By Chris Jones
The actual mechanics of boat purchase and sale are not unlike those of a car. There are, in effect, two principal ways of carrying it out - through a dealer or privately. Most local newspapers carry a nautical section, with a broad band of boats on offer. And there are, of course, specialist boating magazines giving a massive choice of boats right through the price bracket. Practically every marina on the coast has at least one marine dealer, some of the larger ones have two or three and there are dealers in every main city in Andalucia.
In the same way as one would take care buying a car, the caveat emptor principle applies equally when buying a boat. The safest way to proceed, if you are not a confirmed boat person, is to take somebody with you who is. You should check all the mechanical elements, check for body damage, and request a test drive before you part with any of your hard-earned cash.
It may well be that you are trading in a boat against your new purchase, so an element of haggling will be involved. If you are a first-time buyer, you can still edge the asking price down, as many owners can be keen to sell.
There are numerous online boat traders, which have indeed brought more transparency to the market. As with any substantial purchase always check out the yacht or boat brokerage to make sure that you are in the hands of professionals.
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