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Old 05-13-2009, 08:22 PM   #1
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I am in the process of looking into coastal insurance for a 38 ft catamaran that I have made an offer on.

It is my intent to Live Aboard for awhile and I am getting mixed reviews from the various insurance agencies about that. Should I tell them that it is my intent to live in a Marina in NC or simply get coastal insurance and be done with it, and can all concerned please make suggestions as to which insurance companies I should be considering.

Gavin
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Old 05-14-2009, 03:13 AM   #2
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International Marine Insurance Svcs.

110 Channel Marker Way #200

Grasonville, MD 21638

1-410-827-3757

www.IMIS.pro

We are insured through them. We have heard nothing but good reports about them.

(Do not use Bluewater Insurance)
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Old 05-17-2009, 02:31 PM   #3
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I also use IMIS but for offshore cruising insurance. As a broker they can set you up with whatever type of insurance you might need. But if you are only going to be using the boat inside USA waters - check with your automobile and residentail/house insurance companies as they may have better deals by putting your boat underneath or attached to your other insurance policies.

Where you intend to take/use the boat has a large influence on the costs and types of insurance coverage you might need. If you have a bank loan on the boat then you must have full coverage that is acceptable to the bank/loan company. If the boat is totally paid for (no loans) then you can get insurance from full coverage on down to "liability-only" insurance.

Liability-only insurance is significantly cheaper than full coverage. To have a boat in a marina or a boatyard inside the USA you universally must have at least "liability" insurance to cover any damages your boat and you may do to the boatyard/marina and any other boats there. Outside the USA/territories this is not a requirement but is nice to have. If the boat is rather valuable then full coverage is a good idea.

But be warned - - read the policy very, very carefully! There are "hidden" clauses that prevent you from collecting anything should you operate the boat in what most of us consider "normal" ways. Towing dinghies is normally excluded as is repairs and servicing by yourself or other "non-recognized" professionals. Frequent surveys and failure to follow/resolve the the "recommendations" of the - sometimes weird - surveyor can invalidate your coverage. In other words there are many more ways the insurance company can escape paying you for a loss than ways that they will have to pay you. Crew size can be very onerous to single-handers (who are generally not insurable) and to cruising couples (2-person crewed boats). Distances offshore are restricted by many companies as is certain seasons and geographical limits - e.g. the whole Caribbean north of South America to the US Georgia/So Carolina border during June to November can be excluded from coverage.

IMIS can be of great assistance in trying to find the coverage you specifically need based on your desires and destinations. Other companies/brokers can also do this but it is more common that they will sell you a policy and not advise you of all the restrictions and exclusion clauses.

Finally, amongst the "off-shore" coverage companies there are some that will sell you a policy, collect your premiums, and then when disaster strikes - such as a hurricane - shut their doors and you will get nothing (US$0000.00) for your loss. So be very careful reading the policy before you pay them any money AND get recommendations based on past pay-outs to other cruisers for their losses.
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Old 05-17-2009, 06:52 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gslabbert5119 View Post
I am in the process of looking into coastal insurance for a 38 ft catamaran that I have made an offer on.

It is my intent to Live Aboard for awhile and I am getting mixed reviews from the various insurance agencies about that. Should I tell them that it is my intent to live in a Marina in NC or simply get coastal insurance and be done with it, and can all concerned please make suggestions as to which insurance companies I should be considering.

Gavin
If you are coastal USA, do just consider going to BoatUS or another familiar insurer. Your insurance can be very reasonable if you have a lengthy boat experience resume to submit to the insurer.

I agree with prior posts that there are numerous ways that your insurer can get out of paying a claim. For this reason, among others, we only carry liability insurance at this time. We may change that at some point in the future, but it is unlikely.

Fair winds
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Old 05-17-2009, 08:05 PM   #5
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I too went with my home and car insurance agent.

After spending qute some time questioning their coverage I ended up getting a fantastic rate.

Best of luck on the boat.
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Old 05-17-2009, 08:58 PM   #6
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I too went with my home and car insurance agent.

After spending qute some time questioning their coverage I ended up getting a fantastic rate.

Best of luck on the boat.
We found that if your boat is over a certain size, the home/car insurance companies won't insure it. However, if they will, it is usually a great rate. The current BoatUS rate is cheap and hard to beat though at about 1% of hull value for full coverage on a boat insured for $100K or more. Liability only through them or other liability companies seems to be about $500/year for $500K coverage. When we were insuring our little Rawson 30, through 2008, our full coverage was a very cheap $163/year. I don't know how they could have done it so cheaply as it included $300K liability as well.
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Old 05-20-2009, 10:50 AM   #7
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I am going to use International Marine Insurance Svcs, as my yacht is too expensive to be covered by the local insurance company. I did however inquire and was referred to Bluewater insurance.

For the foreseeable future (should I manage to purchase the yacht) it will be used as a liveaboard between North Carolina and Forida or southern California, depending where my job takes me. Those that follow know that my job is in constant flux and one minute I am on the East coast and the next I am on the west coast, only to have things change at a moments notice. I must say I have not actually had to move anywhere yet, just have those clouds hanging over my head..

For those who sent me to IMIS, THANKS they really appear to know what they are doing.
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