Is a Marine Survey Worth It – How to Buy the Right Used Boat

Is a marine survey worth it? The answer is yes. This is because it is only with a professional marine survey that you will be able to understand the exact condition of a boat, its fair market value, and if it fits your intended use. In this post, we will be taking a look at how you can make the right decision when buying a used boat and why it is always wise to involve a marine surveyor.

The main challenge of buying a pre-owned vessel is deciding whether it is in good condition and if it will be a good fit for you. Getting a professional Palm Beach marine survey can help you overcome this challenge. This is more so if you are a newcomer or you need all the cards on the table before making a decision on a used boat. The input of a marine surveyor will help you know if you are making the best choice or not. Here are some additional considerations you should make before buying a used boat.

Think about where you will be using the boat

The mistake most buyers make is of going for the biggest boat without thinking about where they will be using the vessel. Prior to making the decision on a boat, you have to think about the size of the lake or river you will be using it on. The perfect boat must suit the local conditions. For a placid lake, for example, a pontoon boat will be perfect. The pontoon boat will, however, be unideal for rough coastal conditions.

Sail or powerboat

The best way to answer this question is by considering the activities you will be involved in. Are you interested in wakeboarding, waterskiing, racing, fishing, or parties on the water? What you need the boat for will help pick the right boat for the job. Consulting a marine surveyor will help you pick the vessel that is perfect for your lifestyle. The required skills will also determine whether you go for a power or a sailboat.


You should not just pay attention to the initial purchase price of a boat. Your budget must also include the maintenance costs. In addition to the purchase price, you will have to set money aside for storage, fuel, insurance as well as annual maintenance costs. A marine surveyor will be happy to give you an estimate on the maintenance costs of your target vessel.

Boat valuation

If you are still asking the question of is a marine survey worth it, it is good to note that a surveyor is the best professional to give you a thorough boat valuation. This is because he is involved in the valuation of boats almost on a daily basis. They are in the best position to perform a valuation and share information on the fair market value of the vessel.

Is a Marine Survey Worth It

Boat Inspector Palm Beach – What is Looked at in an Exterior Boat Inspection?

When you hire a boat inspector Palm Beachtrusts, he will inspect every inch of your boat. His work mostly starts with the inspection of the exterior. To do this inspection well, your boat may have to be lifted out of the water. This enables the surveyor to inspect the underside of the hull. But what exactly will the surveyor focus on when inspecting the exterior?

As aforementioned, unless you have specific requirements, the inspection of a boat starts with the visual inspection of the boat’s exterior. This helps the boat inspector Palm Beach trusts get a feel of the boat’s exterior condition, its space as well as layout. Keep in mind that the exterior is what keeps water from getting in the boat. If there are any issues, a catastrophe will be inevitable.

Check for damages or repairs

To understand the condition of your boat’s exterior, the surveyor will pay attention to any damages and major repairs that have been done. The surveyor will check for cracks, signs of major repairs, and discolored areas which show repairs were made.

Inspect the transom, decks, bilge and fuel tank

The transom is the area where an outboard engine would be mounted. If the surveyor finds waterlogged wood, this shows the area has major issues. While this issue is less common in modern boats, older wooden vessels are more susceptible to rot. The surveyor will also check the bilge area for signs of oil leaks, rot and warping.

Ensure the stringers are connected properly

The stringers must be connected properly to the hull. If they are not, the whole boat will be doomed. It is not easy to tell if the stringers are well connected. This is more so for an untrained eye. Your surveyor may use a torch or other specialized equipment to determine the integrity of the connection. Any damage or separation has to be treated with extreme wariness.


Are you going for a sailing yacht? If you are, then you have to pay attention to the rigging and sails. These are very expensive to replace. Considering they are used regularly when cruising, you want to make sure they are in perfect condition. The rigging also has to be changed at least once every 10 years. Your surveyor will ask when the rigging was last changed.

These are just some of the areas that are inspected on the exterior. There are many more areas an experienced surveyor will look at. Make sure you get every inch looked at.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Boat Inspector Palm Beach – Important Considerations to Make When Buying a Boat

It’s a big decision to buy a boat. It is not only an expensive investment but one that will impact your finances in the future. That is why making the right decision the first time is so important. You have to be a smart buyer. Part of being a smart buyer involves working with an experienced boat inspector Palm Beach trusts. The primary role of a boat inspector is to go through every inch of your target boat and provide a detailed report. The report will help you understand the exact condition of the vessel including whether it has had major repairs done.

In addition to working with a boat inspector Palm Beach stands behind, there are a couple of things you will have to consider when buying a boat. Here are the most important considerations you must make.

New or used?

This is one of the most difficult questions you will have to answer when searching for a boat to buy. There is beauty in both options. For example, if you choose to buy a brand new boat, you will get all the latest technologies and everything will be working as it should. You also get a good warranty. On the flip side, the value of a new boat depreciates at an alarming rate. For a used boat, you will be able to get a bigger boat at half the cost. You must, however, bring in a boat surveyor to comb through every inch of the used boat so as not to end up buying a doomed vessel. Most used boats will require repairs and upgrades to be done; all of which will cost you money.

The decision on whether to buy a new or used boat will depend mostly on your budget and the type of boat you want. Consulting with a marine surveyor will keep you from going for the wrong boat.

What size do you want?

When searching for a boat to buy in Palm Beach you will be spoilt for choice. This is more so when it comes to the size of the boat. To avoid being overwhelmed, here are some important questions you should ask:

  • Where will you be using the boat?

If you plan on operating it on a lake or river, you will be operating it during the daytime. A boat between 18 and 40 feet will be ideal.

  • How long will you be staying on the boat?

For an overnight stay on the boat, you will be best suited to going for a larger boat. Find a boat with a cabin, galley, and other amenities.

  • What is your budget?

You must also think about how much you want to spare on the boat. Don’t just think about the purchase price. Consider the cost of gasoline, maintenance, cleaning, dry docking, winter storage, moorage, and boat insurance.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Common Questions About Working with a Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Is it the first time you are hiring a boat inspector Palm Beach trusts? If it is, you should not be anxious. The process of hiring a surveyor is quite straightforward. You just need to focus on an experienced boat surveyor who has worked on vessels similar to yours. The surveyor must also have a good track record and supply references and sample survey reports. Next, you need to understand what is involved in a typical survey. Here are answers to the most frequently asked questions about working with a boat surveyor.

What is inspected?

You don’t want to be clueless when the boat inspector Palm Beach approves arrives. You want to have some idea of what the surveyor will be doing. Understanding what is inspected in a survey is a good start. The surveyor will do the following:

  • Find and note the hull identification number as well as federal or state registration marks
  • Take moisture readings in the deck and hull
  • Check for blistering or delamination
  • Check the structural integrity of the bulkheads, stringers, and transom
  • Review and test the electrical systems and wiring
  • Review the plumbing
  • Check the condition of underwater gear, including the propellers, struts, and shafts
  • Inspect the fuel system
  • Create an inventory of the required gear

The list is much longer. What is inspected also varies from one vessel to the next. If the survey is needed for insurance purposes, the insurer will provide a list of things that should be inspected. Make sure you understand what you need the survey for before hiring a surveyor.

How long does the survey take?

How long a survey takes will depend on what has to be inspected, weather conditions, location of the boat and the size of the boat. Typically, it takes a couple of hours to a full day. A sea trial takes about 30 to 60 minutes.

How much will the service cost?

Marine surveyors charge differently for their services. Some will have a flat rate, more so for the simpler and smaller boats, while others will charge per foot for their time. The per-foot pricing ranges from $15 to $30 per foot. It is also common for surveyors to charge a portion of their per-foot time for travel to your boat. The location and age of your boat can also affect the cost of the survey.  There is also a cost for a short-haul at the yard. This costs about $15 per foot.

There are many reasons why you might need the services of a boat inspector in Palm Beach. The key is to hire a dependable surveyor. How comprehensive and reliable a survey report is will depend on the competence of the surveyor you work with.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Why Do You Need a Boat Inspector Palm Beach?

Oftentimes, boat owners only contact a boat inspector Palm Beach when it is absolutely unavoidable. Unavoidable circumstances include when an insurance provider or a lender requires a survey report. They rely more on the input of their mechanic and electrician to ensure everything on their vessel is in perfect shape. What you may not know is that the input of a boat surveyor can save you time and money more so when getting ready to sell your boat or buy a used boat. To better understand why you should work with a marine surveyor, you need to understand when and why you should hire one.

The main reason people call a boat inspector Palm Beach is to perform a pre-purchase survey. This is a comprehensive survey done to understand the precise condition of a boat before buying it. The primary concern when hiring a boat surveyor, in this case, is to guarantee the safety of your vessel, crew and investment. While your lending institution or insurer will require a boat survey to be done, it is important to remember that the reason for working with a surveyor is to ensure the vessel is reliable, seaworthy, safe and with no major flaws.

Secondary concern when working with a surveyor has to be financial in nature. Buying a boat requires a significant investment. As a result, you definitely want the sale to go without a single hitch. If there is a problem with the vessel, an experienced surveyor will be able to find it and document it in the survey report. It is, however, your job as a buyer to make sure these problems are found before the deal is inked. That way you will either be able to avoid making a bad investment or use the documented problems to negotiate a better deal with the seller. Keep in mind that once you sign the sale agreement, you will no longer have any bargaining power in the sales transaction process.

Another reason that mandates a survey to be done is for the benefit of an insurer. After you own the vessel, you will pay for any damage that befalls it. To avoid spending a lot out of your pocket, you should get boat insurance. Insurance providers will require a survey report from a reputable surveyor.

You will have to get a survey done if you plan on using your boat as collateral for a loan. Lenders will want to know the real value of your vessel before accepting it as collateral.

Virtually any vessel will benefit from a boat inspection in Palm Beach. An inspection can be done even when you don’t plan on selling your vessel, using it as collateral or getting insurance. A survey can be done simply to understand the exact condition of your vessel and to avoid expensive repairs in the near future.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Getting Ready for a Boat Survey? Do This

Hiring a boat inspector Palm Beachis the best thing you can do if you don’t want to end up with a doomed vessel. The inspector/surveyor will evaluate every aspect of your boat to ensure it is in perfect condition. They will report on major issues and help you understand the fair market value. In addition to that, the surveyor will help you know how much it will cost to insure the boat and how much the repairs will cost. All in all, for you to get the best experience during a survey, you need to get your boat ready for the survey. Here is how you prepare for a boat inspection.

Arrange for a boat lift

If what you need is a comprehensive boat survey, the surveyor will have to inspect the hull. This will include inspecting the bottom of the boat. To facilitate this, you need to make arrangements for a boat lift at a time that is convenient for the boat inspector Palm Beach. You have to ensure the surveyor will have enough time to inspect the hull without being pressured by the yard to relaunch. To speed up the process, make sure the boat is already lifted by the time the surveyor is arriving.

Play your part

Before allowing a survey to be done, a seller will require you to commit to buying the boat. In most cases, you will be required to pay a deposit and sign a contract. Make sure this is all done before the surveyor arrives. Second, you should take the step to declutter the vessel. Remove anything that will not be sold with the boat. You also need to wash the hull to make it easy for the surveyor to inspect it.

Confirm the appointment with the surveyor in writing

The last thing you want is to spend money getting the boat lifted and cancelling your day plans only for the surveyor not to show. To avoid such inconveniences, you need to confirm the date in writing.

Have all the keys to every corner of the craft

The work of the boat surveyor is to observe, listen and document. To do their job properly, they need unrestricted access to every part of the vessel. That is why as you get ready for the surveyor to arrive you need to get the keys to every lock on the boat.

Ensure the batteries are charged

Another thing that can inconvenience a boat inspector is flat batteries. Batteries are needed when testing various systems on the boat. If the batteries are not working on the day of the inspection, the surveyor will not be able to do his job.

A lot goes into a boat survey. Make sure that the vessel is ready for an inspection, days before the surveyor arrives. The easier it is for a surveyor to do his job the more dependable the survey report will be.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Facts to Remember About Working with a Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Have you ever worked with a boat inspector Palm Beach? If you haven’t, you definitely have a lot of questions mostly on how the survey process works. In this post, our focus will be on the crucial facts you must remember before you hire a surveyor. Keeping these facts in mind will help avoid frustrations once work starts.

You pay the surveyor

The first point you need to remember is the boat inspector Palm Beach is paid by the person who requests the services. This means if you are the one hiring a boat surveyor, you will be the one paying for their services. In some situations, the seller may hire a surveyor in order to understand the condition of their vessel, the fair market value and to instill confidence in potential buyers. In this case, the seller will pay for the services.

How much does it cost?

A surveyor may charge a flat fee or per foot. The per-foot rate is the most common and usually ranges from $20 to $30 per foot. It is also common for surveyors to charge you for their transport costs if your boat is located in an inaccessible location.

The surveyor only works for you

The surveyor only works for the person that hires them. If you are the one hiring the surveyor, you can be certain the surveyor will only share his findings with you. They will not disclose any information to the broker or vendor. This is unless you give them the green light to do so. Immediately after the survey is done, it is common for the surveyor to give you an overview of their findings and a walkthrough of the vessel. It will take about three days for the surveyor to compile a detailed survey report.

You pay for dry-docking

Hull surveys as well as full pre-purchase surveys usually require dry-docking. This is done to help the surveyor get a better view of the boat while it is out of water. You will be the one paying for the slipping. In most cases, surveyors prefer that the boat be already dry-docked by the time they arrive. You don’t have to pressure wash the hull. However, if the surveyor realizes there is excessive corrosion or pitted steelwork, he may suggest the hull be grit blasted or an abrasive process be used to remove the coating, corrosion and marine growth.

A surveyor is not a mechanic

Last but not least, always keep in mind that while the boat inspector may have experience as a mechanic, their job during the survey will be observing and listening alone. Yes, they may use imaging tools like infrared to look inside components but they will never take components apart. If they suspect there is a problem, they will advise you to call in a mechanic or electrician. They will continue with their work once the issue has been assessed by a specialist.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Boat Inspector Palm Beach – What Does a Marine Surveyor Look for in a Boat

A boat inspector Palm Beach is hired to properly inspect a boat. The goal of a surveyor is to make sure that the interests of the buyer are matched with the condition of the boat. The surveyor will inspect the vessel based on the set standards. The areas he inspects and tests he runs will depend on the type of boat survey that you need. Here are some of the key things that surveyors look for when inspecting a boat.


When not fixed, cracks can lead to major problems that can be expensive to fix. That is why some marine surveyors will recommend an out-of-water inspection to take a better look at the boat. It is also not uncommon for a boat inspector Palm Beach to use special equipment to check for cracks. The surveyor will inspect the hull while paying attention to the chines, strakes and stem. They will look for scratches and document every crack, regardless of how small they are. Cracks have to be repaired as soon as possible.

Holes and seepage

The boat surveyor will remove and check the outboard cowling. Holes and all possible seepage have to be document and repairs be done as soon as possible. The surveyor will ensure that the springs are working properly and make sure linkages between shift and throttle are greased properly. Any sign of corrosion has to be documented and repairs must be done as soon as possible.


One of the primary duties of a boat surveyor in Palm Beach is to find leaks. A boat spends most of its life in water. Leaks can make the boat very unsafe. That is why the surveyor pays close attention to leaks. Fuel and oil leaks must also be looked at. The surveyor will ensure that seals and gaskets have no leaks.

Fuel and oil test

Most people assume the only job of the dipstick is to determine the level of the oil. That is not the only thing it does. You can use it to check the state of the oil. If the oil is black, you may have to get it changed.  On the other hand, if the oil smells burned or looks milky, there might be water in it. A marine surveyor will be able to test the fuel and oil on your boat and let you know if they are in good condition.


It is also the job of a boat inspector Palm Beach to ensure all the wiring is in place and working properly. As you may already know, faulty wiring is the leading cause of fires on a boat.

You never know what could happen while out in the open sea. That is why you need to work closely with a boat inspector Palm Beach to understand the exact state of your boat.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Boat inspector Palm Beach – How to Maintain a Boat

The main reason why you hire a professional boat inspector Palm Beach before buying a boat is to ensure you never invest in a doomed vessel. An inspector will ensure that you understand every inch of a boat before committing your money. Once the boat is yours, the next thing you will have to do is give it the best care. In this post, we will be taking a look at some of the things you should do in boat maintenance.

Gelcoat, polishes and waxes

Do you own a fiberglass boat? If yes, you will need gelcoat maintenance to put up with. Gelcoat is the tough, glossy finish on the exterior that protects the fiberglass from the sun, salt, and other elements. If the gel is in a poor condition, it will appear hazy or chalky. The good news is you can restore the gelcoat.

If a boat you are considering has a gelcoat that is a hazy, chalky mess, always ask a boat inspector Palm Beach to check if any damage has been done to the fiberglass. If the fiberglass is in perfect condition, all you need to do is use wax or polish to restore the glossy look. Waxes protect and seal the gelcoat whereas polishes remove oxidation from gelcoat to give it a shiny look. You will also find products that contain both polish and wax.

Your boat needs regular cleaning. You also have to maintain the gelcoat with wax at least twice every season. Always perform this task before you head out in spring and before storing the boat away for winter.

Marine canvas

Does your boat have a canvas for creating the cockpit or console enclosures? If so, you will have to care for this material. Start by keeping the canvas clean. You must never wash the canvas or dry it in your household washer or dryer. Wash it using a light brush, a mild soap, and plenty of fresh water. Regular cleaning will keep the UV and waterproofing components of the fabric intact. Cleaning also helps prevent the growth of mildew. If the canvas has lost its waterproofing qualities, you can treat it using a range of products available in the store.

Upholstery and vinyl

The comfy seats on your boat need to be cared for. Vinyl is the common material that is used for exterior furniture components. It is a very tough and durable material. It can, however, be destroyed by the wrong cleaners. For routine cleaning, use a bucket of mild, soapy water and a sponge. Never use ammonia or bleach as these chemicals will cause the vinyl to break down.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach

Boat Inspector Palm Beach – Hidden Problems in Used Boats

When buying a used boat, hiring a boat inspector Palm Beach is a must. You cannot take the boat owner’s word for it or make decisions based on aesthetics. There are so many hidden problems that have to be looked at when buying a used boat. In this post, we will be focusing on the main issues that boat surveyors focus on.

Engine problems

The worst mistake you can make is buying a boat with a bad engine. Doing so will be disastrous especially when you consider your boat will not work without an engine and it costs a fortune to fix an engine. It is for this reason that the main focus of a boat inspector Palm Beach is the condition of the engine. They check the oil, the plugs and listen to how smooth the engine sounds when running. A boat surveyor will advise you to show up at least 15 minutes before the sea trial so that the boat owner doesn’t warm up the engine ahead of time to hide startup issues.

Electrical systems

Replacing the wiring on a boat is hard. The wires run under decks, through tight chases, and into closed compartments. When evaluating a used boat, you have to make sure that all the electrical items from the lights to the electronics are working properly. Don’t forget to look at the fuse box. If you see different brand fuses, this will indicate that some of the fuses have been replaced. Ask the owner why the fuses have been replaced. Don’t forget to take a survey of the state of the wiring to ensure it is well-loomed and supported.

Failing pumps

The bilge pumps are the most worrying pumps on a boat. You have to make sure that the pump works smoothly after flipping a switch. You also need to access the bilge pump and switch it on manually to make sure it works. You also need to test everything that is powered by a pump. Your marine surveyor will help confirm the condition of all pumps.


Rot is not as common in used boats as it used to be in the past. This is because most boat builders no longer use untreated wood. This does not, however, mean that you shouldn’t check for rot. Your boat inspector Palm Beach will go through the boat checking for rust and rot. The surveyor will also give recommendations on repairs.

There are many more issues you should look for including the stringers, cabin leaks, saturated foam, leaking lower units, and hull to deck joint separation. While an experienced boat surveyor will be able to look at all these issues, it doesn’t hurt to know what to focus on when reviewing a used boat.

Boat Inspector Palm Beach