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How to sell your boat fast ?

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Selling price, advertising, essential documents: what you need to know to sell your boat quickly and save yourself time. Save money by doing it yourself or save yourself time by going through professionals: both options are possible when it comes to selling your boat. Band of Boats, a specialist in sailing boats, catamarans and second-hand boats, has a range of useful tips and advice for you.

Setting the right price for your boat

First and foremost, it’s important to set the right selling price for your boat. To avoid wasting time and ensure your boat sells quickly, the price will need to be as fair as possible (and allow some margin for any potential negotiation). Overpricing it could cause you to miss out on potential buyers, while underpricing it could undermine the credibility of your ad and make it appear less trustworthy.

If you would like to delegate this task to someone else to save yourself time and effort, it’s possible to employ a marine surveyor to do it for you or get your boat dealer involved, Yacht brokers are industry professionals with thorough knowledge of the second-hand market. Your broker will be able to provide you with an accurate estimate of the selling price.

Reassuring the potential buyer about the condition of the boat

In order to achieve a quick sale, there are certain things you need to consider doing to reassure potential buyers:

  • Make the most of your ad: take photographs that show your boat off at its best (i.e. exterior shot of the whole boat, interior photos, shots taken on deck and photos of the boat’s various features), and describe it in positive terms in the accompanying text. Your aim: to create a good impression right from the outset! Without this, potential buyers won’t even bother coming to view it.
  • Have your boat appraised: getting a technical appraisal report carried out by a professional will prove to the buyer that everything on your boat is in good working order and in good condition.
  • Prepare your boat prior to each viewing: clean and air it well before any potential buyers arrive – if necessary, you can call in professionals to do this for you. Remove as many of your own personal belongings from the boat as possible (i.e. decorative items, ornaments, food, etc.)
  • Be able to provide a record of the boat’s full history (don’t try to hide details of any damage or repairs, etc.): this will enable you to show both its plus points and its negative ones. Don’t forget, you are the one in the best position to communicate this information, which could be of great value to potential buyers (Is your boat heavy on fuel? Does the onboard space offer a comfortable and enjoyable sailing experience? Are you its first owner?
  • Draw up an inventory of the onboard equipment: this could be a deciding factor in helping a potential buyer make their mind up. It’s essentially a bit like with a house, where you might decide to include attractive furniture or appliances in the sale.

Finally, don’t forget to have all the essential documents to hand, such as invoices for any repairs, the original bill of sale, administrative documents, registration documents, etc. And if someone is interested in buying your boat, don’t forget to offer them a sea trial!

Using a professional to sell your boat

Not got time to manage the process yourself, or don’t want to have to travel to the boat to show people round? Then sell your boat through a professional yacht-broker or a boatyard. This does come at a cost (expect to pay a minimum of 1,000 euros in fees), but it could enable you to get your boat sold quickly.

Using a yacht broker or a boatyard to sell your boat will give your ad significant added exposure and visibility, as it will be placed on specialist fee-charging websites targeted directly at potential buyers. You can also be kept informed about each step of the process, thereby avoiding any unpleasant surprises. And finally, the broker or boatyard will manage the viewings on your behalf.

They will also take care of getting your boat back in tip-top condition if necessary (for a fee), and provide storage for it while it’s waiting to be sold. Selling through a professional also gives you the opportunity to offer a warranty to potential buyers (providing yet another way to instil confidence in them!).
If you like, Band of Boats can help you sell your boat.

The day you complete the sale of your boat

On the big day itself, remember to ask for a deposit. It can also be a good idea to check that the buyer is solvent and creditworthy through their bank (carry out the sale on a working day if you intend to do this). To avoid disappointments or frauds and scams, etc., make sure you have already met the potential buyer prior to the sale (or that they have viewed your boat in the company of a professional). Do not accept payments in cash or via Western Union: try to ensure you get paid via bank transfer or cheque if at all possible .

A quick summary of the steps to take to achieve a quick sale of your boat:

Don’t be reluctant to get professional help with any or all of these steps if required.

  • Present your boat in its best light
  • Set a fair selling price
  • Stipulate a safe and secure payment method

Discover our full range of new and used boat ads or create your own ad on our Band of Boats website.

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