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Mackay Insurance Blog

 

Take Water Safety to a Whole New Level With Boat Insurance

knot on dock

Next to your home and personal vehicles, your boat may represent one of the biggest investments you make in life.

Yet far too many boat owners neglect the one task that will protect this investment no matter what life or open waters may bring: boat insurance.

We know buying boat insurance isn’t exactly fun. It isn’t why you wanted to invest in a boat. Just tending to the maintenance itself is no joke – that boat of yours probably keeps you pretty busy even in the off-season!

But this is also why winter is the best time of year to talk with your Mackay Insurance broker and find out what boat insurance has to offer. This way, you can look forward to your launch this spring with confidence that your investment is completely protected!

What Is Boat Insurance?

Boat insurance is designed to protect certain categories of watercraft, whether motorized or not.

The main categories of covered watercraft include:

  • boats (both motorized and non-motorized)

  • watercraft (like jet skis, inflatables)

  • motors

  • equipment (GPS equipment, dinghies)

  • boat trailers

If you are not sure if your boat or watercraft will qualify for boat insurance, our friendly Mackay brokers are happy to talk about it with you.

What Does Boat Insurance Cover?

Boat insurance policies are designed to cover you in a number of different categories. You may need all or some of the types of coverage a boat insurance policy is designed to provide.

Boat insurance, like most insurance products today, can be customized to your unique needs and concerns.

These are the basic categories a standard boat insurance policy will offer coverage for:

Liability

Liability coverage is the big one for most boat owners, regardless of craft type; it will protect you if you get into an accident with your boat that causes injuries or fatalities or harms another person’s property.

Emergencies

Emergency services can include coverage for boat repairs or towing.

Damage to the boat itself

All-risk coverage protects you for the types of events you simply cannot foresee.

Some examples include damage, theft, vandalism, destruction, weather, fire, explosion, lightning strikes and other situations that are beyond your control that cause damage or destruction of your boat and related property.

Do You Really Need Boat Insurance?

This is a really good question! Be aware that some types of low-value, low-liability watercraft may actually be covered under your homeowners insurance policy. Examples include canoes and kayaks.

But when you start to get into boats as an investment, it is time to look at standalone boat insurance rather than a rider on your homeowners policy. (As a side benefit here, taking out a standalone boat insurance policy will also safeguard you from an increase in homeowners insurance premiums if you have to make a claim for your boat.)

When it comes to determining how much boat insurance you need, there actually is no “one size fits all” answer to this question.

Rather, the boat insurance you need is dependent on the value of your boat and related property, the type of power your boat uses, your usage patterns, the type of storage you have for your boat/property, who can use the boat, what type of trailer or hauling vehicle you use and other factors.

How Much Boat Insurance Do You Need?

One big question all new boat owners typically have is how to figure out how much boat insurance you need.

As a general rule of thumb, if your boat is valued at $100,000 or less, you will pay about 1 percent of its value annually for your boat insurance policy.

Here, this would mean that insuring your $100,000 boat would cost you about $1,000 in boat insurance annually.

All things considered, paying $1,000 for a boat worth $100,000 is a very reasonable cost to protect the value of your investment.

Are There Discounts for Boat Insurance?

Many boat owners are happy to learn that discounts can apply to boat insurance.

Here are some discounts to be sure to ask about when you talk with your broker about boat insurance:

  • Multiple policy discounts (if you carry more than one policy with the same insurer)

  • Full lump-sum premium payment (if you pay for the full year at one time)

  • Power Squadron or other boat safety courses

  • Homeowners insurance discount 

  • Member discount (if you belong to a boat club or association)

  • Dry dock discount (if you store your boat at a dry dock instead of on the water)

  • Usage discount (if your usage patterns are moderate or seasonal)

  • Good credit discount (if you have an excellent or good credit score)

Get in Touch

Are you considering a boat purchase? Contact one of our friendly, knowledgeable brokers before you buy to find out what your insurance rate will be.

Contact us online or give us a call at 1-888-853-5552.

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