In life, hiring an expert to manage tasks and projects is usual practice due to lack of specialized experience or a need to prioritize time in other areas. Buying an aircraft is no different. In fact, there is a strong case to be made that a mistake in buying a jet can have enormous monetary consequences. Avoiding these financial traps is the job of a professional aircraft broker. Too often, aircraft buyers attempt to go it alone only to find out, in time, that the aircraft they purchased has a Pandora’s box of unpleasant surprises. Don’t be fooled in thinking of saving money by not paying a broker’s fee.
“The Bitterness of Poor Quality Remains Long After the Sweetness of Low Price is Forgotten.” – Benjamin Franklin
Before a buyer ever identifies an aircraft for purchase, he or she needs to know what aircraft is best suited for their requirements and which are not desirable candidates. This can be easier said than done. Damage history, maintenance pedigree, and current market trends are just a few of the major “gotchas.” Some aircraft hold value very well, while others may have higher operating cost. Some aircraft may not have the capabilities to fit the mission of the new buyer, while others may be capable of multiple rolls. Many times, an aircraft broker will save clients from an error long before a transaction ever begins. The perfect aircraft for a buyer who has a house in Hawaii may be far different than that of an aircraft for a buyer who has a ranch in Texas. That said, sometimes these are, indeed, the exact same aircraft. Finding the right aircraft to pursue in your next transaction is a key ingredient for favorable aircraft ownership.
The number of pitfalls in an aircraft transaction and purchase are numerous. Most people assume they can identify the major factors that affect their cost of ownership. However, many times the simple wording of the purchase agreement can have major implications. Unlike real estate, aircraft purchase agreements come in many forms and can be very malleable. Without proper guidance from a professional, one misstep will result in a buyer agreeing to terms that may not be in their best financial interest. On the contrary, having an experienced broker who can assist in the contract phase will help strengthen the buyer’s position heading into a pre-purchase inspection. It goes without saying, you don’t know what you don’t know until it’s too late.
By avoiding just a few of these possible errors in an aircraft purchase, a broker’s fee can easily be redeemed. In actuality, having a broker in your corner during a transaction will pay for itself and you’ll be money ahead when you take possession of your aircraft. It’s often said that you get what you pay for. This holds true for an aircraft purchase. If you decide not to pay for someone to represent you in an aircraft transaction, you will get exactly that, no representation. When you hire a broker to represent you in your transaction, you are paying for their experience and knowledge. Otherwise, you will be learning the hard way. Anyone, who has had to learn a financial lesson the hard way, will tell you to hire an expert!
Those who know Ryan know his longtime passion for planes. As a matter of fact, Ryan soloed his first aircraft before receiving his driver’s license at age 16. Today, he holds multiple jet type ratings (LRJET, CL604 and B737) and is responsible for aircraft sales, brokerage, acquisitions, market analysis, data research and special projects. Ryan puts client needs first, always respecting time and understanding the importance of investments. Outside the world of aviation, Ryan enjoys spending time with his two children and heading out to the golf course as often as possible.
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