Selling the boat. Better to do it alone or with a broker?

Are you thinking of selling the boat? Better to do it independently or rely on a broker? We asked expert Luca Bosazzi, a broker in Abayachting, what are the advantages and disadvantages of the three options facing those considering selling their boat.

Selling the boat. Do it yourself or rely on a mediator?

Regardless of what the used object of buying and selling is (boat, car, motorcycle, real estate, etc…), fortunately today there is a choice on how to behave.

Private-to-private sales have increased dramatically with the arrival of the new free listing or auction portals (above all subito.it and ebay, to name a few). This has allowed an increase in transactions and a very strong fragmentation of items, so that today you can really buy or sell (almost) any item or good you can think of.

The oil spot has spread like wildfire, and has also involved assets of far greater value, including real estate (not only studio apartments, but also valuable properties), boats, airplanes and helicopters, stamps, and precious coins.

I prefer to stay in our field, so let’s talk about boats.

Until 15 years ago, a boat owner almost necessarily had to go through a marina or storage yard. Word of mouth and local presence was the main channel for getting word of a used boat for sale.

Today, however, there are three different options for the owner.

OPTION 1 – I SELL THE BOAT MYSELF

The owner takes photos, decides to post a card with or without photos on portals or bulletin boards that allow it, may hang a sign on the boat with his or her own telephone contact information, personally receives phone calls, emails information that is requested, makes appointments, personally shows the boat, and if agreeable makes arrangements with the buyer for price, appraisal if any, deed, payment, and delivery. And he does not have to pay any commission. Sometimes you may find third-party ads posted by unauthorized persons or companies.

ADVANTAGES: The owner can tell the boat’s story firsthand.

DISADVANTAGES: cannot know with certainty timing, mode, security in payment. He has to move often to/from the boat and be able to untangle the bureaucracy. Not recommended for those who have little time or live far away.

OPTION 2 – I SELL THE BOAT MYSELF AND GET OTHERS TO SELL IT

In addition to what is mentioned in point 1, there are also listings of Maritime Brokers who have the opportunity to advertise on some specialized sites. Depending on who the buyer “brings,” the next steps are arranged, up to and including the bill of sale.

If the negotiation is handled by the owner, then he does NOT have to pay any commission. If a Maritime Mediator has intervened, the owner is required to acknowledge the agreed mediation. If the person or company that intervened is NOT a Maritime Broker, the owner is NOT required to pay any commission. If he then wants to pay an award he is free to do so. His choice.

ADVANTAGES: You don’t have to move often because someone else does.

DISADVANTAGES: The boat is overexposed, and published many times (often even with different prices). Everyone involved will try to sell the boat at any cost, even offering it at lower prices than authorized. The SPAM effect is not a signal appreciated by high-end customers, and it is very welcome by “businessmen.” Not recommended for lovers of linearity, order and precision.

OPTION 3 – I RELY ON ONE MARITIME BROKER.

I entrust the sale of my boat to one Maritime Broker. The owner does other things, devotes himself to his own work or interests, and upon completion of the sale pays the agreed mediation.

BENEFITS: often the boat is sold at a price at the high end of the market, no unnecessary displacement, guarantee on the formal and technical process. A single point of contact who knows everything about the boat, and does not tend to “give up” on price since he or she has a formal and exclusive assignment.

DISADVANTAGES: When the boat is put on the market, it is really sold. Not recommended for unconvinced sellers.

I preferred not to go too deep into the description of the process, partly because it is not the main theme of this article. The issue at hand is a different one.

There is no one solution better or worse than the others for selling the boat.

Each owner has different needs, background, and profile. My advice is to question yourself well about what you really want to do, and what the real project is: do I want (or should I) quit, do I want a bigger (or smaller) boat, do I want to buy a house in the mountains, or whatever. Having established and organized the most suitable route, then you can reread this article, and choose the solution that suits you best.

Either way, have a good sale!

Luca Bosazzi*

*Maritime Broker in Abayachting

 


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