Tag Archives: yachting

Boat Show Secrets Revealed

Most people who are shopping for a boat go to a boat show with high expectations. The majority of boat show attendees however leave the show at the end of the day with nothing to show for their efforts but sore feet and a sunburn. The disappointment is as obvious as is the frustration. Boat shows are after all one of the least expensive ways to shop for a boat with the largest selection and the best deals. So what goes wrong?

Let us take the Ft. Lauderdale International Boat Show as an example. This is the largest boat show in the world. This year the show will feature more than 3 billion dollars worth of boats, yachts, superyachts, electronics, engines and thousands of accessories from every major marine manufacturer and builder worldwide. The Boat Show encompasses more than 3 million square feet of space, both on land and in water, at six sites. Surely with this kind of selection available you should be able to find exactly what you are looking for.

This is a short video of the Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show last year.

The boat show that you attend is likely to be on a smaller scale than the one in Ft. Lauderdale. But the challenge is the same. No one has ever taught you how to shop for a boat at a boat show. Attending a boat show without a well thought out plan is likely not going to lead to satisfactory results by the end of the day. Here are some tips to guide you through the day and find the boat you want.

Go to the boat show website several days in advance. This is the link for the Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show here. Most well organized boat shows should have a list of exhibitors somewhere on their site. Search that list for the boats that you want to take a look at and write down where that boat will be at the show. If the location is not listed there should be the name of the dealer with a contact number. Call the dealer and ask how to find them at the show. Get a cellphone number to call in case you get to the show and get lost in the maze of boats that are there.

Arrive at the show when the gates open as the crowds will be thinner than at mid-day. Get the show guide when you enter and locate the boat show map. Find a place to sit for a few minutes and mark the locations on the map where your boats are supposed to be displayed. Make a “You Are Here” mark on the map and plan your day. Failing to do this simple step will certainly lead to the day ending in frustration and disappointment.

Now this is likely to be the most valuable advice I can give you and that is to attend the show with your broker. If you do not have a yacht broker in your employ like you do an accountant and an attorney – get one. Unlike your accountant and your attorney who charge by the hour, yacht brokers do not get paid until a boat is sold. Furthermore, the yacht broker’s commission is paid by the seller. Most boat dealers will accommodate you if you insist on having your broker act as your agent in your purchase.

If the salesperson that meets you on the dock or at the booth in the convention center tells you that they don’t work with outside brokers you need to ask for the sales manager in that exhibit. The sales manager will likely be the owner of that dealership. The dealer is extremely unlikely to lose out on a sale just because you wish to use your broker as your agent in the deal. This will be especially true for every boat show in the United States this season.

Your yacht broker is also the best person to have in tow if you are considering the purchase of a brokerage or previously owned boat. It is a fallacy to think that you will get a better price if you deal directly with the listing broker. The seller is paying a commission whether there is one broker involved in the sale or two. The commission is simply split between two people rather than earned by one. With large numbers involved that are directly associated with your hard earned money this is the time you need to have a professional on your team whom you have grown to trust.

After the purchase of your home, buying a boat will likely be the largest buying decision you have to make. Most people are not born nor are they trained in how to search for or negotiate to buy a boat. Having your yacht broker meet you at the boat show will likely mean that not only do you not have to go through the effort of having to locate the boats you wish to see. You will not likely have to pay for the boat show tickets either or for lunch.

If you need a broker to show you around the Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show please call me (954) 614-1663). If you don’t plan to attend but could use some help at a boat show in your home town and need a yacht broker to help I can refer you to someone locally. Call me (954) 614-1663 or send me an email (david@oasisyachts.com). And I would appreciate it if you left a comment on your experience at a recent boat show in the box below.

Have a great show!

David

(954) 614-1663

Preparing Your Boat For Sale

So now you have decided that it is time to sell your boat. You have done some research on the Websites that you clicked through to in the last blog. You have discovered that your beloved boat is not the only boat for sale. As I write this there are 120,569 boats for sale on Yacht World alone. Clearly you have some competition. If you want your boat sold first we have some work do.

With the universal acceptance of the Internet over the last few years, the Web is the first place most boat shoppers go to see what used boats are available, the new models that boat dealers have in stock, current asking prices, and other relevant information to help them make an intelligent boat buying decision. If they do not know how to access that information they ask one of their kids to do it for them.

By the time a client shows up at my office and tells me that they want to buy a boat they often know much more about a specific model than I do as a yacht broker and practically anyone else in the industry. They know what boats are available, what condition the boats are in, what current asking prices are, and what that specific boat model has sold for in the last six months. You have access to the same information and need to use that market intelligence to formulate your selling strategy.

In my next blog we will talk about pricing and begin getting your boat ready for sale. Have a terrific day on the water and I’ll see you next time after you have done your homework!

See you soon!

David

(954) 614-1663

Attracting Overseas Boat Buyers

I mentioned in my last post that all of the boats that I have sold in the last 10 months have been to people outside of the United States. Everyday there is a story proving that you are not the only one experiencing this lack of American boat buyers. A story late last week about the boat show in Tacoma, WA focused on the number of foreign attendees on the dock looking for bargains.

It is an understatement to say that you have your work cut out for you if you live in the USA and have a boat for sale. This is indeed a buyers market. The chances are slim that your boat will sell quickly. Even if you have a popular model that is clean and has been extremely well maintained chances are she is still at your dock.

You have another option. Advertise your boat offshore and attempt to attract the attention of the boat shopper overseas who is looking for your model of boat. How do you do that? It is unlikely that you personally have the marketing expertise or connections to target that foreign market. You need to find someone who has tapped into that market, knows where to advertise and understands what steps are necessary to get that buyer to fly in to take a look at your boat. You only have a couple of viable options.

Doing it yourself by taking out an ad on Boat Trader Online or one of the other For Sale By Owner listing services is unlikely to yield any results any time soon. I deal with boats and boat owners everyday and am amazed at the number of people even in America who do not have a clue where to go online when shopping for a boat. Do not expect that guy hunched over his PC in Greece to find your Sea Ray in Erie, PA.

The chances of your boat being viewed online and brought to the attention of overseas buyers rises dramatically when you hand over that responsibility to someone who is already familiar with those markets and has a proven track record in attracting offshore boat buyers to the United States.

Your best option is to search for a yacht broker based in the USA who is familiar with and has listings similar to your model of boat. Check that brokerage out on www.YachtWorld.com or www.YachtCouncil.com.

Check to see if they have any boats listed overseas. Determine who the broker is on that brokerage team who has the most overseas expertise and call them. Tell him that you are frustrated with the lack of inquiries on your boat and that you wish to sell her to someone outside the country. Check out three or four brokers with similar experience until you find one that you trust and have an easy rapport. Verify that they are a Certified Professional Yacht Broker. You can verify that by going to www.cpyb.net.  There are around 450 in this country. You may even have to talk to professional brokers who may not be from your hometown.

Feel free to contact me with any questions.

Have a splendid weekend and see you next week!

Cheers,

David

(954) 614-1663