The first step in acquiring a marine surveyor is to ask questions. Is the surveyor an accredited marine surveyor? There are accrediting organizations for marine surveyors which require strict adherence to the professional, technical, and ethical standards that apply to marine surveys. What does the survey include, and what type of reporting format is used? Accredited marine surveyors will provide you with a professionally prepared report that can be accepted by banks and insurance companies.
Do they use ABYC, NFPA, IMO Code of Federal Regulations, and USCG Standards in their surveys? How much will the survey cost? How long will it take? A thorough inspection cannot be rushed. The time it takes will depend upon the type of survey required and the size, equipment, and onboard systems involved. Marine surveys can include engine surveys, oil analysis, galvanic and stray current corrosion testing, ultrasonic testing, moisture testing, as well as other nondestructive tests. Ask what additional charges could be incurred for these and any other services.
Well conducted marine surveys on yachts and vessels provide solid information about a vessel's condition, but they are not guarantees. Marine surveyors can only report the condition of the areas that are accessible to them at the time of the inspection. Why should you have a vessel surveyed? A prospective buyer needs to know the condition and fair market value of the vessel before purchasing it. Most insurance companies and banks require a current survey on older vessels in order to underwrite/finance the vessel. Finally, the most important reason to survey a vessel is to ensure the safety of its passengers and crew.
AAC Marine Surveyors are accredited experts in yacht and vessel inspection services worldwide. We are fully accredited and a member of the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors.
Types of Marine Surveys
A Pre-Purchase Survey is the most comprehensive type of inspection and is strongly recommended when purchasing a new or used vessel. Marine surveyors examine the condition and overall operational capability of the vessel which includes structural integrity, out of water inspection, sea trial, electrical systems, propulsion system, fuel system, machinery, navigation, miscellaneous onboard systems, cosmetic appearance, electronics, and overall maintenance. The prospective buyer should be aware that if the survey is done at any port for the seller, it might not be accurate and could cause damage that would require extensive repairs.
An Insurance Survey is performed so the insurance company can determine whether or not the vessel is an acceptable risk. They are interested in its structural integrity and safety for the vessels intended use. Most of the insurance companies require a survey on older boats, and they also want to know the vessel's fair market value.
An Appraisal Survey is performed to gather enough information to justify or determine the fair market value of a vessel. This is normally needed for financing, estate settlements, donations, and legal cases.
A Damage Survey is performed to assess the extent of damage, recommend repairs, estimate repair costs, and if requested, the probable cause of the damage.
Preparing for the Survey