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-   -   Boat Insurance (http://www.wakeworld.com/forum/showthread.php?t=798090)

BoardNBama 05-13-2013 6:41 PM

Boat Insurance
Reading about boat insurance, I find so many mixed reviews. Some of the horor stories actually scare me. So who do you guys use?

ferral 05-13-2013 7:13 PM

Boaters Insurance. Haven't had them long but it gets me an extended warranty from Indmar. On my
Old boat had Progressive. Never had a claim so can't comment on their actual performance.

Wakesounds 05-13-2013 7:30 PM

I had a claim with Allstate for some theft and they gave me way more than I thought I'd get with very little questions. I was impressed that I didn't have to fight and claw to get money out of them.

jhartt3 05-14-2013 8:28 AM

i have nationwide... last year my wife hit her head on her board while boarding... got 2k from them to cover what her medical insurance wouldnt cover. totally worth it for me. Surprised it applies to being pulled by the boat. and not just in boat injuries but it did and it was super easy to work with them.

nitrousbird 05-14-2013 8:43 AM

Ski Safe. I had BoatUS prior to that but they increased their rates by $100/year and Ski Safe ended up being cheaper than what I was paying BoatUS for the same coverage. Both are really good with claims from the research I did and everything I have gathered is you usually better off going with a boat-specific insurance company.

I had State Farm for the boat previously and they were a rip off. Cut my bill literally in half going with BoatUS and more so with Ski Safe, all for the same coverage.

jmanolinsky 05-14-2013 9:18 AM

For 8 years I have had Ski Safe. No claims. I just got my renewal notice in the mail yesterday and they have gone up about 10%. It's not a lot, but I am going to give them a call anyway.


boardman74 05-14-2013 10:58 AM

I've used Ski Safe, Boat US, Boatsman, and this year we went with our local Statefarm guy. But like alot of the others we have not made a claim. Thats when you really find out if they are good or not.

cadunkle 05-14-2013 12:25 PM

I switched to Markel recently as Progressive kept jacking the price up substantially every year. Saved me a couple hundred bucks a year. I've heard bad things about Progressive and fighting to get any claims paid out, or paid out to replace like for like. most common seems to be if you have an I/O and the outdrive is damaged or stolen they will only pay for a Chinese replacement, not a genuine Mercruiser. So while I am unsure of Markel's record for payment on claims, I know Progressive has a bad reputation among boaters, with a few exceptions to the generally negative trend of high cost and low service expressed on various boating forums.

Markel was a pain to deal with in regards to some specifics, namely top speed of the boat. They asked what the top speed, engine, and HP was as many insurance companies do. I told them 50 MPH as that's the highest I've seen on GPS running light and wide open. The adjuster, who wouldn't speak with me and I had to relay through the woman I was working with via phone and email, wanted to put it in a 65+ MPH bracket which I believe would exclude any skier/watersports coverage and increase the price. My best guess is Markel's adjusters don't know anything about inboard ski boats and just see 454 and think it must be fast. That concerns me, but I was sick of Progressive jacking prices up, and other companies wanting to write policies that exempt them from paying out any time something unfortunate may happen. The joys of being on the east coast and shopping for boat insurance right after hurricane Sandy. Anyhow, eventually they put top speed as 55 and I went with them. Pending nothing that freaks out insurers in teh next year or so I'll shop around again when up for renewal as their uninformed adjusters concern me, even if it is an agreed value policy.

SkiSafe quoted me about $20/yr less than Markel for the same coverage amounts. SkiSafe would not cover the boat when more than 100 miles from home though, in instances of severe weather such as a wind storm, named storm, hurricane, or as my impression was whatever they deem to be adverse weather. It did not matter if the boat was not in the water but rather on the trailer or even inside a building when the storm occurred, there is no coverage during a severe storm when more than 100 miles from where you state the boat is normally kept.

I mentioned this on another forum when several people brought them up and someone from SkiSafe posted that they would write a policy for coverage in whatever region I wanted (I wanted anywhere in northeast) and price it accordingly, or I could call and tell them where it would be and when. They claimed the issue was people who live up north and have a home in Florida keep their boat in Florida and claim it normally stays in the north, then gets hurricane damage when a storm rolls through.

The rep I spoke to initially told me they would not write such a policy, and said they wouldn't cover it even if I told them where the boat would be and what dates it would be there. I called back and asked if they would write a policy to cover anywhere in northeast, I was again told no, though she said I could call and tell them where and when it would be to be covered. Not worth the aggravation for me and having that undocumented so if there was damage to the boat they could just say "Oh, well it's in the policy document there's no coverage more than 100 miles from the normal storage location." Markel removed named storm/wind storm exemption from the policy when I asked so the boat is covered from any adverse weather anywhere in the country whether the boat is in the water or not, salt water or fresh, so long as the boat is not off shore in the actual ocean some number of miles.

I also believe SkiSafe also only does agreed value policies for two years, then they will give whatever value they think it's worth, not necessarily market cost to replace with the same boat. So if I had gone with SkiSafe there's a chance I'd have had to change insurance again in two years. Just relaying my experience getting policy quotes and information from them.

I truly hate dealing with insurance companies. They all seem to want to charge an arm and a leg for a policy that exempts them from paying if something unfortunate happens.

nitrousbird 05-14-2013 4:46 PM

I spoke with the SkiSafe person before making my policy. I am covered in named storms, though the deductible triples. Otherwise it is just covered except for on the water during the layup period (which is well into the no boating season). I can also call and get coverage if I were to tow to somewhere warm to boat during the winter - though I have never done such a thing before. That said, my boat has never been in a state that has had a named storm, so I'm not exactly concerned about that. :)

No 100 mile limitations and I even discussed traveling to other states for boat vacations.

DenverRider 05-14-2013 8:18 PM

I've had BoatUS for a while now. I had to go with year long coverage instead of seasonal because they are a pain if you come back after a coverage gap. It's always been the cheapest for me so far but, like everything else now, you probably have to switch companies from time to time because companies like Comcast have created a business model where customer loyalty is rewarded by doubling your payment.

BlazeSr 05-14-2013 9:47 PM

Just got mine for the first time. $256 for the year, full coverage w/$250k in coverage for medical stuff (I forget the correct term :)

SangerTom 05-15-2013 12:28 AM

AAA - reasonable pricing

chattwake 05-15-2013 4:29 AM

I used BoatUS for 7 years straight and switched this year to Boater's Insurance. The factory five warranty option was super expensive, so I opted not to do it. Boater's Insurance got me something like 80k in coverage for my '13 LSV, 7k for the trailer, 300k general liability, 10k medical, 300k uninsured boaters insurance, and 10k personal items. My deductable is 700k for the boat and equipment - $250 for the trailer. My premium with a layaup period from November 1-February 28 was like $385. Oh, and this is an agreed value no depreciation policy.

BoatUS didn't offer a layup period. The med pay was less, the deductable was only $500, but the premium was $450, plus you have to pay like $30 to be a member of BoatUS (which is relatively worthless). Also, the last two people I dealt with at BoatUS were pricks. When I told them that Boater's Insurance was cheaper, and asked if someone in underwriting would consider getting closer to $385 rate, I got laughed at. BoatUS could care less that I had been a member/client for seven years. I'll never go back to them

Oh, and I've never made a claim.

trayson 05-16-2013 1:31 PM

My friend/former neighbor works for Boat Insurance Agency in Seattle. They are a broker.

He got me quotes and I ended up with ACE. My boat is only a $10k 1992 Supra Sunsport, but I'm paying $285 a year for full coverage.


nitrousbird 05-16-2013 5:26 PM


Originally Posted by trayson (Post 1822687)
My friend/former neighbor works for Boat Insurance Agency in Seattle. They are a broker.

He got me quotes and I ended up with ACE. My boat is only a $10k 1992 Supra Sunsport, but I'm paying $285 a year for full coverage.


I am paying a lot less with Ski Safe. $229/year with $26,800 for the boat and $3,600 for the trailer. $500 deductible.

trayson 05-20-2013 3:18 PM


Originally Posted by nitrousbird (Post 1822750)
I am paying a lot less with Ski Safe. $229/year with $26,800 for the boat and $3,600 for the trailer. $500 deductible.

Hmmm... I'll email my buddy and see if he explored that option. Thanks for the heads up.

trayson 05-23-2013 1:48 PM

Turns out that if I put the same options on a Ski Safe quote as I did with my ACE quote that the Ski Safe was higher, around $285 for ski safe to my $258 for ACE. I only have a $250 deductible for ACE which if I brough that up to $500 would bring my premium down to $232. I also have $1000 of on the water towing which when I added that to Ski Safe also impacted the price.

Bottom line is that it was worth doing the online quote with Ski Safe, but I'm gonna hang tight where I'm at because if I go apples to apples, then I'm lower with ACE.

tyler97217 05-24-2013 11:36 AM

I have not had any claims with my current insurance company and have been happy with them. I did however have a claim 10 years ago with American Family and they did pay for the boat to be repaired at the facility they recomended. It was repaired faulty and I wanted it repaired somewhere else and they would not pay for that. They will pay for it on an auto, but not a boat. Something to think about. I dumped them!

gpd005 05-24-2013 1:41 PM

As an insurance agent i will advise everyone to SHOP for the best rate you can find on boat insurance, but also be a little leary of the bottom of the barrell pricing. You can really get what you paid for if it is a company/agent who doesn't know much about boat insurance.

Wakesounds 05-24-2013 3:45 PM

After reading this, I think I might have to switch to ski safe. I pay about 650 a year for a 30k boat. I ran a quote through ski safe for the same coverages and its about 350 a year. Looks like it's time for a change!

bboozer 05-27-2013 8:04 PM

I have had Ski Safe since the mid 90's.... I had an issue with my 96 Prostar 205 where I blew the motor 1 month past Indmar's then 2 year warranty. The dealer's Indmar certified mechanic said that the rear main seal went and all the oil drained into the bilge. After much negotiation, with the dealer really going to bat for me, and me being on a call with Mastercraft and Indmar at the same time, they basically told me "tough ****, its out of warranty" I called Ski Safe on a whim, they sent someone by to look at it and sent me a check for a new motor minus the $500 deductible.... and the dealer took $500 off so I got a new LT1 motor with the new 3 year warranty for free....That is the only time I have ever been on the winning end of an insurance deal...and I will continue to keep Ski safe because of that ....I haven't made another claim since 1998.... but they are insuring my Malibu no more Mastercrafts for me....

Wakesounds 05-28-2013 3:52 PM

I made the switch to ski safe today! Allstate was easy to deal with but was twice the price for less coverage. After hearing all the positive comments about ski safe it seemed like a no brainer.

zimme 05-29-2013 3:28 PM

Another vote for ski safe... I have a 35k agreed policy on the boat and 3k on the trailer, cost me 385 for the year.

rexlex01 05-29-2013 8:46 PM

I have BoatUS for $190 a year.

rexlex01 06-04-2013 9:09 AM

Dont bother with Boaters Insurance if your boat is older than a 1999

89nauti2001 06-04-2013 9:43 AM

Ski safe here. 15k on the boat and 2500.00 on the trailer. Runs about $216.00 a year. The way around the "fair market value" is to let your policy lapse. Then just call and start a new policy the following day. The downside is you are taking a chance that something may happen that 1 day without coverage.

rexlex01 06-04-2013 10:18 AM

Many up north just let their policy lapse the entire layup winter season and reapply in the spring.
Or just buy the insurance in the spring and cancel in the fall for a refund of up to 40% premium. why pay for 7 months of winter storage if it was properly winterized and the roof of the storage is strong and tight.

whatshesaid 06-04-2013 10:45 AM

Boater's insurance for me.

phillywakeboarder 06-04-2013 11:12 AM

Progressive for the last 5 years. In year 1 we hit an underwater log and trashed the transmission. (Wife- "What's that red stuff coming out of the bilge?" Me - "That's our transmission fluid." Wife - "That' can't be good." Me - "Nope.") Progressive handled the claim perfectly. Also, I think their website is super easy to navigate and their policy documents are at least semi-understandable.

NotSure123 06-13-2013 3:11 PM

Thanks to this thread you guys saved me $367 a year :) I didn't realize how bad Progressive was sticking it to me! Was paying $47 a month ($564 a year) now though SkiSafe I'm paying $16.41 ($197) a year...AND I have much better coverage!

I got a quote from BoatUS but it was about $40 more and not quite as good of coverage...

annq42 06-14-2013 5:55 AM

I use State Farm. My agent is actually an old Wakeboard Pro, so I feel that they know what I need and what I would want. They did have me take a boater's license course online which dropped my rate by about 20%, so for the $35 investment it was well worth it.

CarZin 06-14-2013 6:58 AM


Dont bother with Boaters Insurance if your boat is older than a 1999
Yeah, if you don't care about liability.

rexlex01 06-14-2013 7:04 AM


Originally Posted by CarZin (Post 1827880)
Yeah, if you don't care about liability.

Its not a question about liability, its because they will not insure you, period!

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