Built a boat. Submitted to Bennington.

BigKahuna

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I have built many boats on the Benny Builder but this is the first one I have actually submitted. I have gotten calls from 3 different people at Bennington directing me to the local dealership here. (As if I didn't know where it was. Ha!) My wife and I are going to go to the Boat show in Charlotte in February to see what kind of deals are available. I built the boat to see what the MSRP would be. My question to you all is 1) Who determines the actual final price? The dealership or Bennington? 2) How many % off the MSRP is normal/average and who/what determines that? 3) For those of you who have gone through this process how long did it take to actually have your boat built and delivered? 4) what percentage did you get off the MSRP? Just weighing all of our options.....
 

sjhorner9475

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Daril I took a similar approach. I used the Benny Builder to determine what I wanted in my new boat last year. I printed it out and then visited my dealer to discuss the options I had chosen. As a result of that discussion, I made a few changes and plugged them into Benny Builder which gives you the MSRP. This was in late August 2018, right after the model year change to the 2019 model year. I then went back to my dealer with exactly what I wanted in the boat. He input all the options into the dealer version of Benny Build, added a trailer that I needed (about $4K), taxes, fees, etc. and then gave me the "list price" and the price he would sell it to me. His price was about 22% less than the list price. From what I have read over the years on this site, most dealers will discount the list price between 20% and 30%. The discount is based on several things such as the price dealer pays Bennington with high volume dealers getting a better price, the time of year, the dealer's current inventory, and whether you are buying from stock or placing an order. I believe Bennington often offers dealers incentives for sales at boat shows that may impact your price. In the end, I know I could have gotten a better price by buying a 2018 boat the dealer had in stock (It was discounted 28% off the list price.) that was similar to the one I was ordering but I was buying what I believe will be my last boat and I wanted what I wanted.

The dealer placed the order for my boat at the same time he placed his orders for his 2019 inventory of boats the first week of September 2018. My boat arrived at the dealership the first week of December 2018 and was ready for delivery to me a week later.

I hope this helps and good luck at the boat show!
 

Stevez

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Hey, good luck! I did the exact same thing last year. Built "my" boat probably 50 times on the website with different options, etc. Took it to the Louisville Boat show and had them price it. The Bennington rep was there and helped the dealer and I come up with some changes. I wanted the ESP on the S Premium model and that isn't an option on the website, but he allowed it and priced it. Talked me out of some things and into some other. All in all, I was very happy. I'll look up my invoice as soon as I can but I think it was close to what Steve said about; about 22 - 24% off. A little difficult to be precise because some options I got weren't on the list. I tried to negotiate down a bit more and both the dealer and Bennington rep said that's all they could do and they have knocked it down as low as they could go. In terms of timing, it was quicker than I thought. Signed the deal the first week of February and it was ready sometime in April. Again, I'll try and look up more accurate numbers. Good luck and keep us posted! Love watching others spend their money.
 

lakeliving

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I didn't do the boat show route or through the website. Just went to local dealers and showed them my build. Let them know to give me their best price and then made my decision. I think at the time I was closer to 28% off. Depending on your build make sure some of the "little" things are accounted for like having a stainless steel prop(s) included. That was one of the items that went into the value proposition for me when determining total price of the boat.

Also, I wouldn't wait until boat show season. You can probably lock in 2019 pricing now which will give you probably a 3% head start compared to Feb pricing. I ordered both of mine in October and paid for them in December which I'm sure can't get any slower for boat dealers in the north.

Good luck on your build!
 

Alicedream

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I have built 3 Bennington's during the last 14 years. The amount taken off of MSRP is completely dependent on the dealer. There are three dealerships in my area. I have purchased all my boats from the same dealership. I have been able to get 30% off of MSRP on all of my boats. It is my understanding that there may be a little more flexility on Q, R, and G boats as far as reductions in MSRPs. S models might have slightly less ability to reduce MSRP but probably on the lower level S models. My dealership runs a lean shop which allows them more flexibility on MSRP. One of the other Bennington dealerships with same builds would not give anymore than 20% off. High over head shops less movement on MSRP. It never took more than 8 weeks to get any of my three boats. Two were ordered in March to May time frame and the other was in January. I should point out the 30% off of MSRP I received was what the dealership offered, not my hard negotiating and I took those prices immediately as compared to other dealerships it was a very good deal.
 

Vikingstaff

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We built and negotiated our boat back in December of 2016 on a 2017 build. We went back and forth with options and negotiating price for about a 2 weeks. At least in our experience, final price and agreement on negotiated price was totally with our dealer. I would assume that is true across the board. Our official order went into Bennington sometime in January. I think our boat arrived at the dealer sometime in March. It then sat there until winter was over and they rigged it. I honestly don’t remember the specifics dates and would need to go dig up our paperwork to know for sure.

We negotiated down to 32.5% off our SSBXP at that time. I was pretty thrilled with that given it was an S-series. They told us they tossed in some boat show incentives, along with a Mercury incentive at the time, and then the rest was arrived at through some back and forth negotiating. I’ve always felt great about the % off MSRP we got. It also allowed us to add in a few extras we otherwise would have forgone.
 

JTaylor

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I dabbled on boat builder myself to sort through the options, and then sat down with my dealer as he put everything in. He came up with a price between 20 and 25% off the Bennington price on an S model, but could only give me about 12% off on a comparable G model. I was able to negotiate a bit more on extras and an engine upgrade, so that further negotiating option is available. We placed the order in early Dec and the boat was delivered to him in late Jan. Good luck!
 

Nautical

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Several years ago 25 to 30 percent off (with 28% being a number I heard thrown around a lot) was normal but today, I don't know . . . Benny went through several years in a row recently when they raised their prices 8 percent PER YEAR. Did their costs go up that dramatically? I would say 30% off as an absolute minimum on an ordered or floored 2020. Any leftover should be lower than that by enough to make it worth it. All of this my opinion, of course, but a few months ago I got a flier from our Benny dealer, who's known for being extremely stingy with discounts, saying they were taking 30% off for just walking in the door and those weren't leftovers back then either.
 
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TomS

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Daril - The above is fairly consistent with what we found 5 years ago when we ordered ours at a boat show ~25+%. The Bennington rep had some input which dropped the price a little more and he knew about a couple promotions (power top) that the dealer was not even aware of.

A big thing for us too, was that the dealer had extended warranty "coupons/vouchers" from Mercury just for the show season. This gave anywhere from +2 to +4 years onto the standard 3 year platinum warranty. They could use only a certain number of these to close deals. The extended warranty is a retail product (heavily marked up) which you can buy discounted from any dealer if you choose to later. This can be a couple thousand dollar "perk" if you can get it.

Good luck!
 

BigKahuna

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Big Kahuna---- any details on the build and what the MSRP was for us? thanks.
Sure. We went pretty conservative. Built a 23 SPDX. It has an entertainment package to include a Corian style table and 4 Captain pedestal chairs surrounding it. It has a matching port stern cabinet and counter top. Perfect for hanging out eating lunch in a comfortable area. 200hp Yamaha, SPS package, heavy duty rub rail, in floor storage, Simtex upgraded seating, ski tow bar, SS steel ladder, and some other goodies. $69000+ MSRP. So we'll see what kind of deal we can get ....
 

sjhorner9475

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Nice specs Daril. Can't wait to hear about the deal and then see pictures.
 

PonTuna Salad

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When Mrs.Salad and I purchased our boat in 2017 from your “local” dealer, we got the “boat show price” which was about 20-22% off. It did include the Yamaha 5 year upgrade. We ordered on Wednesday after the final week of the Charlotte show (mid-February) and it was delivered mid-May. Ours was a SSBXP so there isn’t as much wiggle room as in a R or Q.

Like lakeliving said, I have heard before the boat show is a better time to order. We have even gotten “special invitations “ from your local dealer In November/December for events at the marina for special pricing.

All that to say I would head over now to beat the boat show crowd while the boating sales season is slow. At worst you walk away with some candy, at best you find a great deal. (At least they had candy on the receptionist’s desk the last time I was there.)
 

BigKahuna

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Sounds like a nice build. Have you water tested that combo?
We were on that exact boat last weekend on a foliage tour given by a friend of ours boat club but it had a 150 on the back. It also had 10 people onboard + the driver and he never opened it up. (We were part of a 7 boat caravan) It was very comfortable and my wife fell in love with the large table/dinette. We always have meals onboard and this set up just works for us. Plus we are still able to ski/wakeboard w/the 200 and SPS. We also never had in floor storage......
 

BigKahuna

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When Mrs.Salad and I purchased our boat in 2017 from your “local” dealer, we got the “boat show price” which was about 20-22% off. It did include the Yamaha 5 year upgrade. We ordered on Wednesday after the final week of the Charlotte show (mid-February) and it was delivered mid-May. Ours was a SSBXP so there isn’t as much wiggle room as in a R or Q.

Like lakeliving said, I have heard before the boat show is a better time to order. We have even gotten “special invitations “ from your local dealer In November/December for events at the marina for special pricing.

All that to say I would head over now to beat the boat show crowd while the boating sales season is slow. At worst you walk away with some candy, at best you find a great deal. (At least they had candy on the receptionist’s desk the last time I was there.)
Since we have had our boat winterized we have been over there alot so they pretty much know us. (Oh here comes that couple again) We have gone to the special invite events and they actually had some good pick food there one night. Yes the candy dish is still there. We've looked at a couple pre owned boats as well as their fleet boats they sell after every season but they have alot of hours on them. We'll see what happens. If all of this doesn't work out we have a perfectly great running boat waiting for us to uncover in the spring......
 

Madison19

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We purchased a 2020 23SSBXP, matador red with the blackout package, loaded, with 200 HP Yamaha, in September. Absolutely love the boat. Upgraded Kicker stereo, all the RGB lights, pillowtop diamond upholstery, swingback keeper rail, elevated chaise, SPS system, salt water package, vinyl teak floor, ski tow bar, Simrad GPS. We were fortunate to find the boat we wanted on a dealer's lot and he is a volume dealer. 28% off MSRP and couldn't be happier with the price and the support from the dealer.
 
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