Before getting involved in a transaction, it is important for both you and the prospective buyer to make sure that all of the paperwork is in order, to try to prevent future headaches. One of those documents is the boat’s bill of sale, and we will explain to you what that is, and what other documents you need to sort out when you want to sell your boat.
What’s a Boat Bill of Sale?
Let’s face it: regardless they are material means, everybody gets attached to their vehicles. In particular, if the vehicle is a boat. However, it may happen that you do need to update your boat or, regrettably, that you do have the need to sell your vessel.
If that happens to be your case, you probably need to get familiarised with a boat’s bill of sale and its definition.
In simple words, a bill of sale is a document that you use when you want to transfer the ownership of your watercraft. We say ‘watercraft’ for a reason: you can be transferring any kind of boat: with an engine and non-motorized.
Apart from the type of boat you are intending to sell, the trailer or motor included in the transaction (if any) has to be mentioned in the document. If you are the one who is buying a boat, we recommend that you ask if the trailer is included in the price. If you are the one selling, our advice is to sell the trailer with the boat, as you may buy a bigger boat, for instance, that will not necessarily fit your new vessel.
As we said before, if the boat you are selling includes a motor, its features have to be included in the bill of sale of the boat.
It is also important to know when to finalize the transaction: if you are the one who is selling the boat, we recommend you not to sign the bill of sale until you have received the funds for your boat. If you are the one who is buying the vessel, you better sign the document once the boat has been delivered to you, and you know that it is safe and sound.
Important Information for your Boat’s Bill of Sale
As we mentioned, it is important for both the seller and the buyer to write the bill of sale as thoroughly as possible.
Specifications of the boat such as the year it was made, the make, its title number, the HIN, and odometer reading are just some of the basic details. Furthermore, objective accounting of the boat’s condition should be included, so if something’s wrong with the boat or isn’t working as well as it is supposed to, then it should be noted.
The same specs should be included for the trailer and engine if it is possible to do so
Other than the information from the watercraft we have been talking about, the document has to feature some basic details about the people included in the transaction as well as the county and state it is taking place in.
Finally, the price that the buyer is paying for the vessel has to be mentioned as well.
Documents to Include on a Boat Transaction
Apart from the bill of sale, we have been talking about, the other documents depend on the state in which you are selling your boat.
In Florida, just to use it as an example, you need to fill out a Vessel Registration Application on boats larger than 26 feet.
The HIN number, which we mentioned as a part of the bill of sale, has to be registered by the USCG so it might be a good idea to check their database before purchasing.
Finally, the last document you need is the watercraft title which is awarded state by state.
The Maritime Documentation Center can help you!
The Maritime Documentation Center is America’s leading provider of vessel documentation services. After years of knowledge and experience, they can save you the worries that would otherwise be incurred. Just reach the Maritime Documentation Center by heading back to the home page and completing any of the forms you need.