up to the student. Regardless, they are not the recognized surveying society in this country. There may be decent surveyors not in SAMS/NAMS, but I would never choose one. It's enough of a gamble anyway.
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Old 08-05-2016, 03:55 PM   #9
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If all you want is insurance couldn't you just call your insurance company and ask them for the name of an approved surveyor?
Probably, but Memphis, TN is not exactly a hotbed of marine surveyors and the only one I could find local wanted $800+ to do the job. Since I don't really "want" a survey, I'm trying not to pay a premium for the service. If I was buying the boat, I'd absolutely want the best I could find. In this case, I want someone to tell the insurance company it floats and looks pretty. I even invited my broker down to take a cruise and see the boat for herself if that would appease the insurance gods. They still want a survey...
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Old 08-05-2016, 03:57 PM   #10
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Try calling Rooke Sails in Memphis . He should be able to put you on one local.
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Old 08-05-2016, 04:39 PM   #11
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Try calling Rooke Sails in Memphis . He should be able to put you on one local.
Fantastic advice! I just wrapped up a 30 minute conversation with Chris Rooke and he gave me a list of 5 surveyors around the area that he recommends. I would have never thought to call them...
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Old 08-05-2016, 05:03 PM   #12
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Fantastic advice! I just wrapped up a 30 minute conversation with Chris Rooke and he gave me a list of 5 surveyors around the area that he recommends. I would have never thought to call them...
When you call them remember to tell them you only need an insurance "condition and value" survey, not a full pre-purchase survey. Buyers want to know everything about every inch of a boat...insurers only want to know what's likely to cost them money, which requires a much simpler, less expensive survey.
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Old 08-05-2016, 06:57 PM   #13
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Being in the insurance game, I am not a fan of USSA surveyors. Too often their reports are little more that equipment lists with no narrative commentary, no citing of any promulgated standards (ABYC/USCG/NFPA/etc.), and no recommendations listing.

Just today I had to decline a survey on a 1971 vessel that was in "above average" condition- the report lacked all of the above listed data.

I would stick with NAMS or SAMS.
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Old 08-05-2016, 10:31 PM   #14
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Call your insurance people and ask them if they have an accepted list. Also if they will accept the USSA accreditation or not.
That way no opinions and you then know what you have to do and won't have to pay twice, once for an unacceptable report and again for an acceptable one.
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Old 08-05-2016, 10:40 PM   #15
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Call your insurance people and ask them if they have an accepted list...
Smart idea. It`s very likely individual insurers have a list of aspects they want the surveyor to cover. Surveyors regularly doing insurance surveys are likely to know the requirements of various insurers.
Last survey my insurer complimented me on the condition of the boat. I`d rather a lower premium, but at least they cover it.
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