Boat Insurance Cost

Boat insurance costs are dependent on a number of factors, primarily the type and amount of coverage, the location of your boat, the amount of use, it's size and age, as well as the size of the engine and speeds.

When all these factors come together, a premium is established by your insurance company. Here are the different kinds of insurance, and what each cover:

Agreed Value
One of the most important elements of the policy is your agreed value. Here you will establish a value that you deem to be equivalent to the value of the boat. So, should you assume a total loss catastrophe, much like “totaling” an automobile, you will receive the “agreed value” amount. This amount may, though rarely, total more than the amount of your boat at the time of the signing.

Actual Cash Value
Actual cash value policies are different from agreed value in that the boat owner is covered only to the current value of the vessel at the time of the damage or claim. This kind of insurance should be secondary to “agreed value” policies, since real replacement may cost more than the “actual cash value.” Actual cash value policies, however, are less expensive.

Hull Coverage
Boat owners may opt to purchase hull insurance. This type of insurance covers the whole of the boat, the motor, the electrical pieces, and the boat against any damage.

Liability
Accidents can and do happen. Liability protects you from damage to another boat, person, dock, or marina. Liability insurance should be carried by all boat owners, as determining responsibility for boating accidents can be difficult to verify.

Medical Coverage
Medical coverage is insurance that is carried to cover injuries from a collision, or injuries sustained on the boat.

Environmental
Environmental damages are rare, but the consequences are severe. As more and more localities tighten their belts on the boating community and bring about larger punitive fees for damage done to the environment by boaters, environmental insurance becomes a necessity. This type of insurance will pay your fine should you break the law, or damage the environment with oil or gas spills or any other infraction.

Save On Your Boat Insurance Costs
Many inexperienced shoppers fail to miss a few key components of their policy, most notably the “lay up” time an insurance company expects your boat to be off the water. During this time, your boat experiences little or no risk of loss, damage, or theft, or the risk is pushed to a third-party responsible for proper storage and maintenance of your boat. Check with your insurance company to understand the standard lay up time and look for ways to keep this amount of time consistent with your boating needs.

Length and condition of the boat also affect the boat insurance cost. Longer and older boats are more expensive, and some insurers may require an inspection before an insurance policy is written. If you do happen to own an older boat, it would likely be in your best interest to insure against only injury and liability, since the cost of replacement for your own boat may be very low. Also, higher deductibles will greatly reduce your premiums, and the likelihood that you'll have to bother to get your boat inspected.

Finally, ask about navigational areas and the safety components the insurance prefers. Some boaters will receive discounts for traveling less than a certain distance away from their marina as the insurance company considers these boaters more familiar with their local area to be smaller financial risks. Certain safety features will also reduce your out of pocket premiums including safety vests, automatic fire extinguishers, or GPS tracking devices meant to deter theft.

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