Congratulations! You’ve finally decided to fulfill a lifelong dream of owning that 26’ speedboat (or you’ve already had one for years). You can already feel the wind in your hair and the water spray tickling the back of your neck. You and the family have been planning the upcoming summer vacations with a fervor that’s never been seen before, and going through that checklist of must-do’s is priority:
Boat Maintenance CHECK
Safety Gear Updates CHECK
Trailer Inspection CHECK
Boat Safety Course CHECK
Locating Best Landings CHECK
Planning Excursions CHECK
Called My Insurance Ag…… **squeal, bang, splat**
Oh, did we forget?
Yeah, sorry. Boats require their own insurance policy separate from home or auto policies to fully cover their unique aspects.
What is it?
Like home or auto, Boat insurance covers you in the event of loss or damage to your boat. And like auto, there are multiple options for the kind of coverage you may need.
Your general liability policy covers you if someone is injured on your craft and will typically include coverage for bodily injury that your boat inflicts on others, property damage to, or caused by, your boat. For those brand new, off-the-lot crafts, go ahead and consider those comprehensive policies that cover theft, vandalism, fire and/or flood, property coverage, and uninsured boater incidents. Bonus: unlike home and auto policies, boat insurance allows for suspended coverage—during those months it’s packed away in the garage due to the cold
Where am I covered?
Your boat insurance policy covers you and others when on the water, and only on the water. Depending on your policy and location, you are covered when on all inland waters of the U.S and Canada or the coastal waters of the U.S and Canada for smaller crafts up to 26 ft. Here’s where things can get tricky. Out of the water and hitched to your car, the boat and trailer are now covered by your auto policy. And when it’s parked at home? It may or may not be covered by your homeowner’s policy.
Have a conversation with your agent today to get the best coverage possible, which may include an umbrella policy to fully cover a variety of situations.
SAVE, SAVE, SAVE
- Get Specific
- Make sure your policy is geared towards your boat and only your boat. You wouldn’t want to be paying for features that you don’t have or need.
- Celebrate Safety Features
- Many underwriters can and will offer discounts for tools that will help protect the boat. Know what you have and don’t forget to include it in the description of your boat.
- Educate Yourself
- Taking a qualified boating class can save you percentage points off your policy.
- Extend your Lay-up Period
- Insurers are often willing to cut your premium during those months your boat is sitting unused.
While boat insurance isn’t actually required in California, it’s always a smart idea to make sure you and your family are safe. To fully understand your options and to get the best policy possible, give us a call. Atchley and Associates wants to make that dream summer a reality.