Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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Your boat is a source of fun for your entire family, right? This is the thing that you use when it’s a beautiful day and you want to spend some time outside enjoying it. Not only that, but it is a source of relaxation for a day of fishing or just to get away from it all. That is why having the best boat insurance is important for protecting your investment.

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Just imagine that you are in your boat cruising around and you hear a gut wrenching crunch as your boat strikes a hidden boulder or other object in the water. A hole opens up and your boat begins to sink.

If you don’t have boat insurance, then this is a situation you simply don’t want to be faced with. The problem is that many boaters don’t have boat insurance because it isn’t required by their state. What’s more, many boaters feel that because they are on the open water that they have less to worry about than if they were driving a vehicle.

While it is true that boat accidents are less common than car accidents, the bottom line is that when a boat accident happens you typically lose everything because the boat sinks to the bottom of the body of water. Many people invest thousands of dollars in equipment for their boat from water depth sonar to recreational equipment like skis, towable tubes and more.

You also have to consider the cost of the loss of your boat. While boats depreciate quickly in value, buying a new boat is expensive and if you don’t have boat insurance or a lot of disposable income, it is possible that you will simply have to forget about owning a boat for a while after a boating accident.

Choosing the best boat insurance will require you to understand a bit about boat insurance itself. It isn’t like car insurance, you don’t have a required liability limit that you have to have. What’s more, you don’t simply get to choose your max coverage for certain incidences, insurance companies want you to be more specific than that.

For example, did you know that for the insurance company to provide you with insurance to replace or repair your boat, they have to agree on the value of your boat first? The insurance company will have an adjustor appraise your boat to assign it a value.

Some companies will allow for replacement cost, but most will only provide actual cash value at the time you open your policy. The good news is that once you open your policy the value of your boat doesn’t change in terms of your payout as time goes by. In other words, your policy isn’t adjusted as your boat gets older. This is why purchasing your boat insurance before you leave the boat lot is the best way to get the most value from your boat insurance.

I don’t mind replacing my boat, why should I find the best boat insurance?

There are two answers to this question:

  • First of all, boat insurance isn’t so expensive that you should feel like replacing your boat is the better alternative than buying boat insurance. If you purchase a $30,000 boat and then purchase $5,000 worth of things to use on your boat, then that $35,000 is your total loss if your boat sinks.
  • Boat insurance can cost as little as $300 a year, a very small amount considering how much replacing your boat and everything on it could cost. Even if your insurance is more, let’s say $1,000 a year, it would still take 30 years for you to have actually wasted any money.

The other thing that you need to consider is liability insurance. If you strike another boat or worse yet, a person who is swimming in the water, then you are liable responsible for replacing the boat, medical costs and so on. Purchasing liability insurance for your boat is the only way to ensure that you are not financially destroyed if the worst should happen while boating.

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What is the best boat insurance for my boat and what does it cover?

What your boat insurance covers should be based on your specific needs. The best boat insurance can only be determined by your situation. For example, if you have a lake in your backyard and you don’t take your boat elsewhere, then you may not need salvage insurance, boat cruising insurance, (which covers your boat when you leave US waters) and a few other options.

However, you may want to consider buying insurance for boat replacement or repair in case of an accident, liability insurance, and coverage for your trailer and personal effects on the boat. Your homeowners insurance may or many not cover the items on your boat, although usually it doesn’t unless a theft occurs.

There are also some boat insurance companies that provide insurance for specific types of boats, such as bass boats, yacht and angler boats. Buying boat specific plans is something to consider if you want to save money on your boat insurance.

The best boat insurance will cover your boat in and out of the water. For example, if you are towing your boat and are in an accident, the best boat insurance will cover the cost of your boat. Again, if you choose a policy with agreed upon coverage rather than replacement cost, then the benefit will only be what you agreed upon. However, if someone else causes an accident, their liability insurance (if they have it) will cover the cost of your boat if it is damaged or destroyed.

Something even the best boat insurance won’t cover is your jet skis or other small watercrafts on your boat, other than towable tubes. You can, however, purchase small craft insurance from your insurance company to cover the costs of these items if you are carrying them on your boat.

You can purchase optional coverage for items like fishing equipment, roadside assistance, on the water towing, fuel/spill accident, and personal property insurance. You should make a point of checking your homeowners insurance policy to see what, if any, of these things it will cover if your boat is on the water.

Where can I find the best boat insurance company?

You might want to start with the insurance company that provides your car insurance and, if applicable, your homeowners or renters insurance. Buying multiple policies from the same company can equal real savings for you. Before you purchase your policy, however, you should do a cost comparison between companies to see if your insurance company truly has the best boat insurance costs.

There are many insurance companies that specialize in boat insurance. Often these are the companies that offer the most options for boat insurance, which is why many people feel that these are the best boat insurance companies, but you need to check them out for yourself to make this determination.

Comparing boat insurance is easy with our free quote tool. You can look at the cost between several boat insurance companies to see which one is right for you. What’s more, you won’t have to actually search around for companies that sell boat insurance, they will be presented to you here.

Simply enter your zip code now and get free boat insurance quotes today!