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Do You Have Your Boat Insured For The Winter?

Boat owners need to have some type of marine or boat insurance policy active throughout the year, especially during the fall and winter seasons that might become more inactive than you expect.


Boat insurance is a type of insurance policy that covers the damage and/or loss of different types of watercraft, including the likes of any personal motorized watercraft. Most boat insurance policies, however, don’t provide additional coverage for watercraft that aren’t motorized, which can include canoes and kayaks.


Luckily for most boat owners, preparing to insure your boat throughout the fall-winter season represents some of the better practices to take care of, right before getting comfortable with your boat insurance policy throughout the year.


Preparing your boat for… winter storage?


Even some of the best Florida boat insurance companies are encouraging their consumers to pack away their boats, the right way. Allstate, one of the nationwide boat insurance giants, recently informed consumers across the United States – and Florida – about the necessity of preparing one’s boat for the winter season.


The advice, as reported from local resources in October, mentioned that ‘boat owners should know that it’s also a great time for an insurance coverage check-up with their local agent, just to make sure that they’re maintaining appropriate coverage for the off-season period.’


In other words, boat owners in Florida need to ensure that their boat insurance policies are currently up-to-date to better serve the needs they may have. After all, you wouldn’t want an insurance policy that didn’t fit what you need, right?


There’s also a ‘problematic’ aspect of getting a boat insurance policy that most don’t think about—until it’s too late. Many Floridan boat insurance owners don’t know about the inaccuracies that plague boat insurance policies, especially when they’re gearing up to store their vehicles for the winter.


It starts with homeowners who have their homes insured. If they have a boat, they might think that they can just have their property insurance cover their boat. Many insurers, however, will only cover a small percentage of their personal property, in accordance to their personal property coverage limits. While that can include small boats that have a small engine or no engine, it doesn’t include other, larger boats.


Homeowners can’t exactly use their homeowner’s insurance policy for the sake of covering their boat if it’s stored on property, either.  Boats and other watercraft need enough space to be properly stored away, so it’s not exactly the best idea to keep a boat in a driveway or other open space near the home.


Also, many insurance providers in Florida limit the amount of coverage for homeowners, particularly under personal property coverage. So, if you have a boat that’s valued at more than $1,000 USD, you’re out of luck, as that probably only covers non-motorized watercraft, if it already wasn’t specified in the first place.


Either way, the report also relayed another message from Allstate, repeating the fact that it’s ‘highly recommended to keep an active insurance policy to prevent boats and other personal watercraft from potential physical damage (fire, lightning, hail, wind) and potential theft.’


Getting a yearly boat insurance check-up is another thing that’s recommended by Allstate, especially if you’re already insured by a local Florida boat insurance provider.


This pretty much helps boat owners ‘make sure that they have the right coverage for their needs, since a lot of boat owners probably invested a lot into their boat.’ Insurance pretty much protect investments like homes and personal possessions, so it’s always a good idea to check your insurance policy to make sure everything’s covered.


According to the October report, most new boat insurance policies run about $23 per month, though that’s depending on the type of coverage options afforded by many insurance providers.


Research your boat insurance policy


People who are getting started with some type of boat insurance are generally advised to have their local Floridan insurance agent help them research certain information about their watercraft, including the value of their vehicle and even factors like the make and model of such watercraft.


Just knowing the slightest bit of information can help a boat owner understand what type of boat insurance coverage they need, in addition to how much insurance they may need for their vehicle. That’s also not taking into account the importance of keeping your vehicle insured all year, which brings us back to the first point of the entire October boat insurance ‘reminder.’


A yearly boat insurance policy can afford a typical boat owner more coverage options that simply boil down to gaining more protection for their personal possession. It’s especially important if you and your boat are going to be in different places throughout the year, both physically and aesthetically.


Boat owners are rarely in the same predicament that they were at the beginning of the year to the end of the year. That’s why it’s important to approach getting a boat insurance policy with that notion in mind. You’re always not going to be in the same place, so why not get an insurance policy to match that purpose?


So, even though you’re not always going to have the chance to vacation with your boat on a summer day, it’s still a great idea to have insurance coverage there to help your watercraft during the months where you’re not able to have that opportunity.


Boat owners should always ask themselves what they wish to include within their boat insurance policy, especially when they own a high-valued vehicle. If you’re planning on getting a boat insurance policy, you might want to ask yourself questions like:


  • If you’re going to store your boat for most of the year.
  • If you’re just going to use your boat on weekends.
  • If you’re going to store your boat out of the water when not using it.
  • If you plan on outfitting your boat with new equipment.


These questions merely make up some of the things that boat owners should ask themselves before settling for any boat insurance policy. Boat insurance, even if some boat owners find it superfluous at times, is a necessary evil to protect the investment that’s your boat.

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