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Private aircraft for sale under 5 million, what to buy?

by GlobalAir.com 19. April 2017 12:23
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What kind of private jet can I purchase for 5 million dollars?

We hear that question alot!  The quick answer, there are all kinds of private jets that can be purchased for 5 million or less.  But, there are many factors that you must consider first.  The most important decision you must make is what is your “Mission Profile”? Just like cars and trucks what are you going to do with it? You buy a truck to haul stuff, you buy a Volkswagen to save gas, you buy a van to haul kids. All three could be priced exactly the same given the year of manufacture and condition. If you don’t know your mission profile I will promise you that the 5 million will go right out the window and maybe without ever flying what you purchased.

Questions to consider (just to name a few); Are you carrying a lot of passengers or is it going to be you and your cat? Are you going to fly it or hire professional pilots. Are you flying cross country or over the Atlantic once a week or just going to a vacation spot once a year.

The second thing to consider is the cost to operate and cost to maintain. Most single aircraft (not all) corporate flight departments in general have an operating expense of one million US dollars per year (again depending on several different factors).

So with that all said here is a list that you can review:

Gulfstream IV - Priced in the 4–5 million dollar range. This aircraft can fly from Chicago to London non-stop on almost all conditions. Carries around 15 people in jetsetter style. Maintenance though is going to be well over a million plus each year.

Gulfstream IV private aircraft under 5 Million dollars

 

The new “Fly it yourself” aircraft the Cirrus Vison SF50 - holds 3.5 people comfortably and you fly it yourself. Other wise know as “Dr. Killers”. Around 3 million.

Cirrus SF50 private aircraft under 5 Million dollars

 

Another newbie on the block the Hondajet - Base price is about 4.5 million. Seats 4–5 comfortably and has a range around 1200 nm at about 420 knots.

HondaJet private aircraft under 5 Million dollars

 

If you are looking at an aircraft with less cost to operate but shorter in range and capacities then the Pilatus PC12 is a good choice.

Pilatus PC 12 private aircraft under 5 Million dollars

 

We could go on and on about what to buy for 5 million bucks. Bottom line there are several different types of aircraft to choose from. Your best bet right off the bat is to look on line at an aircraft for sale website like Globalair.com, and look at the many different type aircraft there are. Then do yourself a favor and hire a good qualified aircraft broker that can help you figure out what you mission profile is. That in itself will save you at least a million!

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Aircraft Sales | GlobalAir.com

Buying an Airplane: Tidbits and Tips

by GlobalAir.com 27. December 2016 16:28
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Buying an aircraft can definitely be a daunting task. Then again it can also be one of those life’s experiences that can be a lot of fun. Of course the main element is financially what can you afford? The other requirement to decide on before you even start is what will you use the airplane for business or pleasure or a combination (otherwise known as the mission profile). These two elements will govern the sensibility of the equation and answer the question are you ready for aircraft ownership. I can tell you from personal experience that just because you love flying and love airplanes does not mean you are ready to own one and the financial risk associated with it.

There are many factors to consider when buying an aircraft least of which is the purchase price. Just as you shop for a car in the beginning it may seem complex with all of the different choices. Though it seems complicated by doing your research and knowing what your mission profile is narrows the choices considerably. Believe it or not it may very well be more affordable than you thought.

One of the biggest mistakes when buying anything is not thinking the whole process through. Yes the purchase price is the largest out of pocket financial risk. But, you must look at the sum of the total. One of the largest “Opps” moments I have ever seen has been when the buyer thinks he has made a steal on the purchase of an aircraft only to find out LATER that they did not do a Title Search on the aircraft and there is a lean (such as a mechanics lean) which cost the buyer thousands of dollars. Folks, spending $100 bucks in the beginning for something as little as a title search could save you big bucks in the end. Never, ever buy an aircraft without having a Title Search completed. It would also be to your advantage to purchase a copy of any 337’s done on the aircraft. The 337 form is what an A&P mechanic must fill in when they have made any structural modifications to an airframe. Generally done when there has been damage or mods done to the airplane.

Speaking of Title Searches and 337’s I would also recommend that you use a Title Search company. These companies based in Oklahoma (where the FAA is) serve many tasks. Not only completing Title Searches most also serve as a holding or escrow company. An escrow company holds deposits, pre purchase maintenance fees and in general the middle man in the transaction. You don’t see a lot of the smaller transactions using an escrow but for the life of me I can’t figure out why. Yes they cost money like everything else in this world but they make sure your transaction is conducted correctly and as smooth as possible (peace of mind).

So we’ve addressed a couple of the pitfalls and the easy button that takes care of them, what’s next. Flight Mission is the most over looked aspect of buying an aircraft and unless you have money to burn for over kill (in this context yes literally kill you) it should be the first thing you look at. Everyone one wants to buy the P-51 Mustang but in reality what would that accomplish. Yes the cool factor is out of this world but when you look at what will I be using this aircraft for and the cost to operate it the P-51 is also impractical. For one it is a deadly aircraft, buying a big motor fast airplane is a bad idea. When you buy an aircraft look at what you will really use it for and what you can fly safely. If you are on a limited budget, pure pleasure and the $100 hamburger then depending on your level of training you might try a Cessna 172 or Piper Cherokee. For the more experienced pilot you might want a little more speed and space you might try a Mooney, Saratoga or Cessna 182.

If your flying is going to be more business with a little pleasure mixed in then you will probably want to look at an aircraft that can fly cross country. The Cirrus SR22 is a nice cruiser at about 200 knots has all the next gen avionics and can carry a couple of guys with luggage 800 miles or so. Probably the Cadillac of single engine piston aircraft will be the Bonanza G36. This aircraft can carry a load so yes the wife, the kids, the dog and just about all the luggage will fit just fine. In addition it has retractable gear so performance and mileage move up the scale also. Remember though these aircraft also come with a price. New out of the factory Cirrus SR22, Bonanza G36, Cessna TTX and the Piper Matrix prices can fly upwards of 700K fast.

Then there are the special mission aircraft. Again you will still need to study what your mission is. For instance in Alaska where you live and die with short gravel runways you need to have Short Take Off and Landing (STOL) capabilities. When you are flying in bush country you generally want to also have tundra tires. Keep in mind these will effect the performance of the aircraft. The Husky A-1B, Cessna 185, Cessna T206 are good for these missions.

So now you have figured out what the mission is. Before you ever sign on the dotted line here are a couple more tidbits that you need to investigate.

  1. Purchase price – Simple, low time aircraft that have been hangered all their life or new overhauled engines are always going to be at a premium. Higher time, with good avionics, new paint and interior will be next in the line of pricing. High time, runout engine (or close to it), steam gauges and god help you if it has damage is at the bottom. Globalair.com has a loan calculator that you can choose your payment and loan percentage points and will calculate an entire payment schedule.
  2. Maintenance – One of the first things to look at is where the aircraft is based. It seems almost every aircraft in its life span has spent some time near a sandy beach. Bad for airplanes, if they have been stationed there for some time corrosion sets in. A loving caring owner will sometimes do undercoating’s or rust prevention, that’s the one you want. Start a maintenance program from the start. Calculate the cost for every hour you fly (cost per hour). Put that specific dollar amount into a maintenance program. Hopefully you will never need it until the engine is ready for overhaul.
  3. Upgrades – Avionics, interior and paint. Every pilot has a favorite color or radio! This boils down to what you are accustomed to and what you feel safe to fly with.
  4. Legal work – purchase agreement takes lawyers, partnerships agreements. As the saying goes pay me now or pay me later. Your choice.
  5. Fuel – generally 30-40 percent of ownership.
  6. Insurance
    • New pilot – fly as much as you can and build your hours up, more time less cost.
    • Old pilot – with no incidents, several endorsements of other aircraft, couple thousand hours, type ratings. All of these bring your insurance cost down.
  7. Hangar cost – Most pilots make this their getaway home.

What to look for in a plane.

  1. Always the first thing to look for is there Damage History?
    • Buying an aircraft is always Buyer Beware. It is your life after all.
    • It is your due diligence (responsibility) to read the airframe log books, maintenance logs, engine logs thoroughly. This is when you bring in your local A&P or an expert in that particular aircraft.
  2. If Damage
    • What you determine is damage might not be to the seller – Define it with them from the beginning.
    • Is there a copy of the 337 form in the log books. If not walk away. Just because it is a line item written in the logs does not mean there wasn’t a ton of other work not mentioned.
    • Was the damage fixed by an authorized manufacture facility, local FBO or field repair.
      • If field, use your common sense, if the repair was a wire tie on a bolt OK, if the landing gear collapsed then oh no, walk away.
    • If the damage was repaired several years ago by a reputable maintenance facility. Then it falls under the category of your call. You will never be able to sell the aircraft for what the market is bearing for one that does not have damage, but if you plan on keeping the aircraft until you quit flying then why not. (Check with your insurance company also).
  3. Current condition – again now is the time you to have a good mechanic with you – pay the price for a good one.
    • Paint and Interior
    • Avionics
    • Current maintenance condition, again checking all logbooks determine how the owner(s) took care of the aircraft. Changed the oil regularly?
      1. Have all AD’s and SD be complied with.
      2. Has annual or other scheduled maintenance be done on regular basis
        • Radios been certified in a while
        • Other instruments needing certs.
  4. Check the engine
    • Compression, compression, compression

So we’ve gone through just about all the basic’s the final step is hit the market and find the aircraft that meets your budget and your eye. There are thousands of different aircraft to look at that fit almost any mission profile. From experimental aircraft to one from the manufacturer. This can be almost as fun as flying itself. Finding a needle in the hay stack is a rare find, but if you keep your wits and shop you can find any aircraft. For those that are a little shy on buying one themselves it is highly recommended to find an aircraft broker that specializes in what you are looking for. The reason for this is twofold. One the broker is always going to know more about the market than you will. Second if you find a brokerage firm that specializes in the type aircraft you are looking for they are also going to know more about that aircraft than you ever will which will come in handy on a pre-purchase.

Now while this article has been written for single engine piston aircraft purchases the general outline can be used for twin piston aircraft also. With jet and turbine aircraft there are a few more precession items such as turbine discs and the number of cycles on the blades that are important. For the most part the cost are higher because these aircraft are made heavier, fly higher and faster. There are also believe it or not worldwide rules that must be completed before you can complete the purchase.

Alan Carr is a thirty year veteran in the general aviation business. Bought and sold corporate aircraft and now runs a successful aviation website. To contact please email alan.carr[@]globalair.com

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Aircraft Sales | Aircraft For Sale

Top 5 Most Common Mistakes Among Pilot In Training

by GlobalAir.com 27. September 2016 15:06
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I want to first off begin this post by saying that I highly encourage everyone to go see the movie Sully now playing in theaters. In fact, this past weekend I went with the Sooner Aviation Club to see the movie at the Warren Movie Theater in Moore, Oklahoma. Here’s a group picture that we took right before we went and saw the movie.

Now onto more important things. With the semester in full swing and everyone trying to survive there first major exams and essay, I’ve also noticed that a lot of private pilots are taking a major step in their aviation career by soloing for the first time. I will never forget the first time I soloed back of October 13th 2015, and it’s a day that sticks with you for the rest of your life. As these students begin to work on the cross county portion of their private pilot’s license, I want to share my top 5 most common mistakes that students, and even myself, have made and continuously make.

#1- Forgetting the Checklist- By now I’m sure everyone has heard their flight instructor repeat this phrase multiple times “Are you forgetting to do something?” and 99% of the time they are referring to a checklist. Believe me I’ve heard this multiple times when it comes to flying and it’s definitely something that is easy to forget; however, it’s there for a reason and that is for the safety of yourself, your passengers, and the aircraft so if you are constantly forgetting a checklist this is a habit you need to break ASAP especially when it comes to a check ride.

#2- Landing too fast or to slow- When it comes to landing on final it’s all about your airspeed and making sure you are keeping it constant which means you absolutely need to be working the throttle constantly; however, never add too much power or pull it out when you are on final. This can lead to floating down the runway for a long time, or in the case of taking too much power out, you risk the chance of stalling the aircraft. In any case you feel like it’s going to be a bad landing it’s okay to call a go around, in fact it’s the best option. Remember you aren’t forced to land the aircraft on your first try if it looks like it’s going to be an unsafe landing.

#3- not flaring or over flaring- Along with the speed of the aircraft, a lot of people forget to flare the aircraft before hitting the runway which can lead to a hard landing, bouncing down the runway and even possible damage to the aircraft. Believe me if you don’t flare you could possibly damage the front of the aircraft or worse the propeller, so make sure you add that flare once you are over the runway to ensure not damaging the front. Equally as important is not to over flare since it could lead to a tail strike damaging the back of the aircraft and damaging the landing gear. The biggest thing I’ve noted when it comes to flaring is to just add small amounts of back pressure as I get closer to the ground preventing me from damaging the front or the back of the aircraft.

#4- wind corrections- So this is by far the biggest thing I always get harped on, not going to lie. Remember as pilot in command you are responsible for adding any wind correction because at any time a sudden burst of wind can hit your aircraft and possibly cause for you to flip over. It’s also important you add wind correction during takeoff and landing for the exact same reason, you don’t want to end up upside down like this aircraft.

#5- Situational Awareness- When it comes to flying it’s very easy to get fixated on your instrument especially during a maneuver. For example, when I use to do steep turns I would always focus on my turn coordinator to make sure I rolled on the proper heading. Next thing I knew the nose of the airplane was facing down and I was losing 500ft per minute and it took me a while to break that habit. While your instruments are a great resource, guess what? Your eyes are a better resource and you should always be aware of what’s going on around you. For all you know there could be another aircraft in your area, you could have a bird strike, or in my case you could be losing altitude so always be looking out outside to make sure you are aware of your surroundings.

 

By Cameron Morgan

Choosing The Right MRO For Your Pre-Buy Inspections

by GlobalAir.com 10. August 2016 09:02
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By Mike Saathoff – Director of Estimating and Paint and Interior Sales
Elliott Aviation

Whether you are buying or selling an aircraft, a pre-buy can be a hassle; but it shouldn’t be if you secure a solid, non-biased MRO. Just as you would when you buy or sell a house, pre-buy inspections are a must to protect both parties in the transaction. There are a few key items to help make the process smoother. Whether you are the broker, buyer, or the seller, keeping the sale moving forward is important. Paperwork, airworthiness, scheduled items and coming to an agreement are all part of the pre-buy process. Let’s discuss these key items and how to keep all parties in mind.

Choosing a Broker:
Be selective and do your research when choosing an aircraft broker. Do they have integrity? Can you trust them? Will they have your best interest in mind? Find a broker you are comfortable with and one you can trust. Look for someone with experience and knowledge of aircraft sales. This person should be able to see all sides and assists you with the best possible outcome.

Choosing a Maintenance Provider:
Ensure the facility that is performing the pre-buy inspection or any facility that maintains the aircraft has industry longevity, as well as experience in executing pre-buys for the type of aircraft you are purchasing. Make sure the facility has a history of working on the aircraft model. As a buyer or seller, competitive pricing plays a role in your pre-buy inspection. Always keep in mind that cheaper doesn’t always mean you are getting a deal. Make sure the facility you are working with is using solid quality standards to ensure they are keeping the aircraft airworthy but not going to extremes. Either extreme can be very costly to the buyer or seller. Trust in a company to do a thorough inspection in an acceptable downtime is key.

The Pre-Buy Inspection:
Keep the sale moving. To ensure a sale continues to move forward, reviewing logbooks is a meticulous effort. Having all necessary paperwork in order can help the process along and is highly beneficial. Knowing who maintained the aircraft, if the aircraft always stayed on schedule, how many hours the aircraft has flown per year, and has the aircraft sat idle or extended periods of time are all questions a pre-buy inspection addresses, and this helps to ensure airworthiness.

Other items to be completed during a pre-buy are any scheduled maintenance events. Next, the facility needs to determine if there are burn certificates for the interior, if new paint is due, if the aircraft is on a current inspection program; these are all questions that must be answered. If the current warranty allows, a thorough engine review is done both on paperwork and a boroscope. The facility should conduct an external review of the aircraft for any obvious defects, specifically windows and boots. Brake wear checks and fuel tank external leak checks are other items performed.

Most importantly, you want to find a non-biased facility who will ensure the aircraft is properly inspected and repaired in accordance with maintenance standards, but not one looking to “rebuild” the aircraft.

Lastly, it is up to the buyer and seller to come to terms on an agreement of who should pay for what necessary or optional items. A solid, non-bias broker will be highly beneficial in this process and assist with maintaining what would be fair to all parties.

Mike Saathoff has been with Elliott Aviation since July of 1996. He has performed various roles within the company, including Maintenance Team Leader, Assistant Chief Inspector, Maintenance Sales Manager, Director of Maintenance Sales and most recently Senior Director of Sales. Mike Saathoff is currently our Director of Sales Support and Paint & Interior Sales.

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GlobalAir.com | Paint and Interior

Interior Refurbishment with Resale in Mind

by GlobalAir.com 6. June 2016 08:37
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By Adam Doyle – Paint and Interior Sales Manager
Elliott Aviation

Whether you are purchasing an aircraft or thinking of selling your current aircraft, a little bit of interior refurbishment can go a long way. Potentially, partial refurbishments can dramatically affect the look and functionality of your aircraft interior so that it not only fits your short-term mission requirements, but will be more attractive for the next buyer of the aircraft.

Choose Colors Wisely
If you are not planning to own the aircraft for very long, make sure you choose colors that would benefit resale. Keep it clean and bright. Be sure to use neutral colors. If you do want to add a splash of color, make sure it’s something easy to replace such as an accent strip, curtain or pillows.

Most Dramatic Change
A partial change that is likely to have the biggest visual effect would be your seats and carpet. These items see the most traffic and ultimately get the most wear and tear. They trap a lot of dirt, odor and can become discolored.

If your base components are in good shape, you can make minimal changes that will make a big difference. For instance, if your seat foam is in good shape, you can potentially reuse your current foam and just re-cover your seats. If your seat leather is in good shape, a deep cleaning may make a dramatic difference. Depending on if the seats have been previously dyed, another option may be dying the seat leather.

There are many expensive hand-tufted carpets, but there are also many high-quality, durable machine tufted carpets. Although machine tufted carpets have a reputation of being lower quality, that is not necessarily the case. Many machined carpets offer similar quality at a lower price.

Cleaning Can Make a Difference
In addition to the carpets and seats, a deep cleaning can make a big difference. There are several tips and tricks we’ve covered in previous articles to clean woodwork, ultra leathers and more.

Potential Problem Areas
There are some areas in your aircraft interior that are potential problem areas and will not be resolved with a quick, inexpensive solution. The main areas would be popped, cracked or cloudy veneer, scratched laminate and plating.

When a veneer is popped, cracked, or cloudy, it has to be replaced. Many times, problems in veneer stem from when the original coating was applied. If the coating was applied too thick or was not given the proper drying time or conditions, major problems arise. The stresses an aircraft undergoes in a short amount of time, including major temperature and pressure changes, ultimately expose a veneer that was improperly coated.

Laminate is just a decorative layer of plastic. Since the printing on the laminate doesn’t go all the way through to the bottom, deep scratches can be very visible. The good news is that, for the most part, laminate tends to be very durable and is less likely to show minor scratches over other materials. Plating is one item that can be very expensive to replace. Unfortunately, there are very few options to fix plating other than to replace it completely.

Keeping the Resale in Mind
Keep in mind that your aircraft is competing with many other aircraft. It is not only competing within a particular make/model/year, but with many other aircraft makes and models in its class. The better you keep it looking and the more universal appeal it has, the better off you are when it comes to attracting the right buyer.

Adam Doyle joined Elliott Aviation in 2000 as an interior technician after graduating from Wyoming Technical Institute. While at Elliott Aviation, Adam has earned many different promotions on the shop floor including Install Team Lead, Soft Goods Team Lead, Assistant Interior Shop Manager and Seat Shop Manager. Adam’s most recent promotion has been to Paint and Interior Sales Representative for Elliott Aviation. He uses his experience with various vendors, products and processes to educate our clients by providing direction and helping plan for future investment with realistic and accurate figures.

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