After 25 years and 7 boats, my wife and I were determined to make the switch from sailing to powerboats. Finding the right boat that fit, proved to be the challenge. We were particular as to look – not too traditional and boring, yet not flashy and glitzy. Building custom homes, we appreciate high quality and value, but still had a modest “sailboat” budget in mind. We also had specific “wants” with regards storage, livability, cruise range, etc. We also were only in the market for a used boat.
We toured every powerboat we could step foot on, during three boat shows, spanning from Newport RI to Fort Lauderdale, FL. We found several that were contenders, and traveled to distant states, only to find they were not as represented, or wouldn’t fit our needs. Stepping foot on a 50’ Fairline Squadron at the Annapolis show, we knew we had finally found the brand that spoke to us. Now we needed to find the right size and fit our budget. Searching the web, we came across a listing for a 42’ Fairline Squadron, by G Marine, represented by David Galante. Our first phone call to him, on a Sunday, which he promptly called back, was an hour-long conversation filled with questions both from us and him, to determine precisely what we were looking for. David learned our background and being a sailor himself, he appreciated what we wanted and the challenges we faced in our quest for the right boat. David was honest, straight to the point, kind and considerate and helped us get comfortable that this boat could be the perfect fit.
Next came the dreaded “boat dealer negotiation”. By this time, we were pros. Having made three offers and see them all not pan out due to overblown representations, unreasonable pricing, or other issues, we were braced. Total surprise came over us when in short order, it was very clear, no games, negotiations or sales “tactics” would be thrown our way. David was again, straight forward, showed us comps on other boats to support value and we quickly settled on the price. The “hard” part was over and it only took minutes… Next was a trip down to Fort Lauderdale to see the boat and test ride. David again showed more professionalism than any broker we had met thus far. We spent the entire day together. He not only took us for a test ride, but walked through every inch of the boat explaining and answering our questions. We had a few items we wanted to customize to fit our needs and he attentively made a list and within a day had a price to us to modify – which was far lower in cost than would be expected from a “boat” dealer. Just thinking of anyone willing to customize a “used” boat is probably absurd, but David was more than willing to help.
Delivery was the icing on the cake. Purchasing from afar we had developed a total relationship of trust. We didn’t even fly back for closing. David was kind enough to watch over the boat (cleaning it, checking on it, etc.) for the month after closing, until we could arrive shortly after Christmas to take delivery and start our journey north, back home. After purchasing seven prior boats, most “delivery” days are a matter of hours. Not the case with David. He met us to get us on board and settled in and then over the next three days came back to answer questions, orient us to systems and then spent one entire day on the water, teaching us to handle the boat and feel comfortable. The journey began three days later, pulling out of North Miami on our own. The next seven days were the best in the world with confidence on the water, a boat that performed better than even expected and the little “details” we had hoped would be done, were not only complete but exceeded our expectations. While this wasn’t a new boat, but rather a three year old one, none of this would ever be expected by a broker. As much as we love our new boat, we loved the relationship we developed with David (he quickly takes our calls and texts with any question as we continue to learn and grow with the boat), and we would ONLY reach out to him first, should (when) the day ever comes for the next boat. Bill SaintOwner Fairline 42 Squadron