Selling For Top Dollar

The goal of all boat sellers is to SELL FAST for the BEST PRICE.

Following these basic steps will help achieve this goal.

First Impressions:

“There is no second chance at a first impression…” It is therefore vital to ensure that potential buyers’ first impressions are good, as this will set the tone for the viewing of your boat. Cleaning is one of the easiest tasks, yet most often forgotten.

It is important when bringing your boat to market, that you present it in spotless condition and so we suggest an initial professional detailing, followed by ongoing and regular maintenance cleanings until it is sold.

If your boat is heavily oxidized, a good polishing and waxing is in order to best present it for sale. All clutter and gear, such as crab traps, prawn traps, and jerry cans should be removed and stored elsewhere. An inventory list of included extras can be provided upon closing the sale.

Down Below:

The biggest negative is a boat with bad odors. Walking onto a boat that smells like a holding tank is one of the top negative comments heard from prospective buyers. A space that smells, that is cluttered and appears to be disorganized, creates doubts about the boat’s past maintenance. A seller should remove all personal belongings and items that will not be included in the sale to avoid confusion. Clean storage lockers appear larger and more spacious when empty, allowing a potential buyer to visualize their own personal items on board. The bilge is an area most prospective buyers will look and note its condition, as a clean and dry bilge is one of the indicators of good and regular maintenance. Your boat interior should be fresh, clean and organized to achieve a quick full priced sale.

Does it all work?


Often, some minor items are not in working order, and some of us may consider it “not a big deal”. Potential buyers see these items as neglect and lack of maintenance. Prior to concluding a sale, a purchaser will contract a surveyor, so every inch of your boat will be investigated and scrutinized. If you are looking to get top dollar, it is suggested that you have your boat surveyed and fix all faults. It is a fact that a number of small faults create back and forth negotiating which takes time and results in a lower selling price.


Maintenance history:


This is always a hot topic. How was the boat maintained and are there maintenance records? Please ensure your boat maintenance is up to date with all receipts and records at hand. Evidence of a recent haul out, good condition bottom painting and the replacement of the zincs if necessary is highly recommended. The water line should be clean and the hull polished. Records should show a recent service, oil change, and fuel filters replacement.

Often neglected are the batteries. Please confirm lead acid batteries are topped up and fully charged to ensure the engine fires up the first time and that all accessories work.

For a hassle free, top dollar sale,  your boat should be spotlessly clean and in full running order.

Paperwork/ Safety Gear:

All boats are required to be licensed or registered and paperwork available for your broker. Upon closing, these will be needed in order to transfer ownership and is required by law. If you have misplaced them, please apply for duplicate copies in advance, so as not to delay the transaction.

All boats should be sold with the safety equipment as required by Transport Canada. The lists are readily available on the internet and at your local chandlery. Make sure all safety equipment is on board is in good condition, working correctly, and well within the expiry date.


Prior to listing your boat, ask your yacht broker for an evaluation and an assessment of the boat’s condition. Make a list of equipment, specs and gather together all records of maintenance history. This will provide you with the information needed to price your boat accordingly.

Your broker takes into account boats of a similar brand, size, year, condition and equipment included when calculating the market evaluation. He will also take into account current listing prices and recent sales data in order to suggest a selling price.

Aviso Yacht Sales
106-1840 Stewart Ave. Nanaimo, BC V9S 4E6
Telephone: (604) 353 3713 Email:

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