Many people who are looking for a fishing boat decide to do so online, due to the limited selection in any one given area. If you want a boat that actually suits your needs, the simple fact of the matter is that you’re probably going to have to look long-distance. This can be a hassle, and many online sellers simply aren’t trustworthy.
I was in this situation myself, looking for a fishing boat that wasn’t in my immediate area. I did some detailed research and came up with a few possibilities, all within about 600 miles, but I wasn’t quite satisfied with any of them. Some were simply not right for me, and I couldn’t trust other ads. At first, I looked on Craigslist and found a boat I was interested in. The seller didn’t stick to his listed price because he claimed to have “lots of potential buyers” for the boat, but we finally found a price we could agree on.
The problem was, I was 500 miles away from the boat, and it was a long drive out to get there. I believed this boat could be right for me, so I took a drive out there… and found out it was an old boat in disrepair. The hull paint was in awful shape, and there was an attempt to mask it that made it even worse! I inspected it for about twenty minutes before leaving, tail between my legs.
When I told this story to the guys at work, one of them told me about thexpresstrader.com and said I could have the boat shipped to a nearby marina for inspection. When I took a look on the site, I found a 2010 Bay Rider 2460 in great shape. It was further away than the other boat – about 1,300 miles away, in fact – but it looked in good shape, had lots of cool features including an automatic bilge pump, self-bailing cockpit and fiberglass lining. Even the outer gel coating on the boat shone!
When I talked to the seller, we agreed that I would pay for the initial shipping to the marina here, and if I refused the boat, he would have to take the boat back himself or pay for shipping. The staff at thexpresstrader.com seemed polite and helpful enough, and I was satisfied with the fraud prevention policy.
The boat arrived and I saw minor dock scratches that I hadn’t seen in the pictures – not a big deal, but still annoying since it had looked so shiny and new in the photos. The seller and I talked, and we agreed that if he paid for the marina repair invoice, I would take the boat. We closed the deal, he mailed the signed title for the boat and the bill of sale so I didn’t have to drive out there, and then I released the payment for the boat from the escrow account.
If I hadn’t gone through thexpresstrader.com, I don’t think the seller would have shipped it – and even if he did, he probably wouldn’t have agreed to pay for the repairs. I got my dream boat for a great price and without too much stress, so I recommend the site to anyone forced to buy a boat 1,000 miles away.