WHAT YOU SEE IS not WHAT YOU GET
Let’s talk about the EXHIBIT A (EA). To put it very simply, the EA represents the equipment or items onboard the vessel that will transfer to you upon closing. Those items basically “go with the boat”. They belong to you upon closing.
The EA is typically signed by both buyer and seller at the time an Offer is made.
If the items are not on the EA, the seller can remove them prior to closing.
If the Seller decides to leave them, then you either have some treasure or trash, you didn’t expect.
To clear things up even further, if you see items onboard a vessel at the time you first view the vessel, or at the time of survey, but those items are not listed on the EA, they do not go with the boat.
It is critical that you are aware of the EA and what IS or IS NOT included in the sale of the vessel. These items can be as insignificant as the teaspoons in the kitchen draw, or as significant as the dinghy hanging on the davits. If any of the EA items are in question, or if one would like to add certain items to the EA, this should be done at the time an Offer is made or at Acceptance of Vessel, so that there are no surprises for either buyer or seller at Closing.
We have seen it repeatedly, where a buyer sees an item onboard that he or she assumes goes with the vessel only to find out at Closing that it does not. It can cause unnecessary angst.
When we list a catamaran with a seller, we encourage them to:
- Remove anything and everything off the vessel that does not get sold with the vessel.
- Remove anything off the vessel that is personal, as buyers want an empty space to envision their own lives onboard the vessel. A seller’s personal goodies can detract from the vessel in many ways. KEEP VESSEL CLEAR AND UNCLUTTERED.
- If the dinghy is not registered, we will not sell dinghy with the vessel and the dinghy will need to be removed from the vessel until it has been registered.
However, we cannot control all the other listings out there, so we need to educate our buyers that the Specification or Listing sheet becomes the EA and that only those items ‘go with the boat.’
We recently had a situation where our buyers viewed the vessel when the seller was onboard. He was incredibly helpful in explaining all the systems of the vessel and was truly instrumental in the sale of the vessel. While walking them through the vessel, he made a swooping comment to the buyers that ‘everything on the boat goes with the boat.’ When it came time to Close, items that they assumed were included in the sale and the EA came into question. After a timeous and almost bitter battle, an updated EA was approved by both buyer and seller.
Always sign an EXHIBIT A with the Offer on a vessel, and always double check the EA to make sure it is accurate and complete.