How to Buy a Yacht: The Ultimate Checklist

Buying a yacht is not such a complicated process as many would think, but there are a few steps that you should go through when deciding to become an owner of a vessel.

Nine Steps Every Boat Lover Should Go Through When Buying a Yacht

#1 Choose the Kind of Yacht You Want

The very first step is to make it clear for yourself what kind of vessel you want to purchase. Is it a sailing yacht or motor yacht, new or used one, what size and what features you are looking for in her? When making the decision new or used yacht, you should consider timing. Depending on the size of the boat you want to purchase, if you choose new construction, it might take from a few months to a few years if the particular model is not in stock.

#2 Decide On the Yacht Size

When deciding on the size of your future yacht, be honest with yourself and think again if you need those 2-3 meters more. Large yachts need more maintenance, cost more, and of course, need a larger berthing area.
Choosing extra amenities also increases the price, but at the same time makes the boat more valuable for future sale if the customization is not too bizarre.

#3 Determine Your Budget

Once you have answered the questions above, you should determine your budget. How much are you willing to spend? Make sure you calculate your estimated expenses after the purchase. Your budget would also determine your future boat’s age if you decide to go for a used one. You can now start your search.

#4 Work With a Professional Yacht Broker

It is a good idea to work with a yacht broker. Choosing the right broker might lead to a better deal than searching by yourself. Plus, they will make your purchasing process hassle free. Whether you choose to work with a yacht broker or not, it doesn’t hurt to do a quick search online via There are hundreds of boats listed every day, and you never know when your dream boat will be offered on the market.

#5 Don’t Rush

Don’t rush the process of buying your yacht. Visit boat shows, which may have the type of vessel you are looking for and the opportunity to get on board as many boats as possible. There is a big difference between seeing a boat online and getting on board. Often, vessels that don’t look very attractive in photos have a very homey and pleasant feel when on board. Visiting a few yachts might change your mind about what you would like to purchase.

#6 Narrow Your Vessel Options

After searching, narrow your options and try to visit the particular boats you have liked. Then make an offer. Most of the time, buyers try their best by offering a lower price than what the yacht actually costs. If you work with a broker, he/she would advise you what would be the best amount you could offer.

#7 Pick and Check Out the Vessel

If the offer is accepted, be ready to give a deposit and have a surveyor prepared to check the vessel. The buyer usually pays for the survey, and the sea trial during which the surveyor makes notes about the boat’s performance is covered by the seller. After the survey is done, depending on its result, new negotiations might follow. Don’t be afraid to ask for a better price.

#8 Negotiate and Insure

When both parties agree with the price and conditions you have negotiated, find an insurance company for your yacht, and then close the deal. Make sure you check all the paperwork. As with property purchase, carefully check if there are any bills related to the vessel.

#9 Get the Boat to Your Marina or Private Pier

And if you have come to an end, you should have already thought about how you will get your boat to the place where you will keep her. Will you need to hire a crew or maybe send her to a refit center first to make some repairs and convert her to your desired yacht? Your yacht broker can help you answer all these questions.

Quick Checklist on How to Buy a Yacht

The process of buying a yacht is not that complicated, but you should consider the few steps mentioned:

  1. Decide what you want and need to purchase
  2. Do your research
  3. Work with a yacht broker
  4. Visit as many yachts as possible
  5. Narrow down your options
  6. Try to visit the yachts you have liked
  7. Make an offer and have your surveyor ready
  8. Go through the survey process and sea trial
  9. Re-negotiate
  10. Be ready with yacht insurance
  11. Close the deal
  12. Enjoy your new yacht!

Start the search for the yacht of your dreams in YATCO. Browse through all the new yachts and used yachts for sale today.

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