4 Questions To Consider When Buying A Yacht
There are many resources out there to help prospective buyers through the yacht buying process, such as the 7-Step Guide To Buying Your First Luxury Yacht, but the most important decision can only be made by you, the customer. Deciding which yacht to buy can be the most emotionally involved part of the process as there are many different types and inventory on the market. Power and Motor Yacht Magazine recently interviewed several HMY Yachts sales professionals to find out the answers to some very important questions to consider when making your purchase.
Question #1 : How do you determine the right yacht for your needs?
A professional yacht broker can always help a client find the best yacht for their needs by examining how the customer is going to use the boat. Will the boat be used for fishing, cruising, or long distance travel? What is the customer's budget? How many guests does the customer anticipate bringing on board? What is the skill level of the future owner? Where will the customer be using the boat? With so many uses and so many vessels built for very specific types of boating adventures, it is crucial to really understand what is important to the potential owner. One advantage of using an experienced HMY yacht broker is the knowledge level of the market and of the different types of yachts that exist.
Question #2 : What are the differences between production, semi-custom, and custom yachts?
Veteran HMY Yacht Sales Professional Jack Robertson explains the differences between purchasing what is known as a production yacht versus the different levels of customization options that exist today, "I think on a production boat you're going to have your economy to scale, it's going to be the best priced boat. Taking what that manufacturer puts out, being their best example of what they think the market is. When you get into semi-custom you will be buying, and paying a little more, based on the fact that you are modifying and enhancing some of the factory options to on your own personal needs. And then completely custom being, a project typically found with a larger yacht where the customer would sit down with a naval architect and draw out exact cabin accommodations and essentially building a yacht from your own drawings."
Question #3 : What key factors drive the price of yachts?
With so many different types of boats and level of quality among those different manufacturers, it's important to understand exactly what you are getting for the price of your yacht. "It all comes down to price and materials," comments Jack Robertson. The quality of the materials used in the construction of the yacht generally dictates the price. This is where using a professional broker can really make sense for even the most experienced yacht buyer, as many of the materials and production processes change and improve each year. The value of the boat is also widely driven by the current state of the market. Is it a buyer's or seller's market currently? What have similar boats recently sold for? Your professional broker can provide insight into the current market prices and how they may fluctuate when you go to eventually sell or trade-in your vessel.
Question #4 : When should I get the yacht surveyed and who should I use?
Once a client gets to the point where they have decided on which yacht they want, have made an offer, and that offer has been accepted, it is time to have the vessel professionally surveyed. HMY yacht sales professional Harley Henning has plenty of experience dealing with surveyors and had this advice, "We provide [the clients] with a list of reputable surveyors within the area and then they get to interview and select the surveyor of their choice. And we also recommend that [the customers] not only do a hull survey, but an engine survey as well. We pride ourselves in recommending that as much be done as possible to inspect the vessel." For more in-depth information on the surveying process, read our previous article about how a professional survey can bring you peace of mind.