Chances are, if you’re a motorcycle or boat owner you welcome adventure and are pretty comfortable with taking risks. But don’t make the mistake of getting so comfortable that you suspend your insurance during the winter months in order to save a few dollars. That’s a risk you shouldn’t be willing to take.
Although it’s tempting to save where you can, not having insurance at all times – especially during the off season – could lead to significant personal losses. Many boat claims are for fire, theft, flooding, and vandalism, all of which your vehicle is susceptible to when it’s stored away for a season. And what if you decide to take your vehicle out during those rare, warm winter days and there’s a collision? Or worse, you don’t properly winterize your motorcycle or boat and store them properly and later discover the damage in the spring. At that point, there would be no policy in place to help with the needed repairs.
It’s worth pointing out that there are ways to help lower the cost of insuring your motorcycle or boat during the winter. Here are a few ways to reduce your annual insurance payment:
- Purchase a “lay-up” policy which temporarily suspends your policy, excluding comprehensive coverage which protects you against unfortunate events that might occur while the vehicle is in storage.
- Consider raising your deductible during the winter in order to lower your premium, but make sure you have enough cash to cover the higher deductible if something were to happen.
- Purchase a moderately-priced motorcycle or boat that costs less to insure. A top-of-the-line vehicle is more likely to be stolen and therefore assumes a steeper premium.
- Take a safety course to lower the cost of your policy, which might be offered at a discounted rate by your insurance company.
- If you store your boat or motorcycle in a heated facility over the winter, consider adding “Freeze Coverage” insurance to your policy in the event of a power outage to protect against freeze-related damage to the engine.
No one likes the idea of paying for a service they’re not currently using. We all like to save where we can, but actually your insurance is working for you even if your boat or motorcycle is in storage during the winter. By keeping your policy year-round, you may be eligible for extra premium savings. And consider, that if your rationale for canceling your insurance is that you’ll simply purchase a policy again when springtime rolls around, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to renew your policy for the same rate. In fact, since your policy probably has a one-year term, you might be charged a fee for canceling early. You also might not receive much of a refund by canceling since many insurance companies build seasonality into your boat or motorcycle rate.
Take the necessary steps to prepare for the season for winterizing your motorcycle and boat. Of course, no matter how diligent you are, there’s a chance that you overlooked one or two steps in this important protection process, which is exactly why maintaining insurance throughout the off-season is so crucial.
Contact your HUB insurance broker to learn more.