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Old 12-01-2022, 12:22   #1
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Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

So my wife and I are planning on buying a liveaboard this spring but are having trouble finding an insurance company that will talk to us. We are newer owners and have a somewhat limited resume (asa 101,103,104, offshore class, about a half dozen low 30' charter weeks).

According to my broker Progressive is not insuring liveaboards at all anymore and Geico is putting severe limitations on everyone. Do you guys know any good companies that would work with us? We are resigning ourselves to the idea that we may have to drop our search from a 44' to something like a 36 or 38 and stay in the US for the first year. Which wouldn't be the worst thing but we need to find a company that will work with us even at that.
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Old 12-01-2022, 20:51   #2
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

There is no reason to use the term fulltime liveaboard.

You just take extended cruises away from your usual home ashore, maybe a few months at a time.

AirBNB, resort hotels, campsites in between, whatever...
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Old 12-01-2022, 20:59   #3
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

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Originally Posted by PaulCrawhorn View Post
There is no reason to use the term fulltime liveaboard.

You just take extended cruises away from your usual home ashore, maybe a few months at a time.

AirBNB, resort hotels, campsites in between, whatever...

This is good advice, one of the brokers I was talking with was saying the same thing just today. Honestly we are going to legitimately be extended cruisers because our plan is to put the boat in a yard and fly home to work a few months a year.
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Old 13-01-2022, 08:28   #4
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

I have Progressive and have been happy. I went from a 14' Sunfish to a 38' Hunter with limited experience without complaint from them. Going larger may have been problematic however. No one asked, and we did not volunteer anything about "full time liveaboard" etc.

They do need you to select a location to be "based", but I discussed with my agent and its not really an issue.

It is however US only although a Bahamas endorsement is available for a hundred bucks or so. IDK about further afield.
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Old 13-01-2022, 09:32   #5
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

I have a Cal 39 and I use Progressive! I love them, quite easy to work with
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Old 13-01-2022, 11:09   #6
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

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I have a Cal 39 and I use Progressive! I love them, quite easy to work with
Likewise I had Progressive with my previous boat (37'). They do have limits on size and value though.
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Old 13-01-2022, 11:29   #7
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

And the contradiction we've found is that some lenders offer better rates for liveaboards since they figure you'll pay attention when your feet get wet as you swing out of the berth in the morning.


Insurance guys have a different view, apparently. Not sure why. Probably figure that the more the boat gets used the more chances for damage?
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Old 13-01-2022, 11:36   #8
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

This was a major factor for us in getting into a 34' for part-time use a couple of years ago. It was easy to insure through State Farm while we still have a house and cars. By the time we go full-time in a 44', we'll have 5 years of owner/operator experience.
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Old 13-01-2022, 11:41   #9
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

you need to understand the difference between a liveaboard and a cruiser
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Old 13-01-2022, 11:56   #10
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

I'd stay away from anyone who's bread and butter is really in the Home and Auto business who happen to cover RV's, Boats, and motorcycles.

I also don't like to a single company or agency representing a single company.

I'd prefer to go to an independent agent who represents multiple underwriting companies. For our boat, I prefer an Agency that specializes in marine insurance and carries some marine specific companies.

There are a number of them out there. If the agent your dealing with isn't intimately familiar with marine insurance, then hang up and move on.
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Old 13-01-2022, 12:02   #11
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

Also a friendly suggestion.......stop referring to yourself as a liveaboard.

Have you ever felt the need to inform people which side of the bed you sleep on?

Whether your bed in is the basement, 1st floor or second floor?

Do you mention when you meet people that you happen to be resident of the town??

Probably not......................because people don't need to know where you sleep!!

Plus, it will make much of your boating life easier. Marina's don't love it, Insurance doesn't love it, resident's of the town where you're anchored don't love it.
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Old 14-01-2022, 04:08   #12
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

We use Boat USin the states and Bahamas, and Rassey when we are in the Caribbean. It is expensive to find one company to do everything, but it works for us to switch every couple years based on where we are cruising.
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Old 14-01-2022, 06:14   #13
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

from my perspective a few things here:

it sounds like aside from taking a few courses you don't have much sailing experience and:
1. want to acquire a large boat
2. go offshore immediately

I would scale things back a bit. Stay "local" for at least the first season so you are learning the boat you pick in familiar waters. Don't go liveaboard immediately and if you do, become "cruisers". Liveaboards stay at the same dock all the time. Cruisers move around!

and yes there is a contradiction. If your lender understands marine you might get a better rate as they see lower risk in that you are at the boat all the time and can take care of it. but Insurance companies see it opposite. The more you are at the boat and using it, the greater their risk!
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Old 14-01-2022, 07:12   #14
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

try Markel American
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Old 14-01-2022, 07:46   #15
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Re: Insurance companies that are still writing for newer owners

A second (third) the statements that the term liveaboard is toxic. Your plan should be insurance that lets you go cruising. Also get realistic on where you are likely to go. The insurance company doesn't really care what you are going to do in 9 years they care what you are going to do during this policy term.

Liveaboard my boat for the rest of my life and sail around the world (maybe someday) is going to be a lot more closed doors then we want to sail our boat down the east coast to Florida ... this year. Next year you may do more and deal with that next year when you have more experience and hopefully a record of no claims.

Also yes to answer your question a smaller boat and staying in the US for the first year should make things easier.
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