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Do You Have the Right Boat Insurance for Lake Ozark?

By January 24, 2022Boat Insurance

Perhaps there’s never been a more important time for boat insurance in Lake Ozark.

In 2020, the U.S. Coast Guard report found that there was a 25% increase in the fatality rate from 2019. Property damage to boats totaled around $62.5 million. And the top causes for these sky-high rates came from operator inattention, operator inexperience, and machinery failure — some of these may be covered under boat insurance.

While we highly encourage proactive measures in preventing such tragedies and damage, such as taking proper safety precautions before hitting the waterways, we also highly recommend that you protect your boat and your family’s financial future with the proper coverage. No matter how good of a boat captain you are, or how highly trained you are, accidents happen. When they do, boat insurance can help you pick up the pieces.

Before we get too deep into what the right boat insurance looks like for you, it’s important to understand the basics of what’s covered and what’s not.

What is Boat Insurance?

Before we get into what type of boat insurance you’ll need in Lake Ozark, let’s look at what specifically watercraft insurance, another term for boat insurance, typically means.

Watercraft or boat insurance is a personal insurance policy that can cover damages to your boat, damages your boat causes, and bodily injury liability. 

Sometimes homeowners insurance covers a portion of possible damages and outcomes from your boat, but in many cases, you’ll need to purchase a separate policy. Boat insurance is designed to protect you from a large out-of-pocket expense and keep your family more protected from draining your savings to cover you in the event of an accident on the water.

What Does Boat Insurance Include?

Just like auto insurance, boat insurance can cover physical damages to your boat, as well as any damages or injuries that occur as a result of an accident while on your watercraft. There’s not a one-size-fits-all policy for boaters. Here are some of the most common types of boat coverage to consider including in your Lake of the Ozarks boat insurance policy:

Liability. Like auto insurance, liability coverage pays for any damages or injuries you cause to others while on the water. Policies vary on the level of the limits provided. If the damages caused exceed those limits, you may be required to pay out of pocket.

Comprehensive and Collision. Physical damages to your boat can be classified in two different ways — comprehensive and collision. Comprehensive coverage will step in if your boat is damaged by something out of your control, such as a weather event or fire. Collision insurance covers your boat in the event that damages occur after hitting another boat, watercraft, or object. This type of coverage often includes your boat capsizing.

Uninsured/Underinsured Boater (UB). If another boater collides with your boat and you or your passengers sustain injuries, you expect them to pay. Sometimes the other boaters do not have the coverage or finances to pay. In that case, UB insurance will step in to protect you from taking financial responsibility for an accident that wasn’t your fault.

What’s Not Included in Boat Insurance Coverage?

While the above list looks fairly all-encompassing, there are certain things that you should not rely on boat insurance to cover. Some of the items not covered under a boat policy include:

Natural wear and tear are not covered under insurance. To keep your boat in top working order, we recommend performing regular maintenance.

What Type of Boat Insurance Do I Need?

With so many options to choose from, it can be hard to know which insurance company to choose. We highly recommend talking to a personal insurance agent about the specifics of your needs, as each person’s boat and insurance requirements are unique.

Still, one element that is worth considering when thinking through the type of boat insurance you might need is the value of your boat. Knowing how much your boat is worth will help determine how much protection you want to put on your watercraft. If you cannot or do not want to pay the costs of the repairs out of pocket, having a proper insurance policy is crucial. If you have an older boat that has depreciated in value, you might be okay carrying liability coverage only.

How Much Does Boat Insurance in Lake Ozark Cost?

Like auto insurance, boat insurance prices are calculated based on a variety of factors. Some of these factors include who is driving the boat, their driving record, the boater’s experience on the water, and where the boat is kept.

Another factor that’s considered is the type and speed of your boat. Faster and/or more expensive boats are harder to insure than a fishing boat or a typical pontoon. The year, make, model and horsepower also play a factor in determining how your boat insurance is priced.

It’s impossible to give you a proper estimate without understanding your unique circumstances. A general rule of thumb that’s used in the boating insurance world is to anticipate your policy to cover approximately one to two percent of your boat’s market value. Still, to get the best price and most accurate quote, it’s important to get a quote from a variety of carriers, which is what we help you do at McGrath Insurance Group.

Stay Protected While Boating in the Lake Ozark

While you never want to anticipate an accident on the water, the fact is that accidents happen even to the best boaters. Keeping your boat covered in Lake Ozark will help minimize the damage if or when something does go wrong.

Insurance agents at McGrath Insurance Group are able to help you find the best policy for your personal needs, boat, and situation. We will help you review all of your personal insurance policies and find the best one to keep you covered on or off the water.