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Old 03-24-2003, 10:34 PM   #15
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I am a commercial Property & Casualty broker ( over 20 years ) and I haven't written homeowners or personal auto insurance for many years but I do know a few things. The first thing is to read, read, read your policy, especially the section about exclusions. A trailer will be covered for third party liability (someone else sues you) when it is hooked up to your vehicle. Your auto policy will not cover any physical damage (theft, collision, vandalism, etc.) to your trailer unless there is a specific endorsement adding that coverage. Your auto policy will not cover you for liability when it is unhooked at the campground and someone falls out the door or trips while walking by your site (don't laugh it happens) unless there is a special endorsement adding that coverage. Bring a list of questions to our agent and have your agent, not his assistant, sit down with you and go over the policy and your questions. If your agent won't do this find another agent.

Your Homeowners policy may have some coverage for your trailer but don't count on it covering what you think is should cover. Again, sit down with our agent and go over this personally.

Older trailers will probably need an appraisal to get it covered for what you think it is worth, make sure your policy gives you a stated amount of coverage or else you will get depreciated value.

New trailers need to be covered for full replacement, check the policy, Foremost seems better than some others. Remember, as soon as you drive it off the lot it is worth less, and you don't want to owe more than the insurance company will give you or else you could still be paying on a trailer that is destroyed.

Insurance is a promise to pay you under certain conditions for certain events, it is not a comodity so don't go for the lowest price unless you know what that promise means to you.
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Old 03-24-2003, 10:48 PM   #16
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Insurance coverage

Thanks Mel for the info. I try to always cover the bases , however with the insurance thing, they seem to have to many. You brought up some interesting items, which I think I might have asked, but now I'm not sure.
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Old 03-24-2003, 10:57 PM   #17
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Melvin,

You bring up great points.

Here's my deal... I have State Farm on two vehicles, a boat, and two parcels of real estate in addition to the '03 Bambi.

The trailer has no liability coverage if someone hurts themselves and sues me for damages while detached from the car and not in tow.

The trailer is covered under my auto policy when in tow regarding liability and somewhere between the tow vehicle and the Bambi's policy will I be able to get the Bambi fixed if damaged, etc. I am still trying to find out if I need a tow, does the Bambi get covered as well if in tow. This has taken over a week to get this answer.

The trailer when in my driveway or detached from the car, for any damage, fire, theft, etc are covered by the policy I have specifically for the Bambi (minus any exclusions, etc), but no medical payments.

A.E., your Bambi is an '02? Hard to believe that would be the reason why it's more. It could be driving record, claim history, location where you live, age, any number of reasons. I'm no saint behind the wheel and have a ticket or two in a three or four years. I don't make many claims on my policies, but I have made some in my 10 years with State Farm.

I will say this, insurance is an important thing to protect your assets from being sucked dry, and no offense meant toward Melvin either, but insurance companies (not so much the agents) and the loopholes they have can appear to be some of the most shadey, underhanded, well you should have looked at the microscopic fine print that is novel in size, around.

I'm the type of guy that when I'm hungry, I'm hungry...when I'm thursty, I get a drink. I'd like just for once, to get the real deal, no strings and no twisting the agents arm to get the bottom line without all the al la cart b.s. There are way too many complications in the industry.

The agents need to do a better job of understanding what it is they sell, ask the right questions, and cover your butt, but not overcover or double cover you based on the polices you have with them. In over 10 years going through this, I have yet to find one that can do the right thing.

I have now stepped down from the soap box!

Regards,

Eric
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Old 03-25-2003, 11:08 AM   #18
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This is such a good discussion because most people don't know anything about their insurance. Airstreams are expensive, last a long time and are worth insuring correctly. Believe me, you will find out what your policy will cover when there is a claim. That's not the best time to find out that the deal you got from cheapo insurance is worth less than you paid. I'm not suggesting that cost is not a consideration, I am suggesting that you find out what you are getting for that price.

I can't stress enough that you SIT DOWN with your Agent, not the assistant, and go through the policy personally and have a list of questions/what if's and get written answers. If the agent doesn't want to give written answers that is GOOD, he is not winging it!!! Most agents have limited experience writing RV insurance and probably don't know very much about them. Remember, the agent does not adjust the claim, the claims examiner adjusts the claim and makes payment. Just have him submit the questions to the claims department to get written answers. If you are buying a policy by telephone or mail, then mail the questions to them and get written answers.

My State Farm agent, he does my home and autos, is an RV'r so I have a call into him to get some answers that I can post to help those who have State Farm. I have requested a Foremost policy and I will post what I think about that as well as soon as it arrives.

Hope this discussion helps.
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Old 03-25-2003, 11:47 AM   #19
 
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Location....location....location

it is obvious that you will pay more if your trailer is parked in center city Megalopolis or in the boondocks. Vandalism is a lot more of a possibility if you live in Suburbia than on your own farm, or in or near a small farming community. The big headlines where we are now are: "police responded to car (or store burglar alarm)....it was a faulse alert.". When we where in Philadelphia, several death from gang shooting or a whole city block set ablaze by the police, these made the news.

listen to what Melvin P. Thorpe has to say, he obviously knows a lot more.

Just a small point which will not affect most of us.....except some people we know too well.....:
Quote:
A trailer will be covered for third party liability .... when it is hooked up to your vehicle
We found out that unfortunatly, even though our truck is registered as "Personal use", it is concidered a commercial vehicle as far as insurance companies are concerned, and we have to buy a separate liability insurance for it. More people are buying MDT for towing nowadays and this is an unexpected surprise.
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Old 03-25-2003, 11:53 AM   #20
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Commercial vehicle brings up a whole new discussion about driving corporate owned vehicles. If you have all your cars insured by your corporation make sure your commercial agent knows that you tow a trailer and that you don't have any personal auto insurance. He will be able to fix you up with what is called DOC (drive other car) as an endorsement to your commercial auto policy and he will probable tell you to get RV insurance on the trailer. Not necessary to go into all the ramifications but your commercial agent will be able to go into it with you.
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Old 03-25-2003, 12:03 PM   #21
 
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The problem is, we do not have any commercial vehicle and commercial policies. They just tell us (several companies), that this class of vehicle is, as far as they are concerned, considered commercial, regardless of what you do with it.

The guy who buys a MDT to tow his 5th-wheel, as we see more and more, falls under this classification too.

We tried unsuccessfully to argue that we are penalized for trying to get the safest tow vehicle as we can get. They even refused to give us any extra discount (car and van with State Farm for 25 years.)
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Old 03-25-2003, 12:17 PM   #22
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Yes, it is a commercial vehicle but it is probably rated for personal use not commercial use (this is one of the factors used to determine the premium). If you were using the truck to haul goods for others, etc. it would still be a commercial but now it would be rated differently causing the premium to rise.
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Old 03-25-2003, 03:04 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by femuse
Location....location....location
I agree with that to a point. I'm in the Chicago area and my rates are less that A.E's rate. I would think that Chicago, LA and New York (not in that order) are some of the highest. The only way to know for sure is if A.E. posts the area he lives in where the A/S calls home.

On the comm vs. personal use, femuse, do you go around to fairs and such and do some for profit stuff with your large cube truck too? I don't know if that is why they count you as commercial. Of course if I have you confused with another party, all bets are off.

Eric
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Old 03-25-2003, 07:51 PM   #24
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New Safari & Insurance

Really want to thank Mel for the great insurance info. I'm getting more questions to ask the agent and to put them in writing is good thinking. I think I'll write down the questions ( from Mel's suggestions ) I want to ask & drop them off to my agent & have her send the answers back. As per a previous thread, I feel it's the questions I don't ask, or know to ask, that gets me in trouble. Regarding where we & the TT reside. We are located in the country side ( back woods as we call them up here ) of North-Central Minnesota. I am a blacksmith with my shop located back in a long drive. Most weeks during the winter, I see no one other than the wife & Mr. Turbo. No I don't get lonely. I have had no tickets or claims for several years, but the location is precisely why I have a problem with the insurance rates. No gun fire, no riots. no gang warfare. Nothing but peace & quiet. Maybe that's what costs.
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Old 03-25-2003, 08:44 PM   #25
 
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Quote:
I don't know if that is why they count you as commercial
Eric, just take the time to read the post by Melvin P. Thorpe:
Quote:
Yes, it is a commercial vehicle but it is probably rated for personal use not commercial use
If you were using the truck to haul goods for others.....it would be rated differently [commercial] causing the premium to rise
All MDT are considered commercial trucks as far as the insurance companies are concerned.
If we "were using the truck to haul goods for others" we would have a commercial policy. The policy would change but the truck would still be rated the same.

Any more questions?


A.E. Milliman:

As far as I know, some States who have big cities have problems with uninsured drivers (it's the case with PA because of Philadelphia, and New Jersey). They are taking more risks when writing policies in those States. They end up having to pay claims when an uninsured driver is involved. So, to cover their losses, they nail everybody in that State. Cities of course are more expensive , but everybody ends up paying more. I would guess that in States like South Dakota, Wyoming, they don't have the same problem.
What happened in Phila: they had more drivers without insurance than with. So the rates were going up. So less people were insured. So....
I think the State had to step in to try to stop this vicious cycle.
Other big cities may not have been sitting on their ass for so long, and put their foot down before it was too late.

So, in the end, it's still a problem of location. Just not as direct.

All of this is of course pure speculation on my part. But, it seems logical, no?
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Old 03-25-2003, 11:05 PM   #26
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Chantal,

I read the post, twice for that matter, but it is possible given your two responses of late to my posts that you either misread me or don't read or understand what I am trying to get at. So I think that I will just let it be.

Eric
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Old 03-25-2003, 11:24 PM   #27
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Have you considered

femuse
I understand where you're coming from.
Question, do you have a sign on the side of your tow vehicle that says,"Vehicle Not For Hired" ?? (It's something to consider). Has anyone else seen this before while traveling? I recall seeing this on several large trucks, even larger than the one you have.
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Old 03-26-2003, 10:41 AM   #28
 
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do you have a sign on the side of your tow vehicle that says,"Vehicle Not For Hired" ??
Close enough
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