Tag Archives: Boat Insurance

Boating Insurance 101

 

With spring in full swing, it’s time to get the boat uncovered and ready for the lake. There is nothing more exhilarating than taking on the open water with the wind blowing and rays beaming. One thing that is not so appealing is Boat Insurance. What is it? and how do you begin to know what the right coverage is? When it comes to insurance coverage for your boat, you can imagine that an everyday runaround boat is similar to getting auto insurance versus a large yacht, which would resemble a small home insurance policy.

Here are a few tips on finding the right coverage and getting your boat ready for the water!

Why do I need boat insurance?

Unfortunately, your home insurance does not cover your boat. There is a slight possibility that your home coverage could stretch to a very small boat- most likely without an engine but not likely. Just like your vehicle is not covered by your home policy, neither are watersport vehicles. Why may you ask? A boat is a portable vehicle- not stationary. Your home policy is covering things that don’t necessarily move. If you are new boat owner there is a possibility you could save on your boat coverage by bundling with your home insurance provider.

What is boat insurance?

Boat insurance can be looked at like a combination of auto and home insurance. There a few main things you need coverage for, then you have the extras. Similar to a home policy, you will be covered if there is an accident or someone gets injured while riding in or operating your boat. Protection for the boat owner is there, similar to a homeowner. Like auto insurance, boat coverage typically includes coverage for bodily injury that your boat inflicts on others, property damage your boat inflicts on docks and other boats, and physical damage to your boat should you hit something. You can also add comprehensive coverage that offers theft protection, damage against fire or flood, personal property coverage for any equipment on the boat, uninsured boaters, damage to the trailer, and roadside assistance if you need to be towed. Consider these additional coverages if your boat is stored off-site or if you have a large quantity of gear or equipment. Check out a list of coverage here.

When is my boat covered?

So, your boat is covered regardless if you are in the water or not. The amount of coverage is what comes into play. If you are pulling the boat down the highway and are in an accident or back end to someone your auto policy takes over- but only the limits on that policy. There is a chance your homeowner’s policy will cover some accidents if the boat is parked on your property. If you plan to travel far out into the ocean there can be limitations on the distance you are covered. Check with your insurance agent if off-shore boating is going to be your main source of travel. In the meantime, a one-time policy can be purchased if you need to move your boat or if there is an indication of a natural disaster coming that will require the boat to move.

Know that you have a couple of boating insurance questions answered, download your spring boating checklist from DISOVERBOATING.COM and get ready to have a safe and fun boating season! 7914_DB14_Spring_Startup_Checklist

Give us a call at 1-800-THANKSAL or visit us online at www.thanksal.com to get a free quote and see how you can save while bundling your insurance.

 

 

 

 

 

5 Tips to Help Keep Your Teen Safe On the Road

Getting a license is one of life’s major milestones. There’s no doubt that FINALLY being able to drive on your own is something every teen cannot wait to do. But how sure are you that your young driver is ready to take on the road all on their own? We look for the best car seat, the best daycare, but when your kids are ready to learn to drive, parents should help them the best drivers they can be. Safe driving is really about judgment. At the start of their driving career risk management and decision making while driving has not developed yet. Your teens biggest threat is their inexperience.

Did you know that the #1 threat to your teen’s safety is driving or riding in a car with another teen driver? (cdc.gov).

Here are 5 tips to help keep your teen safe on the road:

  1. Utilize the Graduated Driver License (GDL) Program– this gives a driver the opportunity to improve their driving skills over time. Phase One is the learners permit. Which must be held for 6 months prior to obtaining a provisional license. Phase Two is the provisional license. Drivers education and time behind the wheel are required prior to taking the driver’s test. Once these are completed a driver can graduate with a provisional license. At this stage, drivers are allowed one passenger under 21 who is not a family member in the vehicle and must be off the road between midnight and 5:00 a.m. unless certain circumstances. Individuals under 18 are restricted from using a cell phone including hands-free devices until they reach 18. The graduate program is required by law for drivers under the age of 18. To get all the details on the program click here.
  2. Let Your Teen Drive– the best thing you can do for your teen is let them drive! Young drivers need to gain confidence behind the wheel. This is the perfect opportunity to discuss different driving scenarios and to pass on your driving knowledge. Practice driving in different weather conditions in large parking lots to get a feel for driving in rain or snow. Parents play a key role. When asked whose opinion they listen to, teens mostly said their parents. The biggest challenges are inexperience and distractions.
  3. Set Rules and Expectations– from the get-go your teen needs to know that you want them to the safest driver they can be. Sit down together and set some ground rules and expectations. For example, no cell phone use while driving, no food in the car, no passengers for a certain period of time, setting a driving curfew, always wear a seatbelt, no reckless driving, and no impaired driving. Being involved in their driving development holds your child accountable. When they show progress, good skill and driving maturity certain privileges can be added over time.
  4. Set Up Consequences– Your teen needs to understand that driving is a privilege. Go over the rules and expectations together. Write them down and set up consequences. Your teen will respect the rules and expectations when they know they are being monitored and there are consequences. As parents, it’s important to show your teen you care about their safety. Lose of driving privileges is a big one. Come home after curfew and you lose the right to drive. Whatever the consequences are, stick to them.
  5. Be an example, set up an agreement and be open– the best thing we can do for our new drivers is be the best example. Kids learn from their parents. Set up an agreement with the expectations and consequences. Refer and adjust it when necessary. Kids understand that there is a major risk when driving a vehicle. The challenge is when they are at the moment they may make the wrong decision. Be open and transparent with them, ask them their fears. Help them practice their driving even after graduating periodically. Copy of an agreement can be found here.

Parents play a key role in their child’s driving progress. Overall, showing you care, offering them guidance, listening to their concerns, setting expectations and being authoritative can be the difference in life and death. Progressively give them privileges as they show they can handle the responsibilities. Your teen will feel more confident behind the wheel and in return be a safe driver. For more details on how to be the key in your teens driving visit https://www.cdc.gov/parentsarethekey/

Visit us online at thanksal.com or gives us a call at 1-800-thanksal to see what kind of safe teen driver discounts we offer.

 

Why an Al Boenker Insurance Agent?

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between an independent insurance agent and a standard broker?

why an al boenker insurance agent1. Independent Agents Shop Multiple Carriers Independent agents are able to shop multiple insurance carriers with one application. Agencies carry contracts with multiple insurance companies (versus just one) and can compare several quotes instantaneously. This is a huge advantage for you, eliminating the need to submit multiple applications to different carriers to find the best and cheapest option.

2. Independent Agents Save Time & Money– With more choices comes a variety of coverage options and price points, saving you time and money. Agents do the shopping and you do the saving.

3. Independent Agents are Licensed Professionals– Agents offer their experience, expert knowledge, and guidance when it comes to selecting the right policy. They are able to explain the complex insurance world to you and make sure you understand all aspects of your policy. When independents set up your policy, they are doing all the research for you- eliminating errors and ensuring your insurance needs are met. According to U.S. Insurance Shopping Study by J.D. Power, “Shoppers are increasingly reliant on agent recommendations when considering and quoting insurers.”1 Be certain that your home and auto are properly covered.

4. Independent Agents are Your Neighbor most agencies are locally owned and community driven. They are your neighbor, belong to community organizations, have children on the same little league team, and attend the same church. Your coverage is their priority.

5. Independent Agents are Your Advocate they offer their help and support when it comes time to actually use your insurance. Dealing with a claim can be a mess. Your independent agents assist you and ensure you are taken care of by the insurance company. When accidents happen, your agent is there.

Give us a call at 1-800-Thanksal or visit us online at www.thanksal.com and let us help you find the best rate and option for you. Let our agents compare your current carrier and see how they can help you save.

Spring Boat Checklist

Are you ready to have some fun in the sun? We’re midway through spring and summer is just around the corner, which means it’s about that time to pull out the boat for some lake action! Whether you enjoy fishing, tubing, or hanging out on the vessel with your friends, there are plenty of activities to look forward to on the water. However, not having a fully operating boat will make you want to jump overboard rather than enjoy the day on the waves. Thankfully, we’re here to help provide the necessary tips to help you prepare for boating season. Check out these handy boat maintenance tips for spring!

To make sure your boat doesn’t break down on the water, you’ll need to carry out a full inspection of your vessel. The last thing you want is to be stranded out in the middle of the lake due to a poor diagnosis!

 

Boating Safety Checklist

 

  1. First, take a look at your fuel system to make sure that there isn’t any leaks or damage to the hoses or main tank. If you see any evidence of deterioration to these components, then you need to look into repairing or replacing them. Depending on where you stored your boat during the winter months, there’s a good chance that it was exposed to freezing temperatures and harsh conditions. This can have a disastrous effect on your belts, cables, and other hoses causing them to crack or loosen. One main sign to look for when detecting worn impaired belts is a black residue near the pulley. If this is evident, then you’ll need to replace the belt and make sure it’s fastened tightly.
  2. The functionality of your boat’s electric system and propeller are essential to ensuring smooth sailing. Do a quick run through of your battery and wire connections to verify that there are no signs of corrosion. It would be wise to test your battery before hitting the water to confirm it can successfully hold a charge.
  3. Inspect the boat’s propeller, carefully inspect it for any cracks, dings, or distortion. A busted propeller can result in a very bumpy ride and can even do damage to your engine and transmission.
  4. Inspect the boat’s hull to look for any damage or abnormalities. Even the slightest fracture can worsen with use, so take every measure you can to prevent the sinking of your ship.
  5. Replenish all of your boat’s fluid levels, including coolants, power steering, drive lubricants, and engine oil. If you did not winterize your boat beforehand, then this is a critical step in order to ensure your boat is functioning at full speed. It also wouldn’t hurt to give your boat’s hull, deck, and topside a good thorough wash so that your vessel is ready to shine on the water!
  6. Put together a safety kit. Boating accidents are common and you want to make sure that you’re prepared for anything, especially if you’re on the water with multiple people. We also urge you to store plenty of lifejackets on board and enforce riders to have them on at all times!

Remember, not only does the boat need to be prepared for its return on the water, so does the driver. If you haven’t boated in a while, it would be wise to ease back into things instead of hitting the ground running. Operating a boat is a lot different than driving a car and it takes enormous care and concentration, so you need to get back into a groove to make sure you’re not a threat to yourself or others on the water.

Before getting your boat ready to ride, now is a great time to make sure that all of your boat insurance needs are up-to-date. Give us a call at 1-800-Thanks-Al to have an agent review your policy to confirm that your boat insurance has the right amount of coverage for your family and your needs. We can also ensure that you are getting the best rate for your policy and answer any questions you might have. You might even qualify for additional discounts, especially if you have your home insured through us!