Whether you're after a quick sale or want to get the best price, we explain the benefits of selling with a yacht broker

When it comes to selling your boat, the first thing you need to decide is whether you want to sell with a yacht broker or go private. While there are advantages to both, this guide explains the benefits of working with a yacht broker to sell your boat.

A yacht broker will match your boat with prospective buyers for a one-off commission, which you pay only once the sale has been completed.

Andy Cunningham manages yacht brokerage firm Michael Schmidt & Partner. He said using a yacht broker usually proves cost-effective and worthwhile, especially if a deal starts to unravel.

“If a private sale breaks down, it’s only the lawyers who benefit,” he warned, “and it could be months before the boat can be sold and free of dispute”.

Cunningham explained that yacht brokers will manage the entire sales process for you, from advertising the boat and dealing with enquiries to organising viewings.

Once a buyer has been found, a yacht broker will organise the contract so each party is clear about what is being sold. They will also hold the deposit in a separate account, gather the owner’s paperwork, negotiate the transaction and arrange the Bill of Sale to pass to the new owner.

Any outstanding debt on the boat will be settled before the keys and paperwork are handed to the new owner, once the funds have cleared.

He gave us his top reasons why you should consider employing a yacht broker to sell your boat:

  • An objective eye
    Presentation dictates the price of a boat. A broker will give you a realistic appraisal of your boat and identify areas that need work or might be unappealing to prospective buyers – It’s hard for an owner to be objective about their pride and joy!
  •  Pricing
    There is a marked difference between the asking price and the real value of a boat. Anyone can check how much similar boats are being advertised for but a broker will know how much they actually sell for.  A realistically priced boat will attract sensible offers and you can be ‘harder’ on your pricing. Often the first offer is the best as it comes from the keenest purchaser.
  •  Place & Position
    If you are going to sell your boat, it needs to be seen. Some yacht brokers have raised viewing platforms at popular boatyards and marinas, with power and water fed to the boats and easy access for potential buyers.
  •  Promotion
    You can advertise your boat online yourself but it will take time and money to manage.  A broker will do this for you as part of the service.Sites like eBay might be useful as research tools but they are not the best portal to use to sell your boat. Any sensible purchaser is going to want to view the boat rather than bidding blind, which means the whole transaction reverts back to the normal sale-and-purchase style rather than an online auction.
  •  Private viewings
    A broker will show people your boat at weekends and accommodate those who miss appointments.

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