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Ten Things a Marine Surveyor Wants You to Know

  • Written by News Company

It is imperative for anyone interested in buying a boat to get a marine survey carried out on the unit he/she is planning to purchase. The reason for a marine survey is simple since a boat is an expensive item and It may be one of the most expensive things (after a property) that you have ever bought. The stakes are very high.

Moreover, it is a mandatory requirement of most insurance companies to carry out a valuation survey of the boat before insuring it. If a bank is financing the purchase, the same condition will apply before its financing approval is granted.

If it's your first time getting a marine survey done or dealing with a hydrographic survey company, there are a lot of new things that you might get to know during the whole process of getting a marine survey and how it works.

A marine surveyor is a professional person who is swift and efficient. There are a few things that the surveyor wants you to know regarding this venture.

Here are the ten things a marine surveyor want you to know well advance of the process:

1. Do Your Homework

Before you appoint a surveyor, you are supposed to do your homework to find out if he is accredited by the relevant competent authority.

You must also be clear with yourself regarding the kind of boat you are seeking to purchase. As discussed above, the surveyor is a professional person and knows a lot about boats. However, he is not able to gauge your personal preferences. It is not the duty of the surveyor to tell you what kind of boat you should be buying. To avoid this hassle, clear out your preferences. Don’t rely on the surveyor to advise you on the purchase.

2. Survey Fee

The cost associated with the marine surveyor is an important aspect but it is not ‘the’ important aspect. You should not select a surveyor based on the price he is offering.

His credentials and past working expertise are also very important. An experienced and seasoned surveyor will be able to provide you with a report that will let you know if there are any faults with the boat. You can save a lot of money if you know about these problems in advance because then, you can re-negotiate the price of the boat.

3. Surveyors Are Professionals

Marine surveyors are professional people who are keen to provide you with the best services. When the client tells them that he/she is carrying out the survey only because the bank or the insurance company needs this done, they can become concerned.

For the surveyor, the objective of the survey is different. He has to make sure that the boat will sail smoothly and will not pose a safety threat once you are sailing on the water.

4. It is You the Surveyor is Working For

You should understand that you are paying for the cost of the survey, and the surveyor will be submitting his report to you only. The surveyor is not required to share the same report with either the bank or the insurance company until you request him in writing.

5. The Validity of the Survey Report

The survey report of a particular boat is not valid forever. Its validity expires after a specific period. This is because the report is compiled after the inspection on a certain date. It is likely possible that the boat could have diminished in value after that date.

6. Make All the Preparations Beforehand

If you have requested a surveyor to come and visit your boat, you must provide him with access to the unit. Make all preparations for the survey before he arrives so that his time is not wasted in moving things here and there, upon his arrival.

If you are confused about what preparations you should make, give the surveyor a call and ask him. The surveyor would let you know about the requirements which you can fulfill before the appointment date.

7. Let the Surveyor Do His Job

Surveyors prefer having the buyer on the boat with them while they are performing the survey so that they can discuss trivial things that may not become part of the written report. But, if you begin asking questions about each and everything, it will only make their job tiring and time taking. Let the surveyor do his job. You will get a comprehensive written report that will cover all the important aspects of the boat.

8. The Trial Run

The surveyor would carry out a sea trial to check the engines and systems of the boat. The trial is carried out because there are certain aspects of the boat that cannot be checked while it is docked. Make sure that the trial goes smoothly.

Also, try not to bring the whole family on the marine trial. They will have ample rides later when you have bought the unit. The presence of distractions will only make the surveyor’s job more difficult because the technical aspects of the boat can be checked only through experience and knowledge. Sometimes, he only needs to hear the technical sounds of the boat to assess its condition. He needs full concentration and silence. Make sure that he gets it while he is performing the survey.

9. Talk to the Surveyor

A surveyor wouldn’t mind talking to you after the survey is over. He will also respond to your questions. You can call him anytime and discuss all these questions that you have noted during the survey.

If there is a technical term in the report that you want to discuss, make the call and have it cleared without any hesitation.

10. Surveyors Care Most About Their Reputation

A surveyor’s stock in trade is his reputation. A surveyor with a bad reputation will not get more work. Moreover, a surveyor is running a separate business and needs people to call him up before they make a purchase. They care about their relationships with their loyal clients and believe in a long-term relationship with them


A surveyor is often a freelancer who has the technical knowledge, experience, and accreditation to carry out a marine survey. His job is technical and depends on his assessment. There are things that he would want you to know before hiring him, and after the job is finished. These are all obvious things that have been listed above. Keep these things in mind, and your marine survey of the boat will go as smoothly as possible.

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