The Howdy Blog

Al Boenker Insurance Blog

Summer in Texas is the perfect time to take to the lakes and enjoy sunny weekends on a boat. However, not having the right boat insurance could make you want to jump overboard, rather than enjoy the day on the waves. Whether you enjoy water sports or drifting along with the warm summer breezes, these boat insurance frequently asked questions (FAQs) can ensure your summer is smooth sailing.
  1. What are the different types of boat insurance coverage options?
Generally, boat insurance is broken down by the size of the boat. Small boats are considered 29' or smaller while large boats are bigger than 29'. However, any boat over 26' is considered a yacht and requires yacht coverage, which includes more expansive coverage as yachts and larger boats typically travel farther and carry unique attributes.

 

Small boats can typically benefit best from all risk coverage, which includes everything except what is explicitly excluded in the policy, like marring, animal damage, wear and tear, denting, scratching, etc.

Yacht coverage for large boats and yachts includes hull insurance, which is broad and considered all risk direct coverage with exclusions similar to those listed above for small boats. Yacht policies include an agreed upon replacement cost in the event of complete destruction of the vessel. Yacht coverage may also include protection and indemnity insurance-broad liability coverage that can be tailored to maritime law based on location. Harborworkers and Longshoreman's coverage and Jones Act (crew) coverage should also be considered to cover losses that are not covered under other policies.
  1. How much should I insure my boat for?
Generally, we recommend insuring your boat for the value of what it would cost to replace your boat. This amount is often referred to as the Stated Value or Agreed Value. You do not want to insure your boat for the Actual Cash Value as that will be reduced by depreciation over the years.

 
  1. Can other people drive my boat under my boat insurance policy?
In most cases, anyone can drive your boat. However, it's important to note that having more people drive your boat may increase your boat insurance premiums.

 
  1. Do I have to insure my boat year-round even if I only use it in the summer?
Most insurance companies require annual coverage; however, you can often benefit from a layup discount for the months your boat is in storage. Ask your boat insurance agent about the layup discount.
  1. Do boat coverage policies have deductibles?
Small boat insurance policies generally have standard deductibles while yacht coverage policies have deductibles that are a percentage of the insured value (i.e. if your coverage is for $200,000, a 1% deductible would be $2,000).

Learn more about boat insurance coverage here.