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Boat insurance myths

Apr 10, 2007
 
You may not have ever thought of it, but apparently many boatowners labor under certain boat insurance myths. This is according to a recent survey of 1,000 boatowners undertaken by Progressive Insurance.

Here’s a sample of Progressive’s survey findings — along with the facts behind each as provided by Progressive.

Myth: The entire country is paying higher boat insurance premiums because of hurricane damage.

Survey Says: Nearly three-quarters of boaters surveyed (74 percent) mistakenly believe that everyone is paying higher premiums as a result of the damage caused by recent hurricanes.

Fact: Some boat insurers (including Progressive) price policies based only on claims experienced in each state individually – for example, Ohio customers won’t pay more for their insurance due to the hurricanes in Florida.

Myth: My boat insurance covers me anywhere I decide to use my boat.

Survey Says: More than three-quarters of boaters surveyed (76 percent) mistakenly believe their boat insurance will cover them anywhere they decide to go boating in the continental U.S.

Fact: Some insurance companies only provide coverage on the body or bodies of water where the boat is most frequently used or they limit coverage to within 100 nautical miles of a pre-determined home port. Others, like Progressive, provide insurance coverage virtually anywhere you decide to go boating within the continental U.S. and Canada.

“Our survey shows that many boaters aren’t aware of insurance coverage limitations, especially when it comes to location,” said Dominic Mediate, boat product manager, Progressive. “Some boat insurers define navigation limits on a policy, so it’s important for all boaters to clarify this with their insurance companies, especially before they go on any long trips.”

Myth: If I bundle my insurance policies, I’ll always get a cheaper boat insurance rate.

Survey Says: Nearly half of boaters surveyed (45 percent) mistakenly believe they will always get a better boat insurance rate if they buy their policy from the same company that insures their home, car, etc.

Fact: Just because a boater buys more than one product from the same insurance company doesn’t always mean they are getting the best rate available. In many cases there are savings to be had by shopping around and combining policies from different “best-in-class” insurance companies.

Myth: If I add my boat to my homeowners policy I will get the same protection that I would if I purchase a stand-alone boat insurance policy.

Survey Says: One-third of boaters surveyed (33 percent) mistakenly believe they would be covered in specific boating related claims situations by adding their boat as an endorsement on their homeowners policy - meaning the boat has been listed as an asset, the same way someone would add jewelry or other personal items.

Fact: A boat is a big investment for most people and, the fact is, there’s a lot of protection available to boaters from specialty boat insurers that a boater can’t get with a standard homeowners policy endorsement.

“A day out on the water is something boaters look forward to,” said Mediate. “Insurance on the other hand can be difficult to understand and confusing, especially with all the myths floating around. So it’s not surprising that many boaters go for convenience and purchase a boat endorsement on their homeowners policy, believing it offers more complete protection than it actually does.”

Want to be a boater on 06/05/2007 02:49

I had always figured that your boat insurance would cover you where ever you might sail. If your boat insurance covers you based on a nautical mile range from your home port, would it cover a boat owner on the east coast of Florida that decides to go to the Bahamas if it fits in that mile range or is different because you are going to a different country? These are things I never actually thought about.