Obligations

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A serious buyer will want to have your boat inspected by a marine surveyor and possibly have the engine looked over by a marine mechanic. This will involve haul-outs and sea trials.

These expenses are normally borne by the buyer and any "destructive testing" — for example, scraping bottom paint to look for osmotic blisters — must be repaired by the buyer.

Ordinarily, there is no obligation on the seller's part to volunteer information the buyer doesn't ask for, but this doesn't give the seller carte blanche to withhold information about a known defect or condition that renders the boat unsafe.

Remember, there is a fine line between passive failure to disclose information and active concealment. If an accident occurs later, previous repair records or complaints to the manufacturer may come back to haunt you.

This is also true for liens and other debt encumbrances that might cloud the transfer of title or ownership.

Selling your boat in "as is" condition may be protection against nitpicking later on, but it may not protect you if a serious problem arises.

BoatUS Members can contact the BoatUS Consumer Protection Bureau to discuss specific questions and problems with boat sales.


 

 

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