8 Key Boat insurance Coverages
Compiled by Insurance Agent Paul Phaneuf First Patriot Insurance
Here are 8 main coverages on a boat insurance policy:
- Bodily Injury Liability - Pays for expenses to an injury to others from an accident you caused. Medical bills and defense costs to others may all be covered too
- Property Damage Liability - Pays costs from damage to other property you hit like a boat, dock or other structure.
- Physical Damage - This covers damage to your own boat and its trailer. If you have a fire or hurricane damage to your own boat the cost of repairing it would be covered.
- Underinsured/Uninsured Boaters - In Florida usually covers medical for you and passengers in the event you get in an accident with a boater who doesn’t have insurance or is underinsured
- Medical Payments - Medical for you or your passengers will get paid for up to the policy limit.
- Dinghy- Some policy cover as equipment others cover as a scheduled item.
- Personal Property for Scuba, Ski and Fishing Equipment - This pays for damage including theft of this property brought on boat that is not considered boat equipment or boat accessories.
- Towing and Roadside Assistance - This covers the boat during towing including costs or getting boat towed when grounded.
Boaters should check their policy for coverage, options and exclusions.
8 Most common Florida sailboat insurance claims:
- Hitting a submerged object while moving
- Collision with other boat
- Storm and wind damage
- Theft while in storage
- Owner negligence while docking
Check our site at First Patriot Insurance for more information.
8 Ways To Cut Florida Sailboat Boat Insurance Costs
By Paul Phaneuf, 30 Year Insurance Agent
As an insurance agent I am often asked by phone and at the boat shows, how can I reduce my sailboat boat insurance costs? Let’s look at some ways to lower your boat insurance rate:
- Check the limit on your boat policy. Does it reflect the current value, not what you paid 4 years ago? Are you over-insuring your boat? See Our You Tube Link on Agreed Value on sailboats VS Actual Cash Value.
- Sailboats- does your sailboat have a trailer? Check as this might be a very expensive rider on your sailboat insurance.
- Racing Sailboats and other sailboats under 26 feet may need special trailer coverage excluded by most sailboat policies.
- Older boats- We have plans for boats up to 30 years old, including Dade and Broward. Check older boats for correct value and get repair or replacement cost options when possible.
- Check your deductible. Ask for the savings of the next higher deductible. Many sailboat don't want to turn in small claims anyway. Do you see your policy as a "back up" for the big things like hurricane or theft? Why pay extra for small/low deductible? This makes the most sense with high value boats.
- Do you want to pay for extras? Towing and personal property may be double insured, covered by homeowners policy or a towing service. Your dingy will be covered under some sailboat policies or it may need to be added as a rider.
- Check territory on policy - make sure your policy reflects where the boat is stored and used. If it is a inland sailboat used on lakes make sure you are getting the inland rates, not coastal. If you go offshore what is the mileage limit? I have seen policies with 3 mile off coast limit- no coverage after 3 miles.
- Sailboats- Territory can be very important for sail boaters. When a sail boat is in the Bahamas or Cuba it is in another country and not covered by many sailboat policies! Check your sailboat territory especially in Florida
- Discounts. Have you taken or could you take a boat safety course that would save you $. The courses are low cost- many companies give 10% discount! Sailboat owners can get new boat discounts with many insurance companies if you are the first owner.
- Discounts. Will Insurance carrier give a multi policy discount for having other lines of insurance with them like automobile, home or life? For example, insure your sailboat with the same company you insure your car with and you might get a 15% discount on the sailboat insurance!
- Discounts. Could a low cost fire extinguisher be installed (even on sailboat) that would give discount? Alarms, VHF - ask what discounts are available, it varies by company.
- Shop. Most agencies have one lead company they use. Check several companies for second opinion. Try some independent and direct companies and confirm quotes in writing. You will probably be shocked by the difference between the premiums offered on the same boat!