A marine surveyor is your own investigator who is there to protect your interest and investment. The surveyor is there to inspect, observe and report back to you his findings. Surveyors are not repairmen but can often make suggestions on a course of action or help in locating someone that can help with any problem areas. Needless to say, given these responsibilities marine surveyors are expected to live up to the highest standards of ethics and principles.
Before engaging a marine surveyor ask questions. Try to find a surveyor that will work well with you and can acomodate your needs. The surveyor will have many questions regarding a potential survey before accepting an assignment. You should feel free to openly discuss your needs and questions with the surveyor before engaging him/her.
Check on these items:
- What standards are followed to accomplish the survey?
- What’s included in the survey?
- What type of finished report can you expect?
- How long with the survey take?
- What’s the cost of the survey?
A good survey should not be rushed. The vessel size, equipment and systems will dictate how much time is spent.
Be sure that other people involved in the survey process ( boat yard, seller, insurer, etc.) are also kept “in the loop” so that they are aware of the survey and it’s requirements. Written authorization may be needed to board and inspect the vessel.
Keep in mind that while the survey will provide much information about findings at the time of inspection it is not a guarantee.