You did it. You took the dive and purchased the boat you’ve always wanted. Now it’s time to look into protecting your boat with marine insurance. Just like car insurance, there are numerous options to choose from when determining the right coverage for you. Check out the AIMU website for additional information for marine insurance, but before you do, here are six things you should know before purchasing any boat insurance.
If Getting Insurance is The Right Move
In almost every situation getting insurance is the right move. However, there are some instances when insurance would be more expensive than the boat. Decide if the cost of insurance is worth more than losing your boat, or even the boat itself.
Length of the Boat
This may seem like a silly statement, but it makes a big difference. If your vessel is over 27 feet long, it is consider a yacht and subject to greater risk factors and higher coverages. Policies tend to be more expensive on yachts than boats.
What Your Boat is Worth
Most policies have a section called the “agreed upon cash value” of your boat. This would include many of the after-market accessories you have put onto your vessel post purchase. Your boat may have a sticker value of $45k, but you’ve put $15k of upgrades into it. Be ready to describe each of your upgrades to your insurance provider.
Where You Will be Storing Your Boat
Is your boat kept at a dock, or do you haul it everywhere you go, keeping it on a trailer? Some coverages don’t include land transportation; know where your boat will be most of the time and get the most coverage for your value.
That Optional Coverages are Available
I briefly mentioned this earlier but it is good to state here. There are several coverages available. Do some research before you go into talks with any agent knowing you have options. Some agencies have policies that others don’t such as consequential damage insurance.
Know What Consequential Damage Is
Catastrophic losses resulting from explosion, de-masting, fire, sinking, stranding, or collision are defined as a “consequence.” For example, if your older boat has wiring that starts a fire resulting in severe damage, insurance companies would view the damages as a consequence of the faulty wiring; without consequential damage insurance you wouldn’t be covered.
With a little bit of knowledge, you will be able to go into your insurance hunt with some confidence. Good luck and enjoy the waters.