An Independent Agent Explains:
12 things to think about when insuring your toys This post is part of a series of insurance blogs on Safeco.com showcasing the expertise of local independent agents and aimed at helping you understand important insurance coverage and issues.
All across the country (though not as often here in sunny Florida), people put their motorcycles, boats, RVs, and classic cars in storage for the long winter, anxiously awaiting that warm spring day when the garage door rolls up and the engine purrs (or perhaps rattles) back to life.
After a battery charge, a fluids check, and a few other tasks, you're ready to get back out on the road or the water. But, is your insurance policy ready, too? Maybe your policy is outdated due to some customization work last fall. Maybe you reduced your coverage for off-season storage. Maybe you'd just like to explore a better rate.
These are all reasons to get in touch with your local independent agent
before the boating, riding, and exploring all begins again.
Whether you need to update a policy or buy a new one, here are 12 things to think about when it comes to selecting insurance for your toys that go "vroom:"Boats and Personal Watercraft
Motorcycles and more
- How you use it: The type of policy you need and your rate may change based on things like whether you go boating in fresh or salt water, use it for recreational or commercial purposes, and if there are multiple owners, you live onboard, or you occasionally rent the boat to others.
- Standard coverages: Be sure to cover all the bases, including the hull, engine(s), and trailer. In some cases, the engine replacement cost is more than the hull. And, add your trailer if it needs coverage, too. Do you want Roadside Assistance with that?
- Equipment and extras: Be sure you understand how you're covered and for how much when it comes to your equipment, such as fishing gear and wakeboards. Plus, consider whether you need added coverage for uninsured/underinsured boaters, passenger injuries, theft, and other scenarios.
- How you use it: A bike used for racing or commercial purposes will require a different type of policy than one used for commuting or recreation.
- Standard coverages: Your state likely requires you to carry liability coverage for property damage and injuries to your passenger or others while on your bike, scooter, ATV, or snowmobile. And, of course, you want coverage for yourself and your ride if an accident were to occur.
- Equipment and extras: Your safety apparel, such as helmets, boots, and gloves, is oftentimes a significant investment. Check whether you have coverage and for how much. Then, think about coverage for Roadside Assistance, trip interruption, and custom parts.
- How you use it: Some people live in their RVs. Others only use them a few months each year. How you use yours, as well as things like its size and model, will affect your rate and other aspects of your policy.
- Standard coverage: Much like insurance for your car, RV insurance can include liability, comprehensive, collision and uninsured/underinsured motorist. Your state likely requires you to carry a certain level of some coverage types.
- Equipment and extras: Your RV is a home on wheels, so you no doubt have it filled with some pretty valuable stuff. Be sure your policy covers it all, and think about whether you want extras such as Roadside Assistance and loan or lease protection.
- How you use it: If you take your car out for a spin only in warmer weather and store it in a secure location for the rest of the year, you may be able to reduce your coverage during the off-season and save on your premium. Or, you may commute daily in your vintage beauty or travel the country for car shows. Your policy and rate will change accordingly.
- Standard coverages: While you'll find many similarities between your standard auto insurance policy and an antique car policy, there's oftentimes a key difference: agreed value. When you purchase your policy, your rate will be based on, among other things, the value that both you and your carrier agree your prized ride is worth. Then, if the worst happens and your collector car is totaled or stolen, you receive a payout for that amount.
- Equipment and extras: If you carry a lot of tools or other personal property in your car, you'll want to be sure your insurance policy will help cover them if they're lost, stolen or damaged. And, for those times when you can't get her running again, roadside assistance will come in handy.
Of course, with each type of insurance, discounts are oftentimes available for things such as taking a safety course, being a seasoned operator, or having an anti-theft device. Your local independent agent
will see to it that you save with the appropriate discounts.
It's a good feeling when spring arrives and you get back behind the wheel of your favorite toy. It's even better when you know you have the coverage you want for the toy(s) you love.
Just think – the official start of spring is a little more than 10 weeks away. Get ready to start those engines!
About Shaun Murphy and Pablo Beach Insurance
About Shaun Murphy and Pablo Beach Insurance
Shaun Murphy brings 27 years of insurance experience to Pablo Beach Insurance, the independent insurance agency he founded in 2005 with his wife, Emily. Pablo Beach Insurance
has three locations across Florida and counts one of the Murphys' children, Spencer, as part of its leadership team. Shaun strongly believes in providing customers with a broad choice of insurance coverages from a variety of carriers and at a variety of prices. That's why he started Pablo Beach Insurance, after experiencing firsthand how limited customers are when purchasing insurance directly from a carrier rather than from an independent agent.