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Seven Pointers for Selling Your Old Boat Successfully

Purchasing a boat is much simpler than selling one. It explains why you see many more books and articles about buying boats than selling them, I suppose. Selling your boat takes time, money, patience, and the perfect buyer. It can be stressful to have to sell your yacht first before upgrading to a new ship. But if you are aware of the seven suggestions listed below, there is a significant probability that your ship will sell more quickly than it otherwise would. For more information, look here.

7 Best Advice for Marketing Your Used Boat:

1. Improve your boat’s saleability by following these six steps

  • Let your boat sparkle by clearing it of clutter. Clean boats sell well.
  • Keep your interest. Buyers notice this. Maintaining enthusiasm in maintaining the boat’s appearance and maintenance is crucial.
  • Solve the problem. Don’t count on buyers to make repairs. Instead, replace or repair anything that breaks or appears worn. This demonstrates to the prospective buyer how much you still value your boat. The customer absorbs that energy.
  • Make the engine room clean. No components with grease, oil, or paint chips. This is, regrettably, the biggest deal-breaker. It’s unpleasant to enter a place with moldy walls, filthy toilets, and oily carpets.
  • Tidy up the bilge. Ensure sure it is free of debris such as oil, dirt, and leaves. Another turnoff, particularly for female purchasers, is a foul bilge.
  • Take personal items away. You want the potential purchasers to picture or envisage their belongings aboard the boat. Also, the potential buyers may presume that any personal items you leave on the yacht are included in the sale.

2. Establish the optimum price for your yacht.

Do your research before deciding to sell your yacht yourself. Look up boats with the same characteristics, model, and year online. Examine used boat publications. For how much are these boats being sold? In what state are they? What location are they in? Do they have a yacht broker, or are they being sold privately?

The ABOSTM Marine Blue Book, BUC® Used Boat Pricing Guide, and PowerBoat Guide are websites and books that yacht brokers can use to conduct more research. These books give them a sense of a boat’s current value. In addition, they can learn how much a specific ship has previously sold for from the websites they utilize. There’s a significant probability that you should price your boat similarly if, during your investigation, you find a comparable vessel offered through a yacht broker in your neighborhood.

You can rationally decide how much to ask for your boat once you have an idea of how much boats similar to yours are selling for. Avoid falling into the trap of believing that your boat is worth more than it is or that you may sell it to pay off the loan if you still owe money on it. Time is crucial, and reasonably pricing your boat will increase the likelihood of being seen and quickly sold.

3. Capture pictures

Boaters enjoy viewing photos of boats and their components; the more, the merrier. Consider the kinds of pictures you want to view. Go around your ship and take numerous photos of the port, transom, starboard, stern, and bow from all perspectives. Take pictures of the mast, main sail, and companionway on sailboats. It will be even better to take images of your boat from the water and the water away from the docks.

Next, snap interior shots. Make sure everything is out of the way and that the inside of your yacht is clean and organized before you sell it. In other words, don’t include that flat-screen TV in your images if you’re not selling it at your salon. The electronics, forward cabin, engine room, engines, heads, galley, salon, staterooms, v-berth, etc., should all be photographed. Also, pictures of the helm, flybridge, companion, and mate helm seats are required. Take photos of the rudder, keel, and propellers if the boat is on the hard.

Capture broader pictures in addition to close-ups. Once more, observe other yachts for sale and note which images you enjoy viewing. You can be sure your prospective purchasers will also enjoy those photos.

4. Promote

How much information is included in your ad will depend on where it is placed. Yet, your chances of having your advertisement viewed increase the more locations you can position it. You may advertise your boat for free on several websites and forums. They include mentioning a few,,, and However, some websites that claim to have no fees will charge you around $350 upfront. Thus, before posting your boat ad online, read the fine print. While used boat magazines are still viable, don’t only stick to them. It is more difficult to update them with new prices, pictures, etc.

The number of hours on the engine and generator and the dates and details of any significant rebuilds should all be included in your advertisement for your boat. Is the water in your boat fresh or raw cool? It would be best to be honest about the boat’s flaws, how long you’ve owned it, and—most importantly—why you’re selling it. It’s acceptable to announce that you’re upgrading to a larger boat, downsizing to a smaller one, or giving up boating altogether. Use the table at the end of this chapter as a writing worksheet for the specifications you should include in your advertisement.

Put a “for sale” sign on your yacht wherever it is, so others nearby will know you’re selling.

Create a sales brochure for your yacht and keep extra copies on hand.

5. Timing the sale

With a slowdown in late August and early September, boats sell most frequently between March and September. Many seek specifically for purchases by the July 4th holiday from April through June. Then, November resumes its average pace. Place your boat in its natural habitat—the water—for the best display, if possible. Selling a boat often takes three to six months. Yet, it is known for some ships to lie idle for a long time. It depends on how well you promote, how clean, and how well you price your boat for sale.

6. Choose whether to work with a broker.

The best course of action is to use a broker if you don’t have the time to do the necessary research to write and post ads, build and post signs, answer phone calls and set up appointments, show your boat or sell your yacht. A broker can perform all the legwork for you, including placing the ads, screening potential buyers, showing your ship, etc. In addition, a broker can access other brokers, more functional websites, such as, where non-brokers can post ads, and the used boat books described in Tip 2 above.

Although some charge less, most boat brokers charge a 10% commission. Many brokers genuinely deserve their commissions.

7. Be cautious with maintenance and use during the selling process.

Up until the transaction is completed, keep your boat insured.

Maintain the space around the portholes spotless, the batteries free of acid, and all areas devoid of mold or mildew. Remove the plastic if you’re going to be showing off the boat. Allow the prospective buyers to experience the wind in their faces.

After you’ve signed a purchase and sale agreement (P&S) and received a deposit from the buyer, don’t use your boat.

Contact a qualified maritime surveyor to have your boat surveyed if it is older or hasn’t been in a while. Either way, have a copy of the latest marine survey for your boat available for review by potential buyers.

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