If you want to start a boat repossession business, read and study as much information on this topic as you can before you do anything. There are several steps that you have to take to be successful in operating this type of business. Keep in mind that this can be a dangerous job because you will be seizing individuals’ property. Make sure that you follow all the boat repossession laws in your state. Use the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) website at www.sba.gov as a resource to help you get started. (See Resource 1.)

Things You Will Need
  • Slim jim to open car or boat doors.

  • Boat jiggler keys to open locked boats.

  • Towing hitch to tow boats.

  • Cash

  • Business plan

  • Tow truck

  • Office space and supplies.

Try to locate a boat repossession company in your area. Apply for a job or sign up as an apprentice. Learn exactly how the business operates. If you cannot locate a boat repossession company in your area, log onto repossession-law.com and click on “Boat Repossession (Boat Repo).” (See Resource 3.) This is just some general information to help you get started.

Visit the site www.repo.org and select “Member Tools.” Move down to “State Requirements” and click. Record the information for your state requirements on a piece of paper. (See Reference 2.) Contact your state’s office and request information about all the qualifications and requirements to operate a boat repossession business in your state.

After you have completed all of your state’s qualifications and requirements, visit your local city or county office and apply for a permit to operate a boat repossession company. Go to GovSpot.com to find your state's Department of Revenue. Now, click through to your state's Department of Revenue website. Then register your business online and apply for your state tax ID number. (See Reference 1.)

Call the Internal Revenue Service at (800) 829-4933 to register for your federal tax ID number. (See Resource 2.)

Develop a business plan by using the information from the SBA's website. You will write a 200-word summary about yourself and the business. Next, you are going to write a marketing plan that will explain how you will obtain clients. Then write in the management section how you will operate on a day-to-day basis. Finally, explain in the financial plan how you are going to manage the business's cash flow.

Go to your local law enforcement agency and inform them that you have obtained the permits to operate a boat repossession business. Ask if there are any requirements from their office. Comply with all their rules and laws and provide them with accurate information.

To get started, set up shop at home or rent office space. Now, purchase or lease a tow truck. You will need to order office supplies and business forms from your local print shop (i.e., business cards, work order forms, etc.). Get contact information from banks, credit unions and loan companies.

Inform the default department’s managers that you just started a boat repossession business in the area and you would like to send them your contact information.

Become a member of the American Recovery Association; they will help you build up a client base. (See Reference 2.)

You can obtain business from the federal government by mailing your brochures and contact information to government-owned banks in your area. Also, call the SBA at (800) 827-5722 and let the representative know you are trying to do business with the federal government. The SBA will help you get started.


Always call the local law enforcement agency and let them know when a boat repossession is scheduled.

Always call the bank and marina owner and let them know that a boat repossession is scheduled.

Keep expenses low by operating out of your home.

Do not spend money on expensive tools and equipment.


Boats are hard to repossess if you do not have the right tools (i.e., slim jim, boat jiggler keys, towing hitch and a tow truck).

Always have someone to help you if possible.