Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Non-Airline Forums > Private Flying
Reload this Page >

Buying a share - What to look out for

Private Flying LAA/BMAA/BGA/BPA The sheer pleasure of flight.

Buying a share - What to look out for

Reply

Old 24th Nov 2018, 18:40
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: GB
Posts: 21
Buying a share - What to look out for

So, I'm hoping to buy into a share in a small group formed around a permit aircraft. All seems to be in order, but just wondered if there was anything to look out for.

Thank you
JustOneMoreQuestion. is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 24th Nov 2018, 20:44
  #2 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Moray,Scotland,U.K.
Posts: 1,260
What is the aircraft? What kind of place is it kept? How many in the Group? How long has it been going? Information needed before suggestions.
A 20 member syndicate for your previous suggestions of a VP or Turbulent would probably not work.
Maoraigh1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 24th Nov 2018, 21:01
  #3 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: GB
Posts: 21
Piel Emeraude, grass and tarmac strip for GA, 4 in all, not sure.

Already ascertained there is a healthy fund, no accident damage (apart from a slight mishap on the ground - nothing serious).
JustOneMoreQuestion. is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 24th Nov 2018, 21:28
  #4 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 327
I wish you luck on that one ! Before you commit try and meet as many members as possible. Fro example; some will be clean and tidy folks others will be slobs. This will be reflected in the day to day care of the a/c. The slobs will walk away when they've finished, leaving the a/c smeared with oil and grass stains and in the summer a plentiful supply of bugs fastened to the windscreen and leading edges.

You might consider buying into a more responsible group where they have in place a cleaning schedule. The members will moan at sharing the cost and gradually the efficiency of the cleaning will drop off. I've been a member of more than half a dozen groups over the years and nothing changes.

My suggestion is to stay small. Five or six members is manageable. The shares costs tho' will be higher.
Capt Kremmen is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 24th Nov 2018, 22:32
  #5 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: UK
Posts: 13,468
Look at the aeroplane, the rules, the maintenance practice (make sure it's NOT your inspector doing the maintenance - the system is supposed to be built upon independent checks), the availability of an instructor.

But above all else, look at the group. How are they getting on with each other, are people pulling their weight, are there any difficult personalities who disrupt the smooth running of the group, are there people who fly the pants off the aeroplane and regularly leave it in a poor state or who think it's reasonable to fly it all day, snag something, and leave everybody else to sort the problems out?

It's all about the people. The most problematic aeroplanes will get sorted out by a good group, the best aeroplanes will deteriorate rapidly with a bad group.

G
Genghis the Engineer is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 24th Nov 2018, 23:07
  #6 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Moray,Scotland,U.K.
Posts: 1,260
"It's all about the people. The most problematic aeroplanes will get sorted out by a good group, the best aeroplanes will deteriorate rapidly with a bad group."
YES!!! But 4 is a bad number. I'm in 2 Groups, one is about to go operational after almost 2 years, and a wing rebuild. But that was after 17 years of operating.
The other Group of four, new, splits 2 v 2, and the aircraft is grounded when it could be flying.
I wouldn't worry about guys using it a lot, as long as the hourly makes a profit. We had the money earned to get Mode S, 8..33, and rebuild the wing. And I wouldn't bother if someone is untidy.
I bought my share in an operating Group at the start of 1990, without any inspection of the aircraft - my own suspicions of the aircraft structure were overcome by the calculation I would break even if it lasted 7 months. But I knew the Group.
The kitty, the engine hours, and the fabric are your interests. If the Group is new, then everything is uncertain.
The second Group I'm in has not been operating for 6 months yet, and is unsettled, though with a good aircraft. We took our Inspector to check it before we bought it.
PS It is Mode S and 8.33 of course?

Last edited by Maoraigh1; 24th Nov 2018 at 23:10. Reason: Add
Maoraigh1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 24th Nov 2018, 23:36
  #7 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: West Coast Canada
Posts: 3,274
Originally Posted by Maoraigh1 View Post
"It's all about the people. The most problematic aeroplanes will get sorted out by a good group, the best aeroplanes will deteriorate rapidly with a bad group."
YES!!! But 4 is a bad number.
I don't agree that 4 is necessarily a bad number. In fact in many ways I think it is ideal. A group is a balance between the unlimited availability of owning alone and the fact that you are liable for all the cost vs only having upfront and fixed operating costs as some fraction of the total. The reduction in costs will result in diminishing returns the larger the group.For a 4 person group it is 25 % for a 10 person group 10 % . not much of a reduction for the potentially much reduced availability and the challenge of managing the interests and expectations of a much larger group. The member cat herding is going to be easier with only 4.

But like others have said the group works or does not work on the basis of the members getting along. I formed a 4 person group to buy a floatplane. I sold my share after 3 years for a variety of reasons but the biggest was the other members were constantly moaning about how much the airplane costs to own and maintain. The costs were in line with what I told them to expect but they obviously did not want to believe me.

One thing we all agreed on was that in practice scheduling was almost never an issue and so for all practical purposes availability was very close to what you would have owning the airplane outright despite the fact you were only in it for 25 % of the initial and operating costs.
Big Pistons Forever is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old 25th Nov 2018, 11:32
  #8 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 327
Cleanliness and tidiness are the first steps in efficient maintenance. If the a/c is kept in this manner then you can almost guarantee that the periodic maintenance schedules are observed. Cleaning the a/c with your nose six inches from it makes it difficult to overlook any snags.

I don't know of any issue in connection with group ownership that causes so much angst as that of failing to keep the a/c clean and tidy. There are members in most groups that will complete their sortie, park the a/c and walk away. Infuriating, when the next booking arrives on a tight slot, then has to strip a load of gooey bugs before starting pre start checks and departing.
Capt Kremmen is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 25th Nov 2018, 11:35
  #9 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: GB
Posts: 21
Originally Posted by Capt Kremmen View Post
I wish you luck on that one ! Before you commit try and meet as many members as possible. Fro example; some will be clean and tidy folks others will be slobs. This will be reflected in the day to day care of the a/c. The slobs will walk away when they've finished, leaving the a/c smeared with oil and grass stains and in the summer a plentiful supply of bugs fastened to the windscreen and leading edges.

You might consider buying into a more responsible group where they have in place a cleaning schedule. The members will moan at sharing the cost and gradually the efficiency of the cleaning will drop off. I've been a member of more than half a dozen groups over the years and nothing changes.

My suggestion is to stay small. Five or six members is manageable. The shares costs tho' will be higher.
Just want to make sure you read it was a 4 person group (in total)? Do you know the group? Just as you said looking at a more responsible group.

Thank you
JustOneMoreQuestion. is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 25th Nov 2018, 20:32
  #10 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Moray,Scotland,U.K.
Posts: 1,260
"I don't know of any issue in connection with group ownership that causes so much angst as that of failing to keep the a/c clean and tidy."
I was for 27 years a happy member of a Group with an airworthy, active, but very tatty Jodel.
Still the same Group, same aircraft, almost 29 years now, and about to fly with our newly covered and painted wing.
i wonder if our cleanliness and tidiness will change?
Maoraigh1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 25th Nov 2018, 21:56
  #11 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 327
Ok. If 'very tatty' works for you and you're happy, why consider change ?
Capt Kremmen is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 25th Nov 2018, 23:20
  #12 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: UK
Posts: 13,468
I've been in ten syndicates over 23 odd years (at any one time, usually a member of 2-3: it works for me), from 2 to 20. I don't think that there is an ideal size - to a fair extent I prefer larger groups. You'll find in a group of 20, that only 6 fly the aeroplane regularly and, mostly, this works fine.

I'm presently in a group of 11 and another of 17. Neither do I fail to get the aeroplane when I want it with any regularity - both are very well run and well looked after aeroplanes: and whilst I try to pull my weight, I also (having had the odd prior bad experience) have become rather more cautious of who I'm joining! So I tend to disagree with those saying that only small groups work.

G
Genghis the Engineer is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 26th Nov 2018, 10:33
  #13 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 327
Large group or small group preferences ? Depends largely on the size of your wallet.
Capt Kremmen is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 28th Nov 2018, 04:04
  #14 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Fragrant Harbour
Posts: 4,590
Been in several ranging from 2 to 20 members. It's not the size of the group, but how it's managed that's important. Look carefully at the structure of the group (is there a clearly defined management system); the payment system, (is there an engine fund and does the balance match the hours left before the next overhaul/replacement); look at the booking system (is it equitable or does it favour a few members?) and the airfield (a strip with limited movements compared with an established airfield).

The best way to run a group without doubt is as a limited company. This way, the individual members get additional protection should something go badly wrong. One group I was in, one member was declared bankrupt and the bailiffs came to impound 'his' aircraft. But as he was a shareholder in the company with only one share with a nominal value of one pound, they went away disappointed. Also, look at the hours limits - many have a minimum of 100 P1 since award of a PPL and I would suggest this is sensible. Also, look at the way any check flights are done - is there a structure and is it held to? the same group with the bankrupt member was a bit strapped financially and needed more members. Being the only professional pilot, I did the 'check rides'. I objected to one prospective member , not because of his flying, but because he appeared to me to be a bit of a risk taker. I was overruled and he later proved me right by crashing the aircraft. And it helps to have a lawyer in the group!

Good luck.
Dan Winterland is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 28th Nov 2018, 21:30
  #15 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: In Exile...
Posts: 329
The best question you can ask is...why.

In no particular order...
Why's the share for sale?
Why's the bank got so much money in it? Reluctance to spend it?
Why is there a pilot hours limit?
Why does it do so many hours / never fly?
Why are the monthlies so high/low?
Why are there 4 people in the syndicate but only two names appearing in the tech log?

I'm in a 12 person syndicate. 4 of us fly regularly, 4 occasionally and 4 seldom. I knew the aircraft before I bought my share, and watched what a couple of shares sold for before I bought one. I knew it had a new engine and had been reasonably well looked after but would likely need a cash call. On average, one share per year comes on the market in it, and it sits on the market for about 3-4 months. I was sceptic at first having been in a 4 person syndicate previously but have been very happy with 12 - it just depends on the group. It's rare I can't find someone to come with me and cost share.
x933 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 29th Nov 2018, 00:01
  #16 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: England
Posts: 955
Many good replies. I think you have to dive in and find out about aircraft ownership pros and cons for yourself. At least with a syndicate others share the pain ( and joy)

One thing I always do is write off the investment when you join. If you get anything back when you sell that is a bonus. I've seen so many people spend 2000 per year in monthlies for several years waiting for someone to pay 1,800 for their share because that's what they paid for it. Giving the share away would be cheaper.
18greens is offline  
Reply With Quote

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service