Getting a boat or watercraft appraisal for financing, insurance or a charitable donation qualifies as a necessity when requirements dictate. In addition to accuracy, an appraiser who prepares a valuation report for boats should strive to present professional-looking documents that will impress a bank, insurance company or the IRS as being valid. There are other reasons that appraisals may be necessary such as in matters involving estates, bankruptcy, purchase & sale, damage claims or equitable distribution.


Appraising and donating a boat or other watercraft to charity is both worthwhile and financially beneficial to you. A boat can enhance many lives through the service it provides or financial benefit when it is sold. The tax deduction that is enjoyed by the donor is, of course, another good reason for considering such a gift. The St. Lucie Appraisal Company provides fair market valuation appraisals in all 50 states for many useful purposes such as estate dissolution, equitable distribution, damage claims as well as for donations. Knowledge of boats and other watercraft is one key requirement but another essential necessity that an appraiser of boats needs a database of past sales of comparable items. Whether the appraisal is going to the IRS, an insurance company or a magistrate, it must be documented by sources for the information contained therein. In the case of a tax deductible donation in excess of $5,000.00, you must have a written appraisal in which the appraiser will complete an IRS Form 8283 for you.

Hire an Expert Boat Appraiser

Due to changes in IRS reporting requirements, a boat can no longer be appraised by the dealer where it was purchased unless the item will be donated within two months of when it was acquired. If the boat is worth less than $5000.00, then you usually don’t need to hire an appraiser to value it for you. Like most automobiles, boats can be evaluated by year, make, model and condition. Other factors that should be considered are whether they have been upgraded or customized.

Insuring boats and other watercraft is usually a straightforward process unless upgrades or custom work was done. Claims, however, are a different story. Obtaining a fair settlement for a wrecked, stolen or total loss boat can be a nightmare because insurance companies are far less accommodating paying claims then they are in collecting premiums. An appraisal based on real world comparables is a necessity in these cases.

Obtaining financing from a bank or credit union for the purchase of boats often requires the borrower to have it appraised. Boats depreciate over time so lenders are careful about financing used boats and other watercraft. The NADA boat evaluation guides don’t address upgrades and customization. Many boats have been refurbished to a degree that will extend their lifespans by many years. Banks and credit unions, when searching through their guide books can’t help but fail to realize these and decline to offer adequate loans. Hiring a licensed appraiser is a means to obtaining the necessary financing.

The St. Lucie Appraisal Company has provided valuation appraisals for boats and other watercraft since 1981. We are licensed appraisers and provide service in all 50 states. The cost of a fair market value appraisal depends upon the research necessary to make an accurate determination. However, with the extensive database of past sales at our disposal, we can most often provide an appraisal of a boat for $375.00. We are specialists in appraising boats for donations, financing or insurance.

The St. Lucie Appraisal Company
Service in all 50 States
Phone: (772) 359-4300

Service throughout Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming