Insurance Corner | Want to Cancel your Insurance Policy to Save Money? Think Again.
Sponsored content by NBOA Marine Insurance
Have you ever noticed that things just move slower in the winter? A lot of your favorite activities are ushered into the closet, and you are forced to wait for spring to resume play. The same goes for boating, and many people are forced to hoist their floating toys into a cubby at a marina, or beneath the drapery of boat cover when it is cold outside. But just because your boat hibernates in the winter does not mean you should act accordingly with your marine insurance. Most carriers will discount your policy when you follow protocol for “Winterizing” your boat, but do not opt for cancelling your policy instead.
Universally, insurance carriers frown upon customers discontinuing their service for the winter months, when their crafts are, for the most part, inactive. In many scenarios, a carrier will decline providing insurance for that customer the following spring. Using this term “inactive,” is actually a misnomer as well, because your boats always have some kind of activity occurring around them. In fact, many of the same insurance claims from spring to fall are very much present, even when there is snow on the ground. Imagine the calamities that could occur: something could be stolen, the boat could break free of its reigns and sink, or there could be a fire, and you would have no idea unless you are an anxious parent and check on your vessel every so often, or if it is in your driveway or backyard.
You have heard those horror stories of the burglar breaking into a house through the skylight, landing on a knife and then suing the home owner for damages. Boat coverage protects you from the same scenario. If peddlers break into your boat and leave in an ambulance, you are liable for their injuries, and it is your insurance policy that will save your assets. What if they successfully steal something of value, like an engine? Without an insurance policy to cover it, you must replace this with money from your own pocket. Having liability insurance is just as important in the winter as it is the rest of the year.
Two of the top five claims that typically are denied by insurance companies occur predominately in the winter months. Claims that are related to wear and tear, and a general neglect of one’s boat, are investigated to determine whether the owner took the proper precautions to prevent these damages. Because your boat is essentially out of sight, out of mind during these chilly days, and because wind and water erosion are greater in the cold, the risk of this becoming your predicament is much higher. The cold also causes considerable damage to the engine, such as the engine block cracking! The best way to avoid these catastrophes from occurring is to follow all suggested procedures for winterizing by your insurance company. If this is your fate, then you can show your insurance provider the steps you took to avert this, and Comprehensive coverage, which pays for damages caused by circumstances other than a boat collision, will be your saving grace.
So stay smart this Holiday Season, and keep your insurance policy intact.
NBOA Marine Insurance wishes you a safe and happy holidays. If you have any questions about your current policy, or would like to receive a new quote, please feel free to contact one of our friendly, professional marine insurance agents directly by dialing 1-800-248-3512 or online at www.nboat.com.