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Importing a EU sailboat into US


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Hi the anarchist squad!

I plan to sell my EU flagged sailboat (based in France) into the US.

What are the legal importation procedures into US? Who shall I contact once I arrive in the US marina? and how long does it take ish to finalize the selling process ?

Many thanks for advice

Alvaro

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Is there a buyer for the boat or are you hoping to find a buyer when you arrive?

US Customs would be a contact and would inspect the boat and documentation upon arrival at port. 
 

There are many thousands of boats available here that you would have to compete against. If your boat sells through a broker, it could be a smooth process but take weeks  to finalize, even without the pandemic slowing things and depending on the State you choose as your destination, getting a clear title may be quite involved. 
 

What kind of boat is it that may be a hot seller over here and why not sell it in France?

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Thanks Sail4beer and very good points that you mention.

I have two potential buyers over there. But one day is a 'yes', the other day is 'no'! Things go quickly in this boat market. I've a bit of experience in this in Europe/Mediterranean area.

Florida it is where are my buyers. I am happy to sell to a broker, I am open to options. It's question of time and cost. Few weeks as timeline for processing the paperwork looks good to me.

Don't think it's a hot seller, it is a Jeanneau 53 (2012), well maintained. But I met in marinas few US sailors/owners very interested in this sailboat while I was sailing around the Med. From that, I have been in contact with these potential buyers.

I am then exploring.. as a sailor I am always stimulated by sailing to the tropics and initiate new adventures! From this first transaction, more will be doable. I need first to get familiar to the whole legal process, eventually to have local partners, and make it smoother for the next ones. On a longer term, it can be profitable for buyer&seller and fun! This why I target US rather than France.

 

 

 

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On 10/16/2020 at 7:55 PM, Alva said:

Thanks Sail4beer and very good points that you mention.

I have two potential buyers over there. But one day is a 'yes', the other day is 'no'! Things go quickly in this boat market. I've a bit of experience in this in Europe/Mediterranean area.

Florida it is where are my buyers. I am happy to sell to a broker, I am open to options. It's question of time and cost. Few weeks as timeline for processing the paperwork looks good to me.

Don't think it's a hot seller, it is a Jeanneau 53 (2012), well maintained. But I met in marinas few US sailors/owners very interested in this sailboat while I was sailing around the Med. From that, I have been in contact with these potential buyers.

I am then exploring.. as a sailor I am always stimulated by sailing to the tropics and initiate new adventures! From this first transaction, more will be doable. I need first to get familiar to the whole legal process, eventually to have local partners, and make it smoother for the next ones. On a longer term, it can be profitable for buyer&seller and fun! This why I target US rather than France.

 

 

 

Alva... if you are not a US citizen you may have some issues whilst Covid-19 is raging...  to enter the United States even with appropriate visas.

First.. a normal ESTA is not sufficient for entering the US on a non regularly scheduled passenger vessel. (Commercial Flights  and recognized Cruises are regularly scheduled passenger vessels and an ESTA is sufficient).

If not a US citizen, you shall need a real visa for yourself and all passengers/crew.

Second.. you shall need to get a cruising permit to allow your boat to be in the US.  unless you wish to pay customs duties ahead of time and 'import' the boat.

If you do not 'import' the vessel... you then are not allowed to offer sell it to a US person.  This is why so many ridiculous adverts are in the yachting journals with 'Not For Sale In US Waters To A US Resident'  at the top of the ad.  Because import duty was not paid..... Minor technicality... yet....

 

 

Best of luck.... 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On 10/16/2020 at 7:19 AM, Alva said:

Hi the anarchist squad!

I plan to sell my EU flagged sailboat (based in France) into the US.

What are the legal importation procedures into US? Who shall I contact once I arrive in the US marina? and how long does it take ish to finalize the selling process ?

Many thanks for advice

Alvaro

In the past I have used an import / export agent in the USA 

typically it’s a flat fee based on the value of the boat 

I’m sure its possible to do it yourself  

you would be wise to first consult an agent 

for instance ...http://www.aydserv.com/

a good yacht broker can advise on local agents 

 

 

 

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I can't speak to the legal requirements.  But the boat itself should be fairly easy to sell if you get that stuff worked out. When I bought my 2013 J53 in 2017 there were only 3 for sale on the East Coast.  

I looked at the one being brokered by Atlantic Cruising in Annapolis and I made an offer.  I ultimately withdrew and passed on the boat when I was later told that the licensed captain the seller used to sail the boat for him had run into the Bay Bridge and damaged the mast.  Just a minor issue they said.  Plus ACY was pretty pissy about the whole thing and I decided against having to deal with them.

i ended up buying the J53 privately owned by the dealer in Riverside, NJ.  She is a great boat to sail.  Very fast, and easy to single hand.

Good luck.

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Your J 53 would attract a buyer in Canada.  Canada has a Free Trade agreement with EU countries.  As long as the sellers address and the boat manufacturer is in an official EU country, then your boat can be imported “duty free” into Canada by you or a potential buyer.  Would be much easier for both parties !!! 
 

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16 minutes ago, Ultraman said:

New EU boat Yes.  Pre-owned EU boat No.

A pre-owned EU boat can  be imported into Canada duty free IF:

"...you have to have written proof that the vessel hasn’t been entered or consumed into any country that isn’t a signee of the CETA agreement.

If the vessel has spent any time in US water, the 10% Tariff will be imposed. This functions regardless of the registry.

https://canadianvesselregistry.ca/buying-a-used-or-new-vessel-out-of-canada/

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3 minutes ago, 12 metre said:

A pre-owned EU boat can  be imported into Canada duty free IF:

"...you have to have written proof that the vessel hasn’t been entered or consumed into any country that isn’t a signee of the CETA agreement.

If the vessel has spent any time in US water, the 10% Tariff will be imposed. This functions regardless of the registry.

https://canadianvesselregistry.ca/buying-a-used-or-new-vessel-out-of-canada/

Exactly ..... 

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