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The ESSENTIAL Questions to Ask About Your Boat Insurance

Boat season is here and we're ready to get you on the water. Whether you're getting the wakeboard to the lake, meandering down the river casting your reel or opening the sails on the ocean blue, you're the captain of your own boat. Before you can get out there though, you need to protect your investments. Getting the right insurance coverage to protect your investment in your boat, the engine, maybe a trailer and other equipment, is essential.

Here are the ESSENTIAL questions about watercraft insurance to ask us at Time Insurance Agency to ensure smooth sailing this Spring and Summer.

  1. Agreed value or actual cash value? This may be the most important distinction you'll see as you consider your insurance options. Under agreed value, your insurer, in the case of a total loss, will cover the total value you agreed upon when you insured your vessel. Cash value, on the other hand, takes into account depreciation, and the effects of wear and tear over time to help determine a total loss payout.

  2. What about standard coverages? Liability insurance for your boat helps cover medical care and property costs for other boaters and boat owners if you are at fault for an accident on the water. You might also consider medical payments coverage that includes you and your passengers regardless of who is at fault, and uninsured/underinsured coverage, which helps pay for medical treatment, lost wages, and other costs if you are hit by an uninsured or underinsured boater. Be sure you have protection against financial loss if your boat is stolen, on or off the water.

  3. Can I get a discount for using my current insurer? Insurance carriers often reward customers for insuring multiple assets with them. If you already have a home and auto policy with one carrier, adding a boat policy may earn you a discount.

  4. What other discounts are available? One of the most commonly offered discounts, and one of the most worthwhile in its own right, offers savings for completing an approved safe boating course. Another potential discount is for vessels powered by diesel engines. They're considered less hazardous than gasoline engines.

  5. What's my coastline coverage? Your watercraft policy may include restrictions on open ocean boating, such as limiting your coverage area to within 75 miles of the U.S. and Canadian coasts. If an incident occurs outside your coverage area, your policy will not assist you. If needed, you may be able to purchase additional coverage.

  6. How can I protect my gear? There are several levels of protection you can look for: personal effects coverage for personal property such as fishing gear; unattached equipment coverage for such items as water skis and deck chairs; and physical damage coverage that could encompass personal effects, unattached equipment and more. It's important to know how much all of your equipment is worth so you can purchase enough coverage.

If you bring these big hitter questions with you to discuss your coverage, you'll be in good shape. The more questions you ask, the better you can understand your watercraft insurance policy. Our team of expert agents can steer you in the right direction and help ensure you have the protection you really need. Give us a call today if you have any questions about your boat insurance.


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