Buying or selling a boat? Advice and tips... | My Boat

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Are you thinking about buying a boat or selling one you currently own? We understand that the process can be quite overwhelming, especially if this is your first time. Often, it just sounds like too much effort, paperwork and negotiation and we tend to think, who has time for that?

It doesn’t have to be all that complex, as long as you keep organised and make well-informed decisions. If you’re buying, what sort of boat? How much are you willing to pay? If you’re selling, think about what price you’re willing to let it go for.

Often, we think of any transaction as a financial investment and buying a boat is a big one. You want to make sure to pick the best one for you while still getting your money's worth. If you’re selling, you want to know you have been offered the best possible price.

Before you begin, read our top tips for buying or selling a boat - we hope they make your experience a little easier...


Discuss with your family or whoever else you may be purchasing with, what type of boat you want. Whether you’re after a motorboat, a sailboat or a catamaran, you should be prepared by reading up on all there is to know and choose which is best for you. You’ll want to consider what size boat you’ll need. Do you want to sail solo or make it into a whole family affair?

Agree on a budget beforehand and stick to it, buying a boat isn’t a cheap purchase so keeping to a set amount ensures you only buy for what you can afford. Generally, it’s advised that 60% of your boat budget should go to the initial cost, whilst the remainder can be put towards maintenance costs and gear. Don’t forget to use a surveyor, they’re the experts and can examine the boat for any damage before you sign on the dotted line.



First things first is to agree on a price and decide whether you’ll be willing to negotiate. To help decide on this, do some research using advertisements online to compare how much similar boats go for.

Before you sell, you’ll have to thoroughly prep your boat. Clean every inch and replace or fix any damage because, as mentioned above, buyers will most likely be advised to hire a surveyor who will potentially recommend a lower offer. If you can, keep your boat up-to-date with the latest technology and facilities as this will give it a higher value.

Finally, the paperwork - it’s still important after you’ve made the sale!

Make sure you type up a bill that covers the price, buyer and seller names, addresses and driving license numbers - all relevant details of both parties involved. You’ll also need to include the type and size of boat. Once the sale has gone through, send the documentation to the boat registration agency who need to be informed of the details of the ownership change.


All of this does sound like a fair bit of paperwork to keep track of, so you may benefit from an online portal such as MyBoat, powered by GJW, which gives you the option to store all your documents digitally and keep them organised.