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Old 04-09-2009, 03:25 PM   #8
Scraping Paint
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Posts: 13,748
Should You Use a Yacht Broker?

Keith wrote:

That's just luck, Marin... right time and place.
Finding the right boat on e-Bay is just luck.* Finding the right boat in the paper is just luck.* Finding the right boat on Yachtworld is just luck.*

We've got five or six boating friends, power and sail, who had exactly the same experience as we did.* The broker they were talking to was aware of a boat coming on the market before it had been listed and advertised. In some cases the boat was local so our friends may have eventually*found out about it through the usual boat advertising outlets in this area.* Of course, everyone else looking for that kind of boat would find out, too.

But in a few of these cases the situation was the same as ours--- the boats the local brokers had just heard about were in another state.* Friends on our dock recently*bought a 40' sailboat out of Maine that a local broker had been told about through his relationship with a New England broker.* It's a very popular model and the owner wanted to sell it but at the time had ony discussed this with*the New England*broker.* The New England guy mentioned it to*the Washington guy, who mentioned it to our friends.***Our friends feel that had they not had the advantage of a "forewarned" broker, the boat would have been listed, advertised, and sold long*before they ever got wind of it.

I'm not advocating*that everyone should*use a broker.* All I'm saying is that a lot of established brokers have connections that let them know ahead of time what's coming on the market.* Just like the real estate folks.* So it could be--- you can call it luck if you like---- that if you have a relationship with a broker you might find out before the rest of the market that a particular type of boat you're interested in is coming up for sale.

If you're just shopping for a general*type of boat and are not make, model, age, etc. specific, then this advantage may not be of any value to you.* But if--- like us and the friends I talked about earlier--- you know exactly what you want, and what you want is a very in-demand boat as ours was at the time we bought it, having that "inside information" from a broker can make the difference between getting exactly*what you want and having to wait a lot longer before a similar deal comes along, if it ever does.

And Ken makes a very important point.* If a person wants to use a broker, that broker should be very familiar with the type of boat the buyer is interested in.* In our case, the broker we used worked for the PNW Grand Banks dealer/distributor.* At the time he was restoring his own wood GB32, hull number 7.* He'd made delivery trips of new and used*GBs.* He helped manage his company's large GB charter fleet.* And he went with us to California to check out the GB we ultimately bought (at no cost to us).

So there are brokers and there are brokers.* Hook up with the wrong one and the boatbuying experience, and the boat itself maybe, can be miserable.* Hook up with the right one and the boat buying experience can be a lot of fun.

-- Edited by Marin on Thursday 9th of April 2009 03:44:27 PM
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