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Thread: Negotiating with boat dealers?

  1. #1
    Member Deak's Avatar
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    Default Negotiating with boat dealers?

    Does anyone have any advice on getting a fair price when dealing with boat sales people? I have been looking at the Hewescraft Pacific Explorer and the prices the salespeople are giving me are over 20K higher than what my friend bought one for last year with similar equipment. I don't think prices increased by 20% in a year so I am guessing my negotiating skills are rusty. Can you save this much by ordering in the off season instead of in the spring? When is the best time to buy? Which dealers will work with you a little?

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Check the dealers in Washington.
    You'll save lots even with the cost of shipping....it's easy.
    BK

  3. #3

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    If you get a boat out of Washington or anywhere that it has to be shipped up, make sure you can go down and "receive" the boat before it is shipped. If it makes it up here without your seeing it first, you could have a very bad surprise waiting for you at Ship Creek when you go down to pick it up.

    Timing is important as are material costs which can change significantly over a year. Aluminum is a commodity and you will be charged accordingly.

  4. #4

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    Shipping a boat from down south takes some time and definately some money. Personally I wouldn't buy a boat-new or used without first checking it out in person. So that means flying or driving down. Do the math on all of this and then get some quotes from our dealers here in AK and then some in Washington/Oregon. One strategy might be to get a quote from a dealer down south and the take it into our dealers here and attempt to talk them down. As far as seasons go my experience is that you will get a better deal in the fall than the spring. I purchased both of my boats in the fall and got a good deal on both. Good luck.
    Ruby at the end of a good day.

  5. #5

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    One thing I forgot-aluminum prices hit a high in the winter of '09, a low in summer of '11 and are presently in between those two highs and lows....
    Ruby at the end of a good day.

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    Member AK Fishkiller's Avatar
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    Try River and Sea Marine in Soldotna, he has a last years model boat LOADED and and new 13....I know he is really looking to get rid of the 12....Ask for Peter.....

  7. #7
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    I ahve brought two boats up from Washington, it was very easy and cheap. I would do it again in a heartbeat, especially if your buying a new boat from a dealer....you could save $20k +/- from my experience.
    BK

  8. #8

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    Yeah; River and Sea is world renowned for cheap prices and over the top customer service..............did I almost say that with a straight face???!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bkmail View Post
    I ahve brought two boats up from Washington, it was very easy and cheap. I would do it again in a heartbeat, especially if your buying a new boat from a dealer....you could save $20k +/- from my experience.
    BK
    +1. Bought the last three boats I owned in Washington and hauled them up myself. Dealers in Alaska love to take advantage of people thinking most people are to lazy to go through the process of going out of state. But if you are expecting to get a good deal on any boat in the spring you need to rethink. Buy in the fall for the best bargins. Better yet, buy used and get a boat that someone else sucked up the depreciation as well as adding tons of extra goodies to the boat.
    Tennessee

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    Member jrogers's Avatar
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    Cabellas will be opening in Anchorage this fall I think. I know they sell Hewes in the states. Maybe they will be selling them up here as well.
    2009 Seawolf 31'
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    Boy I can tell you this much. I'm looking for a new trailer for my sport Jon. I'm was looking for best price. So I spent today running around anchorage. I went to every dealer in town. The worst costumer service is Dewey's. guy was rude and pretty much pissed me off. Martina sea and ski never called with a price. Alaska mining diving good costumer service but over charging for there ez loader trailers. River sea and ski in Kenai was there best costumer service with best price.
    Do I give my friends advice? Jesus, no. They wouldn't take advice from me. Nobody should take advice from me. I haven't got a clue about anything..

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    Buying from WA is the best bet if you don't want to spend the additional "20K Alaskan Price" for the same product. Shipping was marginal and they take it to the barge for you. The quality was perfect. In todays age of technology, every inch of the boat was seen before it came here. Buy from WA if you want to save 17K.....end of story.

  13. #13
    Member Cap'n Ron's Avatar
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    I agree with the Washington prices, I saved over $20K on a new HC Alaskan 26' with Honda 135hp outboards, over prices quoted in Alaska with smaller 115hp Yamaha motors. AND I bought mine in the spring, April in fact, but it was the last year's model, still brand new and the motors were not added until I bought it. I towed mine up myself, so don't know about the shipping pros and cons. Got mine at Northwest Marine in Pasco, WA, which is inland. Sounds like the folks buying and shipping are getting theirs near Seattle, so the dealer handles getting the boat to the barge, good idea! If there is a '12 that is brand new in Soldtna, I'd sure take a look at that. Since I was driving up anyway it was a no-brainer for me to buy the boat in WA. Lots of past threads on shipping and trailering boats from the lesser 48....

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by jrogers View Post
    Cabellas will be opening in Anchorage this fall I think. I know they sell Hewes in the states. Maybe they will be selling them up here as well.
    There's a Hewescraft owners' forum, and reports about Cabelas boat sales are bad. No one knows what they're doing, they don't deal well with mods, and there's no service after the sale. If you're looking outside for sales, the most raves are coming in for Clemons in Portland, NW Marine and Sports in Pasco, and Tom-n-Jerrys in Mt. Vernon. Hot competition among those for price and service.

  15. #15

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    20K increase seems a bit steep, but I have been told by boat manufactures that the prices of aluminum do tend to sway the sales price quite a bit.

  16. #16
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
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    I bought my boat in 06 and about a month later seen the same exact boat for $17k cheaper in Washington. It doesn't cost that much to take a senic drive down and pull your boat back, not $17k for sure.
    Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

  17. #17
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    6 weeks ago I was looking at Hewes Pacific cruisers. I would have saved over $20k by purchasing down in Washington. All I did was pick up a phone and get some quotes. The dealers down there will deliver to the dock and you pick it up in Anchorage. Shipping was around $2500.
    It's a no brainer to me.
    BK

  18. #18

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    I bought my present boat north of seattle, Tom and Jerry's. Made the dealer an offer thinking they would never accept it, but they called back and said yes. I drove down and trailered it back to AK. Saved well over 20K. Got to play in several lakes on the way up, learned a lot about the boat by the time it got to Valdez. I agree with everyone else, you get ripped off buying a boat up here.

    I did buy a boat that was being built for delivery in the fall, August, maybe the dealer didn't want to sit on it for months. The dealer was and is easy to deal with, an overall good experience. It was also a 26' Pacific Explorer and has been a great boat. Even after doing all the stuff I've done to mine, I don't have as much in it as a bare bones boat cost in Anchorage.

  19. #19
    Member logman 49's Avatar
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    Here is someone with experience ready to haul a boat up from down south. http://anchorage.craigslist.org/boa/3763057992.html

  20. #20

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    Don't forget about Rocky's Marine in Petersburg. I don't know how their prices compare, but a friend has purchased several boats from them and reports good service. When I spoke with them they were more than willing to help coordinate shipping to the road system.

    http://www.rockysmarine.com/index.html

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