After purchasing an RV, you may find it wise to purchase RV insurance to protect your investment. Sometimes the law requires RV owners to have insurance, but not always. If you’re buying an RV, this article’s for you. We’ll break down the pros and cons, what type of coverage you need for your RV, and how much you can expect to pay.
Let’s get started.
What Is RV Insurance?
RV insurance acts similar to car insurance. At a minimum, having insurance protects your RV from collision damage or some other accident. And, it helps cover any persons or property injured as a result.
If your RV gets damaged – either at the fault of you or someone else – your policy will cover the cost of any loss or injury up to your policy amount. You pay your portion of the deductible to your insurance company, and they pay for the cost of repairs.
What Does RV Insurance Usually Cover?
At a baseline, liability coverage provides financial protection when you hurt someone or damage someone else’s property while driving your RV. Liability does not protect any damage to your RV or property during an accident, or from nature, like fire and hail damage. It also doesn’t cover theft or vandalism.
You can opt to purchase higher coverage, like comprehensive and collision coverage. The comprehensive plan protects you against damage to your RV from theft, a tire blowout, and an act of nature, like a tree branch falling on the roof.
Collision coverage protects from damage from an accident, either with another vehicle or an object, like a tree or telephone pole.
Now, what happens in the worst-case scenario where your RV is deemed totaled? That all depends on the type of policy you have. If you have an Actual Cash Value policy, your insurance company will pay you the cost of the RV on the open market.
If you have an Agreed Value Loss policy, they will pay out the amount you agreed on at the time of signing. And finally, a Total Loss Replacement policy will pay out what it costs to purchase a new RV of a similar make and model.
Like other insurance policies, you can add on different types of coverage to make your policy fit your lifestyle. You can get anything from full-timers coverage or vacation liability to pest protection for your RV. We’ll talk through all those options a bit later.
How Much Does RV Insurance Cost?
RV insurance costs depend on many factors, such as the type of RV you have and the amount of coverage you put on it. The cost can range from $500 to $1200 per year. Let’s take a look at the average insurance amount for various RVs.
Travel trailers are the least expensive type or RV to insure. According to Progressive, camper trailers cost around $502 per year through Progressive.
According to insurance marketing company Trusted Choice, a fifth wheel costs on average between $800 to $925 per year to insure.
Don’t forget that with both travel trailers and fifth-wheel RVs, you’ll need to also factor in the cost of your tow vehicle’s insurance.
➡ Still trying to decide which type of RV trailer is right for you? Read this: Which Is Best? 5th Wheel vs. Travel Trailer
Overland Insurance Services reports motorhome RV insurance costs vary based on the RV class. Insurance for Class A motorhomes is the most expensive at $1,150 per year or about $96 per month. A Class B runs you approximately $1,000 per year in insurance expenses. In comparison, Class C RV insurance costs and average of $900 per year.
According to Progressive, their average rate for a motorhome was $848 per year in 2020.
What Factors Affect RV Insurance Costs?
Several things impact the cost of your RV insurance rate, similar to your auto insurance rate. Let’s discuss some of the most common factors.
Age & Condition
You can expect newer RVs to have higher premiums than older units. Similarly, more luxurious and technologically advanced RVs have higher premiums as well. This is because it cost more to repair these campers.
In addition, motorhomes typically cost more money to insure. They have to cover the mechanics, body, and driveable components if damaged, which factors into the cost of your RV insurance.
Type of Use
If you only use your RV occasionally to camp, it will cost less to insure. Some plans offer the option to pause your insurance coverage while in storage. With others, the more you use your RV, the higher the premium.
If you live in your RV for at least 150 days per year, you’ll need to purchase a full-timers insurance plan. A full-timers plan acts as a homeowners and auto policy in one. It includes the personal liability, medical payments, and loss assessment coverage you’d find in typical homeowners policies.
You might be tempted to withhold your full-timer status from your insurance company to get a lower insurance price. However, doing so risks them denying future claims if they find out you use it as a primary residence.
Trust us; it’s not worth the risk. Not all companies offer full-timer insurance, so you’ll need to ask for this type of coverage upfront.
Type of Coverage
You can get additional add-ons. For one, you can purchase contents coverage, which protects the belongings inside your RV in the event of an accidental RV fire or theft. Before adding this on, check your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy (if you have one) to see if it’s already covered.
Some policies offer roof coverage. This means they replace your entire roof in the event of roof failure due to an incident. This even covers issues related to a manufacturer’s defect, provided your warranty has expired.
Other add-ons include pest coverage, including any damage to your RV mechanics from insects, birds, or rodents. Plus, you can add on medical payments, which cover you and your passengers if you get injured.
An uninsured or underinsured, property damage, and bodily injury add-on covers your injury and your RV’s damage if you get hit by a driver who doesn’t have coverage. Finally, vacation liability provides personal liability coverage when the RV is set up at a campground and someone suffers a personal injury on the premises.
All of these coverage options add to your RV’s insurance premium cost. You’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of each for your specific need.
Have you ever wondered why location matters when it comes to insurance rates? Your region of the country, state, and even zip code impact the rates. Bigger cities mean a higher risk for auto accidents.
In contrast, areas with more risk for natural disasters can raise your insurance. The risk of theft also increases your premium.
Insurance companies will check your driving record to determine how safe you’ll be on the road. This knowledge will help them calculate your risk as a customer and your rates.
The higher number and severity of violations, the higher you can expect your insurance premium. On the contrary, expect some great discounts if you have a clean record.
Your RV driving experience also matters. If you’ve driven an RV in the past, companies expect you have more experience and will be at less risk for accidents than inexperienced RV drivers.
How many claims have you had on your auto or RV insurance policy? This gets factored into your insurance premium cost. If you’ve had claims that weren’t your fault, it’s less likely they’ll impact your premium rate than if you were at direct fault.
For instance, consider if your claims were due to a tire blowout, a branch falling on your roof, or someone hitting you while you were parked. You’re not at fault for these, and as such, your insurance company likely won’t penalize you.
If you have a full-timers policy, some insurance companies may ask for your home insurance claim history as well. Why? Because they consider your RV to be your home.
Do You Have to Have RV Insurance?
If you have a driveable unit, you must have RV insurance similar to car insurance laws. At a minimum, most states require bodily injury and property damage liability for RVs. Check your state’s requirements to get an idea of what you’ll need.
Additionally, if you have a loan on your RV, you’ll need to determine what your lender requires you to carry. Since towable RVs aren’t motorized, you typically don’t need to have a separate liability policy as your tow vehicle’s policy will cover it.
Even if you don’t need to purchase a more comprehensive policy by law, buying an RV is a big investment. If you only carry a liability policy, it’s worth doing your homework to consider if you’d have the funds to cover damage from a natural disaster.
If you’ve spent thousands of dollars on your RV, can you afford it if it gets totaled by someone with an insurance policy that doesn’t have high enough limits to cover the damage? This is something to think about.
Popular RV Insurance Providers
You can find several RV insurance providers out there. Some of the most popular companies include Geico, Progressive, Good Sam Insurance Agency, National General, Allstate, USAA, and Foremost. Research policies and prices to find the best one for you.
Do Your Homework and Decide
You likely already paid a high price for your RV. The thought of paying a monthly premium, plus regular maintenance, campsite fees, and fuel for traveling, might overwhelm you and your wallet.
Still, you may not want to go without RV insurance. Do your homework to determine your best insurance coverage option for your scenario. Once you have the right coverage, you’ll have peace of mind to enjoy your RVing experience.
Do you have RV insurance? What type of coverage do you have? Drop a comment below.
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