Asleep at the wheel
Join Date: Sep 2011
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?
As others have said, while it may not be an absolute requirement, you do need liability insurance. I can understand being callous about your health insurance (though I hope you don't expect to get "free" ER care) since it's your life on the line, or comprehensive insurance since that covers your own mistakes on your boat. But with a boat comes the possibility that you'll damage not only your own boat, but also OPP (other people's property), including their lives, and in some cases their livelihood. To me, failing to carry liability insurance is like flipping off every other boat that you pass.
Hopefully you'll carry liability, at a minimum. But there are also times where comprehensive can be advantageous. When an electrical storm fries the wiring and all of your electronics, will you have the funds to make the repairs, and in the timeframe you need them? When a piece of debris is sucked into your engine and makes it past your strainer, will you have the funds to make those repairs? Or if your prop gets fouled and your engine and transmission are incapacitated, will you have the funds to fix them? These kinds of no-warning, high expense things happen. Maybe you have a nice cash reserve, in which case you're good. But for most of us, quickly coming up with $4,000-$10,000 (or more) isn't all that easy.
Do you need a survey? In a word, no (unless the insurance company requires one). But is one advantageous? Yes. We didn't survey our Catalina 25 when we bought her (we paid $1000 for her). Then I read about rigging failure, swing keel failures, etc., and realized that the peace of mind that would come with having an inspection would make the $300-$500 worthwhile.
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