Safe Showing Suggestions

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JMYS Safe Showings/Surveys Suggestions 

Each individual broker needs to determine for themself what an acceptable situation for multi-person interaction is.  Prior to any vessel visit, the broker should check with local government guidelines to comply with requirements.

Due to so many unknowns there is clearly some form of risk involved for any face-to-face meetings with other people. If the broker cannot or does not want to participate in showings or surveys, then an alternative, qualified representative needs to be appointed.

Please share these suggestions in advance with buyers and sellers to outline how visits will be organized and explain individual responsibilities so everyone involved is prepared. Each broker should use caution when allowing for modifications to these guidelines.


Minimize showings.  Work to insure pre-qualified buyers are viewing boats that suit their needs and budgets. “Looky Lou’s” and long way out “fender kickers” need to be discouraged and asked to wait until they are closer to finalizing a decision or until showings are available with fewer restrictions.

Showings by appointment only. In-person visits should be limited to “finalist” candidates who are serious about purchasing a vessel like the one being viewed.

Alternative real-time phone tours. If travel is involved or logistics make a visit difficult, offer to go to the boat and walk the client through using your smart phone with a face-to-face app to provide a tour.

Approval in advance. Get permission from seller to conduct showing aboard and coordinate cleaning inside and out prior to the visit for best first impression. Comply with any special seller requests.

Prior to the visit. Ask of everyone attending if they have had or currently have illness symptoms and/or have had or been exposed to COVID-19 and cancel any possible contagious person’s access.  Better to reschedule than risk contamination or infection.

Arrival at marina/slip location. Wait in cars until all parties arrive for the showing and can board the vessel together. Coordinate via phone.

General guidelines:

  • Avoid handshakes (wear gloves) and avoid embraces (wave).
  • Wear booties (or remove shoes, wear socks for interior viewing).
  • Wear face masks to cover mouth and nose.
  • Bring cleaners; hand sanitizer, Lysol/disinfectant wipes and a clean cloth/paper towels – minimize touching and opening.
  • Be respectful of personal space and keep some distance. One person through a door at a time with some room between.
  • Neatly discard wipes or other trash in a bag for disposal away from vessel.

Planning.  Broker should bring extra masks, gloves, cloth, disinfectant wipe in case a visitor forgets. Bring printed copies of the listing and own pen / paper for making notes.

Procedure.  Broker should be the only person “touching” door handles, drawers, windows, light switches (buyers should think “keep hands in pockets”). Open up boat, weather permitting, and turn on all lights. Broker should open and close with a clean cloth, or, if not using cloth or gloves, wipe down all items touched immediately after doing so, including closing down and locking up the boat when visit complete.  Broker should provide a trash bag for gloves and wipes to be disposed of.  Return vessel to configuration at arrival and let seller know of any issues discovered.

Buyer Preparation: 

Buyers must certify that they are healthy and not an exposure risk. Wait in car until all gather before going to vessel. No shoes on board, wear socks or clean bootie covers. Bring and wear face mask and gloves. No handshaking or embraces. Bring hand sanitizer. Print out hard copy of listing and bring own pen/paper. No crowding or touching, broker will be the only one permitted to open lockers and drawers. Standing only, no sitting down on seats. No use of sinks or toilets.

Broker Preparation. 

Prior to appointment – determine seriousness and qualification of buyer(s) (minimize people coming for visit – children can be harder to keep in an organized group). Permission from seller to show boat. Certify broker is healthy and not an exposure risk.

Broker – No shoes (socks or booties), wear face mask and gloves. Bring print out of listing for review. Lysol or disinfectant and clean rag/paper towels or wipes for cleaning off all surfaces touched immediately after doing so. Trash bag for disposing of gloves after showing. Confirm boat is secure and in same condition as arriving before leaving.

Conduct a recap with clients off the vessel and in a place with good open-air ventilation and room to keep apart, or by phone after the visit.

Provide Seller a follow up report on prospects level of interest, boat condition and cleanliness.

Surveys – Buyer broker and seller broker roles to be reviewed and responsibilities to be pre-determined. Be realistic and plan out the day(s) agenda in advance. Timing and locations scheduled.

Adopt same safety practices as for showings. Discuss and outline haul out, trial run, etc.

Minimize the number of people in attendance.   Determine who is essential: buyers, owners, surveyors, brokers.  Does everyone need to be there?

Survey team must follow same safe practices and agree to do so in advance.

Broker to broker interactions – be a little more lenient and understanding.  Work together to benefit all parties. Share the workload and be a little more flexible on responsibilities if necessary.  Remember, the roles could be reversed. Think of the clients (buyers and sellers) best interests to facilitate the transaction.

Use your best judgment to make sure all parties are always safe and remain healthy.