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October 19, 2021

I Bought a Boat, Now What?

You’ve signed the papers to buy a boat. But, what happens next. If you’re a responsible boat owner, hitting the water shouldn’t be the first item on your agenda. 

Whether you are an experienced boater or a novice, there are things to do before you hit the water in your new craft. Precautionary steps with a new boat will allow you to better shore up your risks before you hit the water. 

1. Register your boat with the proper authorities 

When you buy a car, you have to register your car with the state’s DMV to operate on public roads. In much the same manner, you often have to register a boat to operate on public waterways. Different states have different boat registration requirements. However, it is often unlawful to hit the water without registration. 

In New York, residents have to register most boats, though some exemptions exist. You will receive a state title proving that you own the boat. 

2. Obtain proper operating qualifications 
speed boat on the water
Most states require boaters to pass an operator test or course to captain a boat with an engine. This is similar to a driving test to get a license.  

In New York, certain boaters have to take a boating education course. These attendees receive operational permits to prove that they can navigate a boat. 

Some New Yorkers may not have to take this test. However, that doesn’t mean they should not. Boating education courses teach valuable operational, navigational and safety techniques about your craft. If you’re a safe boater, your risks are often lower. Your boat insurance provider may offer discounts if you pass an education course. 

3. Get boat insurance 

Boat insurance protects your financial and personal safety in case you ever have a boating accident. 

Insurance might protect the boat from a variety of different perils. These may include fire, theft and weather threats. Furthermore, most boating policies come with accident coverage and hull replacement coverage. If your boat gets damaged or destroyed in an accident, you might be able to claim these damages. A successful claim will help lessen your financial burden. 

Furthermore, you can use boat insurance to protect liability risks you pose to others. This coverage may protect passengers and other boaters. It can help you compensate them financially in the event of a wreck. 

4. Know your boat 

Last, but not least, take the time to learn about your new boat. Read your owner’s manual, take practice tests, or attend an instructional class in how to operate the boat. 

Also, have a professional inspect the boat. An inspector can point out small problems that may exist. They also might be able to offer tips to better protect your boat. 

Blackmore Rowe Insurance is here to help you get the boat insurance that you need. Call us at 800-282-9766 for more information.