Boating Is Booming: How To Sell Your Boat For Top Dollar

Selling Your Boat Online in The Driveway

Not only is it peak boating season, but the business of buying and selling boats is booming from coast-to-coast. As people increasingly look to boats and boating as a way to get out and enjoy the summer weather while maintaining proper social distancing guidelines during COVID-19, we’re taking a look at some ways to ride that new wave and help you get top dollar for your boat in the current market.

Sell Your Boat Online on Boat Trader

Boat Sales Spiking Across The Country

As America’s largest boating marketplace, we’ve seen a spike in demand in all regions across the country, with traffic in the second quarter jumping 74% over 2019. This means that no matter where you are located, demand is likely up. Even areas less known for boating are seeing record-high listing engagement. What’s more, all boat types, new and used, are experiencing a boat buying boom with center consoles, pontoon boats, and ski/wake boats among the most popular segments in terms of lead volume.

Because many boat manufacturers around the world were forced to reduce or halt production in the wake of the global pandemic, the current rise in market activity suggests there will be tighter inventory later in the year. As interest in boating shows no signs of slowing – and supply shrinks as new boaters continue to buy boats – the time is ripe for current boat owners to ride this wave of demand. It is, therefore, the perfect time to sell your boat and upgrade before a possible waiting period for new models sets in.

What Do Surging Boat Sales Mean For You?

If you have a boat currently sitting in the driveway that you’ve been thinking about selling, now is the time! Consider the following:

Buyers are snapping up affordable inventory: Right now, as historic numbers of people are looking to buy a boat, marketplace insight shows the highest demand is for vessels priced under $25,000, followed by boats under $50,000.

Sale prices are up: According to our data, in May and June the average sale price per boat sold in the used, under 26-foot category, increased 5.24% – more than $1,600 – over last year. Though there are many factors that determine the sale price of a boat, like condition, engine hours and age, this trend is yet another signal that demand is strong.

Families want to go boating: Americans, to the tune of more than 10 million boat shoppers per month, are relying on the convenience of technology more than ever to get on the water. For a minimal price, you can sell your boat locally on Boat Trader and get up to 10 times the exposure of free ads. The site also populates boat specs from the manufacturer, making it easy to list and market your boat.

How To Sell Your Boat Faster For Top Dollar

Beware the buzz: There’s a joke in real estate about spotting watchwords in listings. For example, “close to shopping,” could mean you can hear traffic noise from the backyard. Be careful writing a boat listing with phrases like “custom paint!” or “rebuilt engine!” because, without explanations, these well-meaning buzzwords could raise red flags.

Picture perfect: Upload multiple photos to your boat listing and post the best photo first to encourage maximum engagement. The “sweet spot” falls between 11 and 25 photos, and in these times of social distancing, share video tours. Listings with video tours see more activity than those without.

Market price: Position your boat as the catch of the day with competitive pricing. To determine an accurate price range for your boat, look at listings for similar boats in similar condition. For quick research on boat values and to help you set your asking price, use our Boat Price Checker tool.

Be responsive: As the seller, it’s important that you build trust with a potential buyer, which can lead to a faster sale and willingness to pay more money. Respond within 24 hours – if not sooner – to keep interest high and attract that perfect sale.

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is this: Timing is everything. If selling your boat has crossed your mind, either in order to upgrade or put money in the bank, the time is now. Surging interest in boating and limited inventories could mean faster sales and more money in your pocket if you take action today.

Written by: Jennifer Burkett

Jenny is an avid boater who has worked in the marine industry for years. She developed a fondness for trawlers during her tenure at Kadey-Krogen Yachts and has an affinity for life-on-the-water, contributing articles regularly to Boat Trader, YachtWorld and boats.com. Originally from Chicago, she made her way to Maryland to escape the bone-chilling winter temperatures of the Midwest and to be close to the coastline. She's made Kent Island her home—a location that makes enjoying the Chesapeake Bay a part of her daily life.

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