It is officially spring, which means sunnier days cruising down the serene river. As the temperature starts to creep upward, it will become more tempting to haul your boat out of storage and devote your days to the refreshing water. But before setting sail, you are going to want to protect that expensive investment with boat insurance.
Purchasing a policy can be confusing and is frequently an afterthought. But obtaining coverage should remain a priority to prevent a fun-filled day from turning into a havoc-wreaking disaster.
Florida Mandate on Boat Insurance
Florida does not mandate boat insurance. However, if you are financing the watercraft, the lender will require comprehensive and collision coverage. Additionally, if docking the boat, the marina may ask you to show proof of liability coverage.
Limited Coverage with a Homeowner’s Policy
Most insurance carriers provide limited coverage through your homeowner’s insurance for property damage on small vessels such as canoes, kayaks, or powerboats with less than 25 miles per hour horsepower. It typically includes the watercraft, motor and trailer combined.
If your larger watercraft uses a motor, you will most likely require a separate boat insurance policy that offers broader liability protection. Provided a boating mishap occurs, it typically covers fire, theft, bodily injury, property damage, and medical payments.
Supplementary coverage can always be picked up from personal property coverage on the homeowner’s policy, even if the watercraft has a separate insurance policy. However, additional deductibles typically apply.
Additional Boat Coverage for Certain Losses
Unfortunately, it can be expensive to fix your watercraft if something goes amiss or the boat does not stay afloat. Depending on your vessel, accessories, and equipment, you may want increased coverage for certain losses. Luckily, you can expand your boat coverage based on your needs to include reasonable repairs, emergency services, wreck removal, and umbrella liability.
Save Money on Boat Insurance
Insurance carriers have long offered discounts to boat owners who take certain safety precautions. Therefore, it is possible to lower your rates and save money.
First, the type of watercraft and safeguards on board will influence your insurance premiums. Therefore, be specific with the year, model, and safety equipment to get the most accurate quote.
Second, bundling your insurance is always one of the smartest decisions to save money on your policies. Insurance carriers will usually offer discounts if you bundle home, auto, and boat.
Third, you can use diesel fuel and supply the boat with a fire extinguisher, ship-to-shore radio, or wireless auto tether to mitigate your risk. Additionally, your insurance carrier may offer a discount for completing a state-run, approved safety course through the Coast Guard or Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Know the Nautical Rules of the Road
Just like on the road, mishaps can happen on the water. With thousands of recreational boating accidents per year, the best way to ensure an accident-free event and claims-free experience is to follow all safety precautions.
No matter how much boating experience you have, it is always a good idea to review traffic laws and safety practices before leaving the dock. Furthermore, properly equip your vessel with life jackets, flares, flashlights, a radio, a fire extinguisher, a first-aid kit, and water.
DRS Insurance Group Can Help
When chartering your watercraft for a spin on the water, you must ensure protection against any potential damages or losses that could arise. To learn more or obtain a free quote, contact our insurance agents today. The result is more comprehensive coverage and peace of mind.
Looking for a better Boat Insurance Policy? Get a Quote through DRS Insurance Group.
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DRS Insurance Group is an independent insurance agency located in Indialantic, Florida. Our team is here to help you with a quote, analyze your current coverage, and answer any questions you have.