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Old 10-06-2014, 06:35 PM   #1
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Insurance for Novice Boater

Hello Forum.

I am a novice boater without previous experience on the water. Negotiating now with the owner of a 27 year old trawler. I've only made one inquiry about insurance with a broker so far but it was pretty disappointing. They told me most marine markets underwrite based on prior boat ownership experience and could not provide insurance to me based on my lack thereof. Over the next year after I purchase a boat, I fully intend to take USCG approved courses, engage a Captain to help me learn, go to whatever Trawler Schools are available, etc. But in order to get into a marina, insurance is required. Plus, I'd be a dope to not have insurance anyway.

Since I am new to this, what are my chances of getting insurance? Does anyone know of someone who underwrites newbies like me? Would the age of the boat be another factor working against me?

Thanks for any advice anyone may have.

-Sam
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Old 10-06-2014, 07:05 PM   #2
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Sam-look up TF member Pau Hana and send him a PM (he may see this anyway). Peter, by name. He is a marine insurance guru, and a nice guy on top of that. If he cannot help you, he should be able to steer you in the right direction. Good Luck.
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Old 10-06-2014, 07:20 PM   #3
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I took the night classes and the test required by New Jersey before I purchased my 1993 40 Mainship sedan bridge. Just make up a number when they ask how many years have you been boating they have no way of verifying. I'm not saying commit fraud but my 1st boat was a 14 foot Glasspar speed boat. I had it when I was 16. I'm now in my late 50's and prior to purchasing my Mainship my last boat I owned was when I was 27 years old. However I have friends with boats so 57yo(Age) - 16yo (1st year boating) = 41 years of experience. Did I cruise or pilot boats every year in between I really can't remember but I doubt it. Back then and you still aren't required to have a state boaters license unless you boated on a lake which I never did. I always boated on tidal waters. now your state may require that you take and pass the USCG approved coarse it's like 2 nights of time easy as pie. NJ requires you have the USCG safety card and present it when ever boating if asked by the authorities.
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Old 10-06-2014, 09:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamIam_Sam View Post
Hello Forum.

I am a novice boater without previous experience on the water. Negotiating now with the owner of a 27 year old trawler. I've only made one inquiry about insurance with a broker so far but it was pretty disappointing. They told me most marine markets underwrite based on prior boat ownership experience and could not provide insurance to me based on my lack thereof. Over the next year after I purchase a boat, I fully intend to take USCG approved courses, engage a Captain to help me learn, go to whatever Trawler Schools are available, etc. But in order to get into a marina, insurance is required. Plus, I'd be a dope to not have insurance anyway.

Since I am new to this, what are my chances of getting insurance? Does anyone know of someone who underwrites newbies like me? Would the age of the boat be another factor working against me?

Thanks for any advice anyone may have.

-Sam
Hi, Sam,

Let's chat- there's almost always a way to make it happen. Just takes asking a few of the right questions.

Pete
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Old 10-13-2014, 10:42 PM   #5
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Pantaneus took me our 1st year. I did have some experience and training from 20 years ago.
Worth a call to them.
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Old 10-13-2014, 11:10 PM   #6
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I used Pete for my insurance as well. Regardless of insurance, you will be well served to take the USCG classes ASAP.
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Old 10-14-2014, 11:42 AM   #7
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IMO you want on the water instruction and insurers often require it. Many new boaters have succeeded. I don't recommend lying you might get insurance but claims can later be denied.
Do it right with a good teacher and you will enjoy boating a lot more. The admiral should be included as well.
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Old 10-14-2014, 12:42 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Billylll View Post
I took the night classes and the test required by New Jersey before I purchased my 1993 40 Mainship sedan bridge. Just make up a number when they ask how many years have you been boating they have no way of verifying. I'm not saying commit fraud but my 1st boat was a 14 foot Glasspar speed boat. I had it when I was 16. I'm now in my late 50's and prior to purchasing my Mainship my last boat I owned was when I was 27 years old. However I have friends with boats so 57yo(Age) - 16yo (1st year boating) = 41 years of experience. Did I cruise or pilot boats every year in between I really can't remember but I doubt it. Back then and you still aren't required to have a state boaters license unless you boated on a lake which I never did. I always boated on tidal waters. now your state may require that you take and pass the USCG approved coarse it's like 2 nights of time easy as pie. NJ requires you have the USCG safety card and present it when ever boating if asked by the authorities.
Bill
Quote:
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IMO you want on the water instruction and insurers often require it. Many new boaters have succeeded. I don't recommend lying you might get insurance but claims can later be denied.
Do it right with a good teacher and you will enjoy boating a lot more. The admiral should be included as well.
Excellent points, gents- and 2 great examples of "the rest of the story" that makes all the difference between obtaining coverage and being declined. The more info the agent/underwriter has to work with, the easier the policy process.
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Old 10-14-2014, 10:56 PM   #9
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Thanks everyone for your responses. Happy to say I was able to get a policy. I mentioned that I had some experience on my Dad's boat (which is true - some years ago), but never owned my own boat. That plus a thorough survey was sufficient. I won't be venturing from the dock without a Captain to help me learn the ropes and gain experience come spring. Appreciate all the advice. -Sam
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Old 10-15-2014, 07:16 AM   #10
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Glad it worked out...i am sure it feels great to know that you cleared one hurtle in ownership.

stick around, huge knowledge base here.
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Old 10-15-2014, 08:17 AM   #11
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New owner insurance

Quote:
Originally Posted by SamIam_Sam View Post
Hello Forum.

I am a novice boater without previous experience on the water. Negotiating now with the owner of a 27 year old trawler. I've only made one inquiry about insurance with a broker so far but it was pretty disappointing. They told me most marine markets underwrite based on prior boat ownership experience and could not provide insurance to me based on my lack thereof. Over the next year after I purchase a boat, I fully intend to take USCG approved courses, engage a Captain to help me learn, go to whatever Trawler Schools are available, etc. But in order to get into a marina, insurance is required. Plus, I'd be a dope to not have insurance anyway.

Since I am new to this, what are my chances of getting insurance? Does anyone know of someone who underwrites newbies like me? Would the age of the boat be another factor working against me?

Thanks for any advice anyone may have.

-Sam
Good morning,
We are a few days shy of owner ship of a 1992 Sabreline and so thrilled I can barely wait. We will close on it by the 29th. So I feel very excited for both of us.
We have done hours of research on insurance. I hope that it is okay to mention the companies that we have top on our list. Gieco, Acadia and have filled out the online form for the USPS and awaiting a quote. We both have had experience on boats all of our lives however the biggest one is a 22 foot Regency pontoon boat. As already said here tell the broker every experience you have ever had let the broker decide if it is helpful. We have a captain motoring us for 2-3 days to bring our trawler home so that counts too I think for the insurance company to take that into account. We are also taking American's Boat Course (ABC). I agree that fibbing is a bad idea it will catch up with you I suspect.
If you google "what should I know before purchasing insurance on a boat" you will find information to consider. I did not realize how much needs to be consider i.e. towing, fire, personal belongings, dinghy etc.
We have not decided yet which company we will go with but I suggestion the more research you do the better you will understand how insurance works and be an informed consumer.
Congrats on your new adventure.
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Old 10-15-2014, 09:51 AM   #12
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Good morning,
We are a few days shy of owner ship of a 1992 Sabreline and so thrilled I can barely wait. We will close on it by the 29th. So I feel very excited for both of us.
We have done hours of research on insurance. I hope that it is okay to mention the companies that we have top on our list. Gieco, Acadia and have filled out the online form for the USPS and awaiting a quote. We both have had experience on boats all of our lives however the biggest one is a 22 foot Regency pontoon boat. As already said here tell the broker every experience you have ever had let the broker decide if it is helpful. We have a captain motoring us for 2-3 days to bring our trawler home so that counts too I think for the insurance company to take that into account. We are also taking American's Boat Course (ABC). I agree that fibbing is a bad idea it will catch up with you I suspect.
If you google "what should I know before purchasing insurance on a boat" you will find information to consider. I did not realize how much needs to be consider i.e. towing, fire, personal belongings, dinghy etc.
We have not decided yet which company we will go with but I suggestion the more research you do the better you will understand how insurance works and be an informed consumer.
Congrats on your new adventure.

TT54

I would suggest you contact a yacht insurance agent to do a real comparison of policies.

Price is not everything, not even close.
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Old 10-15-2014, 10:01 AM   #13
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Yes, what he said.

Peter above can probably help you the most, but i have now found that greater than 25 year old boat can become an issue.
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Old 10-15-2014, 01:06 PM   #14
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TT54

I would suggest you contact a yacht insurance agent to do a real comparison of policies.

Price is not everything, not even close.
So true- so very true.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TT54 View Post
Good morning,
We are a few days shy of owner ship of a 1992 Sabreline and so thrilled I can barely wait. We will close on it by the 29th. So I feel very excited for both of us.
We have done hours of research on insurance. I hope that it is okay to mention the companies that we have top on our list. Gieco, Acadia and have filled out the online form for the USPS and awaiting a quote. We both have had experience on boats all of our lives however the biggest one is a 22 foot Regency pontoon boat. As already said here tell the broker every experience you have ever had let the broker decide if it is helpful. We have a captain motoring us for 2-3 days to bring our trawler home so that counts too I think for the insurance company to take that into account. We are also taking American's Boat Course (ABC). I agree that fibbing is a bad idea it will catch up with you I suspect.
If you google "what should I know before purchasing insurance on a boat" you will find information to consider. I did not realize how much needs to be consider i.e. towing, fire, personal belongings, dinghy etc.
We have not decided yet which company we will go with but I suggestion the more research you do the better you will understand how insurance works and be an informed consumer.
Congrats on your new adventure.
And congrats to you on your new adventure!

As Kevin stated, there is so much more than price when weighing which policy to obtain. In my opinion there are far better companies that Geico and Acadia to get coverage from. Also, there is a difference between standard property and casualty companies (Geico, Pemco, AAA, USAA, Progressive, etc) and stand alone specialty marine insurance companies; how the policy language is written, what is and is not covered, and more.

Classes are fine, and do hold weight- but there is nothing like experience on your own boat. The journey home with your hired skipper will more than suffice as training time. The rest of the story will be how long you owned the Regency for, as well as your experience (ownership and operational) on other boats.

There is a ton of information on the internet about insuring boats, and not all of it is sound. You'll want to have a good long chat with your agent- they must have your best interests at heart first and foremost.
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Old 10-16-2014, 04:48 AM   #15
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Quote today

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Originally Posted by Pau Hana View Post
So true- so very true.




And congrats to you on your new adventure!

As Kevin stated, there is so much more than price when weighing which policy to obtain. In my opinion there are far better companies that Geico and Acadia to get coverage from. Also, there is a difference between standard property and casualty companies (Geico, Pemco, AAA, USAA, Progressive, etc) and stand alone specialty marine insurance companies; how the policy language is written, what is and is not covered, and more.

Classes are fine, and do hold weight- but there is nothing like experience on your own boat. The journey home with your hired skipper will more than suffice as training time. The rest of the story will be how long you owned the Regency for, as well as your experience (ownership and operational) on other boats.

There is a ton of information on the internet about insuring boats, and not all of it is sound. You'll want to have a good long chat with your agent- they must have your best interests at heart first and foremost.
Thank you Peter I will fill out the form today.
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