Ships are the nearest things to dreams that hands have ever made.
– Robert N. Rose
A lot of people ask me if I were shipwrecked, and could only have one book, what would it be? I always say ‘How to Build a Boat’
– Stephen Wright
Work like a captain, play like a pirate
People(read: Men) love boats. We take care of our boats and treasure them almost as much as a member of the family. Most that have boats have boat insurance, but how much are you really paying for that insurance? If you said to yourself while reading this, “Too much… ” then this article may just be worth a read for you!We hope that this “baker’s dozen” of boating insurance helps you save some money.
First, see what your state requires. Different states require different requirements for proper boat insurance. Most states require a minimum of personal liability insurance. Property damage is also important if your boat is ported or kept anywhere else other than your home. Don’t forget that non-motorized personal watercraft do not require vehicle insurance.
Put all watercraft on the same policy. In addition, see if your automobile insurer can insure your boat(s) as well. Combining policies is a great way to save money and reduce your interest rates.
Switching to liability can help you save. Do this only if you’re comfortable with having your insurance only pay for the damage you do to OTHERS, not your own boat.
Make sure you know the limits of your liability insurance. Check with your liability provider to make sure that all events that can happen are covered. Not all policies are created equal.
Joining a group or organization is beneficial. Most insurers want their drivers to be educated on proper boating procedures. So much so that the majority will offer a discount if you take a reputable course on boating. One good example is the US Power Squadrons course. Even if your insurance provider doesn’t give you a discount, the knowledge you receive can definitely save you money!
Experience matters when it comes to your premiums. Make sure you have a more mature and more experienced boat operator on your boat insurance. This will avoid the added costs of having young and/or inexperienced people on your policy.
Choose the right deductible for your income. Make sure that the deductible you agree to pay for won’t be more than you can afford in the case of an accident. You also shouldn’t have your deductible so low that you can’t afford the premiums.
Keep the boat safe while on shore as well as on the water. Storing your boat in a secure area is vital. If you keep your boat stored in an insured property, you may be able to have the damages covered from your property insurance. Proper investigation of the terms of your property insurance will determine if this is a possible option to save you some money.
Ask for discounts like these listed below. Here are some examples of discounts offered by many insurers:
Paid in full
Is cancelling my insurance during off-season a good option? It’s never a good idea to cancel your boat insurance. Your boat insurance can be damaged during the off-season, and if you’re not covered, you pay the damages. This practice will also prevent you from saving through loyalty discounts such as vanishing deductible. A safer way to save during the off-season is to remove any of the perks that involve actually using the boat, like towing emergency or uninsured boaters insurance. If you do this, make sure you reinstate your previous coverages before you get back on the water!
Consider “port risk” and what can be done to your boat on land. This policy can provide coverage associated with storing your boat, but not any of the navigation coverages. It is a reasonable option in conjunction to the question above.
Know the boating market and how it can fluctuate. In the boating market your boat is constantly losing value. This equals a reduced premium! Regularly check with your insurer to see if you qualify for a lower rate.
Join a club or organization. If you can find a boating safety course in your area, most insurers will provide a discount similar to taking a safe car driving class.