RV Insurance – Why You Really, Really Need It!
Summer is finally here! You’re ready to pack up your RV and take a road trip with the family. Your wife wants you to leave that laptop behind and you are more than happy to oblige. After all, you’re ready to spend some quality time with your family and kids.
Your kids might be a little more reluctant about being in an RV for a week with their folks, but they’ll learn to love it as much as you do. Of course they will!
The weekend arrives and you packed the RV to the rim with not only the necessities, but even went overboard and got a new beautiful flat screen TV for the camper. And with that satellite dish you installed last month, your kids will be psyched at how they can watch whatever they want on the road!
You head out on the open road, ready for an adventure and the whole family is in great spirits. Until…
You’re a few minutes down the road and you can just feel something is wrong. Thump, thump. You pull the camper over and you have a flat tire. Darn it.
Flat Tire is Your First Issue
You figure out you can handle this – a flat tire is really no big deal, right? While your kids are groaning in the car and you start working on switching out the tire, some maniac drives right by you and slams into the front end of your trailer.
Before you can scream, the guy drives off! You run after him and he’s too far down the road for you to catch up. What the heck?!!
Pissed off, you switch out your tire and get back on the road. You can handle a dent and luckily the camper still drives just fine.
Your wife feels awful. She looks at you and in her most comforting voice says, “Don’t worry. Thankfully, we have RV insurance.” And you don’t have the guts or heart to tell her that you let the policy lapse. Ah jeez!
After all, you didn’t use it at all last year. Not once!
You pull over to the campsite. Your kids build tents while you make dinners. Your kids are having a good time as you sit around, eat dinner and telling funny and scary camp side stories. The kids even put their phones away for the night! Miracle.
You’re all pretty tuckered out from a long day on the road and know you’ll sleep soundly. The crickets are humming and there’s nothing like a good sleep outdoors with your wife nestled next to you.
The Next Day
You’re the first to wake up and you head outside, stretch and feel great! Maybe you’ll make your famous bacon and eggs for the crew.
You look at your kids’ tent and notice a big hole in it! Darn it! Some raccoon must have gnawed at it overnight. Oh well. You could patch that up, no problem.
You make your famous bacon and eggs anyway before heading out with the family for a hike to a waterfall with a swimming hole. It’s a gorgeous hike and everyone enjoys cooling off in the water. You are all tired and ready to head back to the RV for a late afternoon nap before dinner.
You return to the campsite and find that your RV is MISSING! Someone stole it while you were gone. You start yelling at the top of your lungs.
Your wife and kids can’t believe that your RV was stolen. This is a nightmare!
Your kids can help but giggle because at least they have their precious phones with them. Your wife tries to comfort you and says that at least you have a great RV insurance policy.
And this is when you have to tell her the truth. You grimace and quietly tell her that you let the RV insurance lapse.
While your wife is screaming at you about how it is your responsibility to keep up with the bills and how she can’t believe you let it lapse… we’ll break down how RV insurance could’ve been a huge lifesaver for you in this nightmare scenario.
In fact, not only did you miss the opportunity to use the RV insurance, in some states, it’s even required by law (so you broke the law on top everything else!).
#1. The Flat Tire
Let’s start with the flat tire. Sure, it’s not a big deal if you have a flat tire. But, maybe, you’re not the kind of person who knows how to switch tires. RV insurance gives you the option of having roadside assistant coverage for your flat tire, if your battery dies, or any other mechanical failure that might happen on the road.
#2. The Dent In Your RV
And what about the jerk who hit your car and drove off?
Maybe you eventually catch up with him or maybe you don’t, but by having uninsured motorist coverage, you’d be fine. It gives you that extra coverage if someone hits you and they don’t have enough liability insurance to cover all the expenses for the dent. It covers injuries too if someone happens to get hurt.
#3. The Personal Belongings in Your RV
Now you have to figure out not only how to replace your van, but how to recoup the costs of all the personal belongings that were inside your RV. Of course, your old policy had personal property coverage which would’ve covered everything that you had in the RV!
You try to put a list together of an inventory of what exactly was inside:
-That new TV and satellite dish you recently installed: holy smokes
-Your wife’s favorite family gold candelabra from Aunt Elma (she’s still yelling at you, reminding you of this) and frankly, you’re kind of glad it’s gone because you think it’s bad luck (see!) until she reminds you it was worth $15,000!
-Your kids’ clothes: not worth much with the holes and all, but they’re just happy they still have their phones.
At least you left your laptop at home!
And the list goes on and on…
#4 The RV itself
If you had an RV insurance policy that included total loss or replacement coverage, the entire cost of your camper, whatever type, would be recouped if it is stolen or even totaled. Wouldn’t that be a relief!
You could have purchased a brand, spanking new RV if you had this coverage.
#5 The Tents
How about the tent which was chewed up by the raccoon at the campsite? Vacation or campsite coverage would cover the cost of the tent or anything else that might happen at the campsite.
You can see why RV insurance is really a no brainer since there are so many things that can happen on the road, even rain or a natural disaster!
Other Tips to Consider
Comprehensive and collision insurance
Comprehensive and collision coverage will cover any damage to your RV whether it’s in an accident with another car, theft, a natural disaster, or even inclement weather. (In the above scenario, this is what you would want).
There is also more specialized coverage you can add which is really dependent on the kind of RV you own and what you want to be covered. Be aware that each state has its own minimum liability requirements.
Car insurance is not RV insurance
You’re probably thinking that you can use a car insurance policy (assuming that you own a car) as insurance for your motorhome or camper van.
Some auto insurance policies might even extend liability coverage for the towable RVs, but most auto policies aren’t enough coverage for your motorhome.
As long as you’re spending the money to purchase insurance, you want to be covered for any personal injury, theft or even sudden rain or tornados on the road. RV insurance will do all of that; auto insurance won’t.
The cost of RV insurance
Cost is always important in whatever we purchase. RV Insurance is the same. It’s difficult to pinpoint the exact cost because it depends on your RV, whether you use it for vacation or live in it full-time.
Which is why it’s always best to get a few quotes from different providers.
When choosing an RV insurance company, make sure that you choose a company that specializes in RV insurance and has a good track record of paying claims.
We hope this scenario never happens to you, but if you have RV insurance, you (and your wife) will be so relieved that you renewed that policy!
Guide to RV Insurance
The team at ConsumersAdvocate.org has put together this GUIDE to help you find the right RV insurance for you. Be sure to check it out and get the right coverage for your RV.
Lisa Fimberg is a writer over at Consumers Advocate.org, which is a site that covers topics from homeowners insurance to RV insurance. In fact, the team over there put together an excellent guide on what to look for in RV insurance and the best companies to purchase it. It’s a great place to start gathering a few quotes and gives you some really good information.
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