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Can You Buy A Boat Without A Survey

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  • Boat survey, Pre purchase survey, Marine surveyor, Valuation, Cost of boat survey
  • Posted date:
  • 26-06-2023
Can You Buy A Boat Without A Survey

Considering a boat purchase? Are you asking: can you buy a boat without a survey? Learn about the necessity of surveys. Explore the advantages and potential risks of buying a boat without a survey. 

Cetec Marine Ltd is a trusted marine surveyor working throughout Kent, Sussex, Hampshire, Berkshire and Greater London. Get expert advice on making informed decisions when acquiring a vessel, ensuring your investment is sound and your boating experience is worry-free.

What is a Boat Survey?

Before we assess why a marine survey might be incredibly beneficial for homeowners, let's take a look at what such a survey is. 

Sometimes referred to as the pre-purchase survey or valuation, it involves the help of a professional marine surveyor who will assess the desired boat. They inspect it for positives and negatives. 

Once this part is complete, they will produce a detailed report. This report demonstrates all the existing or potential faults that will require attention once the boat has been bought. 

The report will also state the advantages of the vessel, to ensure the customers have an adequate assessment of the pros and cons to debate upon. 

You may think that surveys are limited to large boats, ships, cruise lines, and high-end superyachts, but you stand corrected. Just about any boat, new or old, can benefit from a professional survey.

Do I Need a Boat Survey?

Aside from opting for a boat survey purely at the request of your insurance or finance lenders, it's wise to look into getting a marine survey regardless of that fact. 

It is the one part of the process that will clearly ensure you whether or not the asset you have chosen is of good value, and entirely functional to use. 

No matter the budget you have, typically the boat you opt for will be proportionate to your household income. The very last thing you need when purchasing a new vessel is for it to come complete with a boatload of issues that require costly repairs.

Marine surveys help highlight all the positives of the boat and the current or impending negatives that need to be addressed before the issues worsen. It will help all customers and buyers feel prepared and reassured during the final steps of the purchasing process.

Can You Buy A Boat Without A Survey? Marine Surveyor Kent, Sussex, Hampshire, Berkshire and Greater London

Boat Surveys And Valuations

Peace of Mind

Much like buying a car, house, or any other long-term asset or investment, when it comes to purchasing a boat, you must ensure you are fully aware of the product you intend to purchase. 

You must assess whether it is good value for money and whether or not there are changes to be made to improve its aesthetic value and functionality. 

You need to address how you could possibly budget to make such changes, and more importantly, whether or not the investment you wish to make is safe. The best way to do so is by hiring a qualified professional to perform an in-depth boat survey.

In the current era, the price of used boats is appreciating substantially in value. So, with this in mind, it is more significant than ever to ensure you're purchasing boats that will be worth it in the long run. 

With the help of a pre-purchase valuation or survey, you can successfully uncover any visible or underlying issues that need to be taken care of. 

That way, you'll find yourself negotiating a more efficient price that will leave you space to budget the repairs needed. Alternatively, too many problems with a vessel could deter you and withdraw any interest you may have.

If the inspection deems the boat to be in perfect condition, you can then move on through the purchasing process with much more confidence. Any minor improvements that don't affect the value or performance can then be remedied overtime at your leisure.

The Right Type of Boat Survey

When it comes to having a boat survey, there are numerous ones to choose from that all provide their own benefits. We highly recommend opting for a full-condition survey if you are a buyer, as this will be the most valuable form of survey. 

A full survey often includes a complete inspection of the boat's engine, exterior, interior, safety equipment, and control system, and finishes off by searching for any significant damages. If damages are found, they will be detailed in a report, and these are useful to help assess if the boat in question is fit for use.

With this in mind, you'll want to ensure that you select the right surveyor; one that is a qualified individual, or with an accredited company. Accreditations in the boat surveying field can mean a broad range of things. 

Some of them include IIMS (International Institute of Marine Surveyors), RYA (Royal Yachting Association), MECAL, and YBDSA (Yacht Brokers, Designers and Surveys Association).

An Expert Opinion

There are numerous boat purchases that are typically performed privately. Doing so isn't ideal as this means you won't have any legal protection should matters go south. Even if you utilise a broker, this isn't a substantial enough example of evidence that can be used in a court of law. 

On the other hand, if you pay for a valuation or survey, you can gain extra protection for your vessel and investment before you make the purchase. For those that invest in a survey, you'll find that it will put you in a much better position, especially if you wish to sell your boat in the future. 

Many marine finance lenders and various industry insurers encourage customers to get a professional survey. You must do so before insuring their boat vehicle and discussing any financial factors. If there were to be future issues with your boat, your survey feedback can be referenced, should you wish to make any form of claim.

To summarise, professional valuations and surveys provide customers with an expert opinion on the condition of their boat. It also offers plenty of additional information and further protection that you wouldn't gain without one. 

You want to ensure your boat-buying experience is seamless, enjoyable, and thorough. The best way to understand the ins and outs of a potential boat and reap the benefits is with a pre-purchase survey.

An Expert Opinion - Can You Buy A Boat Without A Survey?

What Kind Of Boat Needs A Survey?

Surveys aren't only utilised or completed for valuable, used, or large boats, you can have a survey done on any boat you intend to purchase or sell. You'll be happy to find that there isn't any specific minimum size or value attached to a boat survey. 

Perhaps because in most purchases of boats, generally, the price proportions are a reflection of the buyer's income. Both new and old boats require surveys from professionals, as this help detect obvious or underlying issues with the vessel that need to be mended before or after you make a solid purchase. 

Older boats that have been utilised for many hours and years, may experience some wear and tear from being on or close by saltwater constantly. 

Whereas, newer boats may have mistakes caused by manufacturers and builders, and these need to be rectified. While they anticipate your purchase, it's best to invest in a survey from a qualified contractor surveyor.

How Much Does a Boat Survey Cost in The UK?

The cost of each boat survey you implement throughout your browsing and purchasing process will often depend on the fixed prices of the surveyors you hire. 

Many marine surveyors across the UK typically charge based on the size or model of the boat, and some charge per foot of the boat. If they opt to charge per foot, you can expect it to be around £20 or just over. 

Altogether, it's best to anticipate prices of around £450 - £700. Boat surveys can become quite expensive, especially if the boat that you wish to have surveyed is incredibly large and spacious. 

We recommend getting as many quotes as possible from those marine surveyors in your local area. That way, you have many options to choose from before making your final decision. Whilst these prices may not vary so greatly, there could be a significant difference between those that charge per foot of the boat.

If you're searching for ways to have your boat surveyed at the lowest price you can achieve, it's a wise idea to get a broad spectrum of prices. Throughout England and the UK, this is the likelihood of the fees you'll be looking at.

If you are looking for yacht or marine surveys in Surrey and the surrounding areas contact our professional boat surveyor today. 

We work throughout Surrey and the surrounding areas including Kent, Sussex, Hampshire, Berkshire and Greater London. 

We can also travel throughout the UK if required.

Boat Valuations Surrey