We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.

Buying from a broker

Many secondhand boats are sold by marinas or other brokers, who will often exhibit them together in one place. They produce detailed reports on each boat, much like an estate agent would. They can often arrange insurance, finance, transport and surveys for you.

A good broker will ask the vendor for a detailed craft background, including its financial situation, but they cannot guarantee that the information supplied by the vendor is accurate. Therefore it is important you check all details.

When a sale is agreed between the broker and the buyer, a deposit is paid by the buyer. This is typically around 10% 'subject to survey'. If your survey suggests that the boat is materially unsatisfactory, the deposit will normally be refunded.


When you’re looking at older boats please take insurance into consideration. If the boat is older than 20 years you may be asked to complete a hull survey to satisfy your insurer that the boat is sound.

The boat should have a recent Boat Safety Certificate. If it does not have one, make sure you know the extent of the work that will be required to obtain one - you won't be able to use the boat on Trust waterways until you have one.

Last date edited: 7 July 2015