Losing sleep with buyers regret. It’s always uncomfortable.
Me, I find myself on my stomach, back, stomach, then eventually in the kitchen at some ungodly hour reaching for a cup of tea.
For the average shopper the well documented process of buyers remorse, is around day 2 or 3 from signing on the dotted line. If you want to experience after sale doubts you can try our system, sell a house, visit a boat show and decide to buy, all in one weekend, then hop on a plane and over the next four hours think what just happened…
The process was a mind bender. That was one year ago this weekend.
Ask Why Do You Want To Buy Overseas and Not At Home?
Buying overseas complicates the process so first question is “Why Bother”.
Australia has world class boat builders, marina’s full of new or second hand boats. No doubt if you are a reader in other countries you also have good boats to buy in your marina’s as well.
So why bother… Price is usually the main motivator. Boats are often cheaper elsewhere.
My Mother Says “When You Pay Peanuts You Get Monkey’s.”
Make sure that boat you want from Overseas is:
Once we decided we wanted a Catana, we realised buying one of these new in Australia would be eye watering expensive. Buying directly in France means we buy for less and defer our tax bill of 10% tax + import 5% for quite sometime, if at all if we never make it home.
If you buy second hand or new, there is much to add before you can compare Buy Here VS Buy There.
What cost to change electrical systems to suit your home port. Electronic systems are different the world over. Wind on the other hand is free where ever you go.
How do you get the boat home. Having a boat delivered (to Australia) will cost you, between $40,000 from USA and $80,000 from Europe. If you have the luxury of time then you can buy a boat and deliver her yourself but that has cost as well.
Sometimes, what you think you are buying is not what you end up with. You can only do so much due diligence.
Better is a tricky measure.
Better for you may be that the boat is exactly the one you want and not available in your own back yard.
Better might be you want new and that means buying direct from the yard.
Better might be a host of reasons but the easy one is deciding to make life better by doing something different.
For us starting so far away from home had appeal. Starting on the other side of the planet removes the easy option of going home and giving up. Plus how much street credibility from starting in France and the Mediterranean compared to starting in Hobart.
Buying Overseas Is A lesson In Trust
Buying overseas is risky. You constantly deal with the unknown, deal in new processes and rely on others to give you advice. By the very nature of the process, plus the fact that we couldn’t afford to travel overseas to visit and inspect, you will be relying on the views, photos and interpretations of others.
Let me whisper in your ear “You Need To Get Over It”. In life there is no such thing as security. Life is inherently risky and the more audacious the dream the bigger the risk. Plus there are no survivors. We all end up dead. You need to keep the end game in perspective.
So is it worth it? Only you can work that one out.
Before You Go Buying…
The big risk of buying overseas is that you can’t physically get to look, touch, feel, test the boat you want.
Plus the internet has allowed the unscrupulous and despicable, to now take advantage of vulnerable people from everywhere not just in their own harbour.
Whose to say you’re not next?
Do photos always tell the truth? Surveyors may not be whom they seem and a boats history can be rewritten for unsuspecting buyers. There are plenty of expensive horror stories on the internet and first hand at the yacht club bar. Sometimes you can just be unlucky.
You have to be prepared to do things differently. You have to brace to buy products at outrageous prices if you only buy through the yards agent, or prepared to do the hard yards and buy elsewhere. We purchased all our boat gear from UK and shipped to France and it was still cheaper. You have to have a water tight contract that ensures you the buyer, are getting what you expect. Yet a contract can only go so far and how fun to proceed with litigation from the other side of the world in another language. It is still a matter of trust.
Top this process off with Foreign Currency. Do you lock in, don’t you? A pound, a US dollar a Euro you will have to deal with someone else’s currency somewhere. The items that are reasonable priced in your country may cost a fortune elsewhere. Marine and safety gear seem to double in cost in Europe in comparison to AU. Another of life’s mysteries.
Real Life Happens To Us All
(OK I really wanted to say Shit Happens)
I have followed a blog for about 18 months and from my comfy seat at home, it appears that everything that could go wrong, has done so on this particular Catamaran. Currently this Catamaran (already gone round the world before) boat has recently been demasted in the Pacific. OUCH.
I often ponder to the Captain was the boat worth it to this couple, did they get sold a lemon and if they could go back in time would they still buy that particular boat? Yet credit is due, as this couple are living the dream not talking about it, and the journey is the aim not the destination.
It could easily be us with no mast or some other drama…
Don’t fret I promise to share along the way.
Link to Escape Velocity
Buying Second Hand
We first looked and considered a second hand Catana. Our concerns where the universal ones.
Was the boat worthy of the price. How did the current owner treat her, what were her beauty spots, or did she have any ugly spots hidden from view? Could we trust those from afar to tell us what we needed. What secrets did she hold that we wouldn’t know until it was too late.
It was all so far away, so daunting.
We moved to the new market because the price difference wasn’t that much. Plus this loud demanding rock star of a dream urged us to do it it once and do it in style the way we wanted.
I have to say though if buying new meant not going I would have in a heartbeat purchased a second hand boat.
Make Sure You Are Wearing Tight Undies
It is uncomfortable. You constantly deal with the unknown, deal in new processes and rely on others to give you advice.
To make the process work you need good people you can trust working on your behalf.
Mike man of international waters, our project manager has at times had different opinions to the yard or suppliers but in the end it all comes down to one thing. What we think when we stand on our boat for the first time on the 18th June 2014.
Buying a Boat Overseas Should Be Termed “Doing The Dous”
There are only four Dous words in the English language – (my Dad reckons I’m wrong in this but he is yet to come up with an alternative word).
Tremendous, Horrendous, Stupendous, and Hazardous
These four words just about cover were you go if you decide to buy a boat, be it at home or abroad.
So if you have decided to buy a boat and live the dream Good For YOU!
Congratulations for Doing the Dous!
I look forward to telling you in a few weeks time if doing the Dous has all been worth it for us.
PS My Dad has just come up with the fifth English “Dous” word via Google search engine. (No that is not cheating.)
Apodous. A zoological term which means “without feet”.
Without Feet – It’s quite fitting as Miss Catana is an apodous creature, girl of the ocean, dream maker of our home in 25 days time.
PPS Now my aunt informs me of Apodous Hazardous Horrendous iodous iridous jeopardous macropodous Molybdous Palladous Phyllocladous Podous Stupendous Tremendous Vanadous …..
I am stopping now. So much for only four Dous words! D’oh.