Boat Insurance in Nova Scotia

If you want to keep your boat safe and secure, the best way to do so is with boat insurance. Boat insurance protects your boat from a whole host of risks, and finding it is easy thanks to BrokerLink’s team of licensed insurance advisors. Continue reading to learn how we can match you with insurance for your recreational boat today.

Nova Scotia boat insurance 101

Boat insurance is designed to protect policyholders from the risks that come with operating and owning a boat. That’s what makes boat insurance so important. Without it, you would be on the hook for paying for all kinds of expenses if something went wrong. If you got into an accident or your boat was stolen, you would have to pay for the cost of repairing or replacing it entirely on your own. But with boat insurance, you have financial protection against these worst-case scenarios. A few examples of the ways that a Nova Scotia boat insurance policy could protect you include:

  • Boat insurance will cover you if your boat, its motor, or other equipment or accessories are stolen or damaged in a collision.
  • Boat insurance will cover you if the personal belongings on board your boat, such as electronics or jewellery, are stolen, vandalized, or damaged.
  • Boat insurance will cover you if a driver or passenger is injured while on your boat or your boat causes damage to another person’s personal property, and they file a third-party liability claim against you.

Insurance coverage for Nova Scotia boaters

Boat insurance coverage in Nova Scotia ultimately varies between policyholders. Since it is not mandatory, there are no types of coverage that all boaters must have. That said, there are a few types of boat insurance that are most common, like third-party liability coverage and property damage coverage. We outline a few important boat insurance coverages below:

Property damage coverage

As the name suggests, property damage coverage will protect your boat from physical damage. For instance, if you collide with another vessel or hit a dock and your boat is scratched or dented, you can file a property damage claim to receive a payment that helps cover these repairs. Just be sure to read through the fine print in your policy so that you know what types of damage are covered. Theft, vandalism, and weather-related incidents are usually covered.

Third party liability coverage

Liability insurance is another type of necessary coverage for boaters. This will protect you if you get into an at-fault collision that results in property damage or bodily harm. With this type of coverage, you can file a claim to cover everything from medical expenses and repair bills to legal fees, like defence and settlement fees.

Temporary replacement coverage

Temporary replacement coverage will pay for you to rent a boat temporarily if yours is unusable. For instance, if your boat is damaged after an accident and needs to be repaired, temporary replacement coverage will pay for you to rent a boat until yours is fixed. This will ensure you can still get around even while your boat is in the shop. Temporary replacement coverage is especially important for Nova Scotia residents whose primary method of transportation is their boat.

Agreed value coverage

Agreed value coverage works like a waiver of depreciation for car insurance. You will receive a payout equal to the value of your watercraft if it is deemed a write-off by the insurance company after getting into an accident.

Navigational extension coverage

Navigational extension coverage is available if you regularly drive your watercraft outside of standard navigational limits and want this additional protection.

Collision coverage

Collision coverage will pay to repair or replace your boat if it is damaged in a collision. This type of coverage usually applies to severe collisions and can be claimed whether you are found to be at fault for the accident or not. It also applies whether you collided with another boat or even with property or a grounded object, such as a dock.

Comprehensive coverage

Comprehensive coverage is one last type of coverage that Nova Scotia boaters may want to consider. This is the only type that will financially protect your boat if it is damaged while in storage or while docked. With this type of coverage, you can file a claim if your boat is stolen from the marina or damaged while stored. Specific perils that comprehensive coverage protects against vary but typically include theft, vandalism, falling and flying objects, explosions and riots, fire, and weather-related incidents.

Please note that the above coverages are specifically designed for recreational boats, not commercial vessels. If you want to insure a commercial fishing boat, you may need to purchase an additional policy or at least buy extra coverage that will protect you against business-related risks. Learn more about commercial boating insurance by contacting BrokerLink today. We can also provide you with a complimentary boat insurance quote.

How insurance companies calculate boat insurance premiums in Nova Scotia

Insurance companies, not insurance brokers, calculate boat insurance premiums in Nova Scotia. The tricky thing is that companies use various factors to calculate rates and may weigh the same factors differently. To give you an idea of how insurers assess risk and determine rates, keep reading for a list of some of the most critical factors that come into play.

Your boating record

Your boating record is the first factor that comes into play when an insurer calculates your rates. Nearly every insurance company will ask to see your record. This is because your record reflects your risk level. If you have lots of infractions on your boating record, then you will be at a higher risk of getting into a collision in the future, which will translate to a higher insurance premium. Alternatively, if your record is clean, you will be at a lower risk of getting into an accident, and thus, your premium will be lower. To keep your record as clean as possible, read up on boat safety requirements and obey all rules and regulations.

How long you’ve owned your boat

Two more factors impacting your rates are how long you’ve been a boat owner and how much time you have spent operating a boat. Insurers like to see lots of boating experience. The more knowledge you have, the lower your rates are likely to be, especially if you have a clean boating record. Conversely, if you are a new boat owner, your rates are likely to be higher, just as if you were a new driver. The good news is that your premium will usually drop as you get older and gain experience with boat ownership. If you are looking for a first-time boat insurance policy, contact BrokerLink. One of our insurance advisors can also provide you with a first-time boat owner's checklist.

Where you operate your boat

Where you drive your boat also matters. Why? Certain waterways are riskier than others. For example, they might have more boat traffic, which increases your odds of an accident. Some bodies of water might also be more prone to natural disasters or inclement weather. Thus, when you buy boat insurance, an insurance agent will ask where you dock your boat and where you most frequently operate it.

Where you store your boat in Nova Scotia

Where you store your boat when it’s not in use, whether for a single night or months on end, will also affect the cost of your Nova Scotia boat insurance policy. Some storage options are considered riskier than others. Private options like a boat house on your property or a securely monitored marina may be regarded as safer than more public locations, where the risk of damage or theft would be more significant.

How to safely drive a boat in Nova Scotia

Driving a boat isn’t as easy as it’s cracked up to be. You must be knowledgeable about your own vessel and the laws of the water. Before heading out on the water, be sure to read up on maritime law in Nova Scotia and Canada at large. We also recommend carefully reviewing the boating safety tips below:

Keep important safety equipment on board

Having safety equipment on board your boat is extremely important. It is essential not only for yourself as the operator but also for all passengers. Types of safety equipment that you should never leave the dock without include life jackets enough for every passenger on board, and make sure they are correctly fitted, a sound signalling device, like a whistle, a waterproof flashlight, a first aid kit, a buoyant, an anchor, an emergency flare, non-perishable foods, and a paddle. Having a cellular device and a backup battery is also a smart choice.

Never engage in impaired driving on your boat

Impaired driving is a big no-no, whether you’re operating a car or a boat. Just as with driving a vehicle under the influence, it is illegal to drive a boat under the influence of drugs or alcohol, too. If you are not fit to drive, find an alternate route home or ask a sober friend or family member to drive you. Never risk driving impaired. You could end up in an accident that has serious consequences.

Check the weather and know your route

Double-checking the weather forecast is of the utmost importance when boating. Inclement weather can make your trip extremely dangerous. Thus, before pulling out of the marina, be sure to check the weather and make sure that you have clear skies ahead. We also recommend reviewing your route and informing others of the route you plan to take. Let them know your anticipated departure time, destination, and arrival time. You should also leave your contact information and the contact information of any others travelling with you.

Tips to save money on Nova Scotia boat insurance coverage

If you want to save money on your Nova Scotia boat insurance coverage, you’ve come to the right place. An insurance broker in Nova Scotia would be happy to explain how you can lower your boat insurance rates. From shopping around and comparing policies to bundling boat and car insurance in Nova Scotia, keep reading to discover some of BrokerLink’s top tips to save money on boat insurance.

1. Shop around and compare boat insurance policies in Nova Scotia

The first way to ensure you get the best possible rate for your Nova Scotia boat insurance policy is to shop around. Always do your due diligence by obtaining quotes and comparing policies between providers. Otherwise, you risk paying more for insurance than you need to. A BrokerLink insurance advisor can also shop around on your behalf if you want a more convenient option. We will contact the top insurance companies in Nova Scotia and request estimates on your behalf. From there, we will compare them and present the best options to you. It couldn’t be easier, and this way, you can rest assured that you will receive the most competitive rate for your boat insurance plan.

2. Bundle your Nova Scotia boat insurance policy with another policy

Have you heard of insurance bundling? If you bundle your Nova Scotia boat insurance policy with another insurance product, such as home insurance or car insurance, you could save a lot. Many insurers offer significant discounts to customers who buy more than one insurance product from them simultaneously. Not all types of insurance qualify, but if you are interested in bundling boat insurance with your car insurance or home insurance plan, contact a BrokerLink insurance advisor, and they will help you find an insurance company that meets your needs.

3. Choose a high boat insurance deductible

The higher your deductible, the lower your premium. That’s the way it goes in the insurance world, and that includes boat insurance. If you can afford a higher deductible, picking one will usually result in a lower rate. Remember that you can choose to raise or lower your deductible anytime your policy is up for renewal. So, if you decide that you can’t afford a high boat insurance deductible right away, you can increase it in a year or two.

4. Outfit your boat with an anti-theft device

Anti-theft devices can not only save customers money on car insurance but can also save them money on boat insurance. You can reduce your premium by equipping your boat with an anti-theft device - especially one with GPS tracking capabilities. Since this significantly reduces the odds of your boat being stolen and you needing to file an insurance claim, an insurance company will likely give you a discount if you can show proof of an anti-theft device.

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Contact us

At Nova Scotia BrokerLink, we’re here to help you with any insurance needs you may have. Whether it’s insuring your home, car, business, recreational items, or pets, let us help you find the best coverage possible. We can also help you adjust or renew your policy down the road.

You can reach us by phone, email, or in person at any one of our locations across Nova Scotia. No matter how you choose to get in touch, a BrokerLink insurance advisor will be happy to assist you. We also encourage you to take advantage of our free online quote tool that can provide you with a competitive quote in minutes.


Boat insurance Nova Scotia FAQs

Is boat insurance mandatory in Nova Scotia?

No, it is not a legal requirement in Nova Scotia. That said, it is strongly recommended due to the protection it offers. With a boat insurance policy, you will have financial protection in the event that you get into an accident, your boat is stolen, or your boat is damaged while in storage.

Where can I buy boat insurance in Nova Scotia?

The best places to buy boat insurance in Nova Scotia are insurance companies and insurance brokerages. Both can help you find quality coverage at an affordable price.

How can I save money on Nova Scotia boat insurance?

You can save money on Nova Scotia boat insurance by adding an anti-theft device to your boat, selecting a high insurance deductible, bundling your boat insurance plan with another type of policy, like home insurance or car insurance, and keeping your record as clean as possible by operating your boat safely and obeying all rules of the water.

What types of boat insurance can a broker help me find?

An insurance broker in Nova Scotia can help customers find all types of boat insurance coverage, including but not limited to collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, agreed value coverage, third-party liability coverage, property damage coverage, temporary replacement coverage, and navigation extension coverage.

If you have any questions, contact one of our local branches.