Fly By Night

Sources for buying a used boat?

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Looking for recommendations on sources to search for buying a used boat.

 

I am aware of Boat Trader.   Are there any other good sources to help in the search?

 

Thanks!

Edited by Fly By Night

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If you are looking to buy from a private seller, try Craigslist and facebook marketplace. Both are good for local finds, and you can also change to locations where you think the boat you want might be.

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If you have a particular hull you are looking for, or a couple anyways, owner forums are always a good place ie: classicmako, classicseacraft, classicgrady, etc you get the idea

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I’ve had good luck on Craigslist. BUT Before you go out of your way to look at a boat, get pictures LOTS of pictures. Pictures of things you tell the seller to zoom in on. This way you know he is a serious seller and not trying to hide anything. I learned my lesson. Drove from ct to Delaware, Maryland, and Jersey all to be disappointed in what we were shown, abused over used junk. 

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13 hours ago, turbo_baer said:

I’ve had good luck on Craigslist. BUT Before you go out of your way to look at a boat, get pictures LOTS of pictures. Pictures of things you tell the seller to zoom in on. This way you know he is a serious seller and not trying to hide anything. I learned my lesson. Drove from ct to Delaware, Maryland, and Jersey all to be disappointed in what we were shown, abused over used junk. 

Junk is 90% of what's on Craigslist.  It used to be their motto: "Sell your junk on Craigslist."  

Makorider is right about owner forums.  It's a good place to find people who are serious about their boat.  They probably posted about any problems on the same site.

Local dealers are a great source of quality used boats, but they are protective of their inventory and some even have waiting lists.  Call around or visit their dealerships. 

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There is junk on CL  but there are some very nice boats also, as far as I am concerned. 

If on the other hand if you know nothing about boats , stay away or take someone with you that has knowledge   You can tell the ones that are kept well.

And the junk as well.  

The motor is the key. have it checked out.

Now a days its a lot easier to find out about the motors because they can put a meter on it and know the history. how many hours and the speeds ect.

There are some good deals to be had. 

 

 

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The. Hull. Truth. Is probably the best.  The forum has some serious boat officianados and more often than not the stuff listed is not junk 

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I have bought and sold what seems like a lot of boats over the years. No, not a dealer. However, I would say every few years I want something different (hull style, smaller, or bigger). Knew I had a problem when I had a 'fleet' of boats as my wife called it and scaled back down to just 1. CL used mostly. Although, I have bought 3 brand new boats and countless used. New will never guarantee you a painless experience but infers it will. However, I've never owned a single boat that has not had issues including new ones. Just expect it and focus on staying away from major issues of course. 

 

Advice:

When selling be honest, explain every thing you know about the boat including past and current issues and repairs (if any). Keep it to the facts of what you know and admit what you truly don't if asked but again, be honest. If they ask about something you know about, provide the details and facts that are relevant. 

 

When buying a boat, follow my advice for selling and expect that most sellers are going to do the opposite of this. First red flag is when you ask if there has ever been any issues on a used boat and response is there have never been any issues. Ha ha. 

 

I can go on with signs to watch out for but suggest if you don't know what to look for then to bring someone that does or pay for a full independent survey. Never be afraid to walk away from a deal either. Way easier to deal with the disappointment of a lost deal than the aftermath of a bad one. 

 

Good luck!

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2 hours ago, The Riddler said:

Use "Search Tempest" for Craigslist. It will search all CL's for the product you want.

x2 for Search Tempest...

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13 mins ago, beerdoh said:

x2 for Search Tempest...

you have to write down

how long boat

size ingene

style boat- purpose fishing-skying

new or used year ?

and price

from here you can zero in

i like 20'6" alumacraft with 150 HP and 9.9 HP troling motor with cisco triple rod holders on track for fishing.

locate the boat and go for ride,find what is fair walue now and work with that.

do not trust anybody even if you buy from priest.

write list of inspection,and do that by yourself,life is you learn,if you do not wanet to learn you have to pay big buck and you do not know what is going on.

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If you've got it narrowed down what you're looking for, just specific google searches can turn up boats on dealer lots that aren't advertised on the main sites as well.   

 

Craigslist cracks me up.  Guys asking $45k for a boat, but can't be bothered to take 5 minutes to sweep up the leaves or beer cans in the pictures.  I ruled out a ton of boats in my search just by how dirty they were in the ads. 

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Some good advice above.  A friend suggested reading "Buyers Guide for Outboard Boats" so I'm doing that.  I have until the Spring to pull the trigger.

 

I have it narrowed down pretty well at this point.

Used, Center Console t-top, 19-20', flexible on engine size, 14K to 18K, Ideally in the North East but again will consider driving a bit for a good boat.

 

Looked on Boat Trader & Craigs List.  I agree on CL seems like a total crap shoot.  Pricing on Boat Trader seems a little inflated at times.  I will check out some of the other recommendations.

 

Thanks!

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Head up to the boat show in Boston this week. Listen in to conversations from those looking to trade and if interested approach them. They were likely just offered and insulting price on trade. Some dealers even have a bunch of used boats on small billboards or listing sheets with them. Their incentives for the show may offer a good deal, even on something used. You will see a lot of boats over the next few months up for sale though so again, know when to walk. Can be a great time of year to buy with a larger selection due to those looking to upgrade. 

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