Boating is the family vacation that never ends. Although purchasing a boat can be stressful, it doesn’t have to be. Asking the right questions can be the difference between “making memories” and “making migraines.” Below is a list of ten questions every dealer should have a good answer for.
How long have you been in business?
Longevity is key in the boat business with many dealers being fly by night. You want someone who will be around down the road.
How long have you carried this brand?
Many dealers chop and change brands as trends change. Stick with a dealer that has a long history with their brand. This will help with retained value, service and warranty later.
What is your facility like, what are the amenities?
One of the best ways to judge a dealership is by how they keep their facility. If they won’t show it to you or don’t advertise it, that is a red flag. Top dealers maintain pristine Marina facilities and offer a full range of amenities for boaters including docking, dining, gifts, clothing, hiking, full service, and more.
What is included in this purchase?
Boat dealers will often include valuable items at boat shows as incentives; take advantage of these offers. Examples of necessities you will need are starter safety kits, coolers, and more.
Do you deliver and demo?
Make sure the dealer will deliver the boat to you and educate you on its many features.
Do you offer service calls?
Broke down on the 4th of July? Make sure your dealer’s service team will be prepared to help you.
Are you a Top 100 Dealer?
Boating Industry Magazine ranks the Top 100 dealers from throughout North America annually. These dealers face stiff competition and meet high standards to get on the prestigious list.
Are you a Marine Certified Dealer?
The MRAA (Marine Retailers Association of the Americas) has a rigorous set of guidelines and practices a dealer must meet to be Marine Certified. Why buy from someone who hasn’t taken this step?
What kinds of boats do you sell?
Stick with specialists for the type of boat you are looking for. Many dealers try to do too many types of boats and are experts on none.
What are your hours?
It may sound simple but some dealers close on Sundays, weekends, or for the winter. It is best to deal with someone open 7 days a week in the summer (what if you have a problem on a Sunday?) and maintains winter hours. Winter is a great time to get those accessories added and other work done on your boat so valuable boating time is not lost in the spring.
Atwood Lake Boats