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Is my boat covered by my home insurance?

Home Insurance

By Anne Valentino | February 16, 2018

Whether you use your boat for fishing, water sports, or general recreation, it’s important to have it properly insured. This can help you repair or replace your boat if it’s damaged. It can also cover your liability if your boat causes injury or property damage in an accident.

Some people may assume their boat is automatically covered under their home insurance policy but this is not the case. When you purchase a boat, you have two options for insurance:

  1. Add it to your home insurance policy.
  2. Purchase a separate boat insurance policy.

We’ll discuss the pros and cons of both in this article.

Insuring Your Boat with Home Insurance

Some home insurance companies allow you to add your boat to your home insurance policy. You will still need to notify your insurer and answer some questions about your boat, how you’ll be using it and where you’ll be keeping it.

The pros of adding your boat to your home insurance are that it’s pretty easy to do and easier to keep track of your insurance. For less expensive boats, the coverage can be perfectly adequate.

The cons of adding your boat to your home insurance include:

  • Your insurer may not allow you to add your boat (they don’t offer that coverage or your boat doesn’t qualify).
  • The coverage offered may not be adequate for the value of your boat.
  • The coverage is usually more limited than a separate boat insurance policy.
  • There may be rules on where you can store your boat and where you use it.
  • When you make a claim on your boat, you’re making a claim on your home insurance.

Insuring Your Boat with a Separate Policy

You can also insure your boat through a separate boat insurance policy. This is a great option if your home insurer doesn’t offer boat coverage or your boat doesn’t qualify. It’s also a good idea if you’re looking for more comprehensive coverage or if you plan to take your boat outside of the province or to the ocean.

How do I find out if my boat is covered?

First, you want to talk to your broker or insurance company about your boat. They’ll advise if they can cover it or your broker may suggest separate boat insurance, depending on your situation.

It’s important to understand what damage and liability are covered. Read your policy documents or talk to your broker.

Will I have enough coverage under my current home insurance?

If you do add your boat to your home insurance, you’ll want to make sure you have enough coverage. The first thing to look at is that the coverage is adequate to replace the boat and its equipment. If not, you may want to purchase a separate boat insurance policy.

Next, you should make sure you’re covered for where, when and how you plan to use the boat. Some insurers won’t insure you if you take your boat to the ocean, for example.

Finally, you’ll want to check your liability coverage. You want to be covered if you’re involved in a boating accident or if your boat on its trailer rolls into the street and damages someone’s vehicle.

Your broker can help you evaluate if your home insurance offers enough protection for your boat.

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