So I was contacted by POP Yachts to sell my boat. Every "flag" I have went up. I have been buying, selling, trading and swapping for all of my life, so the thought of handing over the transaction to someone else was not even a consideration.
However, the first POP rep that reached out to me was so nice, so informative and so "not pushy" I had to look into it. Every question I had was immediately answered with professionalism and knowledge. Never once was there a "ugh, umm, well, I'm not sure, let me check, I don't know" or anything of the sort. Every question was immediately answered.
I did my due diligence and checked them out. After about two weeks I made the decision to give them a try.
What really caught my attention was the marketing program POP utilizes to bring in the buyers, and the reporting they do to keep me in the loop. Also I was impressed with how the boat stays in my possession along with the title, and then the "big thing".. If I source a buyer on my own I wouldn't owe a commission!
I'm in the marketing business, so I know how it works. But I also know the value of a syndicated marketing program that populates out to the hundreds of "boat for sale" web sites. I could do it, but I have my own business and dealings to run. If someone else can handle it, then why not give it a try?
I truly thought I would source my own buyer and not be out a commission.
Then James Schwartz, my local rep contacted me, and I want to sing him praises from the rooftop!
I had already written a very descriptive add and taken over 150 photos. Normally the rep takes the photos and writes the ad, but James tweaked what i had already written and used my photos. He answered all of my questions and worked with me on every detail, every step of the way. I had a specific strategy I shared with James to sell my boat and he was all in.
Occasionally I would let him know I was working with a buyer on my own. He would add their name to the protected list, and if they became a buyer I would not owe a commission.
Being in the business of marketing, selling and commissions, I told James that if I sold the boat on my own I was still going to pay what was owed just because its the right thing to do, as well as all of the tremendous amount of work he was doing. He assured me it was not necessary, but I had already made the decision to follow through because I will likely use this service in the future. And again, it would be the right thing to do! But as it turned out my buyer came from POP Yachts marketing.
The boat was listed in the fall, and both of us knew it would likely be spring before we found a buyer. About halfway through the listing I was contacted by someone at the POP home office that just wanted to make sure I was happy with my rep, happy with the results, and happy with the process. The customer service that POP exhibits in OVER THE TOP! Yes I'm happy!
James sent a detailed report every week showing the web hits, the inquiries, and the active buyers that he was engaged in conversations with about my boat. Throughout the week if someone contacted him with a question he would also let me know to kept me in the loop. We talked dozens of times via text, email and the phone to answer questions or get better descriptions of things I had done to the boat before the first showing was scheduled and we met face to face. We both knew this first prospect was not likely to buy, but James continued to follow up with him and communicate on both sides
On the second showing we found our buyer. The buyer was very interested and spent a considerable amount of time (four hours) looking at the boat and asking questions. James had another appointment and left us to talk. When the deal was finally made I called James to let him know and he initiated the paperwork that night.
This was a cash sale with no contingencies or lending required, so I can't speak to the length of time a normal transaction might take. A survey was not necessary and a lake test was not scheduled. My buyer actually lives within 10 miles and I'll likely go with him to a local lake to walk through everything when the time comes.
We made the deal on a Sunday, the buyer wired the money into escrow on Monday, and had the weather cooperated we probably could have done the pickup on Tuesday. As it was, we had to wait until Thursday for the weather to clear up.
That's FOUR DAYS from the time we shook on the deal to the time he pulled out of the driveway! Again, it could have been sooner if the rain wasn't coming down!
On Thursday late afternoon I met with James and the buyer. James had the required docs for the buyer to sign, I assigned the title over to him and had it notarized, he hooked the boat up and drove away. The next day POP wire transferred the proceeds (less commission) into my account, and it was over.
The complete transaction was awesome. The thoroughness,, the kindness, the follow-up, the professionalism of POP Yachts is OUTSTANDING. I highly recommend this service, and two of my friends have already contracted with POP on their boats. Would I use them again?