The VanDyke Group | Uncovering the Need for Boat Insurance
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26 Apr Uncovering the Need for Boat Insurance


Before you take the cover off of your boat, check your coverage. I mean insurance coverage. Do you have boat insurance? Do you need it? Does the state require all boats to be insured? If you’re new to boating these might be a few of the questions you have.

Many new boat owners think that their homeowners insurance will somehow cover their boat as well. Sadly, in most cases it won’t. Some homeowner policies will include a minimal coverage for small boats such as a canoe or kayak. But if you’re purchasing a $10,000 boat or more your homeowner’s policy will not cover what you need.

So, do you need to purchase boat insurance? The easy answer is yes. Although many states do not require you to have boat insurance it is highly recommended. Some marinas or harbors do require boat insurance if your boat is being kept at their facility. Remember that boating faces a lot of risks, and repairs to your boat can be costly. Boat insurance can help offset these costs with collision, towing and comprehensive coverages.

Because there is such a variety of boats there are many policy options as well. Whether you own a pontoon, sailboat, personal watercraft, or yacht they each have their own set of policy features and price structures. Most boat insurance policies generally include liability, medical coverage, and coverage of the boat. There are other additional coverages you can choose to meet your needs.

Before calling for a quote you will need to have the following information about your vessel:

  • Year
  • Length
  • Make and manufacturer model number
  • Vessel material (fiberglass, aluminum, etc.)
  • Vessel type (pontoon, fishing, ski boat, etc.)
  • Type of engine (inboard, outboard) & horsepower
  • Value of boat and trailer if applicable.

Everyone wants to save money when purchasing insurance and there are several ways you can do this for a boat policy. By taking a boating class you may be able to save up to 5% on your premium. Cut your premium cost during the months when you are not using your boat and have it in storage. Certain safety features and gadgets, such as, wireless auto tethers that kill the engine if the captain or any other passengers fall overboard, can also provide a discount for your policy. Some carriers will give discounts for having your cell phone aboard as a safety feature. These, along with owning your own home, having no violations on your driving record, and having multiple policies with the same carrier can all save you some money.

Give your trusted insurance agent a call before you take the cover off your boat this spring to review your existing policy or purchase a new one.

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Material posted on this website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a legal opinion or medical advice. Contact your medical professional or legal representative for information specific to your needs.