Maximising Your Selling Price – 10 Top Tips

Often, it is only when boat owners decide to sell that they finally get around to completing all the jobs on the old “to do” list. Tightening lifelines, polishing the stainless steel, repairing tears in upholstery, and fixing small gel-coat chips are just some of the typical jobs that don’t stop you using your boat but get relegated to the “I’ll do it one day” category.

When preparing your boat for sale, these little jobs are important in achieving a sale at the highest possible price. First impressions are paramount and “cosmetic” flaws are often some of the first things a buyer notices. Buyers tend to assess how much work they would have to do if they purchase, and a lot of small jobs can cloud their overall impression of the boat. Small faults can also give an impression that other, less visible areas of the boat may be neglected.

To gain the best price for your boat, it is important to attend to the smaller repairs and fixes as well as ensuring the main systems of your vessel are sound and in good working order. Here are some tips to help you maximise your selling price:

  1. Have your boat thoroughly cleaned and detailed throughout. This is VERY important. A well-presented boat always sells faster and for a better price. Getting a professional detailing company to clean your boat inside and out will be well worth the investment. Be sure to set up a regular cleaning program for the duration your boat is for sale so she is well presented at all times. Multihull Solutions offers detailing packages for boats listed for sale.
  2. Don’t forget the bilges. Savvy buyers will be lifting floor boards throughout your vessel to check for structural faults. A dirty bilge is not only off-putting, but it can suggest that other areas of your boat may also not be well maintained.
  3. De-clutter the boat. Remove any personal items that make the boat look messy or cluttered; the more space buyers can see to put their own gear the better.
  4. Ensure your boat does not have lots of growth on the hull. This indicates the boat has not been used in a while and hints possible neglect. Be sure to regularly clean the hull while the boat is for sale.
  5. Be sure your engines, generators, rigging, electrical and all operating systems are in good working order. Attending to any issues before sale will prevent any costly delays or issues throughout the sales process.
  6. Check, replace or repair any safety items that are out of date or need attention eg: fire extinguishers, flares, lifejackets, first-aid kits, EPIRBS, etc. Many buyers want to be able to “sail away” on purchase and a list of “must buy” items can deter them from purchase or give them bargaining power to offer you a lower price.
  7. Be upfront with any issues or maintenance that needs to occur. Buyers are looking for a well-maintained boat with good maintenance logs. Keep receipts and track all maintenance as it is undertaken.
  8. Ensure your boat is in a location that is easy for buyers to access. Talk to your broker about the best possible location to gain maximum exposure.
  9. If possible, have someone open and check your boat prior to showing a buyer. This ensures the boat is aired and everything in place before a buyer steps aboard. A good broker will ensure this happens to give the buyer the best first impression.
  10. Have all your documentation in order. Registration, insurance papers, recent surveys, mechanical log, rigging services and reports are all invaluable to have on hand to show your potential buyer.

Remember that all offers will be subject to a marine survey and sea trial, and buyers must be satisfied with the boat’s condition.

You need to present your boat in its best possible state, and by attending to any issues with the larger operating systems along with smaller aesthetic repairs and fixes before embarking on any marketing will give you the best opportunity to maximise your selling price.

For more information on selling your catamaran or trimaran, please contact Multihull Solutions on 1300 855 338 or email

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