Winter Storage Insurance

Friday, January 10, 2014

Many people want to store some of their possessions over the winter months, either because they will not use them, or because they want to rent out their properties while they leave the country or go on holiday. There are several insurance options available to cover your possessions while they are stored.

Winter Storage

  • The most common possessions to be packed away before winter are summer vehicles like motorcycles and boats. Notify your insurance company that you will take your summer vehicle off the road. Your premiums will be reduced, since your insurer will remove all but low liability and coverage against theft, vandalism and fire.

  • Your home insurance policy does not cover vehicles parked in your garage against theft and fire, so do not drop your auto insurance policy.

  • If you have to store your summer vehicles off your own property, your insurer may want to inspect the storage space and increase your premiums if it is not as safe as your property. Do not deceive, since your insurance company will not pay out claims for theft and fire if your vehicle is stored elsewhere. Rather find a safe storage space and make room in your own yard.

  • It is important to remember that insurance does not cover wear and tear due to poor storage practices. To prevent engines from freezing and cracking, which insurance will not cover, apply some anti-freeze before you store them. Also apply wax to the vehicles to prevent rust and remove all water from boat engines. While insurance may cover serious flood damage to your summer vehicles, it is unlikely to compensate you for damage from leaving them out in the rain. So store them in a covered, enclosed space. Remove fuel or add fuel-stabiliser to prevent engine damage.

  • If you want to leave the country during the winter and store your household possessions away from your home, ask your insurance company whether your home insurance policy covers it. If not, purchase a policy to cover it. If you store it in a friend's house, their home insurance will not cover it. If you store it at a storage facility, their insurance will not cover it either.

  • Pick a storage facility with good security so the insurance will not be more expensive than at your house.

Do not lose stored items this winter because of skimping on insurance. Storage insurance is just as important as home and car insurance.