Are you one of many Sheboygan area residents that have a boat? If so, you may have been led to believe your homeowners insurance extends to your watercraft. In reality, only some boats are covered by homeowners insurance, leaving many boat owners vulnerable to the ‘what-ifs’ in life. If that statement leaves you wondering, “Do I need boat insurance,” continue reading to find out more about whether your homeowners insurance is adequate, or you should carry a separate boat owners insurance policy.
Will My Homeowners Policy Cover My Boat?
Homeowners, renters, and Condo Owners Insurance policies vary from one insurance company to the next, but in most cases, boats are not covered items. Even if you store your boat at home, it is still a mobile vessel. Like your car, a motorized watercraft typically requires its own insurance coverage separate from your homeowners insurance policy.
Of course, there are some exceptions, as your homeowners insurance may provide limited coverage for certain types of boats that do not exceed a specific value, size, or horsepower. For example, if you are an avid fan of sailing or enjoy taking your canoe downstream on the weekends, homeowners insurance may provide protection against covered losses. Larger boats or those with big motors are often excluded from homeowners protection.
Do I Need Boat Insurance?
The truth is, most boaters need boat insurance – regardless of whether homeowners insurance provides coverage or not. Boat Insurance takes the guesswork out of insurance, providing coverage against losses, as well as liability and personal injury. That means you can have peace of mind if your boat runs aground and requires major repairs or if an accident leaves you or one of your passengers injured.
Many boat insurance policies offer optional comprehensive protection as well. Comprehensive coverage is even broader than standard property and liability insurance, providing protection against unexpected losses. This type of insurance can fill the gap when a flood washes your boat away, or it gets vandalized while at the dock. It can even be underwritten to include coverage for any extra gear you may have or for towing expenses.
Purchasing Boat Insurance
Boat insurance does not have to be expensive. There are several factors that can affect the cost of your coverage, including deductibles, the type of boat you have, and whether your boat is covered for its actual cash value, or a predetermined valued agreed upon between you and your insurer.
Boat Insurance Discounts
To maximize savings, many people choose to bundle their boat insurance with an existing homeowners policy. Ask about multiple policy discounts, paid-in-full discounts, as well as additional savings for safety features and safety education courses.
Even if you have an existing boat insurance policy, it is important to review its coverage exclusions on a regular basis. After all, it is not uncommon for a policy to exclude coverage during the fall and winter months or to provide other limitations that are often overlooked by boat owners.
At Heinen and Associates, we are committed to raising awareness about the coverage gaps many people are unaware they have. Unfortunately, many people do not discover the shortcomings of their insurance policies until the time comes to file a claim. Our goal is to provide clarity about watercraft coverage and help our clients find a policy that fits their needs. Contact our office for more information about boat insurance or to get a quote. We look forward to serving you soon.