Do I Need Caravan Insurance?
Have you ever asked yourself “Do I need caravan insurance?” We’ve been caravanning since 2006. I’ve always insured my caravan, just as I do the car and even the house.
It wasn’t until recently when a thought occurred to me. Do I really need caravan insurance? I’ve never really thought about it before as everyone I know has car insurance because they have to legally and because they don’t want to lose their investment if the worst happens.
There is no legal requirement to insure a caravan. What? I hear you say. So, why do I need caravan insurance?
Caravan insurance isn’t cheap. When you add up all the bits you need to buy for the caravan, then you have club site fees and even storage fees things really start to add up.
Why Do I Need Caravan Insurance?
You might be thinking, I have my caravan on a secure site during the winter, it won’t get stolen. The secure storage site won’t cover you for theft, there may be some clause that says if a tree falls on your caravan we’ll cover the damage but this is unlikely. You’re better off making sure you’re covered yourself by getting your own policy.
During the winter months caravans can be unattended for weeks if not months at a time. If on one of your visits your caravan is stolen, you’ll need your insurance then to make a claim.
What Types of Things are Covered?
- Storm damage whilst in storage
- Stolen from Storage
- Damage to the caravan whilst driving
- Items stolen from within the caravan
- Accidental damage
In some ways it’s a bit like buildings and contents insurance.
Surely my Car Insurance Covers Me For Towing My Caravan?
A caravan is treated as a trailer, albeit a very expensive one. It’s towed behind your car like a trailer. If you have an accident whilst towing your car would be covered, but the trailer wouldn’t, or in our case the caravan would be covered, as we have insurance.
How To Make A Claim
We had to make a claim a year or so ago, so I know how to make a claim.
We were driving to the Caravan Club’s Brighton Site (which we love). When we got there we noticed, in fact my wife noticed, that there was a crack in one of our side windows. Naturally I was blamed for it; “You were driving”. Well, that’s true. The split was about 12 inches long and there was cracking along the window. I had to use duct tape along the split and we carried on with our holiday.
When we got back from our break I rang my insurance company to inform them. They needed to know what happened when it happened, what damage was done etc. I agreed to get some quotes and send it to them. After sometime they agreed to pay for the work.
In this particular instance I got a new window made up and fitted it myself.
It was easy to make a claim and the insurance paid up quickly. However, as I’d made a claim ( cost of the claim was around £400 ) when I next came to shop around, to my amazement a lot of companies wouldn’t even give me a quote because I’d made a claim in the past 3 years. On reflection maybe I should have paid for the window myself.
Types of Insurance
- New for old
- If your caravan gets stolen, or is a total loss, the idea here is that if you make a total loss claim your caravan will be replaced by a new equivalent caravan. You’d need to check the exact wording on your particular policy.
- Market Value
- Differing from New for Old, and a cheaper alternative, this offers you the market value of your caravan. Remember, this isn’t the price you see your caravan selling for on eBay, or on the dealers forecourt, it’s probably based on the Glass’s Guide price. Again check you policy. What this means in real terms is that if you think your caravan is worth £12,000 you’ll probably get £8,000. Ok that’s maybe a cynical view, but due diligence is required here, make sure you know exactly what you’d get.
One thing to be sure you get right is that cover you require for items in the caravan. It can effect the cost of insurance.
Things to remember to include:
- Water Butt
- Waste container
- Gas bottle
- Crockery / Cutlery
An awning is normally a separately insured on the same policy, so you’ll have awning insurance cover, I think it’s worth it as awnings can cost over £1,000.