Please select your home edition
Edition
Sail Excchange 728x90 New

Great brokerage bargains for boat buyers as market heats up

by Jeni Bone on 23 Jun 2011
Ensign broker, Peter Nicholson says it’s an exciting time for buying a used boat. Ensign Ship Brokers http://www.ensignbrokers.com.au
Peter Nicholson, Broker at Ensign Ship Brokers, says it’s a very exciting time in the 'pre-loved' boat market.

'There’s a lot of activity at the moment, buying and selling,' he says, adding that buyers can find great bargains, from $20,000 to $6m boats, across the range. 'As far as pricing, there’s downward pressure. It’s a buyer’s market. People can expect 5-10% beneath the asking price. But for sellers, depreciation depends on the boat, its age, hours, condition, make and model.'

Peter reports sales have been fairly strong in Gladstone and the Gold Coast is doing well. 'But we are selling product to people all over Australia. There were people here over the Sanctuary Cove weekend who bought and their boats are heading their way now. We sold a Meridien 411 for half a million, which is going to Sydney from the Gold Coast. And we have boats going to Townsville and Groot Eylandt.'

With offices in Sydney, on the Gold Coast, Manly Brisbane and Gladstone north Queensland, Ensign has a large catchment of product, around 500 boats on its books.

'Ensign is the largest independent brokerage in Australia. Having 500 boats in brokerage gives us large capability too – people end up buying their next boat from us.'

From a market frantic with people upgrading, buying sideways, trading down, getting out of boating altogether, Peter says there are a few emerging trends.

'We have seen a lot of interest in first time yachting, particularly sail. People entering the market for the first time attracted to the lifestyle, and looking for a large cruising boat to live aboard, both new and old. The grey nomad segment is cash up. They’ve done the campervan trip and now they’re ready for the next challenge, sailing.'

According to Peter, this older market – frequently overlooked by every sector – is 'an interesting evolving market in power and sail, as well as houseboats'.

'Particularly in Queensland, where you can still live on a houseboat!'

Another trend is the rash of 'private imports', boats brought in from Europe and the US which are making things harder for people to sell their used boats.

'Imported boats, bought when the Australian dollar was low, are now having to compete with imported boats coming in as ‘grey imports’ rather than through the dealer network three to four years ago. There’s a lot of product out there.'

The importance of consulting a broker with the expertise gained over years in the industry cannot be overstated.

'Brokers have an understanding the market place, they know the product and are able to work with buyers to identify their real needs and match their expectations with product. Then, we are skilled at handling the negotiations between vendor and buyer, the intricacies of the paperwork and guidance through sea trials and surveys, establishing the vessels have clear title and can be sold, so when we hand them over, it all goes smoothly. Brokers also manage the marketing and merchandising.'

Peter says he has seen and heard of 'plenty of people buying overseas, private imports thinking they’re getting a good deal, and then suffering remorse when something goes wrong'.

'Most times they are non-compliant, in terms of electronics and internal electrics. People are potentially buying a hazard. Then there’s freight, GST on American boats and additional duty of 5% on foreign builds coming in from the US. Brokers can navigate these topics with people. We can help them by showing them some of the potential pitfalls.'

More at www.ensignbrokers.com.au

BIAA have put out a brochure 'Thinking of Importing Your Next Boat'.
Hall Spars - BoomInsun - AC ProgramBandG AUS Zeus3 660x82

Related Articles

A Q&A with the RORC’s Nick Elliott about the 2017 Rolex Fastnet Race
I caught up with Nick Elliott, RORC Racing Manager, via email, to learn more about the world-famous Rolex Fastnet Race. When one stops to consider the world’s best ocean races, the Royal Offshore Racing Club’s Rolex Fastnet Race, which starts on Sunday, August 6, 2017, is never far from mind. I caught up with Nick Elliott, RORC Racing Manager, via email to learn more about the race’s history and evolution, its challenges, and the amount of work that goes into pulling off this world-famous regatta.
Posted on 1 Aug
Tank killers
Not all that long ago, the US Army started using depleted Uranium shells. Not all that long ago, the US Army started using depleted Uranium shells. These shells were wickedly awesome at their job, which was killing enemy tanks in their tracks (and yes the pun is fully intended). The mighty, turbine powered, M1 Abrams became even more formidable, and their crews somewhat safer again.
Posted on 24 Jul
Ian Walker - Musto Ambassador on the Volvo Ocean Race, America's Cup
Ian Walker on his Volvo Ocean Race win, why food and clothing are so important offshore, his views on the America's Cup We speak to Musto ambassador Ian Walker about his Volvo Ocean Race win, why food and clothing are so important offshore, his views on the America's Cup, his new desk job, sailing for fun, and 20 years of the John Merricks Sailing Trust.
Posted on 23 Jul
Black Jack Yachting. Bigger boat. Bigger team. Even bigger performance
Throughout the iterations of maxis called Black Jack, a strong, consistent and talented team has been their focus Throughout the iterations of maxis called Black Jack, a strong, consistent and talented team has been their focus. Some were sail makers, like Skipper Mark Bradford and also Vaughan Prentice from North Sails’ Brisbane loft. Others were riggers, such as Bruce Clarke, and there are even boat builders, like Gary van Lunteren, as well as Ash Deeks.
Posted on 20 Jul
Gladwell's Line - America's Cup returns to its new home and thinking
Emirates Team New Zealand's win in the 35th America's Cup ends 17-years of wandering in the AC wilderness Emirates Team New Zealand's win in the 35th America's Cup ends 17-years of wandering in the AC wilderness and will open a new era of America's Cup, New Zealand and World Sailing. A rookie crew won the most prestigious trophy in sailing, and one of the most difficult to win in any sport.
Posted on 29 Jun
SuperFoilers Are Go!
SuperFoilers represent many things. Whilst those components are disparate and virtually from different planets SuperFoilers represent many things. Whilst those components are disparate and virtually from different planets in the great scheme of things, they come together in the one form as harmoniously as a Rolls Royce, and also deliver intense energy way past the sum of their parts, just like some amazing band.
Posted on 28 Jun
Poppy takes Australia to her dad who’s afflicted with Parkinson’s
It’s a very sad way to begin such a great voyage. Not that you would know from the ultra-effervescent Poppy Moore... It’s a very sad way to begin such a great voyage. Not that you would know from the ultra-effervescent Poppy Moore, mind you. So the chance to talk with her and learn her tale was fantastic, and she is also the best one to recount it. “I decided to sail around Australia to raise awareness and funds for Parkinson’s, because my father’s got Parkinson’s
Posted on 5 Jun
Jeanneau Sun Fast 3600 - It just works
Every now and then a boat just clicks. It has all the right bits, of the correct dimensions, in the appropriate places Every now and then a boat just clicks. It has all the right bits, of the correct dimensions, in the appropriate places, and out of it all you get something that simply sings. The Jeanneau Sun Fast 3600 is one of these craft. It was designed and built in parallel to the other, more well known versions of the brand’s vessels, and benefits from being more geared towards performance, without going tot
Posted on 23 May
The return to Coffs!
The word is out that the new race to Coffs Harbour is on. The phoenix would run once again in the Christmas timeslot The word is out that the new race to Coffs Harbour is on. The phoenix would run once again in the traditional Christmas timeslot, and also be the much easier to digest 200 or so miles. The ‘new’ race would also be geared towards club racers, so they, and their non-pro crews could be out and back, and almost more importantly, returned to work before anyone missed them. Bring it on...
Posted on 22 May
America's Cup - Southern Spars AC50 build for Emirates Team NZ + Video
The Peter Blake skippered Steinlager 2 put Southern Spars on the map 27 years after Steinlager 2 put Southern Spars on the map with her unequalled clean sweep of the 1989/90 Whitbread Round the World Race, Southern Spars were called on to build Emirates Team NZ's America's Cup Challenger. Here's a look behind the scenes at the composite engineering process Southern Spars employ on projects ranging from Volvo OR spars, to Olympic bike wheels to an AC50
Posted on 1 May