Often we are asked to ‘pick up the pieces’ for many clients who on their own have purchased a boat off-shore. Clear titles not being established, monies still owed on boats bought, hidden costs, non-compliance with regulations and lapsed/unclear warranty cover and poor surveys. Sometimes help is at hand; other times the damage is already done. Yachtfinders Global have been selling boats all around the world for over 24 years. Off-shore buying and selling has been perfected over this time allowing a purchase or sale to be a stress-free and enjoyable one! We are proud of our history and are keen to make buyers aware of the pitfalls of going it alone.
Don’t Get Caught Out
Yachtfinders Global is often asked to assist in an hour of need when things have come unstuck for an offshore purchaser going it alone. Our MD has acted as a crown witness to provide specialist knowledge concerning pitfalls and dangers the innocent and unaware purchaser can be subjected to. Many buyers think they save money by not using Yachtfinders Global when making their purchase – it costs them nothing for our protection. The commission is split. Pure and simple.
The Costs of Buying Offshore
If it was that easy, everyone would be doing it. The costs associated with buying a boat offshore and importing it have been perfected over many years of experience. We use accurate spreadsheets created by us for our buyers to prevent any hidden costs arising and to allow for complete transparency.
The offshore market is very lively for New Zealand buyers, especially in light of the American and European used boat market being on average 20%-25% less than the local markets. Add to that the current exchange rate and people have figured out that some boats can be purchased offshore, shipped to New Zealand, imported and GST paid for less than they can buy the same boat for already in New Zealand. Just make sure you’ve done your homework if you’re going to choose to go it alone. Remember, it costs nothing to use us, our fees are paid by the seller.
How unsuspecting internet shoppers get it wrong
But beware, all is not as it seems. Many buyers are being caught in a very simple, albeit innocent trap. The internet is deluged with used boats for sale, tens of thousands of them. But the moment someone makes an enquiry through the internet their details are logged into a database and without knowing it, the person making the enquiry becomes the ‘client’ of the target of the enquiry. This is all good as well so long as the broker on the other side of the world genuinely puts your interests first and foremost.
We’d like to bring this dilemma to the attention of the wider boating community because when things go wrong, and they can, it can be very difficult if not impossible for a local broker to get involved to assist.
One client who unwittingly made direct enquiries for over a dozen yachts and is now listed with as many brokers in Europe and the USA as ‘their client’, making it very difficult for us to represent him for any of the yachts he has looked at. Although he made enquiry through us, he also made direct enquiry, so that when we tender a co-op agreement the listing broker advises; “that person is already a client of ours”.
This is one of the pitfalls of internet boat shopping. It’s a trap that many buyers fall into and often leaves them no choice but to trust the first point of contact, in a foreign country, often not even speaking the same language, to do the right thing and protect their interests. It can get very messy.
Why Use a Qualified Local Broker?
- We encourage people to let us do the shopping, or at least let us make the first contact for a particular boat they have seen.
- By all means do your internet browsing but let us make contact for a boat that appeals to you.
- By doing it that way you are registered as our client.
- You automatically have local representation that is bound under the laws and commerce of New Zealand and there is no added cost to you.
- It is simply a co-op agreement between international brokers who split the commission.
- The commission on a boat gets paid regardless of who handles the contract, so why would you choose not to have local representation?
An offshore broker’s background may appear to be reputable and your interests may be in good hands, but should something go wrong your avenues of recourse are limited. You can choose to go it alone, but if something goes wrong things can become complicated.
We are here to help, but coming to the rescue after the ship has sailed is the difficult way to go.
Yachtfinders Global……more than a brokerage