Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Survey Says...

Buying a new boat? Once you’ve chosen the "perfect" boat, get it surveyed before you complete the deal.

When searching for a surveyor, keep in mind that a Google search will not necessarily point out which surveyors are properly accredited and honest. And while the boat dealer you're buying from might tell you they "know a guy" who can survey your boat, keep in mind that it may be a conflict of interest to get a reference from the seller.

Luckily, there are reputable organizations with searchable websites that you can use to find a trusted surveyor. The two that seem to be recognized by marine insurance companies such as BoatUS award accreditation to surveyors who have a minimum of 5 years experience, pass rigorous examinations and agree to adhere to an ethics code.

The National Association of Marine Surveyors (NAMS, pictured) offers Certified Marine Surveyor (CMS) status.

The Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors (SAMS), offers Accredited Marine Surveyor (AMS) status.

The bottom line is, when buying a boat, look for an independent surveyor that shows you their credentials as CMS or AMS. More boat buying tips and reasons to work with a surveyor can be found in the FirstBoat buying guide.


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