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Colorado Insurance Blog

Should You Keep Your Motorcycle or Boat Insured in the Off-Season?

Do I really need to insure my motorcycle in the winter?

It may seem like a good idea to cancel your motorcycle policy in the off-season, but it could cost you more in the long run. The same goes for boat, ATV, motorhome and snowmobile policies.

Most people only think about the risk they face while riding or boating. But there are plenty of things that can happen while your toy in storage.

If you insure your recreational vehicles year-round, you’ll be protected if something happens. Even in the off-season.  

Claims that could occur while a boat, ATV, snowmobile, or motorcycle is in storage:

  • A strong storm comes through the area and knocks a tree onto your camper in the driveway.
  • There is a fire in your garage and your boat, snowmobile, or ATV stored inside is damaged.
  • Someone backs into your boat or RV while it’s at a storage facility for the winter.
  • Your motorcycle, boat or other recreational vehicle is stolen.
  • While you’re hosting a birthday party, a neighborhood kid wanders into your garage. They think it’d be fun to take a picture on your motorcycle but if falls and breaks their leg.

Many people think that if something is in your garage it’s covered by your home insurance. That’s true for a lot of the property in your garage, but not everything. Most homeowners policies exclude coverage for motorized vehicles, which means your home policy is unlikely to cover a motorcycle, boat, ATV, motorhome, etc.

You may also save money on your policy in the long run if you keep it active all year!

Insurance carriers consider the portion of the year you can ride your motorcycle. Your rate will depend on your state’s climate and the vehicle you’re insuring.

A motorcycle policy will cost more in California than in North Dakota. And a snowmobile policy in Alaska will be more expensive than in Texas.

In Colorado you can only use your motorcycle or boat 5-6 months out of the year, so your rates will reflect that.

The rate for motorcycle insurance also depends on if you’ve had continuous insurance. If you cancel your motorcycle policy in the winter, you’ll have a lapse in coverage. When you get a new policy and there has been a lapse, your premium will be higher.

There are some ways to save money in the off-season without cancelling your coverage.

Most insurance carriers won’t let you to remove liability coverage during the off-season. There are other coverages you can change when you’re not using your motorcycle or boat.

One option is to remove Collision coverage. Since you won’t be driving your boat, motorcycle or other toy, it’s unlikely to suffer a collision.

You can also remove optional coverages like roadside assistance during the off-season. Give us a call to discuss what you can do to lower your insurance costs in the off-season.

If you do reduce any coverages, make sure you call your agent to add them back on before you start using your toy again. They will not be added back on without your request.

If you have a loan on your toy, check with the lienholder BEFORE you reduce any coverages!

Most lenders have specific requirements when it comes to insurance. If you remove coverages they require, your lender could “force-place” insurance. That tends to cost more and provide less coverage, so be sure to check with them before making any changes.

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