What Is Boat Insurance And Why Is It Important
Boat insurance is primarily designed to cover boats that have motors or sails. A new boat can cost tens of thousands of dollars, so for many, this coverage is well worth the investment.
The US Coast Guard reports that Texas boaters are involved in an average of 203 accident a year. In fact, in one recent year, boating accidents in this state resulted in 173 injuries, 59 deaths, and $2.2 million worth of property damage. Thats a lot of expensive losses for uninsured boaters in the Lone Star state.
Care & Protection Of Your Craft
When Is Proof Of Insurance Required
Even though most states dont legally require you to carry boat insurance, other situations may require proof of insurance for your watercraft.
Docking your boat at a marina
If you plan on docking your boat at a marina, many will require you to show proof of insurance before signing the contract. That being so, make sure to read the fine print and understand the requirements before proceeding with any contractual agreement.
For example, marinas such as the Charleston City Marina in South Carolina and the Kemah Boardwalk Marina in Kemah, Texas require docked boats to have liability insurance of at least $300,000.
Marinas like Brickyard Cove in Pt. Richmond, CA require an endorsement on your policy as additional interest or additional insured to avoid claims of negligence.
Harbors will carry their own liability insurance so they can protect claims where they may be at fault.
Financing your boat purchase
If you have financed your boat, your bank may require you to carry boat insurance. If the bank is using the boat as collateral for the loan, they will require you to list them as payee for loss or damage of the boat.
Unlike home and auto coverage, some policies dont require you to carry year-round coverage. But if you have financed your boat, your lender will most likely ask you to carry coverage even when the boat is stored. Your vessel may still be exposed to risks, such as theft and storm damage, while in storage.
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Who Must Be Certified To Operate A Vessel Alone
In Texas a person cannot operate a windblown vessel over 14 feet in length, a motorboat with more than 15 horsepower, or personal watercraft unless he/she:
- was born on or after September 1, 1993 and has passed a boater education class or equivalency examination prescribed by the department.
- is 18 years of age and can lawfully operate the motorboat and is on board the motor boat when underway.
- is at least 13 years of age and have successfully completed a boater education course approved by the Department.
What Does Texas Boat Insurance Cover
Boat insurance policies can vary from one provider to the next. Some of the coverage that may come standard with one policy may be optional with another.
Most boat insurance providers in Texas will offer some or all of the following types of coverage.
It is a good idea to review all your policy options when deciding which are a good fit for you and your family.
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Who Offers The Best Boat Insurance Rates
Many insurance companies offer competitive boat insurance rates. Shop around to make sure you are getting the information you need to make an informed decision. Sites like allthingsboat.com and consumeraffairs.com provide reviews for many different insurance companies and are great places to begin your research. Speak with other boaters find out what features are important to them and why. Do your homework by researching different companiesâ offerings and you will be prepared to make the best decision for your needs.
Should I Insure My Boat During The Off
Even if youâre not using your boat during the winter months, you should still maintain the insurance policy. With this coverage, you can be protected against losses from damages that occur when your vessel is in storageâsuch as those caused by theft, vandalism, or fire. During these months, you may qualify for a lower premium due to non-use.
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Best For Policy Bundling: Nationwide
- No. of Policy Types: 4
- Coverage Limit: Varies
Nationwide is a well-known insurance provider that offers several packages to choose from and offers bundling discounts.
Multiple packages to choose from
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If you are already a Nationwide policyholder, then you may be eligible for the multi-policy discount offered through Nationwide Insurance, which gives you a discount for combining your home, boat, vehicle or life insurance policies. A few perks of this policy include optional towing and rental reimbursement coverage, as well as roadside assistance when you insure your boat trailer.
Several options are available for boat insurance with a variety of package options. You can get coverage for fishing equipment from $1,000 to $10,000, personal effects from $3,000 to $5,000 and towing coverage from $500 to $2,500. Other discounts include multi-boat, boater safety course, diesel fuel, paid-in-full discount, and a claims-free renewal discount that goes into effect for the policy renewal period if you have remained claims-free for the entire policy period. Nationwide also has a rewards program through a partnership with Plenti, which allows customers to earn points that can be applied as discounts at certain stores.
Actual Cash Value Vs Agreed Amount Value
For physical loss or damage, coverage includes the hull, machinery, fittings, furnishings, and permanently attached equipment as part of either an actual cash value policy or on an agreed amount value basis. These policies also provide broader protection than a homeowners policy, but there are distinct differences between the two types of policies.
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Does Texas Require You To Insure Your Boat
Unlike car insurance, boat insurance is not required by the state of Texas, so you do not need to have insurance to register your boat.
It is possible, however, that you may need to carry coverage in order to dock your boat at certain marinas, and lenders may require it if you have financed the your boat and are still paying on the loan.
Texas Discount Boat Insurance
ABC insurance Services offers a wide range of coverage options and discounts on boat insurance in Texas. If you already have insurance on your Texas boat, now is the time to consider looking at better coverage and cheaper prices. If you are shopping for a new boat, we would be glad to give you a quote even if you havent signed the paperwork yet.
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Boat & Marine Insurance
Boat or Marine insurance is available for:
- small boats
Boat policies can cover damages to your boat, motor, trailer, and personal effects in the boat. Available coverage includes liability, medical payments, injury to a water skier, and damages to the boat itself .
Availability varies by state and by individual insurance company. Even though boat insurance premiums are low, shopping your rate can save a substantial amount of money.
What Types Of Boats Are Insured
Typically, most types of boats and watercraft are insurable in Texas, such as fishing boats, pontoon boats, paddle boats, leisure crafts, jet skis, and yachts. Basically, you can ensure a watercraft if it has a motor, but canoes or kayaks without motors are not considered boats for insurance purposes.
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Do I Need A Boating License In Texas
Yes, but only if you were born on or after September 1, 1993. If this is the case, then you need a boating license in Texas to operate certain types of vessels. These vessels include:
- A powerboat that contains a motor of more than 15 horsepower
- A windblown vessel, such as a sailboat, that is more than 14 feet in length
- A personal watercraft , such as a jet ski
Texas Boating License Age
In Texas, in order to operate a motorboat, a windblown vessel or a PWC, an operator must meet the following requirements:
- The operator is at least 13 years of age and
- The operator has passed a safety course approved by the Texas Parks and Wildlife .
If the operator is younger than 13 years of age, he or she may only operate the vessel if:
- The operator is supervised by an adult at least 18 years of age and
- The supervisor has passed a safety course approved by the TPWD and
- The supervisor in on the vessel while it is underway.
Is Boat Insurance Required In Texas
No, Texas does not have a law that requires boaters to carry minimum levels of boat insurance. That being said, it is very strongly recommended that you do not own a boat without boat insurance. The purpose of boat insurance is to protect you financially from the challenges that come with owning a boat. Boat Insurance can help with injuries that occur on the boat or harm that can happen from the off-season. Boat safety and prevention is the most important thing you can do to reduce your risk of an accident, but they do happen. With the right boat insurance coverage, you can rest assured youre protected in any event when it matters most.
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How To Buy Boat Insurance
Selecting the right coverage for your boat policy is crucial, but its also just as important to select the right insurance provider to cover your boat insurance. At TGS Insurance, our team will shop your policy with top-rated carriers, and then explain to you the different boat insurance policies you can pick from that are best for your lifestyle and budget.
Shopping for boat insurance is easy at TGS Insurance and our team will ensure a smooth-sailing process from start to finish.
What Should I Consider When Looking For Boat Insurance
From the marinas at Corpus Christi to the shore of Lake Texoma, boat owners are all over Texas and are faced with a variety of insurance options. There is a lot to keep in mind when looking for the right policy for your needs. Some things that you should consider are:
- We live in Texas! Hail is always with us. Does your policy adequately cover damages as a result of hail?
- Oh my! What about all those tornados? Do I have coverage for that?
- Is my fishing equipment, navigation gear, etc., covered on my fast moving bass boat?
- Are my electronics covered if there is a lightning strike?
- If I am in the Gulf, are there navigation limits in my policy that I must be aware of?
- Does my current homeowners policy provide any coverage for my boat?
- Do I have to be a resident of the state in order to get coverage?
- Do I motor in a High speed or go-fast boat that needs special underwriting?
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What Is The Best Type Of Boat Insurance
The best type of boat insurance is insurance coverage that adequately meets your legal and contractual obligations and allows you to feel comfortable about your exposure to risk. Because each individual situation is different, it is important that you determine what coverage factors matter most to you and your family. Spend time researching your options and speak with multiple insurance brokers or agencies. Allthingsboat.com has an excellent review of boat insurance providers.
Actual Cash Value Policy
Actual cash value policies pay for replacement costs, with less depreciation at the time of the loss. In the event of a total loss, used boat pricing guides and other resources are used to determine the vessels approximate market value. Partial losses are settled by taking the total cost of the repair less a percentage for depreciation.
Boat Insurance Coverage In Texas
Did you know that some boat insurance companies provide limited coverage for property damage for small boats, such as canoes and small sailboats or small powerboats with less than 25 mile per hour horsepower, under a homeowners or renters insurance policy if they are located on your property?
Coverage can be $1,000 and can include such things as the boat, motor, and trailer combined. Liability coverage is typically not included, but it may be added as an endorsement to a homeowners policy. At Costlow Insurance, we want to help you stay informed and educated about your boat insurance options and what limits of coverage there may be.
What Kind Of Boat Insurance Do I Need
Like many other insurance policies, boat insurance can typically be separated into a few types: liability, uninsured motorist, and collision/comprehensive coverages.
Liability insurance is the minimum standard required by most states, banks, and marinas. The boat insurance professionals at trustedchoice.com recommend buying at least $1,000,000 in liability insurance. The recommended amount of liability coverage can be even higher if you have a fast, powerful boat that is both riskier and can cause more damage.
With uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, the standard minimum is $10,000. Ensure that you take into account any potential injuries and damages you may need to cover if you or one of your passengers is injured or your vessel is badly damaged.
The last type of boat insurance we will cover is collision coverage and comprehensive coverage. These types of coverages should be based specifically on the value of your boat. Check with your lender or your marina to see if there are insurance policies in place.
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What Does Boat Insurance Typically Cover
Boat insurance coverage will depend on what type of boat you have, what insurance provider you use, and what coverage youre willing to pay for. General boat insurance typically covers physical damage to your boat, as long as none of the restrictions of the policy were violated, and liability coverage for damage to other property caused by you while operating your boat. You can add additional coverage types, such as medical payment for injuries you sustain while on the boat.
Care & Protection Of Crew And Guests
Skippers can obtain free advice and boating-safety courses from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. Upon request, the auxiliary will conduct a Courtesy Marine Examination on your boat, checking electrical and safety equipment and fuel hoses. Boats meeting safety standards are awarded the CME decal Seal of Safety.
Insurance You Can Count On
Disclaimer: Content and illustrations represented and provided here-in are for informational purposes only. This information should not be misconstrued to be considered Insurance or Binder Coverage for Insurance. Always consult a licensed insurance agent in the state of Texas for specific insurance coverage types and needs analysis as insurance policies in Texas vary.
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Liability Protection And More
In addition to the coverage options related to property damage and theft, SkiSafe also offers customers in Texas protection with a variety of other types of coverage:
- Towing and Roadside Assistance: Not all boating accidents happen on the water. Unfortunately, auto insurance wont protect your boat while youre towing it. SkiSafe provides coverage for your boat whether its being towed on the water or on the road.
- Bodily Injury and Property Damage Liability: We can protect you against liability for bodily injury or property damage related to your boat ownership. SkiSafe also pays any legal expenses related to your defense. Such expenses will not reduce the liability available under your policy.
- Medical Payments: Boater safety is a priority for SkiSafe. Thats why our policies cover no-fault medical payments for injuries up to $25,000.