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  #11  
Old 01-30-2014
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

If you ever hope to spend a night in a marina, and there will come a time you need to, you'll need $300k in liability, so get it now.

About the survey, only the craziest person alive would buy a boat without hauling it of the water to see what the bottom looks like.... so you may as well get a survey while you're at it IMHO.
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robertluster (01-30-2014)
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

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Originally Posted by robertluster View Post
The minimum to get by on a practical basis is what I'm after. I have NO health insurance, and don't intend to sign anywhere.

Sounds like you are proud of that. I hope you never fall and break a limb, need an emergency appendectomy or hundreds of other issues/ailments that will need medical attention....because you will get screwed. The costs of routine medical procedures easily run into 4 and 5 digits.
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

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Originally Posted by robertluster View Post
This kinda sounds like my attitude/plan. Insurance has it's place, but is often for people who don't want to be responsible for themselves.
In my experience the ones who dont have insurance are the ones with limited to no ability to be responsible for themselves and their actions when the crap hits the fan.
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

Liability insurance is relatively cheap, mine from Boat US is only $250 per year. My boats a 1974 so they did require a survey. Where you get murdered is on the comprehensive which you don't need on a $10K boat. Buy an $8K boat and use the 2K to register it, buy insurance and a place to put the boat. The days of just anchoring for free anywhere are long gone, even where it's legal to do so the water cops will make your life unbearable.
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

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Originally Posted by chuck53 View Post
Sounds like you are proud of that. I hope you never fall and break a limb, need an emergency appendectomy or hundreds of other issues/ailments that will need medical attention....because you will get screwed. The costs of routine medical procedures easily run into 4 and 5 digits.
Well, Thanks just loads for the heads up, but corrupt lawyers, insurance companies, and a particular nameless hospital are the reason my IRA and 401K and ex wife all went "poof". I'm thankful for the ex-navy surgeon that worked on me - but all the rest should be lined up against a wall somewhere... If anyone were to EVER try to collect 5 or 6 digits from me again, they will just have to suck hind teat - and it's dry...
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

I am not suggesting that the op not get insurance. I do find it odd that no marina that I have overnighted at on the Chesapeake has ever asked me if I was insured. I don't stay at marinas often but I'm always surprised that I'm not asked to show proof of insurance.
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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-$500 worthwhile.
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

Not sure where you are located but in Seattle/Everett I used Safeco insurance... they did not require a survey based on the cost of the sailboat. I have the following for insurance:

$300,000 liability (needed by the Everett Marina)
$1 mil environmental (fuel spill clean up)
$15,000 medical per passenger liability (I think this is small in my book)
$7500 hull recovery/replacement if it sinks or gets totalled
$1500 outboard motor coverage for theft
I don't have the policy opened at this time but I know there was other coverage and riders...

I pay $345 a year for this coverage and well worth it... The boat had a survey back in 1990 and I sent that survey in even though it was outdated, they gave me the coverage...

My best advice to you is pay the survey and get the insurance... peace of mind goes a long way....
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robertluster (01-30-2014)
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

The boat you buy for $10,000 will probably be needing lots of deferred maintenance tasks taken care of - do it now safely and conveniently or do it later expensivley and maybe hazardously. I think you should forgo paying a surveyor and learn to inspect boats yourself. There are at least a couple of good books that will guide you through the inspection process. This will be your first step in learning how to do all those deferred maintenance tasks yourself. If you find inspecting boats to be too tedious, you should probably stay in the metal box in Mesa. So YES to your first premise of doing your own survey.

Liability insurance? Absolutely. The reasons have been well-explained by previous posters. Even though it's not part of your dream, much of your anchor time is likely to be near other people, so be responsible for the damage you may cause them. Clearly you don't have the money to self-insure and liability insurance is not very expensive. So YES to liability insurance. But your question was, "Is a survey necessary for liabiltiy insurance?" My experience says the answer to that question is NO, you do not need a survey to get liability insurance. It may depend on your engine, though. I have a fairly new outboard engine and did not need a survey to get liability coverage.

Last edited by jwing; 01-30-2014 at 12:38 PM.
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Re: 10K$ boat --- Are Insurance and Survey REALLY mandatory?

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Originally Posted by robertluster View Post
...... the QUESTIONS: For a boat with a purchase price of about 10K, do I REALLY need a Survey? I've read the blogs and advice on what to look for and am not totally incompetent. No doubt someone with years of experience will find things I won't notice - but if I cover 95% myself with my own checklist/inspection, might that not be plenty good enough? Is there any cheap help available?
Relative to a newer more expensive boat, a $10K boat naturally has increased risks of something going seriously wrong with rigging or hull that could end up in disabling or sinking the boat. Those are risks to your life and savings. If it sinks or ends up on shore you will be forced to pay very high costs of removal. Unless you're outside of US jurisdiction, you cannot walk (or swim) away from a mess of broken fiberglass and leaking diesel fuel. If you go in open waters or offshore you may be endangering your life. With your budget you're unlikely to carry a life raft and related safety equipment.

Before considering going without a survey, I'd suggest trying to find a surveyor who can work with you and understand your needs. To be at all realistic you must assume that a few things on your $10K boat need to get fixed or replaced. A good surveyor can be well worth the the $300 or $500 fee by guiding you toward which things really need replacement, how to repair/replace cheaply, and which things only look ugly but do not endanger your boat.

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