Sailboat Condition Matters

By far the second most important factor to listing your sailboat for sale, after price, is condition. Clean sailboats, priced right, sell. And sell quickly! It is really that simple. As your sailboat listing gets compared to comps on price it absolutely will be compared on condition and how well it shows.

Does your sailboat's condition check off all the boxes?

3 Areas of Attention

The following 3 areas of attention are what create a sailboat listing that maximizes its potential and gets offers versus those that sit on the market getting no offers and eroding in price and condition.

Hull & Exterior

The first impression can make or break your sale. What will a buyer see as they approach the sailboat?


Your chance to get the buyer picture the sailboat as their own.

Engine Room & Mechanical Spaces

Prove your sailboat is well kept with clean and orderly mechanical spaces.

Hull & Exterior

Your sailboat's finish is the first thing a potential buyer sees walking down the dock.

Keeping the hull and topsides waxed and shining is vital. Make sure rust stains and black streaks are not present.

If you have canvas enclosures, bimini’s/dodgers you cannot have broken zippers, cracked or cloudy isinglass panels and mold growing on the backing. Is your rigging in good condition? Sails properly stowed and showing well? The first impression your sailboat makes as the buyer approaches will either set a positive tone for a chance to sell or a sailboat that says "nobody loves me anymore."


Upon entering the cabin a buyer must be greeted with a sailboat the lets them start picturing owning it - not how worn out or cluttered the sailboat is. To many times a sailboat is shown and buyers are greeted by a cabin that is cluttered, smells, looks worn out and is not staged. You need to check off these items as taken care of.

1. The Sense of Smell

The Sense Of Smell will make or break a sale. Make sure your heads are deodorized and fresh, that you’ve cleaned out your fridge, scrubbed your bilge so that stagnant oil and water permeate the interior. Are your carpets shampooed and fresh? When you leave your boat make sure you vent a hatch or run your ac/heat systems to circulate air. A smelly yacht is a hard negative to overcome!

2. Get Rid Of Clutter & Personal Effects

Get Rid Of Clutter & Personal Effects so that buyers can imagine themselves owning the boat. Sailors tend to have a lot of clutter aboard. Remove as much as you can without limiting your ability to use your boat. GET IT ALL EMPTIED OUT NOW. These issues contribute to smell, make a yacht feel much smaller and create a feeling of invading your space. You want a buyer to feel like sitting down in the salon imagining it’s theirs not staring at a picture of Aunt Mildred tacking or half empty wine bottles. Your sailboat needs to look like it could be in a boat show.

Engine Room & Mechanical Spaces

Your sailboat looked great walking down the dock. The interior sparkled and was staged like a model home. Finally, the buyer will now open and enter the mechanical spaces and engine room. Do you pass the test?

1. Grime & Grease

Grime & Grease build up in these spaces and a sparkling bilge screams a boat owner who takes care of things. Smells also are created from standing water mixing with oil & coolant. Put fresh bilge diapers under motors to show and spot leaks that can be addressed now.

2. Remove Or Organize

Remove Or Organize loose tools and half empty oil or antifreeze bottles that you accumulate. Again this makes the space feel smaller or projects a boat that is in a constant state of repair. Use bins or tool-boxes as a means of showing you have cared for how this space functions.

3. Fix It, Clean It Or Replace

Fix It, Clean It Or Replace It in regards to hoses, bilge pumps, rust covered anything, battery corrosion, shower sumps that are clogged with hair, burned out light bulbs all can be negatives that can be overcome ahead of time.

“Clean sailboats, priced right, sell. It's really that simple, if you get it right”

My Sailboat's Value

Learn Your Sailboat's Value in Today’s Market

You will receive a report with sold comps, active comps, and become an educated seller on how to best position your sailboat to sell, not sit. 

“Look at your sailboat's exterior, interior and mechanical condition and ask yourself would you buy it today?”

LISTINGMYSAILBOAT.COM is dedicated to educating sellers who are thinking about listing or actively selling a sailboat.
Knowledge is power & this education is powered by Knot 10 Yacht Sales.

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