Top Tips for Buying a Yacht
So, you have decided to buy a yacht? Congratulations! There is no greater lifestyle than yachting! Now comes the hard part deciding what yacht is right for you. You’ll need to consider performance, size, the number of guests you can expect, and more, and have a good idea of what you are looking for before you begin your search. Let’s explore the options, and then the steps to follow when making your purchase.
Performance and Other Factors to Consider
There are a number of items to consider when choosing your yacht. To make the process simpler, having an idea of what you want in your yacht is a good place to start. For example, do you want a motor yacht or a sailing yacht? Are you looking for high speed performance? Full-displacement or semi-displacement? Next, you’ll need to determine if you have any size restrictions. Knowing where you will dock your yacht will help, in other words, does your home port have limited access due to a fixed bridge in the area? Is the needed water depth available? How many guests do you anticipate while cruising? How many will you need to accommodate sleeping onboard? Do you plan to have a full-time crew? You will want to factor in these costs in regard to yacht ownership. Where do you plan to travel, that is, will you need a yacht transport service? Will parts needed for maintenance be available there? Keep in mind, every vessel requires maintenance and operating cost. What type of layout or décor do you prefer?
Once you have answered these questions, you should have a good idea of what type of yacht you are in the market for. Now, take your time choosing your perfect yacht. Don’t be rushed or allow yourself to feel pressured into a deal because you see what appears be a “great deal” or a “giveaway price” – they rarely what they seem at first look! You want to choose a good value, not a money pit. For this reason alone, you should charter the yacht you are considering or one like it, prior to making an offer. Finally, understand the cost of yachting. It is an amazing luxury experience, but one which requires ongoing operating and maintenance costs.
Ready to Buy Your Yacht?
Much like purchasing a luxury home, buying a yacht follows a unique sequence.
- Begin your search and selection with the help of a trusted professional yacht broker. He or she can help you refine your search parameters and make the necessary arrangements to review and inspect yachts available which meet your needs and desires.
- When your find “your yacht” your broker will present your formal offer with your 10 percent deposit in escrow and an industry standard contract and sales agreement including timing for sea trial, survey, acceptance, and closing. Your offer should include an inventory of the vessel.
- The seller then accepts, rejects, or counters your offer. Keep in mind, that counters are common.
- The yacht survey is the next step and includes testing of electronics, mechanical, and electrical equipment. The goal is to determine the yacht’s condition and expected maintenance cost for the future. In most instances, the yacht should be removed from the water for inspection. As the buyer, you will be responsible for the survey costs.
- The sea trial may take place before, during, or after the survey and allows you, the prospective buyer to verify the yacht’s performance while underway. In most cases, the sea trial is limited to four hours and the expense is the responsibility of the seller.
- After the completed sea trial and survey, you, the buyer, will submit written acceptance which can be conditional based on the need for repairs or financial allowances in regard to deficiencies discovered.
- Closing is the final step in the buying process and includes the exchange of signatures on legal contracts, followed by the ownership exchange. At this point, you will need a new registration and insurance for your vessel.
Congratulations! If you have made it through the process, you are now a yacht owner. Your next steps including hiring the best crew available and having a strong shore support team like the one at Lighthouse Point Yacht Club.