Insuring Your Boat: Top Tips For Boat Insurance


Insuring Your Boat: Top Tips For Boat Insurance

Physical Damage and Liability

Let's start by describing the two basic sections of a typical yacht or boat insurance policy: physical damage and liability. The physical damage section covers accidental loss or damage to the boat and its machinery. This not only covers the hull and the boat engine(s), but also the sails and other equipment on board that are required to operate the boat.

The liability section covers your legal obligations to third parties. This legal liability can arise from bodily injury or loss of life, or damage to someone else's property, as a result of the ownership or operation of your boat. In order to be registered to use a mooring at Rottnest Island you require a minimum legal liability cover of $5 million.

Agreed Value VS Market Value

Basically, if you have a Market Value policy and you have a total loss, the value of your boat will be determined at the time of the loss, whereas with Agreed Value the value is determined at the time of the acceptance of the policy subject to written valuation.

Anti Theft Devices

An anti theft device is any retail trailer anti theft device sold through a retail outlet. Combinations of padlock and chain and padlock and cable are not acceptable anti theft devices. To fit an anti theft device you must follow the instructions given by the manufacturer or retailer when you purchase the device.

Lay Up

Many boat insurance policies include a lay up period which is a time that the boat is normally laid up and out of commission, such as during the winter months. The underwriter will normally allow a discount (up to 5%) for each month that the boat is laid up at agreed premises.

Factors Affecting the Cost of Boat Insurance

The underwriter must consider many factors when determining the rate (or premium) to charge for a boat insurance policy. The most common determinants are: value, length, construction and age of boat; type of boat (i.e., power, sail); type of engines; mooring location; intended area of navigation; previous boating experience and claim history of the owner; lay up; and deductible amount.

Seek Out Boat Insurance Specialists

The condition of your boat is mentioned as a rating factor. If you own a boat that is greater than 25 years old, the underwriter may request a recent marine survey of your boat before quoting or insuring it. The better the condition, the greater the likelihood of being approved for boat insurance and receiving a competitive quote. Anything that you can do to update and repair critical systems prior to the boat being inspected can improve the results of the marine survey and leave a better impression with the underwriter.

Now that you have a better understanding of yacht and boat insurance policies, you'll be in a better position to ask the right questions when buying boat insurance. It also pays to work with a company who thoroughly understands boat and yacht insurance. This is important not just at the time that you apply for insurance, but also in the unfortunate event that you have a claim. Ensure that the underwriter has a developed repairer network in order to minimise the time taken to settle your claim and get you back on the water quickly.

It is also important to disclose your claims history and other required information in order to receive insurance coverage notwithstanding payment of your premium.