- April 10th, 2008
- in Yachting
Selling: You Have to Spend Money to Make Money…
Or not! You could simply sell your boat as seen yourself without the aid of a broker and manage the whole project yourself… but seller beware! As your own broker, your lack of training and experience as well as incorrect networking could come back to haunt you and cause you endless headaches.
It’s perfectly acceptable as a boat owner and sailor to be stubborn; it is a different lifestyle, against the grain after all. However, anticipate up to 50 prospects for any given boat, which means 50 enquiries that translate into people interested in your boat. All well and good, but bear in mind that you will probably need an hour each day to catch up on correspondence, be physically present to show your boat, test sail it and, most importantly, have your boat in the best possible shape at all times and be in contact directly with a potential buyer, which leads to quite a hard sell and is definitely a full-time job.
Ideally, your buyer falls in love with your boat and the price point is a secondary consideration. This will make the sell easier, but if your boat is large, cheap and in a poor state, expect a lot of enquiries and get ready for a pounding on negotiations, with phrases like I will take the old girl off your hands, which is certainly motivating!
There will be survey fees and maintenance issues, so why not hire a broker? A broker can eliminate the trials and headaches of having to do it yourself. He or she will advise you on the maintenance of the boat and screen and liaise with potential and realistic buyers. Brokers also have a vast supply of networking and, most importantly, marketing dollars in the right areas. A good broker will dramatically play down the off-putting qualities of your boat and ultimately be the one who test sails and shows your boat for you. You will not have to meet or negotiate with your buyer, which is the broker’s role. Obtaining a good broker, as we always advise, makes all the difference.
So returning to the ideal world for a moment, imagine your boat has someone in love with it. Well, the broker’s job is, after a survey, to get the seller to acknowledge the boat’s faults and come to an agreement to fix any problems that may be reasonable for the buyer to request. Once the buyer is satisfied, the deal is ready to be in play—happy days and potentially fewer headaches than dealing with everything directly yourself. Your broker is essentially your partner in every way, and everyone is looking to win. If it’s the same one who sold you your boat in the first place then you can have every confidence!