I had a conversation the other day with a customer who was looking at buying a new camper. They said they weren’t sure how you insure them. They said they had looked online and what most people do is add them onto their existing auto insurance policy. This is actually not the best option if you have a camper, a boat, or a side by side. For those of you that go online to find answers to your questions, this is why you need an agent that can help you make the best decisions.
While a lot of people may think they should add a camper, boat, or side by side to their auto or home policies, there is a much better option. I am going to outline 2 of the most important reasons. Let me first explain, very few insurance companies even offer a specialty policy for these types of recreational vehicles. If you talk to one of the brand name companies, they don’t offer these specialty policies, so obviously the only option you have is to add it to you existing auto or home insurance. That’s why you may not have hear of having a special policy because most of the big name insurance companies don’t have them to offer.
The first reason you should have a separate policy for your camper, boat, or side by side is so that if you end up having a claim, whether its damaged, stolen, or someone gets hurt, that claim would be on a stand alone policy that would not impact your auto insurance. This is a biggie to me because auto insurance, especially in our part of the state tends to be a lot more volatile than any other kind of insurance policy. So, lets say you added that camper onto your auto policy, you leave to on a trip and on the way to the campground there’s an accident and your camper is damaged. If you had to turn in a claim on the camper, even though your auto itself was not involved in the claim, this claim is now going to go against your whole auto policy. When your policy renews, there’s more than likely going to be a decent increase in your overall auto rate. If you had that camper on its own policy, your auto rate would not be effected as a result of that claim.
The second reason you need to have a specialty policy for your recreational vehicle is that there are special coverages that are offered on these specialty polices that your auto or home policy will not and cannot offer. Let’s say you are purchasing your camper, boat, or side by side brand new. You know as well as I do, when you drive a vehicle of the lot, whether its an auto, a camper, a boat, or a side by side, it automatically loses value. If you add your recreational vehicle to your auto policy, if you do have a claim and it is completely totaled, your auto policy only pays out based off of NADA value of those toys. If you had a specialty policy, you could choose to have full coverage based on Total Replacement Cost of that recreational vehicle. Now, if you were to have a claim and the vehicle was totaled, this specialty policy would pay to replace that recreational vehicle, even if it costs more than what you originally paid. They will replace that vehicle for a new one that is the same make and model.
Additionally, there are other miscellaneous coverages that apply to specific recreational vehicles, that you can not get on any auto or home policy. For instance, there are coverages for boats that could include your fishing equipment, additional coverage for your boat motor if you damaged it, and even on water towing. For campers, there is a vacation liability coverage that would protect you if someone gets hurt while you’re at the campground and you can include you contents of your camper as well.
If you’re thinking about buying, you recently bought, or maybe you have had your camper, boat, or side by side insured on an auto or home policy, it’s time to look at getting a specialty policy for them to give you better protection and save you money in the long run.