Boat Insurance

Let’s Talk Boat Insurance

Good boat insurance is a kind of insurance that is specifically designed to protect boat owners from the financial consequences of damage and/or injury that can occur while boating. In some cases, like auto insurance coverage, boating insurance is legally required.

Who Needs It

When one contemplates owning a boat, he or she will likely be picturing lovely times on a lake, ocean or other bodies of water with friends and family. While a worst-case scenario is not generally part of the plan, being involved in a boating accident or experiencing the boat being vandalized or stolen means there are issues that could end the enjoyment of your vessel and potentially result in significant financial loss. Buying good boat insurance is a smart way to protect yourself against such perils and risks, and it may even be required in some instances. Boat owners should at least ponder buying coverage for bodily injury and property damage. This includes injuries or deaths that can occur on the boat and that might happen to other related parties too. Liability insurance can pay another party for any damages for which you are at fault while operating your boat. This can cover boat or property damage, medical costs, lost wages and more. Comprehensive insurance is what can pay out for your own costs if your boat is damaged. For each of these and other coverage types offered, the insurance policy will only pay benefits up to one’s coverage limits. You will need to pay any extra expenses. In addition, you may need to pay a deductible for each claim filed.

Policy Details

Boat owners are well advised to learn the details of boat insurance coverage options before signing up for any one policy. For most boat owners, coverage is not designed to be in effect year-round, as a boat is normally less used during the off-season and is likely berthed or out of the water. Additional coverage is also available for any damage that might happen during these off-season times.
Another important aspect to consider is how quickly a boat can depreciate in its monetary value. Just like buying a car, the minute you start your first cruise, the vessel will quickly decrease in its value. This is where an “agreed value” policy can be helpful as it this type of coverage that gives the boat owner the ability to have the boat replaced or to be provided with a lump sum that was previously agreed upon. Market value policies have coverage that is determined by the currently appraised value of the boat, taking into account its depreciation. This can mean a lower payout, but it also can mean lower premiums too.


Boat owners should figure out when and how often they will likely be using their boat when shopping for the right policy. Some coverage will only cover freshwater use while others can be bought to protect vessels that head out beyond the coast and into the open ocean. Owners are greatly helped by researching the many methods for lowering their premium costs. Examples include boating safety courses, installing safety extras like an engine kill-switch, and more. Speak with an insurance professional for more information in finding the best boat insurance coverage that covers both your needs and your budget.