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Intro:
Owning your own watercraft is a satisfying yet often costly investment. Therefore, you may want to purchase boat insurance for your own investment protection. The idea of going into trouble with your boat seems to be very much unlikely. Still, the sad reality of life is that mistakes happen, and accidents occur. So really, we should think about keeping and protecting a boat the same way we do for a car. That is why it is essential to have all your boats covered with boat insurance. Boat insurance is a policy contract that provides financial protection for the loss or damage of your marine vessel, regardless of whether it is on land or water and liability while operating it. The policy only provides protection provided the loss or damage meets the coverage limit, peril clause, and other exceptions included in the policy agreement. Get an online insurance quote for boat insurance today.



Boat insurance aids in covering your losses during an accident when injuries and property damage occurs, depending on the type of policy you purchase. Your homeowner's insurance may already have most small boats cover under specific circumstances and with limitations. However, other kinds of marine equipment or vessel needs actual boat insurance; you have choices regarding your deductible prices and liability limits on these.

Assuming you live in Canada and you're among those fortunate enough to have your own watercraft, you know that it's a satisfying yet often costly investment. Therefore, you may want to purchase boat insurance for your own investment protection. The idea of going into trouble with your boat seems to be very much unlikely. Still, the sad reality of life is that mistakes happen, and accidents occur. So really, we should think about keeping and protecting a boat the same way we do for a car. That is why it is essential to have all your boats covered

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What is boat insurance?

It is a policy contract that provides financial protection for the loss or damage of your marine vessel, regardless of whether it is on land or water and liability while operating it. The policy only provides protection provided the loss or damage meets the coverage limit, peril clause, and other exceptions included in the policy agreement. A Peril is the cause of loss, and the peril clause is the policy coverage based on the type of peril. However, for insurance, the types of perils considered are accidents resulting from weather-related incidents, collisions with other marine vessels or boats, submerged objects, fire, theft, and vandalism.  

Coverages included

The boat insurance may cover the following:

  • Replacement or repair: If damaged or completely wrecked due to the perils mentioned above, your insurance will pay for the expenses incurred for repairing or replacing it with a new one. The repair or replacement also includes the machinery, hull, or anything permanently attached to the boat. For instance, insurance will cover repair expenses of the broken parts if damaged due to an accident, provided the type of peril is included in the peril clause. 
  • Medical bills: Whether you were injured alone or with another person on your boat, the insurance will cover the medical expenses incurred. For example, because of a tide change, your passenger broke his arm while trying to support himself when falling to the ground. In such a scenario, the insurance will pay for the expense incurred for the treatment. It covers the third party because it features a protection and indemnity section that covers your legal obligations to the third party Liability.
  • The physical damage section of the policy includes protection and indemnity cover for damage or loss of your personal property and third-party belongings. If thieves vandalized your boat while in the process, your passengers' luggage was damaged. The liability coverage will pay for the damages.
  • Underinsured watercraft 
  • Cover the injuries caused by other watercraft that are either underinsured or not insured. For instance, while operating your watercraft and colliding with an underinsured or uninsured watercraft, the insurance will pay for the injuries or expenses incurred for treatment.    

Coverages not included

Your boat insurance will not cover if the damage or loss is due to the following reasons:

  • Damage or loss happened when you sailed off the limited waters or out of the geographic region. Therefore, it would help to know or inquire about the insurance navigation limit. This is due to the farther you sail, the more risks it becomes.
  • Inappropriate use of the watercraft. Your policy will not cover damages or loss if you use it for competition races because they are considered intentional risks.
  • Poor maintenance: Poor maintenance increases the risk of your boat prone to accident, sinking due to waterlogging, spillage and infestation of insects, animals, molds and waterlog. Moreover, poor maintenance also makes parts of the sailboat like the engine, hull, and anchor faulty. Therefore, if loss or damage results from poor maintenance, insurance will not cover the expenses incurred to replace or repair it. 
  • Damages or losses incurred due to the deterioration of your boat will also not be covered. Therefore, it is your responsibility to maintain your watercraft to avoid inconvenience when the need arises.
  • If multiple boats were involved in an accident, but the person sailing it was not included in the policy contract, insurance would not cover it.
  • The owner was sailing under the influence of substances. Alcohol, marijuana, or cocaine resulting in the accident are likely to decline in a claim.

 

Types of boat insurance

There can be many types of insurance choices. It should be based on coverage that meets your comfort, legal, and contractual obligations and risks exposure. Below are types of insurance a watercraft owner may settle for:

Third-party insurance

This type of insurance policy provides financial coverage for any loss or damages to another individual's watercraft. 

Marine hull and Liability insurance 

This insurance covers loss or damage to the vessel and liability and includes third-party cover. However, this type of insurance is recommendable for commercial vessels because it provides comprehensive coverage. 

Homeowner watercraft storage insurance

This type of insurance provides coverage for loss or damage of your boat while at home, but not in marine waters.

Cost of Boat Insurance

Boat insurance might cost you at least $300 or less than $1000 on the higher end per annum. However, this depends on several factors that might make its price increase. These factors include:

Type and the size of the watercraft

Depending on the type and model standard and size, it may attract higher or lower premium rates. 

Purpose of the boat

The watercraft's purpose may directly impact the premium because of the risks related to its purpose.

Navigation or sailing geographical limit 

Distance

The further the distance you cover from the land, the risks also increase, thereby attracting higher premium rates.

Sail experience

Your sailing experience also deters the cost of boat insurance. For instance, the insurance cost tends to be higher if a teen drives the watercraft than an adult because of the risks involved in an individual's sailing experience. 

Claim history, driving record, and credit score

Your claim history, driving record and credit score may negatively or positively impact the cost of your boat insurance.

  Information needed for application 

Before signing up for an insurance policy, you should be aware of the vital details that will be required about you and the boat you intend to insure. The significance of having detailed information about you and your boat is to help the insurer decide whether you are qualified for the policy or not. They include the following: 

  • Value of the watercraft
  • Age of the watercraft
  • Mileage covered and the horsepower
  • Serial number
  • Intended use or purpose 
  • Condition of the watercraft. This is essential to determine whether it meets the standard regulations
  • Type of water the watercraft will operate on
  • The size 
  • Type and the model
  • The owner's residence address and where will it be stored when not in operation
  • Ownership documents and whether it is privately owned by an individual or more
  • Marine sailing license
  Risk factors 

Travelling on the water is much riskier than on land, and many boating disasters are primarily contributed by the following factors.

  • Failure to adhere to the marine rules and regulations.
  • Operating under the influence of substance abuse, like alcohol and more.
  • Careless and overspeeding.
  • Driving experience.
  • Weather-related issues like tornadoes, windstorms, and many more.

 Always safety First

To ensure everyone's safety while sailing on the water, it would help if you employ the following tips and make them your rule of thumb. They include: 

  • Wear a safety jacket and also consider having extra or plenty of them for other passengers
  • Ensure you install a fire extinguisher on your boat and put it in a place that is easy to access and visible for emergency use
  • Always carry a first aid kit with you, tool kit, navigation lights, flashlight, radio and fresh water supply. All these tools are essential when an emergency arises.
  • Before heading to the sea, always tell or let someone know where you are headed and when to expect you. Letting someone know your whereabouts will help rescue efforts if an emergency arises.
  • Do not overload the boat and secure the load. All the cargo and passengers are evenly distributed. For smaller watercraft, passengers should not stand up and avoid shifting their position suddenly because of increased risks of capsizing.
  • Adhere to the distress signal from the other boating signals and ensure you follow the marine traffic rules and regulations.
  • While sailing on shallow water, be careful and avoid high speed and high speed because of underwater objects near the surface.
  • If you are drunk or under any influence, you should refrain from operating the vessel because of impaired judgement.

Always confirm the following before sailing:

    • weather condition 
    • engine oil and its condition, 
    • fuel tank level or gauge reading, 
    • exhaust system if it has a leak and 
    • Your boat's steering system. This is significant because it helps decide if the weather and the boat condition are safe for sailing.

Additional/extra coverage

Besides providing basic coverage for medical expenses, liability, underinsured boats, repairs and replacement of your boat, you may sign up for more premiums for comprehensive coverage. This additional coverage includes:

Emergency towing

For instance, if you had an accident, mechanical failure, or fuel shortage while on the sea, your boat insurance will pay for the cost incurred for emergency towing.

Legal protection

 Did you know that spilling fuel or sailing under the influence is illegal? It also attracts a huge penalty. Therefore, you should subscribe to legal protection premiums to cover you if such incidents arise for such an incident.

Spillage cleaning

Your boat might spill fuel on water due to a faulty fuel tank or accident. Therefore, the insurer will cover the expenses used for cleaning the spillage on the water.

Transportation of wreckages

Many boat insurance covers the expenses of transporting broken or damaged ship wreckage from the sea to the land. However, this varies across individual insurers. Hence you should confirm if it is included in the policy.

Fishing Equipment

The basic insurance excludes replacement or repair of fishing boat equipment upon damage or loss within your boat because they are not permanent attachments of the vessel. Therefore, before signing up for a policy, you should inquire if the insurer covers fishing equipment. 

 

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Standard Sailboats, Power Cruisers and Yachts Package

Our product comes with some exclusive coverage features not seen in other. 
(Alternative platinum package for newer vessels over half a million, please refer)

• All Risk, Replacement cost basis for partial losses on vessels 15 years and  newer (ACV / depreciation thereafter)
• A separate Additional $1 million limit for pollution / spill liability included
• Consequential Property Damage Protection –  affords coverage for basic marine perils regardless of cause, even wear & tear.
• Vermin & Marine life damage is covered
• Freezing damage covered where appropriate precautions taken
• Uninsured Boaters coverage
• Emergency Towing
• Permission granted to sign standard hold harmless agreements for moorage and storage
• Medical Payments and Accidental Death Benefits coverage
• Lower deductible for tender, electronic equipment and personal effects
• Deductible waived if damage caused by a liable third party
• Extended navigation (Caribbean, Mexico, etc.) available by request 

Conclusion  

Instead of insuring your boat with a homeowner insurance policy, you should opt for a marine insurance policy that offers comprehensive cover that will satisfy your needs. However, you should consider many options provided by individual insurers to find the best comfortable and versatile for you because premium services carry with individual insurers.