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Blue Knight

My Broker Experiences As A Newbie

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1 hour ago, WotEver said:

He’s right though. Unless the batteries have been recently replaced, budget to replace them. A surveyor won’t be able to check their capacity so anything he says about them is worthless. 

I agree with all but one thing. Although a surveyor can't say anything definitive about battery sulphation or even cell shorts if he knew his stuff he should be able to spot and report on indications of such faults (battery design allowing). Bowing case ends or lifting cell tops indicate a serious degree of sulphation while individual dry cells are fairly indicative of that cell gassing  excessively so may well have internal shorts.

 

having said that I bet few bother to look, mine certainly did not so its down to the potential owner if getting new may be an issue.

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1 hour ago, WotEver said:

He’s right though. Unless the batteries have been recently replaced, budget to replace them. A surveyor won’t be able to check their capacity so anything he says about them is worthless. 

 

They were replaced in June-2019 according to the brochure but, as I pointed out to the sales chap the other day; if they've not been looked after in that time then they could already be kaput. His reply was "Don't worry, they last for many years".

 

I appreciate the fact that I'm a newbie to this hobby but his attitude toward our particular sale was:   "give me the dosh, here's the keys and if anything onboard is a bit iffy or broken then don't worry as at least I have your money".

 

You guys are all seasoned veterans of the boat world but I'm finding some of the attitudes by these guys to be quite hard to chew. 

 

That said, the seller may have given the broker an opportunity to make some money by providing his goods to sell but it's the buyer that inevitably has to complete the 3-way sales deal and there seems very little respect for the last party.

 

Thanks for the post-up. It's very much appreciated.

 

 

 

 

9 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

I agree with all but one thing. Although a surveyor can't say anything definitive about battery sulphation or even cell shorts if he knew his stuff he should be able to spot and report on indications of such faults (battery design allowing). Bowing case ends or lifting cell tops indicate a serious degree of sulphation while individual dry cells are fairly indicative of that cell gassing  excessively so may well have internal shorts.

 

having said that I bet few bother to look, mine certainly did not so its down to the potential owner if getting new may be an issue.

 

Many thanks Tony and duly noted.  I'll be sure to check when I visit the yard with the surveyor.

Edited by Blue Knight
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On 14/09/2020 at 21:21, Halsey said:

I'll wager broker no 1 was GHBS

As I was reading the comment I immediately thought of them. I had similar dealings with them but fortunately I didn’t travel as I wasn’t convinced they had what they said.

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2 hours ago, Tony Brooks said:

... having said that I bet few bother to look, mine certainly did not so its down to the potential owner if getting new may be an issue.

However skilled or experienced your surveyor is please don't rely on them to pick up on everything - check your boat as carefully as you can before handing over your hard earned. 

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17 minutes ago, MrsM said:

However skilled or experienced your surveyor is please don't rely on them to pick up on everything - check your boat as carefully as you can before handing over your hard earned. 

A boat is chock full of systems, frequently everything that a house has but smaller, more inaccessible, of rare and unusual design and on my boat no professional has had a hand in putting it all together. It also runs on 12 volt with a bit of 240 here and there , the heating is unusual - paraffin - and the engine is nearer the front than the back. Crammed into most boats is an ex automotive or plant engine and coupled to the propeller by a frequently poorly installed gearbox and various couplings. All this is contained in a hull that is impossible to inspect on the inside and not easy to interpret on the outside. Also in this challenging structure is enough gas to destroy a medium sized house, enough amps to melt big chunks of metal and enough diesel to make a very hot thing even hotter. Pity the poor old surveyor who inspects this expensive assemblage and misses a corroded jubilee clip or missing split pin that sinks the whole lot.  As MrsM says, check as much as you can and it really is in our own interest to familiarise ourselves with our boats.  There, That'll put everybody off buying a boat and make a bit more space on the cut.

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On 14/09/2020 at 20:00, Blue Knight said:

 

Here are just a few of our recent experiences (no names mentioned though).

 

6.  (Broker-5):  Now these guys were very special indeed and did a 'speculative sale' on a boat that, as it turned out, was never really for sale in the first instance. My wife and I even submitted a very healthy offer on said boat but the broker was unable to convince the owner to release his boat after they had sold the deal to me. It's probably due to the fact that he wanted to live on it next year when he returned to the UK - you can't fault a dealer for trying though, eh!

 

Hi All,

 

If you can remember my serial-6 of my 'broker experience log', above, then it refers to this little beauty; a 63ft Aqualine NB with a asking price of £84,950 only 2-weeks ago:

 

https://www.aqueductmarina.co.uk/second-hand-boats/lottie-m/

 

Bear in mind that this boat was sold in 2016, 2018, 2019 and also in July 2020 (the sale fell through after the survey in August-20), so we then thought that we were taking a risk by buying it (i.e. was there something wrong with the darn thing?).

 

In our opinion it was slightly disadvantaged by having a gas-only Alde heating system onboard, no secondary heating, darkening wood over the Aldi radiators and a stinky pump-out toilet. We were going to add a Webasto boiler and possibly a multi-fuel stove at quite a cost I may add so we didn't wish to pay £85K for that reason. The RCD is also a 2011 whereas the boat is being marketed as a 2012 model. (I always like the paperwork to be precise) 😉

 

Pardon the pun but we were on and off the boat for two weeks with us asking the broker whether "is it for sale, is it not for sale" and then suddenly being told exactly 1-week ago that it was to be retained by the owner.

 

As of yesterday it's now back on the market so at least someone else will get the chance to be messed around and not us.....

 

........the broker was probably too embarrassed to phone us - for the umpteenth time.

 

Regards,

 

Andrew

 

 

 

2143912261_Screenshot_20200918-195904_SamsungInternet.jpg.23f73d41ab6bc2b10fcea64204200e10.jpg

 

Edited by Blue Knight
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46 minutes ago, Blue Knight said:

 

 

Pardon the pun but we were on and off the boat for two weeks with us asking the broker whether "is it for sale, is it not for sale" and then suddenly being told exactly 1-week ago that it was to be retained by the owner.

 

As of yesterday it's now back on the market so at least someone else will get the chance to be messed around and not us.....

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Free mooring while its up for sale

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48 minutes ago, Blue Knight said:

Hi All,

 

If you can remember my serial-6 of my 'broker experience log', above, then it refers to this little beauty; a 63ft Aqualine NB with a asking price of £84,950 only 2-weeks ago:

 

https://www.aqueductmarina.co.uk/second-hand-boats/lottie-m/

 

Bear in mind that this boat was sold in 2016, 2018, 2019 and also in July 2020 (the sale fell through after the survey in August-20), so we then thought that we were taking a risk by buying it (i.e. was there something wrong with the darn thing?).

 

In our opinion it was slightly disadvantaged by having a gas-only Alde heating system onboard, no secondary heating, darkening wood over the Aldi radiators and a stinky pump-out toilet. We were going to add a Webasto boiler and possibly a multi-fuel stove at quite a cost I may add so we didn't wish to pay £85K for that reason. The RCD is also a 2011 whereas the boat is being marketed as a 2012 model. (I always like the paperwork to be precise) 😉

 

Pardon the pun but we were on and off the boat for two weeks with us asking the broker whether "is it for sale, is it not for sale" and then suddenly being told exactly 1-week ago that it was to be retained by the owner.

 

As of yesterday it's now back on the market so at least someone else will get the chance to be messed around and not us.....

 

........the broker was probably too embarrassed to phone us - for the umpteenth time.

 

Regards,

 

Andrew

 

 

 

2143912261_Screenshot_20200918-195904_SamsungInternet.jpg.23f73d41ab6bc2b10fcea64204200e10.jpg

 

Do you mean #5 (the speculative sale, not the director owned boat that sank)? That's just... weird.

That broker actually seemed one of the more professional outfits when I visited them.

 

 

Was going to suggest another Aqualine Madison on the basis when I visited I said "don't think I'll look at the Aqualine" and the broker said "noone else wants to look at it either" but that's now sold...

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1 hour ago, enigmatic said:

Do you mean #5 (the speculative sale, not the director owned boat that sank)? That's just... weird.

 

 

Serial-6, (Broker-5) as per my numbered inserts. Ser-1 and 2 relate to the same Brockerage 🙂

 

Aqueduct are good guys but the state of confusion between the various parties over the Aqualine was simply ridiculous. 

 

Also, the sale of this particular Aqualine had only just fallen through by the time we initiated our enquires 3-weeks ago so I presume they were just attempting a bounce back sale for the owner - who didn't seem to know if he wanted to sell it or not. 

 

It's all water under the bridge now so we're quite happy with our final boat choice.

 

Final point on the Aqualine:  I would hate to pay the bill for the number of 13kg gas bottles that it would take to heat it over Xmas.

 

 

Edited by Blue Knight
Spelling - as usual

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Part of the learning curve as a new boater is coming to the understanding that a lot of people in the Inland waterways boating business hate boaters! It's difficult to think of another area where business people have such disdain for their customers.

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I'll say now that I have no business interests (or any other interests come to think of it) in ABNB Brockerage but I'm left wondering why all of the other brokers can't be like them.

 

We last saw ABNB 9-days ago and yet they have still endeavoured to get back to me with boat recommendations, brochures, offers of help and to see if we are OK etc. 

 

It pains me to say this but I do wish that ABNB had previously had the boat in stock which fitted our needs as my wife and I would have loved to have done business with them.

 

But instead we have a feeling that our own broker doesn't give a crap about us which, in theory, is quite a sad reflection of the industry.

 

 

Edited by Blue Knight
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1 hour ago, Blue Knight said:

Instead we have a feeling that our own broker doesn't give a crap about us which, in theory, is quite a sad reflection of the industry.

 

 

So sorry to hear that. I hope it doesn't spoil your enjoyment of your first boat and that it is soon forgotten once you are out on the water. Perhaps we will be able to swap tales in a waterside pub one day? Mx

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4 hours ago, Blue Knight said:

I'll say now that I have no business interests (or any other interests come to think of it) in ABNB Brockerage but I'm left wondering why all of the other brokers can't be like them.

 

We last saw ABNB 9-days ago and yet they have still endeavoured to get back to me with boat recommendations, brochures, offers of help and to see if we are OK etc. 

 

It pains me to say this but I do wish that ABNB had previously had the boat in stock which fitted our needs as my wife and I would have loved to have done business with them.

 

But instead we have a feeling that our own broker doesn't give a crap about us which, in theory, is quite a sad reflection of the industry.

 

 

 

I found the same about ABNB, but bought my  boat from GHBS, which went well despite my trepidation  from what I had read about them on here.

 

At the end of the day, it is better to buy the boat you really want from wherever it is on sale, rather than restrict yourself to the very few excellent brokers.

 

Only if you are really lucky will the boat you really want will be available from the broker you really want to use.

 

 

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On 19/09/2020 at 18:47, cuthound said:

 

I found the same about ABNB, but bought my  boat from GHBS, which went well despite my trepidation  from what I had read about them on here.

 

At the end of the day, it is better to buy the boat you really want from wherever it is on sale, rather than restrict yourself to the very few excellent brokers.

 

Only if you are really lucky will the boat you really want will be available from the broker you really want to use.

 

 

On the other hand, when you come to sell, you know who you will and will not use.

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A new method of buying has come to light owing to the shortage of decent boats and potential buyers missing out.

A couple spent the weekend in a camper van at a local brokerage which is still getting boats in. One arrived, within an hour a sale was agreed.

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13 hours ago, David Mack said:

On the other hand, when you come to sell, you know who you will and will not use.

Too right, David, we'll be doing just that if we ever come to sell.

 

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13 minutes ago, matty40s said:

A new method of buying has come to light owing to the shortage of decent boats and potential buyers missing out.

A couple spent the weekend in a camper van at a local brokerage which is still getting boats in. One arrived, within an hour a sale was agreed.

 

While on our travels we would ask the brokers about their incoming stock and at one point we even knew about the future pre-sale survey schedule of what boats were arriving at ABNB.

 

If you take us and our boat as an example then it hadn't even gone on the market before we agreed to purchase it - just the right place at the right time.

 

That said, it's very much apparent to me now that the 'for sale pipeline' is drying up rapidly with very little good stuff coming to the market.

 

 

On 19/09/2020 at 16:15, MrsM said:

So sorry to hear that. I hope it doesn't spoil your enjoyment of your first boat and that it is soon forgotten once you are out on the water. Perhaps we will be able to swap tales in a waterside pub one day? Mx

That would be great M. I like the idea of mooring up and enjoying a glass of red in the canal side pubs.

 

See you soon 🙂

 

Andrew

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7 hours ago, Blue Knight said:

Nothing much to report guys.

 

We've still got 3-4 weeks until everything is done and dusted but I have to say that this waiting around business is becoming a bit tedious.

 

That said, we've made some really good friends during our narrowboat search and some of them are now telling us about a few funny dealings in the sales market.

 

One chappy (in the business) told me about a few cases he had witnessed in September whereby the seller(s) had terminated their respective boat transactions in favour of selling their boat to other folk who didn't want a survey.......

 

..........so the poor unfortunate buyers who wanted a survey first were being gazumped by persons who were happy to fly without.

 

The narrowboat market has gone mad from what I can see and I'll be chuffed when we reach the finishing line.

 

Otherwise NFTR,

 

Regards,

 

Andrew 

 

 

 

 

 

Why is it taken so long

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16 hours ago, ditchcrawler said:

Why is it taken so long

 

The big challenge for me and many others last month was to find a surveyor who was available at a time when the broker could lift the boat out of the water. My broker, like many, has limited facilities available to him so he still had to honour the blacking and repair jobs which have been pre-booked by his other clients.

 

Here's an example for you:  On the 12th September I spoke with a very reputable surveyor who said to me that he had a cancelled slot available for the 16th October. The problem here is that he had also offered the same date to three other potential clients so, by the time I got back to him, an hour later, the slot had already gone and his next available date was early November.

 

I'm not alone though.  If you monitor some of the most popular brockerages on the internet then you'll see that many of the boats being advertised stay 'under offer' for many weeks as the buyers are awaiting on for the completion of their survey.

 

That said, the 2020 market for Narrowboats is starting to slow down significantly from what I can see so this change in sales pace will at least give the surveyors and marinas a chance to catch up.

 

All the best,

 

Andrew

 

 

Edited by Blue Knight

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On 01/10/2020 at 14:28, Blue Knight said:

Nothing much to report guys.

 

We've still got 3-4 weeks until everything is done and dusted but I have to say that this waiting around business is becoming a bit tedious.

 

That said, we've made some really good friends during our narrowboat search and some of them are now telling us about a few funny dealings in the sales market.

 

One chappy (in the business) told me about a few cases he had witnessed in September whereby the seller(s) had terminated their respective boat transactions in favour of selling their boat to other folk who didn't want a survey.......

 

..........so the poor unfortunate buyers who wanted a survey first were being gazumped by persons who were happy to fly without.

 

The narrowboat market has gone mad from what I can see and I'll be chuffed when we reach the finishing line.

 

Otherwise NFTR,

 

Regards,

 

Andrew 

 

 

 

 

 

This doesnt suprise me at all. Turning money down against someone who may or may not buy subject to survey sounds fair to me. I bought this boat within first seeing it after twenty minutes paid for and done. I have never had a survey on my 8 boats. Good boats have always sold very quickly.

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5 hours ago, mrsmelly said:

This doesnt suprise me at all. Turning money down against someone who may or may not buy subject to survey sounds fair to me. I bought this boat within first seeing it after twenty minutes paid for and done. I have never had a survey on my 8 boats. Good boats have always sold very quickly.

If you don't mind me asking, what age bracket have those 8 boats been in? I wonder whether people are happier going without a survey on relatively young boats but less so on older ones that might be more risky (say c. 25 years old)...

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1 minute ago, Ewan123 said:

If you don't mind me asking, what age bracket have those 8 boats been in? I wonder whether people are happier going without a survey on relatively young boats but less so on older ones that might be more risky (say c. 25 years old)...

Good point. the first one was very old and I have always been a bit of a risk taker. This was  before personal computers and tinternet forums. I risked it and paid 10k at the side of the canal in used notes. Sold it five years later to another bloke for 10k and he didnt have a survey, it was solid luckily and is still around albeit having some plating work done since. Next was old and bloke who bought it from me a year or two later had a survey and it was solid phew!!  Next was wood and fab and no survey and sold again cash no survey. Next brand new. next 18 years old and never been blacked, I paid well below market and had it checked out and the 6mill had gone to 5.7 at the worst places!! It was built 6/6/3 The last ones have all been less than 6 years old this one was 6 years old on purchase. I am not knocking people who have surveys but most are not worth the paper they are written on and anything other than a hull survey is imho worthless. So in my case mixed boats but experience taught me what to look for after a lucky start!! over thirty years ago when actualy 10k was a few quid. Some people are more risk averse than others of course.

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