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Old 08-06-2021, 16:01   #1
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Newbie insurance question

Good afternoon all. Long time lurker, first time poster.

Iím dreaming of possibly moving to a liveaboard in the next 3-4 years. Iím assuming it will be a 39-40í lagoon. Plan would be to cruise the Caribbean.

Iím a western Canadian prairie boy. Iíve done some casual sailing on our local lakes, owned a family 18í ski boat. Nothing on big water.

Iím envisioning taking the ASA 101, 103, 104, 114 in Vancouver over the next couple years as mini vacations as I need to fly out to get there.

What scares me most is getting insurance and all the horror stories about the difficulty getting it as someone with no experience on a catamaran.

What advice can you give a newbie to help build up my boating resume over the next few years to make getting insurance easier. Especially considering Iím in the prairies.

Thanks
Ace
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Old 10-06-2021, 03:04   #2
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Re: Newbie insurance question

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Old 10-06-2021, 03:56   #3
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Re: Newbie insurance question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ace35 View Post
What advice can you give a newbie to help build up my boating resume over the next few years to make getting insurance easier.

Thanks
Ace



Good question to ask of some insurance underwriters rather than rely on anecdotal stories
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Old 10-06-2021, 16:06   #4
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Re: Newbie insurance question

Look at the older Gone With The Wynns videos. They bought a Leopard 43 with no experience. The insurance company required basic instruction which happened on their boat and then a sign off by the instructor. After a week they were good to go.
Actually those vids about them looking for and then buying the boat is really informative. They are in Tonga now.
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Old Yesterday, 04:53   #5
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Re: Newbie insurance question

I bought my sailing 34 foot catamaran in Fiji with no sailing experience what so ever,
But my 50 years of ski boats with skiers to 25 feet and fishing boats and speed boats counted,
I got my Insurance on my Cat,
In Fiji, No problems, Fully Insured, I dont remember how far offshore that was included,
In Australia and 200 nmiles offshore, No problems, Full coverage,
But between Fiji and OZ, No insurance coverage, Thats Blue water,
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Old Yesterday, 05:01   #6
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Re: Newbie insurance question

The insurance environment has been deteriorating so any years-ago information is out of date. Worse, anything that is true now won't necessarily still be true in 2-3 years. There are people who never had a problem before who are having difficulty finding coverage, facing policy provisions that undermine the usefulness of their coverage, and dealing with large premium increases.


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Good advice to which I would add, buy a smaller boat and sail it.
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Old Yesterday, 05:12   #7
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Re: Newbie insurance question

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The insurance environment has been deteriorating so any years-ago information is out of date. Worse, anything that is true now won't necessarily still be true in 2-3 years. There are people who never had a problem before who are having difficulty finding coverage, facing policy provisions that undermine the usefulness of their coverage, and dealing with large premium increases.





Good advice to which I would add, buy a smaller boat and sail it.
Exactly, getting offshore insurance is a real challemge now and it has little to do with skipper experience. There are very few underwriters writing offshore policies and the ones that are are both increasing premiums and adding lots of restrictions to the coverage.
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Old Yesterday, 08:05   #8
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Re: Newbie insurance question

The interesting thing about this is to me is that modern technology actually improves route planning which should reduce the chance of getting caught in a storm and/or making navigational errors and ending up on a reef. So while one would think that insurance company loss ratios should actually be decreasing, insurance companies are in fact restricting coverage and increasing rates. Has the marine insurance industry just been broken for the past 100 years and companies were actually losing money all along? Or are they possibly just trying to make up for the claims paid out due to the massive losses from hurricanes a few years ago? If the later it doesn't seem to make much sense to restrict offshore coverage when virtually all of the claims paid were for boats that were literally attached to land. Hopefully this is just a transitory situation and the marine insurance environment will become more favorable again in the future. I'm not holding my breath on that one though...
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Old Yesterday, 08:18   #9
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Re: Newbie insurance question

Capnmatt, that isn't how the insurance business works. They want to offer the minimum coverage they can get away with and charge the maximum the market will bear. They don't care if an ocean-passage is safer than driving to Walmart. They only care whether there are enough customers that will go somewhere else if they don't offer the coverage.

If the group needing the coverage is too small to bother or nobody else is offering, no point in making the effort. The evaluation of the risk only starts once it has been decided that offering the coverage is necessary to remain competitive.
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Old Yesterday, 08:36   #10
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Re: Newbie insurance question

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The interesting thing about this is to me is that modern technology actually improves route planning which should reduce the chance of getting caught in a storm and/or making navigational errors and ending up on a reef. So while one would think that insurance company loss ratios should actually be decreasing, insurance companies are in fact restricting coverage and increasing rates. Has the marine insurance industry just been broken for the past 100 years and companies were actually losing money all along? Or are they possibly just trying to make up for the claims paid out due to the massive losses from hurricanes a few years ago? If the later it doesn't seem to make much sense to restrict offshore coverage when virtually all of the claims paid were for boats that were literally attached to land. Hopefully this is just a transitory situation and the marine insurance environment will become more favorable again in the future. I'm not holding my breath on that one though...

The insurance industry starts and ends its day thinking about claims history. Hurricane losses are widely believed to be a significant factor in their thinking. Who knows what they actually think beyond that.


It is often said that boats most often sink while at the dock. A variety of factors have led to a rise in the number of boats with absentee owners. Chief among these is the growth of the charter market. A close second is the practice of people flying in to spend a few weeks on their boat and then flying out a few weeks later, which was all but unknown 10 years ago.


I think the deterioration of the geopolitical situation is also a factor. 10 years ago the chances of a well-found cruising boat being impounded or its crew being unable to return aboard and depart when they wish were remote outside of a handful of known high-risk areas. It got bad before covid, covid made it worse, and we're still seeing major western nations imposing various kinds of new travel restrictions without warning. This all leads to more boats being left unattended for longer periods.
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Old Yesterday, 22:20   #11
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Re: Newbie insurance question

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The insurance industry starts and ends its day thinking about claims history. Hurricane losses are widely believed to be a significant factor in their thinking. Who knows what they actually think beyond that.


It is often said that boats most often sink while at the dock. A variety of factors have led to a rise in the number of boats with absentee owners. Chief among these is the growth of the charter market. A close second is the practice of people flying in to spend a few weeks on their boat and then flying out a few weeks later, which was all but unknown 10 years ago.


I think the deterioration of the geopolitical situation is also a factor. 10 years ago the chances of a well-found cruising boat being impounded or its crew being unable to return aboard and depart when they wish were remote outside of a handful of known high-risk areas. It got bad before covid, covid made it worse, and we're still seeing major western nations imposing various kinds of new travel restrictions without warning. This all leads to more boats being left unattended for longer periods.
Many insurance policies exclude coverage for government impoundment.
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Old Today, 12:58   #12
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Re: Newbie insurance question

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Many insurance policies exclude coverage for government impoundment.

Well, sure, but:


--they don't exclude damage that occurred because the owners couldn't enter the country to care for the boat or move it to a safer place



--they don't exclude damage from theft, vandalism, etc., while the owners were ashore but not permitted to access the boat, especially if the boat isn't officially impounded. e.g. owners not permitted to dinghy out from shore, in jail, being detained


--if the boat is damaged while it is seized under the color of law but is never actually impounded, who knows how it will end
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