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Old 04-09-2019, 07:38 AM   #21
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"I`m finding brokers happy to start engines, and genset, even without asking. If they run nice and quiet, it`s a selling point, if they don`t the broker might be less willing."

That's a broker that should be fired!!!

As boats may be for sale for months not days , some owners will shut sea cocks , just in case
A few boats with tank fuel cutoffs or other fuel securing systems might be run out of fuel to the engine.

Will the broker come back and bleed the engines and pay for repair of overheated engine or noisemaker?

It may be a cultural difference between Oz and the US. In my experience here in the US, there's no starting engines without the owner present.


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Old 04-09-2019, 07:54 AM   #22
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So I have finally found a boat pending survey. This may sound like I am cheap but I have been through one unsuccessful survey already. So the boat in question has twin diesels. I am having the boat surveyed and the engines surveyed as well. Engine surveyor want to do it at the same time. What if the boat surveyor finds something wrong which will negate the sale? I will be stuck paying for 2 surveys? Would it be better have the done separately?
pretty simple: reach an agreement with the surveyor and mechanic on how you want to execute.

some people do either the mechanical inspection first or the boat survey first, have the most critical / likely culprits looked at first, and then will stop the rest of the process and not go to the next step whether its mechanical inspection or the survey. if the surveyor is local and did not have to travel, you may be out just an hour of their time if you want to stop the entire process. boats i look at are $2k+ easy for survey and mechanical inspection. hypothetically, something major is found in first hour, i might be out $1-200 instead of $2k. then again, i do a lot of due diligence myself before hiring a surveyor or mechanic. i have never had a failed survey or mechanical inspection and much of the time i am really doing it for a second set of eyes on things that i may overlook and because a lender/insurance requires it. some times i buy at a great distance so i fly-in for one day and have both the surveyor and mechanic go at it at the same time. so i might be on the hook for $2-400 if they are working separately and come across a major issue in the first hour.

again, this is basic communication and reaching an agreement on how things will be conducted....
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:03 AM   #23
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Leaking fuel tanks and soft decks.
was the fuel odor in the bilge? fuel itself in the bilge?

where was the soft deck?

i ask, because you may have been able to catch it your self if it was something obvious. smelling fuel or seeing it in the bilge would be a red flag. as for the deck, you can tap around with a mallet or your knuckles and get a pretty good initial sense as to how the deck is.

like i said in my post above, i have my own checklist of things that i try to do myself or get answers on and the surveyor / engine mechanic comes on-board to check their own list. some times i have things on my list that they never thought of or are specific to my boat make/model. some times they have things on their list that i dont have the experience or tools to assess and i let them handle. end of the day between my checking things and their checking things, we have a pretty good survey/inspection. if there is opportunity for me to check some things ahead of even scheduling a survey/inspection, i will. i can run through a lot of things myself in an hour or two of poking around. pictures can also help indicate the condition of a boat. i typically want to see recent, high resolution pictures of a boat including critical components, areas (i.e. bilge, wiring), etc, and i can make a decent judgment of what condition the boat is in before even getting to the point of scheduling a surveyor / mechanic. getting all the maintenance records helps too. i will not consider most boats without a full review of those records to make sure the boat was well-maintained. finally, before i even get this far i want to see the seller's material damage statement saying basically the boat has not been in any accidents, sunk, there are no known mechanical conditions, or anything that makes the boat un- sea worthy or unmarketable. in fact, most brokers require this statement before they will even list a boat so its usually as easy as them forwarding it via email.
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:07 AM   #24
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"I`m finding brokers happy to start engines, and genset, even without asking. If they run nice and quiet, it`s a selling point, if they don`t the broker might be less willing."

That's a broker that should be fired!!!

As boats may be for sale for months not days , some owners will shut sea cocks , just in case
A few boats with tank fuel cutoffs or other fuel securing systems might be run out of fuel to the engine.

Will the broker come back and bleed the engines and pay for repair of overheated engine or noisemaker?
it all depends on the arrangement. some sellers tell a broker to do anything to get the boat sold. its rare for a broker to start up engines but i have seen it once or twice. its between the seller and the broker on scope and who is responsible for what. a lot of brokers may refuse to do it even if the seller asks or allows because of liability and their insurance may not cover them operating a boat.
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Old 04-09-2019, 12:34 PM   #25
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If you want to get screwed, tell your surveyors how to do their job. If your engine guy wants to be there for the boat haul out then I doubt pictures will be acceptable. The hull surveyor is going to sea trial the boat. The seller might not be too keen on two sea trials.

I am curious what the surveyor found on the last boat. I have only once seen a boat that failed survey. Serious bottom blisters were found when the boat was hauled out. Almost everything else can be repaired by the seller.
When boat "shopping" we found a boat that we liked. I was not as knowledgeable then as to "some of the warning signs" as I am now. The boat "failed" survey and we walked away. I am now, very happy that I did not buy that boat and feel that the money on the surveyor was well spent!
The first issue that was of concern was the listing broker. He would not allow us to involve our own broker (who we had been working with for a while). Second, there were a few items I did "catch" on my own (that neither the broker nor seller had dealt with) that were pretty obvious. For instance he stored both a gas container and a spare propane bottle in the lazerette under the cockpit floor. Bad enough that this was an enclosed space, but it also contained 2 batteries (in series) and a battery charger for powering the stern thruster. The broker removed the flammables prior to the survey. I also spotted a couple of "easily visible issues" with the engine. The gear oil cooler was leaking saltwater right over top of the airsep filter and there was visible "crud" in the Racor filter. Both of these were corrected (at least visibly) prior to survey. Were these an indication of "general" engine maintenance?
Anyway, the reason the boat "failed" survey was that one of the stringers had separated from the hull and was not repaired in a "proper" manner. The surveyor was not the only one who felt that way, as I sent several good photos of the "issue" to the original boat manufacturer who was extremely helpful with suggestions, answers, and advice.
The broker told us that "stringers were not really important" and we shouldn't worry (his first comments), but later said that the seller would not drop the price nor would he repair the issue to our surveyor's satisfaction.
We walked, really glad we did, and I would not use that broker (even though he has the "certification") ever again for anything.
As an aside, the broker we had been using as a buyer's broker still helped us with advise and even research during this situation even though he would not have received a "commission" from that sale. I would have given him a "gift" (cash) for his help if that sale had gone through. Later he was instrumental in the completion of our purchase of Pilitak and we are FAR better off than if we had completed on the other boat.
I agree totally with what others have stated. Do as thorough an inspection on your own as you can. Don't go just by the "cosmetics". Then if a boat fails survey, think of it as "money well spent" as you could have ended up an expensive mistake.
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Old 04-09-2019, 12:55 PM   #26
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Another option may be to request an "at the dock" pre-offer inspection. The seller could baulk but hiring the same surveyor or a trusted shipwright to inspect the vessel with you as part of a "should I make an offer" inspection may reveal major issues before committing to the offer and full survey.
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Old 04-09-2019, 02:18 PM   #27
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FF,

It might depend if the boat is being showed by the seller's own agent, or someone else from the brokerage vs a co-brokerage. When sellers were there, or the seller's agent knew the seller and the boat -- they did occasionally (often?) start engines. But, mostly they told me it was too much liability and that was something that happened at the sea trial and inspections. Maybe it was just my bum luck -- but I had a lot of it. :-(
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Old 04-09-2019, 02:54 PM   #28
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Don't start off boat ownership looking for ways to cut corners. Let the surveyors coordinate their efforts and timing to minimize any issues. Then let them do their jobs completely. If either one finds a deal killer in the process, then stop right then. I've seen surveys halted within the first hour. Both the boat and the engine surveyors gave substantial discounts. Those would depend somewhat on their travel. You've got to assume you've chosen people who will be fair with you but fair isn't just charge for an hour. They still blocked out time and traveled to and from.

As someone mentioned above, if you're very worried about the boat failing, then perhaps you haven't done due diligence. I would assume and hope any boat I had surveyed would be worth buying with some accommodation as price reductions for significant work needed.

I've also observed in South Florida that the surveyors and engine surveyors all know each other well and if you've selected wisely, they'll work very well together.
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Old 04-09-2019, 05:18 PM   #29
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As a hull surveyor I like to have adequate quiet time aboard without interruption. On larger and/or more complicated boats I come the day before and the next day with the mechanic too. Sometimes the mechanic comes the day before too.

I work on my notes between the first and second days and hit the ground running day two for an early haul-out and trial-run. The brokers do not always like it but they spend plenty of time sitting somewhere working so most just do that aboard during the process.
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Old 04-09-2019, 05:40 PM   #30
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I too like quiet time to do my job. Very stressful to have a buyer hovering over me asking questions. I have no problem discussing things (he is paying me!!), but I can either work or talk. I am not very good at doing both. I'd much rather be left alone and then when done (or if I find something significant), I take the buyer aside and then talk.

I also do "quick looks", just go to the boat for like an hour and sniff around before travel plans, surveyor, captain and haulout are scheduled, which can be quite the undertaking. Usually in 15min I can tell if the engines are a mess or not. Works out pretty well.
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Old 04-09-2019, 06:22 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FF View Post
"I`m finding brokers happy to start engines, and genset, even without asking. If they run nice and quiet, it`s a selling point, if they don`t the broker might be less willing."

That's a broker that should be fired!!!

As boats may be for sale for months not days , some owners will shut sea cocks , just in case
A few boats with tank fuel cutoffs or other fuel securing systems might be run out of fuel to the engine.

Will the broker come back and bleed the engines and pay for repair of overheated engine or noisemaker?
Good heavens FF, have a valium and a nice lie down.
Did it ever enter your mind a broker starting engines might have express prior authorization to do so? One broker told me the owner, who was away overseas, had asked him to run the engines at any inspection.
On your benighted view, a broker should be fired for following owners instructions and or authorizations.
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Old 04-09-2019, 06:42 PM   #32
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Leaking fuel tanks and soft decks.
Ok, that’s exactly why we hire surveyors. With the next boat I bet you will know how to look for leaking tanks and soft decks. Odds are your next boat won’t make it to survey with those type issues. While you might feel the sting of the boat failing survey, you are in fact looking quite smart. Don’t over react to the sting, continue to be smart.
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Old 04-09-2019, 07:43 PM   #33
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We did vessel survey and engine survey at the same time on a boat we had made an offer on. I wouldn’t do it any other way. The vessel surveyor and the engine mechanic worked as a team (as a previous person mentioned). They complemented each other very well. Did the haul out and they both went around checking things and comparing notes. Then sea trial. Miserable fail. Engines would not reach WOT after multiple attempts. Huge amounts of black smoke. Both surveyors compared notes, completed their reports, and I paid them. This gave as solid negotiating ground with the seller. At the end of the day, we walked away from the boat. The information provided by the two of them working as a team was invaluable to me in being able to evaluate repairs, negotiation, and ultimate decision. We found another boat and I did the same thing again, vessel surveyor and engine mechanic at the same time. Better outcome this time and we have our new boat now and are not only happy with the boat but feel that we are well informed about all of her goods, bads, and uglys.
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Old 04-09-2019, 07:58 PM   #34
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However, at the risk of being berated, I must say in total transparency that for our first boat, we did not get a survey at all. First, the seller had a recent insurance survey with haul out that was less than 8 months old and done by a local surveyor that I knew and was able to contact to discuss the details. And the seller provided the full survey report. 2nd, the seller provided all of the documentation of work done including mechanical on the engines by a local mechanic that I was also able to contact and discuss details with. Third, sea trial performed flawlessly. 4th, this was a very low price purchase. So added all up, this was a low risk purchase in the grand scheme of things. Second upgrade boat was a different story. Vessel and mechanic survey were a must at that price point. Just felt I needed to add that caveat to the discussion.
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:10 PM   #35
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However, at the risk of being berated, I must say in total transparency that for our first boat, we did not get a survey at all. First, the seller had a recent insurance survey with haul out that was less than 8 months old and done by a local surveyor that I knew and was able to contact to discuss the details. And the seller provided the full survey report. 2nd, the seller provided all of the documentation of work done including mechanical on the engines by a local mechanic that I was also able to contact and discuss details with. Third, sea trial performed flawlessly. 4th, this was a very low price purchase. So added all up, this was a low risk purchase in the grand scheme of things. Second upgrade boat was a different story. Vessel and mechanic survey were a must at that price point. Just felt I needed to add that caveat to the discussion.
I caution people not to use a past survey no matter how recent. The boat could have been run aground the day before it was put up for sale.
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:46 PM   #36
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What if the boat surveyor finds something wrong which will negate the sale? I will be stuck paying for 2 surveys? Would it be better have the done separately?
If he does, he does and you move on. To echo what the others have said, you will have to pay for both, depending on how early on you pull the pin and how much they want to also work on your next survey.

Would it be better to have them done separately? I don't think so depending on the two surveyors. As we've seen posted, there are those surveyors who want to work alone to get their job done. Others might feel differently. Both my surveyor and mechanic were enthusiastic about working together. This was on a 42 ft twin engine boat.

I think the huge advantage was having both of them aboard for the sea trial. I had two sets of experienced eyes (plus my own) looking at everything going on - the engines, their temps, the smoke (or lack of) from the exhaust, the gauges at both helms, the boat's performance and handling, quality and any issues with controls.

From that experience I felt both surveys had a higher level of detail than if they had occurred in isolation. Yes, I would have paid out big dollars for both if, after the sea trial, I had some sort of deal killer come up. I went into the purchase agreement knowing I could lose that, and to also echo what others have said, there was little that my surveyor found that I hadn't spotted, or had a clue about. My son and I spent about 4 hrs on the boat before our offer, and presented the admiral with what we thought was wrong and would need work before we decided to make an offer. In fact, we only really had one project come up as as result of the survey that we hadn't thought would be needed right away (a lot of wiring coming off a positive bus without fuse protection.) Some of the other findings he came up with were more minor and not deal killers, in fact not even really negotiation issues, just maintenance items that were either a priority or needed to be done soon.
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:50 PM   #37
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Thanks all for the replies and interesting conversation. Will be doing both surveys at the same time on April 27th will report back the findings, fingers crossed!
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Old 04-09-2019, 10:50 PM   #38
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I caution people not to use a past survey no matter how recent. The boat could have been run aground the day before it was put up for sale.
And especially an insurance survey which is much different than a buyer's survey.
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Old 04-10-2019, 04:48 AM   #39
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"Did it ever enter your mind a broker starting engines might have express prior authorization to do so?"

Perhaps , but many brokers are like house brokers , one holds a contract and dozens of others show the boat when they can.

My problem is with a "broker" that has zero idea of how the boat is stored , just turning things off and on , especially engines or noisemakers.
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Old 04-10-2019, 11:50 AM   #40
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I caution people not to use a past survey no matter how recent. The boat could have been run aground the day before it was put up for sale.
and make sure the P&S agreement contemplates reporting of events that happen between the time you make your offer, survey, and closing. i make it clear that full reporting of any incident no matter how minor must be made. some people like to do a quick check of things if some time has elapsed between survey/sea trial and closing.
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