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Old 04-18-2021, 08:40 PM   #1
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Insuring an older boat

From what I gather finding a company to insure an older boat can be difficult.
I am looking to buy a trawler or motor yacht in 45’ to 60’ range to cruise and live aboard six months a year. My budget has me looking at 20 to 40 year old models. I found a 50 plus footer that I’m very interested in, and called my trusted insurance guy to give me a quote. He said, “sorry, I don’t have anyone who will write a policy for a boat older than 30 years.
I called Boat US insurance / GEICO and they said, “no problem, we insure boats up to 40 years old, as long as it’s fiberglass.” After providing all the particulars, the quote was declined. “Sorry, we only insure boats under 40 feet that are over 30 years old.”
I was told to try Markel. I called them and they said, they only handle boats up to 26 feet, but I could talk to one of their independent agents. I have a call into one.
Does anyone know anything about Markel? Are there another companies you suggest I should be talking to?
I’m open to wood, steel and aluminum boats also. Anyone who will insure them? Are there companies that still insure wooden boats? How about steel or aluminum?
I am thinking there are people to write the insurance, but I’m concerned about high premiums. Any idea how much of a premium I should expect to pay?
I’ll be doing most of my cruising on the eastern seaboard and also in the Great Lakes and down into the Caribbean.
Any help you can provide would be most appreciated.
Thanks.
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Old 04-18-2021, 08:53 PM   #2
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Try talking to an insurance broker. Peter at Novamar. He has help a lot of folks here on TF.

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Old 04-18-2021, 10:53 PM   #3
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If your range is US & Canadian waters out to 25 miles, try:
https://www.hagerty.com/Insurance/Cl...Boat-Insurance
They do older boats including wood.
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Old 04-19-2021, 02:25 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt. Kirk View Post
From what I gather finding a company to insure an older boat can be difficult.
I am looking to buy a trawler or motor yacht in 45’ to 60’ range to cruise and live aboard six months a year. My budget has me looking at 20 to 40 year old models. I found a 50 plus footer that I’m very interested in, and called my trusted insurance guy to give me a quote. He said, “sorry, I don’t have anyone who will write a policy for a boat older than 30 years.
I called Boat US insurance / GEICO and they said, “no problem, we insure boats up to 40 years old, as long as it’s fiberglass.” After providing all the particulars, the quote was declined. “Sorry, we only insure boats under 40 feet that are over 30 years old.”
I was told to try Markel. I called them and they said, they only handle boats up to 26 feet, but I could talk to one of their independent agents. I have a call into one.
Does anyone know anything about Markel? Are there another companies you suggest I should be talking to?
I’m open to wood, steel and aluminum boats also. Anyone who will insure them? Are there companies that still insure wooden boats? How about steel or aluminum?
I am thinking there are people to write the insurance, but I’m concerned about high premiums. Any idea how much of a premium I should expect to pay?
I’ll be doing most of my cruising on the eastern seaboard and also in the Great Lakes and down into the Caribbean.
Any help you can provide would be most appreciated.
Thanks.
Find a quality marine broker and let them advise you.
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Old 04-19-2021, 07:41 AM   #5
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Join MTOA or reach out to some of their members. The new owners of our last boat just got insurance . I don’t remember the name but it is a major marine insurance company. The boat was 42’, fiberglass, 34 years old and in Florida.
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Old 04-19-2021, 08:41 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt. Kirk View Post
From what I gather finding a company to insure an older boat can be difficult.
I am looking to buy a trawler or motor yacht in 45’ to 60’ range to cruise and live aboard six months a year. My budget has me looking at 20 to 40 year old models. I found a 50 plus footer that I’m very interested in, and called my trusted insurance guy to give me a quote. He said, “sorry, I don’t have anyone who will write a policy for a boat older than 30 years.
I called Boat US insurance / GEICO and they said, “no problem, we insure boats up to 40 years old, as long as it’s fiberglass.” After providing all the particulars, the quote was declined. “Sorry, we only insure boats under 40 feet that are over 30 years old.”
I was told to try Markel. I called them and they said, they only handle boats up to 26 feet, but I could talk to one of their independent agents. I have a call into one.
Does anyone know anything about Markel? Are there another companies you suggest I should be talking to?
I’m open to wood, steel and aluminum boats also. Anyone who will insure them? Are there companies that still insure wooden boats? How about steel or aluminum?
I am thinking there are people to write the insurance, but I’m concerned about high premiums. Any idea how much of a premium I should expect to pay?
I’ll be doing most of my cruising on the eastern seaboard and also in the Great Lakes and down into the Caribbean.
Any help you can provide would be most appreciated.
Thanks.
Good morning, Kirk,

Insuring older boats is getting more challenging, to be sure! That said, there are insurers that will insure older boats of the usual construction (no ferro-cement/ no fiberglass over wood not original to the vessel). The area the vessel is moored in, the navigation territory, and the overall experience (ownership and operational) of the vessel owner will also be strong decisioning factors in the underwriting process

Markel has a very broad appetite and will offer coverage on a wide variety of boats; we also have other markets available. PM me if you need assistance.
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Old 04-19-2021, 09:32 AM   #7
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I have Markel on my 30-footer through USAA right now. I had them for my 1972 wooden Grand Banks 42 before that clear up to 2015. So I don't get that they only insure up to 26 feet.
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Old 04-19-2021, 10:55 AM   #8
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We have Geico full coverage through Boat U.S on our 42 foot 48 year old fiberglass boat. They just renewed it a month ago.

But, my wife and I have a lifetime of boat ownership and operating experience. Maybe that’s the difference.
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Old 04-19-2021, 11:36 AM   #9
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We have Geico full coverage through Boat U.S on our 42 foot 48 year old fiberglass boat. They just renewed it a month ago.

But, my wife and I have a lifetime of boat ownership and operating experience. Maybe that’s the difference.
You’re grandfathered in (don’t let your policy lapse!)

New business for GEICO is no older that 40 years over 30’.
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Old 04-19-2021, 12:09 PM   #10
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You’re grandfathered in (don’t let your policy lapse!)

New business for GEICO is no older that 40 years over 30’.
That's good to know! Our 41' 42yr old vessel is covered by them - they wrote the policy less than a year ago after we moved from a 33yr old 41' vessel.
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Old 04-19-2021, 12:22 PM   #11
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Paul....


How hard is it to get liability, salvage and environmental for these older boats?


If so, is getting out of the hurricane zone any help?
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Old 04-19-2021, 01:00 PM   #12
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Paul....


How hard is it to get liability, salvage and environmental for these older boats?


If so, is getting out of the hurricane zone any help?
In the dental chair- will reply shortly..,
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Old 04-19-2021, 01:07 PM   #13
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In the dental chair- will reply shortly..,
Wifey B: Hope he's not on Nitrous Oxide when he replies. Or maybe that would be entertaining.
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Old 04-19-2021, 01:11 PM   #14
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Usually just talking about insurance I would rather be in the dental chair....
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Old 04-19-2021, 01:59 PM   #15
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I just bought a '79 Californian (42 years old) and had all sorts of trouble getting it insured. Turned down by multiple agencies.

Then I called Progressive and we were done in 20 minutes. We have agreed value, etc...
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Old 04-19-2021, 02:44 PM   #16
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Paul....


How hard is it to get liability, salvage and environmental for these older boats?


If so, is getting out of the hurricane zone any help?
Not too hard- the only difference is that (generally) no survey is required for liability only. The experience of the owner, as well as the hull construction and nav territory, will still be factors.
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Old 04-19-2021, 03:21 PM   #17
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I just bought a '79 Californian (42 years old) and had all sorts of trouble getting it insured. Turned down by multiple agencies.

Then I called Progressive and we were done in 20 minutes. We have agreed value, etc...
What were the reasons for the declinations? Progressive will offer agreed value on older boats, but only up to a point. Their ancillary coverages aren't great, either.

All that said, Progressive is another tool in the box, as they definitely have their place...
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Old 04-19-2021, 05:05 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Pau Hana View Post
You’re grandfathered in (don’t let your policy lapse!)

New business for GEICO is no older that 40 years over 30’.
Definitely won’t let it lapse! Just to be sure! It actually went down a little this year. Maybe some credit for going through a hurricane with zero damage!

I also think that a lot of the time, it’s just whatever way the wind is blowing that day as to coverage and rates.
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Old 04-19-2021, 06:16 PM   #19
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Liability insurance is the most important coverage rather than insuring the value of an old, depreciated asset.
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Old 04-19-2021, 08:24 PM   #20
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Call your local State Farm rep. They have more discretion to underwrite policies. Nobody would insure our 50yr old Grand Banks, and those that would were quoting crazy rates for crap policies. One phone call to our local State Farm rep and we had a comprehensive policy lined up within 24hrs for very little money. They were amazing.
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