Questions To Ask Before Getting Boat Insurance

Are you thinking of getting a boat or watercraft? Have you heard about boat insurance and need more information on the topic? If you're just starting out as a boating hobbyist, these questions will help you be more informed about what boat insurance does and does not do:

What kind of damage to your boat does the insurance cover?

It depends on the type of coverage you choose. If you choose comprehensive, your policy can cover you if you hit a rock in the water, some types of damage on newer engines, or hurricane and storm damage. Some insurance policies may only cover damage that occurs while the boat is in the water, while others may also cover damage that may happen when your boat is pulled from the water for winter storage. Make sure to discuss these various types of issues with your insurance representative before you buy the policy, so that you have a clear picture of your coverage.  

Is boat insurance required?

Some states and municipalities require a minimum of liability coverage before you take to the water, while others do not. Make sure to check your local laws before you head out for your first boating excursion. Even if your state does not require you to purchase insurance, if you dock your boat at your nearby marina, they may have their own insurance requirements. In addition, even if you have boat insurance, some marinas may charge their own small insurance fee in addition to their docking fee. They may do this to be reimbursed more quickly in case their dock is damaged during a storm by the boats that are moored there.

Won't homeowners insurance cover any boating damage? 

Many new boaters wrongfully assume that their new watercraft is covered by their current homeowners policy. However, in most cases, your boat has nothing to do with your home's insurance. Just like your car requires a separate policy, so does your boat. Your homeowners may offer a small amount of coverage if you have a small boat without an engine, like a canoe or rowboat. It also may cover some damage that occurs if the boat is stored on your own property, such as being damaged by a large tree limb. But as a general rule of thumb, if your boat has an engine then it is probably going to require its own policy. Make sure to ask an insurance expert, like those at The Flechsig Insurance Agency Inc, if you can get a discount if you bundle your boat insurance with your auto or home policies.