If you are planning on buying or selling a used boat, it would be a good idea to find out about used boat values. There are lots of guides out there that have average boat values or that give tips on appraisals and you should use those to your advantage. You might be surprised to learn that the market for used boats is actually incredibly competitive. This means that you have to make sure you know what you’re doing to get the best deal.
There are many reasons as to why people sell their boats, and many reasons why they price them differently. Those who are looking for a quick sale will price their vehicle very low. Those who want to make a profit and can afford to hold on to their boat for a while, will want to sell it for a much higher price. Regardless of whether you want to buy or sell, you also have to understand the various factors that influence used boat values. Hence, you should investigate the price ranges of different vehicle models within a certain geographical area as well.
There are quite a lot of online sources that can provide you with average appraisal values of different boats. These include ABOS, BUC, and NADA. All of these guides are available for free. They provide you with an estimate on used boat values, considering the make and model of the craft, its condition, and additional features. Furthermore, some people also look at the geographical location, as this can be a major influencing factor.
An appraisal guide is useful, but you shouldn’t see it as the absolute truth either. There are many different factors that influence price, not in the least buyer or seller willingness. However, there are obvious price differences between pontoon boats, outboard motorboats, boat trailers, personal watercrafts, power boats, sailboats, and yachts, for instance. That said, an outboard motorboat with a brand new, recently serviced engine will obviously have a greater value than that exact same motorboat but with its original engine, which is obviously getting a little bit older. Accessories like radar or satellite systems, cockpit carpet, electronic packages, dinghy lifts, and canvass tops also influence the price. However, if these accessories are necessary upgrades to the original condition of the boat, rather than optional extras, they will not increase the vessel’s price.
You must remember that an appraisal guide is just that: a guide. It gives you the book value of a standard craft of that particular make, model, and age. Some will give you a price guide, from lowest to highest, so you can have a better idea of where you should price your boat as a seller, or what you should be willing to pay as a buyer.
Important Facts to Consider:
If this is the first time you want to buy a used boat, then you should consider going through a dealer with a solid reputation. While you do usually pay more for crafts available through dealers, just as you would with a car, you do also get the security of working with people who know what they are talking about. Plus, when you buy through a dealer, you will receive some sort of warranty. That said, whether you want to buy through a dealer or a private seller, there are always a number of important facts to consider, all of which influence used boat values.
1. The Boat’s Maintenance History
You should receive a copy of all the maintenance and repairs that have been made on the boat. This will tell you how well the boat has been looked after, and also if it is experiencing any problems. General wear and tear through usage will lead to certain parts breaking down, which is fine. If, however, lots of parts have started breaking down in a short period of time, there may be some issue of concern. This should be reflected in the price.
2. Conducting a Boat Inspection
Before you buy a boat, you should ask a professional mechanic to take a look at it. This probably won’t be free, but it may help save you a lot of money as you won’t accidentally buy something in a very poor condition. If you’re confident about making the inspection yourself, make sure that you look at the condition of the alternator, the spark arrestors, the spark plugs, the hoses, the belts, the blower, the strainer, the engine alignment, and the shift cables.
3. The Condition of the Hull
It is very important that you look at the condition of the hull. Try to spot gel blisters, mismatched paint, holes, and dry rot. Check every element of the boat, tapping the hull so that you know the material is solid.
4. The Propeller of the Boat
Next, you should look at the propeller. It should be free from nicks or cracks and it shouldn’t be warped or bent either. These all make the propeller much less efficient and would mean that it will need replacement soon.
You should also ask about how the boat was stored when it wasn’t used. Dry storage is the best type, but few owners do this because they generally use their boat. If it has been properly maintained, then that is okay.
Some other important things to consider include the upholstery, which shouldn’t be ripped or faded, and the extras included with the boat. Sometimes, owners don’t mention these extras when they sell, because they can also sell them on their own and therefore get a bit more money in their pocket. Again, make sure that you check what the actual market value of the boat is, and query the owner if it is priced above or below the acceptable used boat values. As stated earlier, people have different reasons for selling, which is why their price is often somewhat removed from the price indicated in the appraisal guides.
One final thing to remember is that you should do your research before you start looking for a boat to buy. Think about how you want to use a boat and on what type of water. Also, consider your budget and your skills as a boater.