Insurance surrounding boats can be confusing. Are boats covered under home insurance? Is boat insurance legally required? What about trailers for boats? When looking to purchase or transport a boat, it’s important to understand the insurance designed to protect it.
First, some boats are covered under home insurance. This insurance has strict monetary limits, however, and likely won’t help with large or expensive water vehicles. While boat insurance isn’t typically state required, it’s crucial to have in case of an accident. The same goes for a trailer. A trailer may be covered under your auto insurance policy, but this insurance isn’t legally required.
Does Boat Insurance Cover Trailers?
You’ll need a specialized trailer in order to transport your boat. There are different options when it comes to insuring your boat trailer. Some auto insurance policies cover damage or injury caused by trailers being pulled by the insured vehicle. Again, however, this coverage is limited. You may also add coverage for your boat trailer to your boat insurance policy.
Boat trailer insurance covers:
- Liability: Liability refers to bodily injury and property damage you may cause with the trailer. This insurance can help with the victim’s medical expenses as well as legal fees should the victim decide to sue.
- Physical Damage: Boat trailer insurance can also cover physical damage to the boat that occurs from fire, wind, hail, collision, theft, vandalism and more. This insurance applies wherever the trailer is stored, so long as it is reasonably covered.
Your boat insurance policy should cover damage to your boat whether it’s in the water or in transport across land. To cover the trailer, you may need to purchase separate coverage for it and your boat’s other accessories. Certain boat accessories are not covered under a basic boat insurance policy or a home insurance policy.
Does it Cost More to Insure a Trailer?
Whether you’re adding a separate boat trailer insurance policy or adding a boat trailer to your auto insurance policy, you will most likely pay a little more for the extra coverage. If you frequently transport and store the trailer, however, this coverage is well worth it. You can save money by bundling some of your insurance policies, especially if you have multiple policies with the same agency. A basic boat insurance policy costs between $300 and $500 on average, depending on your location, credit score and the value of the insured boat. Vessels with specialized equipment or speed modifications may cost more to insure.
Expanding Your Coverage
There are ways to upgrade your insurance if you find that you need more coverage. Umbrella liability insurance covers the gap leftover by your other liability insurance policies. This policy is useful because it can apply to any of your other liability insurances. For example, if you cause a car wreck and owe damages of $15,000 but your policy only covers $10,000, umbrella liability will step in to cover the remaining $5,000. It can also apply to liability related to your boat trailer and personal liability associated with your home insurance policy.
Do You Need Boat Trailer Insurance?
Since trailers are generally covered under auto insurance, many people choose not to insure their boat trailer. This could leave you open to huge financial loss in case of an accident, however. Auto insurance only provides limited coverage for trailers and may not cover all of the danger your boat trailer faces. Make sure to speak with your insurance agent about whether your auto insurance policy covers your boat trailer and how much coverage it provides before deciding on a policy.