Now known as the "New ABLBoats.com" or "BoatsFSBO.com"
In case you're interested in something more current re: American Boat Listings:
We listed our 1984 Thompson last June or July (2007) after being assured by Bruce that he had 4 or 5 buyers lined up and ready to view it. Obviously, no one ever showed, we never heard from Bruce again, (although he called us several times a day BEFORE we paid the fee) and we are out $190. They listed the boat for WAY too much, and I just received a response to my e-mail requesting they lower the price.
I do occasionally get responses to my inquiries, but they are never signed and I never know WHO I am corresponding with. Attempts to find out why I was lied to, are met with silence.
My advice, save your money and your self respect and DO NOT LIST WITH American Boat Listings.
Thanks for all your previous info.
Thanks for posting your information about ABL Boats. I had the same experience with Howard as your other posters in regard to him seeing my ad in a reputable magazine (Offshore Boating) and as soon as I told him that I had some reservations about giving him my credit card number he said "now you are insulting me" and hung up on me.
Your post that came up when I Googled ABL Boats just saved me $299. Apparently the price has gone up since the people who said they were charged $190.
I use the internet in good faith. It doesn't take many of these critters to jade an opinion.
Thanks so much
Received this email from Raylene
Thanks for your posting on ABLboats. I filled out an information form on their website a couple of weeks ago and have since received a call from Alan Burk (I wonder if itís the same Alan referenced in your letter from the Hobie 14 (tried to sell in 2004)? He told me the same things the Hobie 14 seller referenced from 3 years ago. I guess the stock market is still encouraging people to buy used instead of new?? Iím looking into selling my Capital Yachts, Newport 33. Blue book value on it is around $30,000. When Iíve done internet searches Iíve found two other Newport 33ís, one listed at $33,000 and one at $29,000. Alan told me he had two buyers interested in my boat at $35,500 (because of the demand for used boats). Hard to believe. When I told him I was not going to pursue the option of listing with ABLboats at this time, he hung up on me without a word. I searched the better business bureau on this company and found them with a number of non-resolved (no attempt to resolve) complaints in the past 12 to 36 months. Since reading your posting as well, I consider myself lucky he just hung up. Thanks.
Just received this email from Byrd, seems ABL got his money too.
I am running an ad on American Boat Listing as well. I got taken by the same exact scam. Bruce Edwards at ABL Boats called me after seeing my boat listed somewhere else. He said the price I was asking for was very reasonable and the boat would sell immediately. He said he was attending a boat show where he would pass out brochures with the boat in it. He said he already knew of three people looking for boats like mine. There is less than one view per day on my ad and noone has called in the weeks it has run. I am going to call my credit card company and try to get my money back.
Byrd's email makes me question Howard's email below.
I received this nice email from Howard at American Boat Listings, apparantly they had a problem with some overeager salesmen, and he'd really like to have this page removed.(yeah, right). I DID check with the Palm Beach boat show, and ABL was listed as an exhibitor, so they do indeed go to at least some boat shows.
In reference to your updated paragraph on American Boat Listing I
respectfully request that you remove the information that it refers to.The
complaints listed are at least 3 years old and are all about 2 overzealous
salesman that are no longer with the company.All the testimonials on the
website are 100% real,that is why if allowed we list the city,state,and the
pesrsons first and last name.We still exhibit at boat shows,the last one we
were at was Palm Beach which can easily be verified.
As you can see the site has been vastly improved and if you notice,we are
spending thousands of dollars on search engine placements.If you do a google
search for "used boats" or "used boats for sale"(those are just some of the
terms),you will see that we almost always come on top or near the top either
in the center of the page or under the sponsored link section.I would be
happy to answer any quetions that you might have about the company.
2/14/07 update. American Boat Listings has apparantly changed, perhaps they have new owners. Their website is better looking and they seem to be removing ads when the boats sell, so the information below could be incorrect. I'm leaving it on the site for now as an example of what to watch out for on the internet, I'll look into it more.
The American Boat Listings service is quite interesting. I have had complaints from my users about American Boat Listings but gee whizz, any business will have a few disappointed customers.
Here's the deal they offer. For a one time fee of $190 they will run an ad on their website until your boat sells. Not a bad deal if it helps you sell your boat for a good price. Brokers commonly charge 5% or more, on a $100,000 boat that would be $5,000, much more than $190.
I decided to sell my Hobie 14 this fall (2004), so I went to the ABL site and filled out their request for a quote. I couldn't find a place to just place an ad. I got a call from "Allan" today. He told me a lot about American Boat Listings, that they go to boat shows and have the only booth there for "used boats" (apparantly they missed the 2005 Houston Boat Show, I didn't see them there). He told me lots of stuff, like the bad stock market has made the "used boats" worth more cause people aren't buying the "new boats".
He told me ABL has a "publication" that they give out to prospective buyers at the boat shows, "only after they have checked them out to make sure the buyers are for real". This publication of course would have my Hobie 14 in it, at no extra charge.
He told me ABL has "offices" all over the country. I'm going to stop by next time I see one, but the only one I could find with internet directory searches was in New York.
"Allan" told me my 1981 Hobie 14 Turbo was definitely worth $2500. I'll sell it to you today for $700 (maybe less), I know it's not worth $2500. I've been trying to sell it since September and it's priced at $717 now and going down.
It will never sell for $2500, no way, no how. Yet Allan, or is it Allen, told me emphatically it was worth $2500 and he KNEW because he's been selling boats for 20 years! After 3 months I sold it for $700.
From the ABL website, "Since 1983, American Boat Listing has helped millions of people buy and sell boats.". Well, "millions", that's at least 2 million, right? Very impressive. Let's see, divide 2 million by 22 years would be 90,909 per year, or 249 boats PER DAY. Quite impressive. Of course, they did say they are helping buyers AND sellers, so that would only be 124 BOATS per day, but I'm still impressed.
Allan told me that ABL was #1 on ALL the search engines if you searched for anything about used boats. I guess the search engines weren't working right the day I looked.
These are responses I've received so far from boat sellers.
From Carol, 5/23/04, selling a 1978 AMF Puffer
The site was under American Boat Listings at www.ablboats.com
The amount was $190.00 for a 90 day listing, no brokerage fee or commission and
he stated he had 3 potential buyers for the puffer, since it was such a hard to
find classic and that, consequently, was worth $7500.00. I am sure that Claude
at the Sailboat Shop would have priced it higher 2 years ago if that was the
case. He is pretty shrewd. I did not bite so he said he would call back and
did he ever. I was tempted to offer to sell it an pay him 10% for linking me
with a buyer and then decided I should not touch this guy with a ten foot pole.
I haven't had a chance to check your list of scams yet, but this sure sounds
like a possibility. Maybe not.
From Ken, 9/28/04
I too was scammed by ABL. I received a call from a Dave Ross in Aug of 2002. He said he had a person interested in my 1979 36' Uniflite. He insisted that I put 190.00 on my credit card, and would contact the buyer, who would then call me the next day (sat). No call, no calls on my ad to this day. However a few months ago I got a e-mail from someone who told me to contact ABL, to run an ad. RIGHT! Their e-mails to me were written very similar to the 419 scams out of Nigeria.
I called my credit card company after talking with this Dave Ross. He said they would not allow me to get a refund from my credit card co. Right. I called Bank One, and had the charge reversed, so I didn't lose any money. But they are defiantly scammers. Their testimonials are more than likely written by a hand full of scammers.
I asked them to remove the ad, but it is still on the ABL site [as of fall 2004]. I've also e-mailed a few ad's that are on that site. No answers to date. I'm sure they leave old ads on. Also, read their 'testimonials', as most look like they have two or three people writing them!
One other point. A few times I tried to call them. That is this Ross guy. When I did get a hold of him, he babbled 100 miles an hour, then concluded with, "that's all I have to say", and would hang up on me.
I could never get in a word to him.
And from Rachel, 10/13/04
I wish I had found your site first! I already tried American Boat Listings (I paid the $190). They told me my boat was a collectors item worth $10,000 (for a 1974 Mutineer), so I signed right up. Every response I received to my ad was a scam, trying to get money from me by sending me a counterfeit check. It stinks to learn the hard way!
William wrote me 12/12/04
I received a call from someone at American Boat saying that this 74
Mutineer was a collectors item worth $8500. It sounds like a boiler room
operation to me. They wanted $190 for a listing. I doubt if the boat is
worth that much. What do you think? [It might be worth $1,000, maybe]
On 12/15/04 I heard from Tony
I received a call from Alan Burke (that's what it sounded like) of ABL who said the market for used boats was especially good now due to the .COM bust. When he asked what I wanted for the boat and I said $1225, he said that was way too low. He said I could get at least $5000 for the boat. When I said "No, a new one only costs about $4000", there was a pause and then his hang-up click. I guess scammers just don't have the class to be courteous.
On 5/3/05 I heard from Gene
Boy I'm glad I tripped over your link. I think I am being scammed by Dave Ross of abl.com. I enquired about the value of my boat online and got a message on my machine. Got another the next day saying if I had answered the first one I would have sold my boat by now. I called back and got the "you gotta act right now" we need to have your listing (and the $190) by 10am tomorrow. I didn't. The following evening I got the "well you blew the deadline but we got two buyers interested at 58K" (I'd be lucky to get 50) and I was told he'd only hold the offer 24 hr. Which is when my wife found your site. I have a caller ID # in area 818 and the 877 fax #, and of course there is now name nor address associated with either in Anywho. Nor can I find any kind of listing there for American Boat Listing.
Do you know any thing more about these guys? I noticed they have a sponsered link on google. Is there a way to alert Google? I'm not sure wether to blow them off completely or to string them on for a while and see where it goes.
Thought you'd be interested
Well, that's only 7 dissatisfied customers I've heard from. Not bad out of millions! While $190 seems steep for a classified ad, they will let it run until you sell, even if it takes years and years. The added exposure of the boat shows and their publication surely helps too, don't you think? I'm went to the Houston Boat Show this week and looked for the ABL booth, but there wasn't one.
The internet is a wild world, be careful.
See these other scams:
Page 1: Internet scams
Page 2: Sell your Sailboat to Africa!
Page 3: American based scams
Page 4: Boat for sale scam
Page 5: Room for Rent scam
Page 6: Motorhome for sale scam
Page 7: I've lost my wallet and need your loan!
Page 8: Give me your PIN number, I already have your credit card number.
Page 9: How to accept payment for your boat without getting scammed
Page 10 Counterfeit checks
Starboard and Port
Sell your Sailboat to Africa!
Grandpa's Funny Pages