Closing the Deal  –  As the closing day approaches on your dream asset, assuming you have all of your proverbial ducks in a row, you will need to consider where the boat is going to be—because the day after it’s yours, it’s all yours mate!  Most good brokers will advise you on all details of “where to” and “how to” with respect to your yacht, and by now your relationship with him or her is all about advice.  Listen!

From the seller’s perspective, there are ends to tie up.  Bills of sale must be usually notarized and, in the case of a US buyer, a US Notary MUST be used.  Particularly if financed, the boat will need to be insured, and often requiring that the surveyor’s recommendations are adhered to.  Bills go with the boat and the seller will produce a letter of indemnification for the buyer that  protects the new owner against any prior liens or claims against the vessel.  European sellers will need a relevant Power of Attorney, if selling to a US buyer, to allow another party to sign the bills of sale on their behalf in front of a US Notary.

If the nationality of the new owner is different than that of the prior owner, the existing registration needs to be deleted before the vessel can then be reregistered for the new owner.  Financially speaking, it is up to the buyer to ensure that the remaining 90 per cent of the purchase funds gets to the seller, or more often the broker, by the day of closing. It is worth noting that in the BVI there is no sales tax!  If the new owner of the boat is not a BVI resident and full import duty has not been paid on the boat a, very reasonable, temporary importation duty must be paid.

Don’t panic! 
This is where a good broker comes in.  Up to this point, they will have been helping in every aspect of the purchase; now, the finer details regarding where you want the boat to be will shift to the forefront.  Several delivery companies are available to transport your boat to the next port; the important part is to have a plan!  All things considered and all paperwork tidy, the boat (yes, and its future bills and upkeep) are now yours.  I seem to remember someone once saying that the first rule of business is to protect your investment.  But you should have a little fun, too!