5 RV insurance tips to make sure you’re fully covered.
Summer is here, and with us living in a pandemic, many of us Americans are not traveling abroad. We’re deciding to see the beauty that is in the USA, and we’re buying an RV to explore and vacation. Whenever we want. Freedom and travel.
Some of us are even selling our homes and becoming nomads; traveling, working, and living in an RV.
No matter what you’re doing with your RV you need to protect it and your stuff with insurance.
In this short blog post we’ll go over 5 topics you may not have thought about when insuring your RV.
- Is RV insurance mandatory?
- Is insurance different for full time vs part time RVers?
- What about personal items, do they need to be separately insured?
- The difference between towed and toad vehicle coverages.
- Is your RV’s home address correct?
Just like your home, apartment, or car, RV ownership comes with some risks. These risks may arise whether your RV is parked at a campground, garaged or on the road.
To protect your RV and your financial responsibilities as the owner, you’ll need good insurance coverage.
Is RV Insurance Mandatory?
If it has a motor and a steering wheel and is drivable, probably yes. Just like a vehicle you should have at the very least liability and personal injury coverage.
Most states, except Virginia and New Hampshire require RV insurance. That doesn’t mean you don’t have to have insurance in those states. In place of traditional RV insurance, you’ll pay an uninsured motor vehicle fee or file a financial responsibility insurance certificate (SR-22) which you must pay for upfront.
Insurance for full time vs part time RVers
Most folks buy an RV and just add it to their current automobile policy and hit the road. This will cover you for the bare minimum, but it may not be enough if you spend lots of time in your RV.
Insurance companies sort RVers into a couple of different categories, which are based on presumed liability needs. Some people only use their RV occasionally, however if you spend more than 150 nights a year in your RV you’re considered a full time RVer.
The difference is simple, your carrier will anticipate how much you’ll be on the road, which will translate into how much more risk you’ll be exposed to.
A nomad RVer who has no physical address and spends most of their time on the road is a higher risk for collision and liability.
If you try to outsmart the carrier and they’ve come to find you use your RV more than you stated, you run the risk that a claim may not be covered at all.
Make sure your personal belongings are covered too.
This is a GREAT reason to not just add your RV to your automobile policy.
What you keep in your car is vastly different than what you keep in your RV. You don’t have a stove or couch in your car. Dishes, computers, kayaks etc in your car.
RV policies can add up to $99k in personal content coverage. Much like home insurance you can schedule your belongings that are in your RV, and assign individual coverage to items like jewelry and anything worth something to you that’s inside or outside it, like that awesome sunshade you pull out when you get to the campground.
The difference between tow and toad vehicle coverages.
If you’re an RVer you probably already know what a tow and toad vehicle is, but do you know the coverage is different?
So you’re on the road towing your toad vehicle with your RV and you’re in an accident and both your RV and toad are damaged. Which policy covers what? Will your RV coverage cover damage to your toad? What if you’re driving your RV and a tire blows on your toad and causes an accident? Normally your RV coverage will cover both. It’s a good idea to have both your RV covered as well as your toad.
It’s an even better idea to call your agent and ask about the types and amount of coverage for both.
Now you’re pulling your travel trailer with your truck and you’re in an accident. It’s the same type of coverage as with an RV and toad, however, once you disconnect the 2 your truck’s insurance no longer covers your trailer.
So if you and your family are parked at a campground at the beach and a fellow RVer stops by and sits with you under your awning, and it falls a hurts them, your truck insurance will not cover this, but your travel trailer insurance will.
It’s better not to guess, but to call your local insurance agent, and get the facts for the best coverage for your toad or tow vehicle.
Make sure you’re RV is insured at the correct address
When you go to cover your RV your agent should ask you where it is stored when not in use.
If you store it at your home, that’s easy. You’ll use that address.
If you store your RV at a friend’s farm or a campground in another state, you want to make sure your agent knows this.
If your RV is stored in a location other than your home, your agent will need to assess the area for additional risks. You are more likely to have a loss when your RV is stored away from your home, and you want to make sure you’re covered.