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Negotiating price on a new boat?

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  • Negotiating price on a new boat?

    I'm in the process of shopping the local dealers for a new fiberglass runabout. Budget about $25,000I know that when buying a new car, there is usually about a 5% 'flex factor' built into the dealer's asking price.What's the deal on new boats? Can I come in with an offer below the dealer's price? Or can I ask that additional options such as radio, GPS, seats, boat cover, etc, be included in the deal?


  • #2
    Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

    yes.try 20%
    Medford, WI

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    • #3
      Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

      20%? That sounds like a pretty big discount from the asking price. Are you serious?Anyone else with experience at this?

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      • #4
        Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

        Yes I'm serious.Don't know what price they are asking.Is it the manufacturers suggested retail?An already discounted price?Everything changes if you are looking for financing also.Some will cut you a better price if you go with their financing, because they make a comission on selling the financing too.The last new car I bought cost me 71% of the sticker price.The one before that was about 78%.If you buy one now, from dealer inventory, you should get a substantial discount, as the dealer won't have to carry it on the books till spring, or store it. If its in inventory, its costing them money. And if it is a 2004 model, they get to sell it before they have a showroom full of 2005 boats.You may only end up with a 10% discount ( in dollars and accessories) but you won't get any discount if you don't ask and get the negotiations started. Don't be afraid to walk out on the negotiations if it doesn't feel right. Beware of ad ons like freight and delivery, prep, rigging charges, storage, etc. Make sure if they are all included in the number you are negotiating, or if they will all be added on after you reach a price. I'm not saying these charges are not legitimate, just know up front, if they are included in the price you are negotiating.
        Medford, WI

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        • #5
          Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

          I'd add one more thing to roscoes' observations, many large dealerships (car or boat) run competitions between the salespeople for the 'most sales' in a set period (especially towards the end of financial year), if you are observant you may notice the whiteboard with the names of the salesmen, ask to see the one with the least ticks against his/her name. Salespeople are hungry for your money, good time to tighten the screws. Give it a go, start at a price that you may consider ridiculous - negotiate from there.Aldo
          Watch this space......................

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          • #6
            Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

            RoscoeThanks for the advice. I'll probably go in there with your -20% suggestion, either in cash or accessories. DunarunaGood idea, which I'll remember next time I buy a car....but the dealership I'm thinking of buying from is small, and only has one salesman.

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            • #7
              Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

              Originally posted by Brookville:[QBonly has one salesman. [/QB]
              Err I wonder if he's winning the comp Sorry, my bad.Aldo
              Watch this space......................

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              • #8
                Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                I was pricing new boats a few months ago. Looking at a 2005 sea pro, I'll omit the dealer's name to protect the guilty. He started off at $31,200 for the boat rigged with a 200 and a couple options. At the end of negotiations we were at $25,000 with a trailer. It took me finding a better deal to get him to come down to that, but he came down. Then I went out and paid cash for the used rig I have now and never looked back, but I digress.... Sad part is I bet there are plenty of people that won't put up that much of a fight and end up paying way too much. Boats are not like cars, you don't need one, you want one (right?) so they don't move as fast as cars do and therefore you can usually do a lot more dealing on them. Especially when the new model year rolls in and they need to move the leftovers.Good luck!!

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                • #9
                  Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                  Beware of the Boat Show price too. Last year I saw 3 models of interest @ the Ft. Wayne show. The show price was exactly the same as it was at their showroom 2 months earlier. If you see ballons and streamers, it must be a SALE????? NOT

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                  • #10
                    Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                    how many hrs. does a boat really get up north?how many folks buy a boat and almost never useit, then decide to sell 2-3yrs. later?I am willing to bet you can get 10X the boat orsave $5K if yur willing to consider used... (get a good survey and have it tested by a goodmechanic PRIOR to closing of course)safe boating,M.Y.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                      I agree, MellowYellow. My experience up to now has always been in sailboats, and I have always bought used.But, as my ignorance of power boats and engines is vast, I decided to treat myself to a new one this time.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                        brookvillei purchased an o4 alumacraft 175 cs navigator, with 3 alumacraft seats, with an 04 90hp 2 stroke merc, with trailer at a spring boat show in alexandria bay NY. i thought the show price was great, we started at $14,000, negotiated down to 13,000 and dealer threw in extra alumacraft seat, giving me 4 nice seats. this boat can be seen at www.alumacraft.comi think you should shop for 04 model. this time of year dealers have their own $$ invested in inventory and would be quite willing to unload boats.my expereince at the boat show was was a good one, remembering the dealer needs to make a $$$ and i dont feel i got overly screwed.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                          I've always gotten 10% to 15% off on cars. Boats and campers are 20^ to 30%.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                            Here's my opinion: I would work your offer on the dealer having a mark up around 20-25% (off retail)on the base boat and 50% markup on accessories. The best time to buy, when salesmen are getting incentives, is the LAST day of the month and from the salesman who is CLOSEST to getting the monthly incentive. Your deal may put him over the top to win. All others don't have a chance to win and won't be as negotiable on commission. Never shop for best prices at the first of the month.2005s are coming out now, if you buy a 2004 it will be depreciated a whole year in book value when 2005 arrives. In 3 months the boat will be "1 year old" by book values...a 3 month old boat will have the same book value as one that is 12 mos old. Make your offer based on 10 months depreciation the boat already has...even if new.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Negotiating price on a new boat?

                              You can get the dealer's cost for a new car from all kinds of places and it's pretty easy to figure out how much negotiating space you have.In most cases that's a big secret with boats (and many dealers will lie like hell about it, or even resort to the unscrupulous practice of having fake wholesale invoices printed so they can show you inflated prices). The asking price for a boat can have a huge dealer profit in it without anyone knowing better unless you do some homework and shop around. Competition, as always, will make the truth come out.Somebody also made a point about boat dealers having to make more profit from fewer sales. I think that is most likely to be true in seasonal climates or other areas of low boating activity. In Florida, for example, where there are almost as many boat places as car places, the economics are also much more like cars - sell a lot of boats at lower profit margins. Big difference when the competition is across the street as opposed to three towns away....

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