Practical guide to successfully selling your boat
When you are an owner, selling your ship can be more difficult than it seems. Should you hire a boat sales professional or take care of it yourself?
Is there a safer, more effective or less expensive solution? What are the steps to follow to promote the rapid sale of the vessel?
In this article, the Boat-registration.com team shares its opinion on the matter with you.
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Selling your boat, alone or with the help of a professional?
First, know that it is not mandatory to hire a professional to sell your boat. Whatever your vessel, you have the right to choose to sell it yourself, or trust a third party to find a buyer and complete the sale.
If you delegate the sale of your boat to a specialist, the fees to be paid to this intermediary are generally subject to a commission, deducted from the final price of the boat. The professional can manage your file from A to Z: he can take photos of the vessel, write and distribute the ad, make visits, answer questions from potential buyers, and put you in contact with other nautical specialists, if necessary.
So, calling on a professional can be a quick and safe solution, especially if you are geographically far from your ship, or if you have little time to spare. This is the guarantee of finding a serious buyer, without necessarily spending more: indeed, the specialist will also take care of negotiating the selling price for you!
If you delegate the sale of your boat to a specialist, the fees to be paid to this intermediary are generally subject to a commission, deducted from the final price of the boat. The professional can manage your file from A to Z: he can take photos of the ship, write and distribute the ad, make visits, answer questions from potential buyers, and put you in contact with other nautical specialists, if necessary.
So, calling on a professional can be a quick and safe solution, especially if you are geographically far from your ship, or if you have little time to spare. This is the guarantee of finding a serious buyer, without necessarily spending more: indeed, the specialist will also be responsible for negotiating the selling price for you!
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The steps to sell your boat yourself
Would you like to take care of the sale of your motorboat or sailboat yourself? Boat-registration.com details the steps necessary to put the odds on your side and not forget anything. Here are some tips to know to sell your boat on your own, without stress!
Clean your unit
First of all, remember to restore your boat to a clean state. The interior, the exterior… To prepare your unit for sale, everything must go through! In your living spaces and cabins, limit the presence of personal effects: during future visits, neutral spaces will help potential buyers to project themselves.
Check the good condition of the equipment
Plumbing, electrics, electronics… Check the good condition of all elements on board.
Carry out any repairs, but also small jobs that you may have been putting off for some time. They will make the difference on the day of the visits and, while waiting to sell your boat, they will allow you to make the most of your navigations!
Gather the papers
Make sure you have all the boat's administrative papers, warranty certificates, and invoices for purchases, repairs or maintenance. Ideally, you will sort and place all these documents, neatly, in a binder or a pocket to give to the future owner.
You can also anticipate by preparing the administrative papers necessary for the sale, in particular an essential element: the deed of sale which formalizes the sale of your boat.
Complete and draft a deed of sale according to the regulations in forceYour boat bill of sale
When your boat is clean and tidy, take out your camera. Make sure you have good light, and photograph the different areas of the boat: interior, exterior, berths, engine hold... Vary the points of view and take detailed photos of the most important elements. Think that, sometimes, the wide angle makes it possible to obtain better shots!
Write a description
To inspire potential buyers, prepare a detailed description of your boat. Construction site, model, year of release… Note all the characteristics of your ship, and all the specific equipment with which it is equipped. Do not forget the detail of electrical and electronic devices! Describe the condition of all the elements, as well as the work to be planned. Specify the dates of the last maintenance operations, and possibly complete with the history of your boat, or the navigation areas it may have frequented.
Choose the right selling price
Estimate the value of your boat based on the price at which you bought it, and the value lost over the years. Research the asking price for other units of the same type on the market, and inquire about other boats available at the price being considered. The chosen price must be fair, justified, and justifiable!
Publish and broadcast the ad
Now that everything is ready, you can officially put your unit up for sale! If your motor boat or sailboat is based in a port, you have surely already submitted an advertisement to the harbor master's office. But if you want to put the odds on your side and advertise your boat more widely, you will need to publish the ad online, on the web.
A good option is to use a website that specializes in selling boats, such as Band of Boats . On this one, you will be able to communicate your announcement to all those who seek to acquire a new unit, to find the buyer you need!
Band of Boats advice: To maximize your chances of selling your boat, it is essential to create an attractive and detailed advertisement. This includes an eye-catching first photo followed by numerous images that showcase the boat from all angles. An accurate and complete description will reassure potential buyers by detailing the condition of the boat, the repairs carried out, the number of hours of navigation and all the relevant characteristics. It is also crucial to set the right price by educating yourself on market prices or asking for a quote. Responding quickly to requests for information from potential buyers and preparing well for the visit of the boat with the buyers, putting forward the sales pitches and preparing all the necessary documents, are key steps in concluding a successful sale. And the little extra: do not hesitate to promote your ad once it is online (share it on your social networks, on specialized forums around sailing or water sports, talk about it around you , etc.)
Show the boat
Thanks to the publication of your advertisement, you will obtain several contacts. You will offer to make visits to your boat, and will receive each one individually on board. So that potential buyers can discover your boat while enjoying good light, prefer to welcome them during the day!
Discover all the spaces. Answer all the questions, explain the role of each piece of equipment and detail the work carried out. Also specify how you maintain your unit.
You will have to create a relationship of trust, and leave no doubt about your transparency.
Even if you surely like your boat very much, try to remain objective! Leave time for the visitor, so that he can apprehend the different spaces and imagine himself the owner.
Offer to show him the capabilities of the boat during a sea trial and, if necessary, to train him in the various maneuvers, in navigation or in port.
Negotiate and close the sale
At the end of the process, you may need to review the price and terms of sale for your unit to come to an agreement with the buyer. Be open to negotiation, but don't lower your demands too much! The agreement reached, you will sign the documents together, and carry out all the administrative procedures relating to the sale of a vessel. For this last step, the experts at Boat-registration.com can help you!