Chris Reid Jun 26, 2023

Before you start looking for a boat, have you thought about requesting a loan pre-approval?

Knowing how much you can borrow with assurance comes from having a pre-approval. A pre-approval has several additional advantages, which makes it a popular choice for our clients.

As an alternative, you might start looking for your new boat and hold off on requesting financing until you've found something that works. But if you can't borrow enough money, you run the risk of wasting your time and being let down.

Pre-approval aides in preventing that discouraging scenario. Find out below what a pre-approval is and how to request one for your boat loan. 


What is conditional pre-approval? 

When you initially speak with a lender about a boat loan, they might be able to offer you what’s known as conditional pre-approval. What this means is that they can provide you with a certain amount you’re allowed to borrow depending on the details you give them at this point of the process.

It’s important to remember that the pre-approval amount that is granted by the lender is time-sensitive. That is, you don’t have unlimited time to then find a boat you want; generally between 1 and 3 months.


Why is getting pre-approved for a boat loan so beneficial?

There are quite a few solid reasons to get pre-approval before heading out and boat shopping. These include:

  • Budget is determined

Because you know the maximum amount you’re able to borrow, this will help narrow which makes and models that fall within your budget. This enables you to focus your attention on researching vehicles in your price range and be realistic about what you can and can’t afford.

  • It’s an easy out when dealer finance is brought up

Some people can find it a little uncomfortable when, while talking to a salesperson in the boatyard, dealer finance is brought up. And they will most certainly try their absolute best to get you on board with it, not only because it helps them fudge numbers during the negotiation but also due to the fact that a substantial amount of their commission comes from the money made selling their financing.

But when you have pre-approval, not if but when dealer finance is brought up, you can simply let them know you’ve been pre-approved and aren’t interested.

  • You have a bargaining chip during negotiations

When you have pre-approval for a specific amount (your ‘price ceiling’), unless you want to use additional savings the salesperson will either need to sell you a vehicle for that amount or you’ll have to walk away.

Also, in essence you are a cash buyer; that is, the lender has agreed to loan you the money already which means you’re serious about buying and there’s no stuffing around to find a loan later on - you’re there to buy (provided they can offer you the right price!).

Plus, after you’ve decided on a make and model, the salesperson can’t use any of their number smoke-and-mirror methods to take your attention away from the bottom-line sale price of the car. Approach them and ask for their best bottom-line sail away price - if they 'umm' and 'ah' about that simple request, walk away and head to the next boatyard.


How to obtain boat loan pre-approval?

In order to put your best foot forward towards getting yourself pre-approved for your boat loan, it’s really important that you get some things together beforehand such as:

  • Collating the documentation that may be required

This might include a few months’ worth of payslips, information about credit cards and other loans (if you have any), identification documents and anything else you think the lender may want to see.

  • Finding out your credit score

Prior to submitting your application for boat loan pre-approval, it’s worth checking up on the health of your credit score as this can not just determine whether you actually secure pre-approval but also how good your interest rate could be. You may find that it’s worth doing some work to improve the score before applying.

  • Get a good idea of the type of boat you want

While the actual make and model may be determined by how much you’re eligible to borrow, you should still be aware of the type of boat you’re after. Do you want a fishing boat? An SIB? Or maybe a Speedboat? And what about some basic features you couldn’t live without? A bit of preliminary research can help give you a much better grasp on how much (roughly) you think you’ll need to borrow.


Speak with us to get pre-approved for a boat loan today

Reckon getting conditional pre-approval for your boat loan sounds like something you’re interested in? We’re here to help. After more than 2 decades’ experience in the finance industry, Stratton FInance has amassed a gigantic network of lenders we have available at our fingertips. That means whatever your personal requirements may be, we’re certain to find the ideal lender and boat finance package to match.

Get a boat finance quote and discover how awesomely low your monthly repayments could look like, and if you’re happy with the figure you can easily apply online in less than 5 minutes! For any questions or if you’d like us to help you through the process, call us now on 1300 787 288 or message us online and we’ll be in touch soon.


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