Summer is almost here and for the residents of Rockwall that means heading outside. It also means that it’s time to break your summer toys out of storage. Regardless of whether you are slipping your boat into Lake Ray Hubbard, cranking up the ATV on some of the local trails, hitting the road on your Harley, or getting the RV out of storage, insurance is a key component to keeping your toys safe.
While you may be under the impression that all of your summer toys are protected by your home and auto insurance policies, that is not always true. Before you head out to the lake or hit the road, be sure to check your policies to make sure you are fully covered.
The summers are hot in Rockwall and one of the best ways to cool off is to head to the harbor and drop your boat into Lake Ray Hubbard. While it’s possible to simply add your boat to your homeowners policy, in most cases, it’s best to buy a separate boat policy.
Homeowner policies usually have specific exclusions pertaining to marine issues such as wreck removal and salvage work, both of which can be very expensive and if you are not carrying a separate boat policy you may end up on the hook for some major bills.
Boat insurance comes in a couple of different types and choosing the right one for your particular boat is important.
Agreed Value: This policy type allows you to set the value of your boat and in the event of a total loss that is the amount you will be paid. Depreciation is not figured in with an agreed value policy. These policies are more expensive but the amount you will be paid for a total loss claim is fixed.
Actual Cash Value: Actual cash value policies will take depreciation into account when determining a payout amount in the event of a total loss. As boats tend to depreciate fairly quickly this can leave you in the lurch if your boat is destroyed. These policies are much more affordable than an agreed value but you must be willing to take a risk on lower payout if you need to make a claim.
Ask your agent about discounts for taking boat safety classes as well as seasonal storage of your boat.
Screaming across the lake on a personal watercraft (PWC) is the definition of summer fun in Rockwall. Just like most summer toys, your wave runner needs a separate insurance policy in order for you to be fully protected. If you currently have a boat insurance policy you can easily add your personal watercraft to the policy.
However, it is also possible to buy a standalone policy that protects your jet ski. These policies are usually very affordable and protect you against accidents, vandalism, theft and liability issues.
Personal watercraft insurance offers protection against the following:
• Damage to another water craft or dock
• Bodily injury or death you cause another person due to negligence
• Damage another driver does while using your PWC
• Physical damage to the PWC
• Towing assistance if your PWC break downs in the water
There are exclusions with these types of policies. If you plan on modifying your personal watercraft to enhance the performance or speed you may not be covered. Some personal watercraft policies also exclude damage that occurred while operating it after dark or if the person driving it did not have a valid drivers license.
Read your policy in full so you are aware of all exclusions.
ATV or UTV Insurance
Summer in Rockwall means heading out to the Bushy Creek Motor Farm to spend a little time on your ATV or UTV. Hitting the trails or the motocross track is a great way to spend the afternoon with your family.
In most cases your ATV or UTV will not be covered by your homeowners policy and requires separate coverage. If you already own a motorcycle and have a motorcycle policy you can usually add your ATV or UTV to your existing motorcycle policy.
It’s also possible to purchase a separate policy for your ATV and it is highly recommended. Coverage costs are fairly inexpensive for a standalone policy but rates can vary dramatically between insurance companies so be sure to shop around for the best deal.
Be aware that some policies will exclude add-ons so if you want to customize your ATV or UTV with aftermarket components make sure your policy allows customization.
You will absolutely need a separate insurance policy for your motorcycle. Your homeowners or auto insurance policies do not cover motorcycles. The cost of a motorcycle insurance policy can vary dramatically depending on the type of bike you own and your driving record.
Motorcycle coverage is very similar to car insurance, you can purchase collision, comprehensive and liability coverage. Collision and comprehensive will make sure your bike is repaired or replaced if it is damaged due to a collision or act of God while liability coverage will pay out if you damage other people’s property or injure them in an accident in which you are at fault.
Verify that passengers are covered as some policies exclude passenger coverage.
If you like to spend part of the summer out of Rockwall and on the open road in your RV, you need to make sure your RV is covered.
When it comes to your RV there is a bit of good news regarding insurance. If you only use it a few weeks out of the year it will most likely be covered under your homeowners insurance policy. However, it is always a good idea to call your insurance agent to verify coverage.
If it is not covered, you should be able to purchase a recreational vehicle rider which will extend coverage to your home on wheels.
On the other hand if you spend most of the summer or part of the year living in your RV you should consider a specialized policy. If you end up going this route verify Total Loss Replacement coverage for your RV as well as Personal Belonging Replacement, which will pay to replace all your personal items if your RV is destroyed.
It is also a good idea to purchase roadside assistance as towing an RV can be expensive and is often not covered by an AAA membership.
Now its time to fire up the boat, RV, motorcycle, ATV or personal watercraft and start enjoying all the summer fun that Rockwall has to offer. Call us today or contact us for more information.