To buy a boat is an important investment, after all, it can represent the second biggest purchase of many, preceded by a house. But also to maintain it and ensure that it stays in excellent condition might become quite costly and time-consuming. Moreover, for certain insurance companies, you need such inspections to be able to renew your insurance company. After all, if you own a boat, or you are looking to buy one, it is because you have somewhat of a passion for it, so you knew already that you’d have to work a bit hard to keep it inappropriate conditions.
Still, you might have never heard about Marine Surveying, which is an incredible service you should make use of so in case you’re considering to buy a boat, you had an accident, or you just want to ensure your boat is safe enough. If you’re interested to learn more about it, keep reading and inform yourself about the importance of such a survey, why you should be doing it and what to look for.
What is a Marine Survey?
A marine survey is carried out by qualified professionals to determine and evaluate the conditions of a vessel, especially its fitness to travel on river or sea. Such analysis can be carried on pretty much all types of boats: from small boats and commercial ships to mega yachts.
The industry of marine surveying is made of independent local businesses and organizations. Generally, the inspection is done methodically throughout every part of the boat, inside and out. Out of the water, assessment is common and usually look at paint condition, propellers, zinc protection, and keels.
When accidents on the water have occurred, usually marine surveyors are called to investigate the causes based on the vessels’ conditions. Otherwise, the main focus of the analysis would be safety or market value.
What Are the Types of Marine Surveys?
According to the specific needs or the reason why you chose to carry out a marine survey on your boat, you should know that there are several types of marine surveying. Even if each survey is supposed to assess the conditions of a boat, specific surveys might be focusing on certain details that are particular to a certain situation. Be sure you know them to understand which one might be most useful according to your needs.
- Condition and Valuation for Purchase and Insurance
When you want to buy a boat, this is the survey you should be looking for. Marine surveyors, in this case, should check all the systems onboard, the overall structure, and stability. By surveying your potential purchase, you’ll ensure both quality and safety from the beginning.
- Condition and Valuation for Insurance
This is a specific type of marine survey carried out specifically to certify your boat’s conditions for the renewal of your insurance policy.
- Damage Inspection
If your boat has been involved in an accident or has suffered damages, you’ll need the eye of a professional to determine the importance of the damage, the impact on the safety and overall conditions of your boat and how to fix it. This is when you need a damage inspection.
This type of survey is generally carried out with the intent of establishing and re-assessing a current fair market value of the boat. Usually, it is required for tax settlements or cases in court as well as for donations. Tools and guidelines like depreciation and databases are used.
- Corrosion Inspection
Corrosion is not an uncommon problem in vessels. A corrosion inspection is one kind of marine surveying that is carried out while the boat is in the water using a silver-chloride half cell probe and a meter.
How to Find A Good Marine Surveyor
Do some research in advance. Not only in terms of what is the offering available in your area but also to come up with specific requirements if needed. Prices usually are based on square feet of the boat and charges might change according to the boat, the service needed and many other characteristics.
Remember than marine surveying is an investment in the maintenance of your boat and that a surveyor’s job is to represent you in case there is a court involved.
For some companies, you can be present during the inspection so that you can provide explanations when necessaries. However, don’t make your presence heavy and allow the professionals to do the job you hired him for.
How long does a marine survey take?
A marine survey can take between three and up to seven hours on average, depending on the size of your boat and the conditions.
You should prepare your boat in advance, cleaning up lockers, bags or whatever might be in the way during the survey. Not only it will save you time (and possibly money) but also you’ll create a good environment for the inspector to perform his job with better quality and efficiency. A dirty boat, with inaccessible areas, will take more time to get inspected thoroughly.
Usually, after an inspection, the organization or company you chose would provide you with a written report with the results of the survey.
Keep in mind that no matter how much time marine surveying takes, it is essential to ensure and certify the level of safety of your boat. If there are any issues, even if hidden, a marine survey will usually uncover them and save you a headache and further costs in the long run.
A Marine Surveying is an important service to be done on your boat. If you are a new owner of a boat, the survey is the perfect occasion to make sure you’re purchasing an excellent vessel. If you have been owning the boat to inspect for a while, you want to make sure that its conditions are still on point.
Because marine surveys are carried out by private companies, make sure you accurately select one and consider building a relationship which both you and the surveyor can benefit in the future.