Whether you're still saving up to purchase your dream boat or are looking for boat insurance to protect your current investment, it's a good idea to know why some people can't get their boats insured. Some of the top reasons boaters get denied boat insurance are:
- Boating Violations: If you've been involved in reckless behavior on the water and received a ticket for it, this could be serious enough to be denied insurance. Following boating rules on the water is just as important as obeying traffic laws. Failing to do so may lead to expensive premiums, at the very least.
- Boating Under the Influence: Operating any vehicle with a motor while under the influence of alcohol is unsafe and, if you're caught, can lead to serious consequences.
- Buying an Oversized Boat: There are guidelines in place for how large a boat an insurance company will cover. If your boat exceeds the size allotted for personal boat insurance policies, it may be difficult to get it insured.
- Prior Insurance Claims: Having filed multiple insurance claims tells insurance companies that you may be more of a liability than boat owners who haven't made claims.
- Poor Driving Record: There are many factors that go into underwriting an insurance policy, but your record on the road gives them insight to what you'll likely be like on the water. If you've received tickets for speeding, chances are you'll get them for boating too.
- Using Your Boat For Commercial Use: There are different insurance policies for boats that are used for recreation and commercial purposes, and you might be denied coverage if you're trying to get a policy that you don't need.
- Inadequate Safety Equipment: Underwriters want to know about the safety equipment, including life jackets, that you have on your boat. Failing to provide proof of proper equipment may result in your policy not being written.
- Poor Boat Condition: Perhaps as you're saving for your dream boat, you bought one that's seen better days. While it will provide you a place from which to fish, it might also cost you your ability to get insurance if it's deemed unsafe.
Boat insurance isn't too much different than car insurance. Many of the laws that apply to cars, trucks and motorcycles on the road are enforced on the water with boats. Keeping your claims, violations and fines to a minimum will help you get boat insurance at an affordable rate.