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Old 12-02-2018, 13:30   #1
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Insuring in Bahamas

Morning folks,

Just joined and already have a question. I've just completed a handshake deal for a 1975 Pearson P35 sloop. I'm trying to get insurance for it, but I'm in a slightly unusual situation, and the usual insurers that I'm familiar with like Progressive and Geico can't help.

My wife and I are US citizens. Our homes are in Colorado, currently rented out. Our mailing address is her parents place in Kansas. We're currently living on Great Guana Cay in the Bahamas for at least the next year while she works for a private club out here. I'm looking for something to do to occupy myself, and the boat seemed like the perfect situation.

The boat is currently registered in Maryland and USCG registered. The owner has always lived aboard on it down here 8-10 months out of the year and taken it up to the Chesapeake for the rest of the time. She's never insured it. I'll be buying it for 15k, and keeping it US registered via the Coast Guard (no state registration) and keeping it in the Bahamas on a cruising permit.

The US insurers that I'm familiar with can't deal with the fact that it's here most of the time. They can insure it if it's in the US most of the time with the occasional trip to the Bahamas, but not the other way around.

Any suggestions on companies that I could use? I'm primarily concerned with liability insurance, but if hull insurance is reasonable I'd take that as well. I can't imagine 15k worth of boat would be that expensive.

Sorry for the long post! Any ideas would be welcomed.
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Old 12-02-2018, 13:42   #2
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

Have you tried Pantaenius?

Pantaenius - Best American Yacht Insurance Company
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Old 12-02-2018, 13:46   #3
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

It is unlikely that you will find a cost effective full policy that allows you to keep the boat year round in the Bahamas.
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Old 12-02-2018, 14:05   #4
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

I think Pantaenious US only insures above $250k.

The reason so many cruisers go north in summer is that their insurance policies don't allow them to stay in the hurricane box.

And the commission on a $15k policy isn't going to get anyone to be very creative.

If you have other assets to protect, I'd look for a liability only insurance. But it sounds like you should just go uninsured like the PO.

I'd contract with a boatyard for a guaranteed haul if a hurricane approaches. There used to be one in Green Turtle Cay that did this. I expect there are others.

Otherwise, research hurricane holes and get there early.
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Old 12-02-2018, 14:13   #5
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

Call Casey Heer at Casey Insurance Group 954-474-3387. Im in almost the same situation as you, and he took care of it. Tell him Pete Eshleman sent you, maybe hell split the commission with me
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Old 12-02-2018, 14:20   #6
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

Yep, the Green Turtle cay marina is my hurricane plan. I didn't think about having a pre-existing contract with them for a guaranteed haul out. I'll look into that..thank you. Pataenius just effectively told me to go away as I don't meet their underwriting requirements. Pete, thanks for the advice, I'll give your guy a call tomorrow.
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Old 12-02-2018, 14:34   #7
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

If the other routes don't work, at least give a call to IMIS. They insure all value of boats and are creative. They are brokers so work with lots of insurance companies. Many cruisers use them (including me) and they have a great reputation. They also will have seen plenty of people with exactly your problem so you'll get a quick answer.

IMIS Home Page ~ International Marine Insurance Services
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Old 14-02-2018, 10:23   #8
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

On a $15K boat, I'd be more concerned about liability insurance than any other kind. I'd be prepared to just walk away from the boat and tally it as a $15K loss. You are going to have a difficult time getting insurance on that boat with it staying in one of the most active hurricane zones in the world.
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Old 14-02-2018, 10:41   #9
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

Yeah, I'd be ok with that as well. Got two of the above suggested vendors looking at options at the moment. Fingers crossed something comes back soon.
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Old 14-02-2018, 15:54   #10
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

We have gone to the Bahamas each of the last ten years in our 1988 boat (Irish Eyes to the Bahamas). We carry liability only insurance from BoatUS on the boat as we consider the boat itself easily replaceable but worry about the damage we might do to others. We have no calendar limits and can go as far south as Grand Turk Island.

We are in Florida headed south on trip eleven.
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Old 14-02-2018, 16:34   #11
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

Just find a good boat insurance broker and the Bahamas will not be the problem. The bigger problem will be the age of the boat.
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Old 15-02-2018, 04:29   #12
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, GlobalGuy.
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Old 15-02-2018, 05:39   #13
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Re: Insuring in Bahamas

Since you are essentially a "Bahamian" boat that occasionally cruises to the US, I suggest you try contacting the local (Marsh Harbour / Nassau) insurance agencies / brokers:

Abaco Insurance Agency Ltd.
Insurance Management Bahamas: Personal, Commercial, Professional Services
https://www.jsjohnson.com/
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