Buying a Boat – Overview of Boat Sales

Checking out what is available for sale in the boat market to find the boat that is right for you has never been easier. There are several online platforms which enable private sellers, dealers, manufacturers and brokers to list what they have to offer in both new and used categories.

These platforms are easy to navigate, with clearly defined categories for each type of boat. It’s good to know what you are looking for so you can go straight to that section. Functionality usually allows search by boat type, age, price range and other key features. Being able to compare new and used of the same manufacturer or type, side by side, can be extremely helpful.

Buying a New Boat

Manufacturers of all major brands, both power and sail, have invested in their websites to present their ranges as precisely and comprehensively as possible. You’ll find great photos, full spec sheets and heaps of other details including videos of the boats on the water.

Some manufacturers sell direct, others through a dealer network. Most dealers will be selling at the same recommended prices but often there is room to negotiate, so don’t be afraid to ask. Individual deals may add extras and options to the package to sweeten the deal, so it’s worth checking out a few.

To compare a number of boats in person, for the smaller trailer boat ranges, head to a boating centre that represents several brands. For the larger ranges of cruisers and yachts, dealers tend to specialise in one or two brands but have demo models at their marina-based offices.

Commercial Boats

Many commercial boats are custom-built to suit your specs. Boat builders such as Baldwin Boats are in this category as are several other reputable builders.

Buying a Used Boat

Used boats are available direct from private sellers, through dealers and through boat brokers. If buying through a private seller, ensure you follow best practice and check all verifications and have a marine engineer give you a professional condition report.
Using a boat broker is a great way to go. You can give them your brief and they will actually search out the boat you’re after- saving you a lot of time and hassle.

However you buy your boat and whatever boat you purchase, remember to check licensing and registration requirements in your state and don’t forget your safety equipment!