Boat Insurance Tips for First-Time Owners

February 21, 2024 | by admin

Congratulations, you’re a new boat owner! Before you get on the water as a first-time boat owner, you need to consider boat insurance to protect yourself, your passengers, and other boaters.

Your boat should be insured for liability and for damage, similar to how you insure your car.

What does boat insurance cover?

While boat insurance is not mandatory in Canada, it helps cover you financially in the case of accidents and damages.

Boat insurance provides financial protection if your speedboat, sailboat, personal watercraft, or any other type of watercraft is involved in an accident, is damaged, or stolen.

Boat insurance includes liability coverage in case you are responsible for another person's injuries or property damage.

Boat insurance helps protect you should your boat, its motor(s), boating equipment, and accessories are damaged due to collision, theft, and vandalism.

It also helps you in the event that you and your passengers’ apparel, personal items, and sports equipment onboard are damaged or stolen.

Boat insurance also provides coverage in case you injure someone or cause damage to another person’s property or boat while operating another watercraft you have permission to use.

Ask a Western Financial Group marine expert about boat insurance and how it can protect you and your investment.

Can I bundle my boat insurance with my car and home insurance?

Ask your insurance provider if this can be done. Some insurance providers do offer this. Bundling can lead to savings, so ask your Western Financial Group boat insurance expert about the possibility of bundling.

Did you know? Your home insurance policy provides limited coverage for watercraft and often restricts what will be insured based on length and/or horsepower of your boat.

Types of coverage usually included with boat insurance

Property coverage: It covers certain risks such as collision, theft, and vandalism.

Liability coverage: In the event of lawsuits and claims resulting from an accident or incident involving your boat, the recommended coverage is $1 million or even $2 million to protect yourself.

Temporary replacement coverage: It allows you to keep boating with a rental boat while yours is being repaired or replaced.

Actual cash value vs. agreed value coverage

Actual cash coverage covers you for the value of your boat at the time of loss, not when you bought it.

An agreed value policy honours the value of your boat at the time the policy was written.

Did you know your boat insurance policy depends on:

  • Length of watercraft
  • Size of motor
  • Type of motor (inboard / outboard)
  • Type of vessel
  • Use (rental to others/sporting activities)
  • Boat storage - where it is kept when not in use

How to save on your boat insurance

Choose a higher deductible

By choosing a higher deductible, your premium may be lower. When you choose a higher deductible, you will be covering more of a loss yourself should there be an accident or incident. Make sure you understand the implications of a higher deductible.

Stay claims-free

One of the best ways to minimize premiums is to maximize available discounts for remaining claims-free.

Install safety features

Investing in safety features for your boat not only enhances your security on the water, but it can also reduce insurance costs. Consider adding features such as GPS navigation, anti-theft devices, and fire extinguishers. Safety enhancements demonstrate your commitment to lowering your risk.

Join boating associations

Some boating associations offer membership benefits, including access to group insurance programs with discounted rates.

Choose the right boat

Before buying your boat, consider the insurance costs. Smaller boats with lower values often come with lower premiums. The type of boat, its age, and its safety features can all impact insurance rates.

For more information on what boat insurance includes, you can refer to Western Financial Group’s: What Does Boat Insurance Include and Do You Need It in Canada

Western Financial Group offers a complete set of insurance products and solutions through our licensed sales brokers who are located across Canada. Car, home, many types of recreational vehicles and commercial/business insurance are available.

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