I dare say I will not make myself popular by saying this, but the brokers that I know personally are honest, very hard working, men and women and they certainly don't look like fat cats. I think 8-10% is fair and reasonable.
Boats change hands for considerably less than houses do, and the broker incurs much heavier expenditure than the estate agent does - advertising in the magazines which we like to read, like this one, costs quite a lot, and that cost is incurred whether the boat is sold by that broker, or sold by another, or is withdrawn from the market.
The broker carries out the work which a solicitor does when you buy or sell a house, as part of the service.
The broker has to put up with sellers who want unrealistic prices, who lie about their boats and who leave them in dirty and disgusting condition, and with the buyers who offer absurd sums, who waste hours of their time and phone bills and who have no intention of buying anything.
An estate agent writes out a few particulars, maybe puts up a signboard, and advertises, cheaply, in the local paper. His or her travel and communications costs are a fraction of the yacht broker's costs.
Try another comparison - with an auction house. See how much they charge, with sellers and buyers premiums, in relation to how much work they do, and maybe you will think better of yacht brokers.
I am not a yacht broker, by the way, but I am fed up with this constant dripping about brokers. There are excellent yacht brokers - if you choose to deal with a bad one, whose fault is that?
I cannot say I agree with Mirelle, but have only experienced brokers from a buyre's point of view. From my experience, they do not know anything about the boats they are selling, they are not helpful, and they misinform.
The worst is the time they waste. having defined carefully what I was looking for, I got details that in no way approximated to my needs. And this from brokers across the board. This was mixed with an attitude that implied they were doiung me a service and that I sjould be grateful they even bothred to reply. Some did not.
Whether they would deserve 10%?? Perhaps if they did what they claim to do. Most people see to ther own paper-work anyway. It is the only way of getting it done reliably.
> What do boat owners consider to be a fair commission for full brokerage service
The current market rate i.e. 8% ? From my observations I would say brokers are not exactly rolling in it and some have to juggle other marine related side-lines.
It is easy to take exception to a broker's cut because they frequently seem to deliver a sub-standard service, bad brokers outnumber the good ones in my experience.
But good or bad it is difficult for a conventional broker to exist long term on a much lower margin. In a related thread in a motorboat forum hereabouts someone has just posted an outline annual budget for a broker, it is not pretty reading should anyone be thinking of a career change.
Having just bought a Moody through a broker after looking for about 4/5 weeks, there are some that earn their 8% and there is the 70% who don't.
The good ones only do accompanied viewings and have all the answers at hand or get them from the owners and phone you when they say they are going to!
The rest give you all the sales pitch, waste an hour of your time or just lob you the key's tell you where you should find a ladder if it hasn't been nicked and then say that they hadn't spotted the Osmosis...
I will use the same broker to sell my boat as I did to buy it !
friend of mine decided what he wanted for his boat, and advertised it privately at that price. at the same time, he put it with a broker at a price increased by the brokers commission. to his surprise, it was the broker that sold it.
personally, I wouldnt dream of paying a broker £4000 for selling my £50 k boat. Even £1000 sounds too much - which probably means I will have to sell it myself. did that on the last one and simply paid a major south coast broker £50 to check the paperwork and hold the money until exchange took place.
And as for paying an estate agent 3%. You've got to be joking!
I believe the fastest way to find the answer is by trying to sell your own boat. I did just that this past summer. After a couple of months of reasonable efforts on my own part, including a small advert in a newspaper, ads on boating web sites and by putting up my own web site and leaving hints on bulletin boards such as this one, I finally struck a deal with a friendly broker whereby I would pay him his 10% if he sells it and nothing if I were to still come up with my own buyer. The broker did immediately deliver a stream of interested parties, he advertised and placed a picture of my boat in a regional yachting magazine for 3 months, he kept the ultimate selling price near what I wanted and he delivered a qualified buyer, who paid within 10 days of signing the offer. I did not like paying 10% but in the end, it sure was worth it and this broker worked hard for it.
Surely the right way of coping with brokers who are unsatisfactory is to buy the right boat in the first place and keep her for 20 years. This way there will be less boats lying around looking tatty in marinas and more berths for those who sail.
And little income for brokers so that only the good will survive.