What is RV insurance?
Normally, insurance companies won't allow RV owners to add Recreational vehicles to individual car policies. In order to get complete coverage, you have to get a separate policy for your RV.
The essentials of RV insurance — table of contents:
- What’s covered by my insurance?
- What are some extra protection policies I can have?
- What isn’t covered?
- Full-time vs. part-time insurance on RV
- RV Insurance Companies
What does RV insurance consist of?
Many trailer insurance companies policies consist of liability, comprehensive and collision, and under/uninsured vehicle driver protection like your auto insurance. Let's break it down for you.
Liability coverage ensures that any damage you trigger to someone else's property or car is covered. For simpleness, it's broken down into bodily injury and residential or commercial property damage limitations, much like your automobile. Physical injury limits are defined on a per person and per mishap basis whereas residential or commercial property damage coverage is on a per mishap level only. Similar to your car insurance, RV insurance matches the vehicle insurance coverage requirement for each state.
Comprehensive and collision insurance
Like your automobile , collision and comprehensive insurance pays for physical damage to your RV. Collision refers to damages that occur when your RV hits another vehicle or fixed object. Comprehensive, or sometimes called "other than collision", covers things like wind & hail damage, theft, animal collision, falling objects, and vandalism.
Collision and comprehensive coverage also feature deductibles, which is your portion of financial responsibility for claiming damage to your RV. The amount of deductible for comprehensive or collision coverage varies per your choice but can range from $250 to $2,500. A helpful hint if you're trying to lower your insurance premium by changing your deductible is the inverse relationship between the two — meaning that if you increase your deductible, you decrease your premium (AKA your bill).
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage
This extends to your RV in the event of an accident where the other party either does not have insurance or does not have enough coverage to pay for all of the injuries they caused in an accident. Uninsured or underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage is broken down similarly to liability, using a split-limit format where the coverage amounts correspond to a per person/per accident limit.
Additional coverage options for RVs
While the above coverage describes more of a basic form of coverage for your RV, if you live in your RV full-time or have expensive upgrades or features, you should consider the following additional coverages.
Personal property and attachment coverage
This coverage extends to personal effects like furniture, satellite dishes, sporting equipment, or camping supplies that you might have in your RV. This is unique to your RV policy as auto insurance usually doesn’t extend to personal effects. The exact deductibles and limits of personal property vary per policy as well as per individual.
Considering the amount of time you spend with your RV on the road, having a towing service can be vital. While it varies per insurance company, roadside service for RVs typically has high-limit coverage to account for the large vehicle size.
Vacation Liability coverage for when you stop driving and begin utilizing your recreational vehicle as a temporary home. Some travel trailer and motor home policies can include extra coverage for physical damage in Mexico.
Full-time RV coverage
If you’re using your RV as your full-time residence, this is the type of coverage you need. It works similarly to homeowners insurance in that it offers higher personal liability and medical payments for injured visitors, in addition to coverage for any items you keep in storage while you’re traveling.
What's not covered by RV insurance?
The exclusions for your RV vary per insurance carrier. Typically, however, travel trailers or other towed vehicles would require a separate policy — didn’t we warn insurance was specific? Moreover, if you plan on taking your RV out of the US and into Canada or Mexico, you should consult with your insurance company. While coverage to Canada varies, typically Mexico is not a covered location for insurance companies but can sometimes be added onto your policy for an additional premium.
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Full-time vs. recreational RV insurance
When you're quoted for an RV insurance policy, it's likely your insurer will inquire how many months out of the year you'll be spending traveling in your RV, and rate your premium accordingly. Whether you're a full-time or part-time RVer, RV insurance covers you while traveling and at the campsites you stay at.
If you're a full-timer whose primary residence is your RV, your coverage needs would differ compared to someone who occasionally takes the RV out for vacations and weekend trips. The full-timer coverage you would want if you lived in your RV would look more like a union of a homeowners or renters policy and a car insurance policy. In addition to coverage for your personal property, it would also be a good idea — for some extra peace of mind — to add personal liability if your full-timers policy doesn't already include it. Though a typical RV policy comes with liability insurance, this only covers you for accidents while on the road as opposed to liability for injuries that may occur in or around the RV. You can also consider adding an endorsement for an agreed value or replacement cost — instead of actual cash value, which deducts for depreciation — so you don't find yourself financially underwater if your motorhome or camper RV is totaled.
- Specified Value -- market value/actual cash value of the RV
- Agreed Value -- the insured quantity, despite the current market price
- Replacement Value -- replace your insured RV with a new Recreational Vehicle that is most like it
Keep in mind not all insurance companies offer Agreed Value or Replacement coverage on their rv insurance policies.
When you ask for an rv insurance quote, request that they tell you the difference between the traditional actual cash value and the agreed value insurance for rv, the insurance companies might not charge that much extra for it, but it could be a huge deal in the event of a total claim.
If you're more of a recreational, or part-time, RV or motor home traveler, it could be a good idea to have additional coverage like vacation liability as mentioned above as another layer of protection in your RV insurance policy. While your auto liability covers you for accidents while driving the RV, vacation liability extends your liability coverage to cover accidents that may happen in or around the parked RV while you're on vacation or a road trip.
RV Insurance Companies
- Encompass Insurance
- Foremost Insurance
- Nationwide Insurance
- Progressive Insurance
- Safeco Insurance
- Travelers Insurance
RV insurance is a no-brainer. If you want to be protected in the case that anything bad should happen while you’re camping, you need insurance for travel trailers. There are many different kinds of coverage, but you should at least have comprehensive and collision coverage to protect your investment.
Requirements will vary by state and by the insurance provider, so be sure to ask questions before you buy. It’s smart to compare options before you pull the trigger. That way, you’ll get the very best policy for what you care about.
If you need help finding the best provider for you, request a proposal today. We'll help you get set up with insurance for your recreational vehicles that benefits you..
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