Whether you are buying or selling a used boat, knowing its value on the open market is important to make sure you are getting a good deal or providing a fair price. Even experienced boaters aren’t always able to easily determine the condition, and thus the value, of a used boat. Fortunately, there are resources and professional experts out there who can help to ensure the pre-owned boat market continues to flourish.

There are plenty of websites out there that will give you a good starting point for determining the value of your boat. Sites like NADAguides have exhaustive boat model records to help you find the one you’re buying or selling. Of course, what these websites can’t do is determine the condition of the boat and how much that condition impacts the overall price. A website also can’t factor in any upgrades, accessories, or customizations made to the boat, so it’s best to use this as a starting point.

Also read: How to Prepare Your Used Boat for Sale

If you’re trying to get a more accurate estimate on how much a boat is worth, it’s best to go to a marine surveyor who assesses condition and helps determine value based on an inspection. Many also provide comprehensive reports to help both the buyer and seller understand the true condition of the vessel. If you’re buying a used boat from an individual rather than a dealer and the boat has not been inspected by a marine surveyor, it is a good idea to go hire one to make sure you’re not on the receiving end of a raw deal.

When hiring a surveyor, it’s important to remember that this isn’t a licensed profession, so anyone can call themselves a marine surveyor. Be sure any surveyor you hire is familiar with the type of boat in question, that they can provide references, and that they are truly independent.

There are many factors that go into determining the value of a used boat and it’s important you seek professional assistance when making such a significant financial investment.