Buying an aircraft is a significant commitment that you must make with careful consideration. A used aircraft can be less expensive than a brand new one. Still, it is a costly purchase in which you cannot afford to act impulsively. The cost of an aircraft is high no matter what, but certain factors can reduce its value.
The closer an engine is to its recommended time overhaul (TBO), the less its value. The engine manufacturer determines the TBO, which is the recommended number of running hours of an aircraft before it requires an overhaul. An overhaul is a removal, inspection and cleaning of an engine. The TBO varies per aircraft, but if the aircraft is close to its TBO, you will need to pay the maintenance of the engine if you want it to be in good condition.
As with any vehicle or craft, the damages it may have had in its past may decrease its market value. Damage history refers to the repairs to the surface or system of an aircraft after an accident that affected the craft’s airworthiness. The reduction of an aircraft’s worth will depend on whether the damage was superficial, minor, moderate, major or extensive. For this reason, you must review the damage history of an aircraft and ensure that the previous owner repaired those damages correctly.
The technology inside of an aircraft, and its age, also determines its value. Aircrafts with new technology will be more expensive than crafts with outdated equipment. Some examples of equipment include air conditioning, deicing gears, fire detectors and oxygen and pressurization systems. The older the equipment, the more expensive its maintenance will be.
The Federal Aviation Administration issues regulations called Airworthiness Directives (ADs) to notify aircraft owners when they find that their aircraft has some unsafe conditions that they must repair to ensure a safe and efficient flight. The owners of the aircraft must do the proper maintenance and repairs within a specific period. Correcting the failures in an aircraft can be expensive, so you must review the AD history of the particular aircraft you are interested in buying.
Paint and interior
If the aircraft looks good as new, the odds are that it will have a higher cost. A visual inspection of the aircraft’s exterior and interior is necessary to determine its value. Any signs of chipping, burning, corrosion, blistering and flaking on the aircraft’s surface will affect its price. The same applies to lights, seats and carpets in the interior of the plane.
Unless you are an aviation expert, you won’t be able to determine the value of the aircraft on your own. Because of this, you must ask specialists to review and inspect the aircraft you plan on buying. A team of aircraft experts and technicians can ensure that the aircraft does not have significant failures or pending repairs. You may also need the help of an experienced aviation lawyer with your purchase, as you must verify that the craft complies with state, government and European Union regulations. Buying an aircraft is a complicated process, and you must seek the proper guidance before making such a significant purchase.