What is An Insurable RV?

In 13 years of providing RV insurance we’ve gained a bit of experience. By experience I mean we get asked to insure all types of things. So much so that it necessitates a few definitions.

Since we are talking about RV insurance, let’s start with defining what an RV or Recreational Vehicle is. A Recreational Vehicle comes in two general types–Motorized units and Non-motorized units. Motorized units are Motorhomes. Motorhomes are divided into three classes including Class A, Class B, and Class C. Non-motorized units are typically of the towable variety and include conventional travel trailers, fifth wheels, toy haulers and pop-up campers.

That said, not all “RVs” are insurable. So let’s define what an insurable recreational vehicle is.

While different insurance companies have different appetites for risk, most have very similar definitions of what makes an RV insurable. For example most insurable RVs have the following equipment.

  • Refrigeration equipment
  • LP-Gas / Propane System
  • Bathroom Facilities that are “Built in and Plumbed”
  • Cooking Equipment (think kitchen, not a Coleman)
  • Heating/Air conditioning system that is separate from the system provided by the engine
  • Separate electric power system with a 110V-125V hook up
  • Drinkable water supply system

With few exceptions these are required for all insurable RVs. So, let’s talk exceptions to these hard fast rules.

These items are insurable if the exceptions are met:

Class B Motorhomes, or camper vans – While Camper vans are not required to have all of the equipment provided above, they are still required to have a fresh water hook up and a separate 110 volt electric power hook up. In addition a Class B motorhome must include at least two of the following: sleeping facilities, kitchen or toilet facilities.

Pop-up Camper – no requirements

Truck Camper – again, no requirements

If you have an insurable RV and are in the market for RV insurance contact us today at 877-784-6787 or start your quote online today.

This coverage explanation is for illustration purposes only and is general in nature. Coverage explained here may not apply to your policy, State, company, or situation. For more information about how your policy would respond in the event of a loss, please refer to the terms and conditions and declarations page of your policy.

Understanding Perils Insurance

Perils insurance against, what in the world does that mean. Here’s an insurance guy trying to explain the insurance options for rental property insurance.

Rental Property Insurance Coverage – Section I policy Form – Perils insured against.

Demystifying the stuff coming out of your insurance agent’s mouth

Perils insured against…. What does that mean? Let’s see if I can take off my insurance man hat for a second and put on my investor hat. Why? Because I believe this is where A LOT of insurance folks tend to lose their clients. It’s a simple thing, but we often get too caught up in the insurance lingo when we are explaining this stuff. So, here is my best attempt.

A peril is stuff that happens to cause a loss. So, stuff that happens, for which you are insured, is a covered peril.

Okay. Sometimes you will hear an adjustor or an insurance agent say something like, “in the event of a covered loss.” Well, what in the world is a “covered loss?” How could you know? That’s where the policy form comes into play. Policy forms are like a series of hooks on a wall, so we take our policy and we hang it on a form, then every time we read something like “in the event of a covered loss,” we can look at our hook, and we see if it’s covered in the policy.

Okay, so there are essentially 3 types of “hooks” or options for rental property insurance buyers. There are basic, broad, and special forms. That’s easy, but of course you will often hear agents referring to these as DP-1, DP-2, or a DP-3. This basically says it’s a dwelling policy with this kind of form… Now, each form has a list of stuff that gets covered. Basic being the worst and special being the best. Now that I have gone all insurance guy on you, let me break it down visually so that you can understand it.

THIS IS A GENERALIZATION, CHECK YOUR POLICY! THERE ARE THINGS THAT CAN CHANGE THESE LISTS LIKE THE PROPERTY BEING VACANT OR OTHER FACTORS!

Now before you get all crazy and say, “hey Broad has most of what special has, I bet I can save some money,” slow your roll. Let’s look at that last one; Risk of Loss with Exclusions. What does that mean? It means that unless the insurer specifically excludes it, it’s covered. That is a HUGE difference.  In the first two options the insurer will only cover a handful of things, and if it’s not on the list, then it’s not covered. The last option, the special “hook,” says if it’s not excluded, its covered, which leaves hundreds of covered situations with a handful of exclusions.

LONG STORY SHORT? You’re special so get special. It’s as simple as that.

Start your quote online or call us for an immediate quote 1-877-784-6787.

Homeowner’s Liability Coverage

Home insurance Safford, AZIn general terms the liability portion of your homeowner’s policy makes two promises:

1. It pays for the damage you cause to other people’s property and for the injuries you may cause to others. For example, in the case of an auto policy, if you crash into someone else’s car the liability portion of your policy pays to replace their car, and the medical bills due to the bodily injury that you caused to the other party.

2. It pays for your legal defense in the event that you are sued for something covered in the policy. For example, in the case of a homeownwers policy, if someone slips and falls on ice on your front porch, and sues you, the liability portion of the policy would provide coverage to defend you against the suit.

However, there are different types of liability, and that are offered on different types of policies.

Personal Liability – This is a broad form of liability often found on homeowners policy. It provides coverage for the bodily injury and property damage that an insured person is found to be legally responsible for. It can provide coverage on the home’s premise, but also away from the home’s premise.

Premise Liability – This liability form typically is found on dwelling policies where the home is a secondary home (meaning you have personal liability from your primary homeowners policy), a rental property, or a vacant home. It also covers bodily injury and property damage, but it only provides coverage when the cause of the loss is on the insured premise. In other words, if something were to happen at the dwelling because it was unsafe and you were sued, then Premise liability would respond, but unlike personal liability it provides no coverage off the insured premise.

Personal Injury – This liability can be Excluded OR Included on a given policy, so if you want this coverage, you need to make sure the company you have chosen makes it available, and purchase it. Personal Injury excludes things such as False Arrest (keeping someone against their will even for a short period of time), Wrongful Eviction or Entry (Landlords pay attention), Invasion or violation of privacy (Landlords pay attention), and slander and defamation (have any kids on the internet?). You can see why this is important, but this is also often excluded under personal or premise liability, so if you have these exposures (you probably do) you will want to consider adding this to your policy.

How much liability to purchase? That is a good question, and one that only you can make, but more is better which is why we offer an umbrella policy so that you can purchase additional coverage.

Travel Trailers and Fifth Wheels – What We Can Insure

Travel Trailer Insurance Agent Safford, AZWhen we look at what can be broadly classified as “towable” or non-motorized units there are all sorts of variety and nuances can that can be introduced. The long and short of it is that we do provide travel trailer insurance for all sorts units including conventional travel trailers, fifth wheels, toy haulers, and more. In most states we can provide travel trailer insurance for units up to $200,000 in value. Below is how we define each of our insurable travel trailers.

Conventional Travel Trailer Insurance – A conventional travel trailer is one that is towed by bumper or frame hitch. It must include living quarters that include bathroom, kitchen, and sleeping facilities among other requirements. They can be stationary, but there are state limitations.

Fifth Wheel insurance – Fifth wheels are distinguished by their gooseneck hitches that are designed to extend into the bed of a truck, and connect to the ball located in the center of the bed. Similar to conventional travel trailer these must have living facilities, can be stationary subject to limitation. Fifth wheel trailers have several advantages over conventional travel trailer as the goose neck hitch offers better load transfer and weight distribution than bumper hitches. Consequently, there is increased stability resulting in better operator control and safety. Fifth wheels can be hauled by pickup trucks, but also have the versatility of being pulled by medium duty tow unit which are semi-trucks that have been modified to pull fifth wheels.

Toy Hauler insurance – Toy haulers can be of the bumper pull or fifth wheel variety. They must include living quarters, but unlike traditional travel trailers or fifth wheels they also include storage space for items such as ATVs, Motorcycles, or all sorts of things.

Regardless of the type of travel trailer you have, the RV Insurance Professionals at Gila Insurance Group can probably insure it.

This coverage explanation is for illustration purposes only and is general in nature. Coverage explained here may not apply to your policy, State, company, or situation. For more information about how your policy would respond in the event of a loss, please refer to the terms and conditions and declarations page of your policy.

RV Insurance Loss Settlement Options

RV Insurance Agent Safford, AZWhen it comes to your RV, auto insurance isn’t good enough. You need specialty RV insurance coverage, and one of the most important things you get with a specialty policy is unique RV Loss Settlement Options. Below is a brief explanation of each of the options.

Actual Cash Value – This is the auto insurance option and in some cases its the only thing you can get. In an actual cash value situation you get the current value of the RV. Meaning you are subject to depreciation. So even if you bought a new unit, you may get significantly less than the purchase price. This is the cheapest option when it comes to premium, but is not the greatest when it comes to a claim, as it pays out the least.

Total Loss Replacement – If you have a total loss, Total Loss Replacement will replace your unit with a new unit. After a while, you will get the purchase price guarantee. Wait, what? Remember the cost of a new unit will increase every year. So total loss replacement would ensure you get a new unit for the first several years (sorry for being vague it varies by company), after the first several years you would get the purchase price of the original unit to go towards the cost of a new unit (which again, may not cover all of it because prices of RVs go up every year).

Purchase Price Guarantee – Purchase Price Guarantee protects you against deprecation. With this option you would get what you paid for the original unit (less the deductible) towards the cost of a new unit. Unfortunately this option has lots of rules that vary by carrier. But some general rules include the fact that this coverage is not available to every RV, and must be applied soon after you buy the unit. Also, the coverage may drop off and will no longer be available after a certain number of years. With this option you premium will increase each year, as your unit gets older. Unfortunately switching a new company with a lower premium means that you will probably lose this coverage and only be able to get Actual Cash Value.

Agreed Value – In some cases you might have an older unit that is worth more than the actual cash value because you have refurbished it. In these cases you will be asked to provide pictures and other proof of the higher value. Then you and the company can agree on a value that will be paid in the event of an accident.

Insurance is a balance, premium on one side, and payout on the other. In some cases the age of the RV will determine the loss settlement, but in other cases understanding the RV Loss Settlement Options available to you can save you a lot of headache in the event of a claim.

Specialty RV Insurance Coverage

RV insurance specialty coverage is important, because le’s face it, an RV is a hybrid. It rolls down the highway, only to be parked and be a temporary home. From an insurance stand point this means we need to cover you not only while its being driven or in tow, but also when its parked. It also means that we need to insure all the cool things that make it livable.

Replacement Cost Personal Effects – Unlike an Auto policy an RV policy can provide coverage for your personal effects. This is an example of how an RV policy can kind of be like a home insurance policy. A traditional Auto policy isn’t going to cover you for personal property, rather, it tells you go get that coverage from your Homeowners policy. But in your RV you may have things to cook, clean, sleep, and live. Personal Effects coverage can cover all these things up to the limit on your policy in the event that then are damaged, destroyed, or stolen.

Attached Accessories – Coverage for Attached Accessories, including awnings, satellite dishes and TV antennas.

RV Road Service Insurance & Unlimited Towing  Provides sign-and-drive coverage 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Includes battery jump starts, fuel delivery, flat tire change, lockout service, and winching and towing for mechanical or electrical breakdown. The amount you choose is the limit of coverage (the maximum payment from the insurance company).

Emergency Expense Coverage  Reimburses you for expenses incurred following an accident or other covered loss. Pays for hotels and transportation if your coach is incapacitated. Choose the dollar amount for maximum reimbursement.

Vacation Liability – So you have just finished, setting up your rig in a camp site, you have just put out your chairs so that you can sit and relax under the awning, when a neighbor, comes over, trips, falls, and breaks an arm. Where are you going to get covered? Vacation Liability. Vacation Liability covers losses resulting in injury, death, or property damage that includes in your motor home or travel trailer, or on your campsite.

Full-Timer RV Coverage – Are you living in your RV full-time. If you are you will want to purchase Full-Timer liability. This works like the personal  liability coverage that is provided by a homeowners policy. Whereas the vacation liability works like premise liability, the Full-Timer Liability is much broader. Some companies will cover medical payments, loss assessment, and even contents in a storage unit. Full-Timer Coverage is designed for those that use their motor home or travel trailer for six or more months out of the year.

Mexico Physical Damage – If you are headed to Mexico, we can cover your RV for collision and other-than-collision while in Mexico.

RV Specific Loss Settlements – From total loss replacement, to purchase price guarantee, to agreed value we have RV specific loss settlements that will protect your RV in the best way possible.

Diminishing Deductible – For every loss free year you have, your deductible decreases. At within several years (depends on the carrier) you can have a situation that you would not have a deductible in the event of a loss.

Mexico Coverage  Covers your recreational vehicle for comprehensive and collision while you travel in Mexico, provided you maintain Mexico liability insurance during your entire trip.

Don’t settle for an Auto insurance policy, get the RV insurance specialty coverage you need! Request a quote through or website or call us today.

Rental Home Insurance Deductibles

One of the most common insurance issues is what the deductible should be. While only you can decide, here are a couple of thoughts that might help you.

Deductibles
When it comes to deductibles there are a few of questions you should ask yourself.

  1. How much cash do I usually have on hand?
  2. How much am I willing to pay out of pocket?
  3. What deposit amount do I receive from my tenants?
  4. What kind of discount am I looking for off my insurance premiums?

Each of these is pertinent to the deductible question. The first two are very much related. If you are able to keep cash available for business emergencies, and are willing to spend it, perhaps opt for a little higher deductible.

Now, for the deposit question. I wrote an article for a Magazine once that was entitled. Smoke, Fires, Lawsuits – OH MY! In it, I described a fire that happened just around the corner from my house. The tenant was a friend of mine. Long story short, as the family moved out after this devastating situation the landlord came and asked for the next month’s rent. It seemed like kind of a weird thing to do, in my opinion. She was clearly facing a major loss. But, if she had insurance, her property would have been covered for the loss caused by the fire. Her rents would have been protected by loss of use/rents, but she would have been on the hook for the deductible. Now, consider if her tenant’s deposit amount had been the same has her deductible, she would have had no out of pocket costs. ASSUMING SHE HAD VALUED THE HOUSE PROPERLY. But consider the concept of making the deposit match the deductible. In the event of a total loss, it could save your bacon (clearly, this assumes that if someone burns down your rental property, you’re not giving them the deposit back… I think that’s fair).

Finally the discount question: Deductibles are simple. The higher the deductible means you take more risk, and the lower the premiums. The lower the deductible means the less risk you take, and the higher the premiums. However, there is a reason I tackled this question last. This should be the determining factor. A $5,000 deductible that makes your premiums dirt cheap doesn’t make sense if you don’t have the $5,000 to pay when you have a loss.

While only you can determine what deductible is best for you, hopefully this is some good food for thought.

To get an incredible quote these coverage sections start our online quote form. To Talk to a licensed agent about this coverage call us at 1-877-784-6787.

This coverage explanation is for illustration purposes only and is general in nature. Coverage explained here may not apply to your policy, State, company, or situation. For more information about how your policy would respond in the event of a loss, please refer to the terms and conditions and declarations page of your policy.

Ways to Save With Your Deductible

I recently went to go see “The Greatest Showman,” as one who is often found singing or whistling show tunes, I loved it. But the sound track is probably better than the Movie. A great mix of music with strong beats and base lines and violins coupled with distorted guitar, and great melodies. Followed by hopefully ballads. Anyway, there is a song that talks about the long-lasting idiom, “Walking a Tight Rope.” What does this have to do with Saving money on your insurance? Anymore Insurance companies know about your home or auto by running reports. They know if you have had losses, they know when your home was built, what materials, the size, etc., etc., etc. They know. So, there isn’t a lot of wiggle room on a lot. But there is when it comes to deductibles, but it’s a tight rope walk.

When you have a covered claim the insurance company will pay the amount of the loss, less the deductible.

So for example, if you have a $1,000 deductible on your auto, and have a fender bender that costs $2,000 to repair the insurance company will pay $1,000, it is your responsibility to pay the rest of the amount due to the auto repair shop.

On a home if you have $1,000 deductible, and a hail loss that requires you to replace your roof, if the cost is $10,000 to replace the roof, then you would be paid $9,000 and you would be responsible for paying the contractor the other $1,000.

So how is this a type rope? There is a inverse relationship between the cost of your insurance policy and your deductible. The higher the deductible the lower your rates. The lower your deductible the higher your rates.

So how is this a tight rope? Well, on one hand if you have a BIG loss you won’t want to be coming out of pocket to pay a large amount of the claim. On the other hand, if you have a small loss will you actually turn it into the company? Think about it, if it’s a $1,500 loss and you have a $1,000 deductible. The additional $500 dollars you get from the insurance company will cost you dearly once you lose your claims free discount. So what should your deductible be? That depends? Do you have cash on hand usually? Do you have the ability to cover small losses yourself? If so, then the answer is higher.

Once quick example to close. I recently helped a real estate investor get an insurance policy on a Manufactured Home he had purchased as a rental. As an investor he has cash on hand on a regular basis, and he knew the only time they would ever report a claim is if it was BIG. So we looked at the deductible. At a $1,000 deductible the rate was $1080 annually for this manufactured home. With a $2,500 deductible the rate was $817. With a $5,000 deductible the rate was $349. Wow! A 70% discount because of the deductible. Now he knows if there’s a loss he is probably covering it, but what he is most concerned about is a catastrophe, so he decided to go with a high deductible. But now you see, choosing your deductible is like walking a tight rope.

For questions on how to save money on your insurance policy, contact Gila Insurance Group. We’ll review your current policy or provide an insurance quote.

Umbrella Liability Insurance for Landlords

Do you have enough liability insurance? Probably not. But how much is enough? Unfortunately that question varies. First, what does liability insurance do? Liability insurance does two things: (1.) it pays for losses for which you become legally liable for as a result of a lawsuit and (2.) it pays to defend you in the event of a lawsuit.

So what can you become legally liable for? As a real estate investor you have some unique exposures. You have tenants, and, let’s face it, they probably don’t love you. Not because you’re a bad person, but because you represent a bill, and maybe a past due bill. You’re the proverbial “man” they are trying to stick it to. So you need to protect yourself, your assets, your business.

“It won’t happen to me.” Try this. Google how to sue your landlord and feast your eyes on the three million, yes, three million results.

The bottom-line is that if you get sued and are found liable you will be required to pay the judgment. How? That depends. If you have insurance, that would be first, then it goes to your assets, including cash, stocks, bonds, REAL ESTATE. Yes, you selling that investment property might do real well to pay off your judgment, and you’re out the asset and the cash flow. Beyond that, your wages from your J-O-B can be garnished. Liability is a serious thing.

Liability insurance isn’t expensive, it’s actually quite reasonable. So max out the limits on your policy, the marginal difference will be dollars. Then, consider an umbrella policy. An umbrella policy is a liability-only policy with some unique features which are pretty cool, but the important part is that it kicks in when you get sued for limits that are higher than a home insurance policy. For the limits you get, it is amazingly affordable. And if you have several investment properties you may have several million in real estate. Protect your investment(s) by making sure you have enough liability insurance!

Get covered today with an umbrella policy today! Start your quote immediately, but have what you need on hand!