One of the first considerations when buying a caravan or motorhome should be its insurance; you protect your home so why not protect your holiday home, which is just as precious?
Why Insure your Caravan?
Your car insurance only provides third party liability cover whilst towing. It does not cover your unit or camping equipment and personal belongings inside. Your caravan is at risk of damage when towing, hitching or in storage, all of which are covered by your caravan insurance policy. Unfortunately, you also have to consider the possibility of the unit being stolen and this is where having the right insurance is essential.
What should I look for?
You should research the company and check the cover in detail. It’s easy to be swayed by the cheapest quote, hoping that you’ll never need to make a claim. Good value insurance is about getting all the insurance benefits you require at a competitive price, not just going for the cheapest option.
How can I reduce the premium?
Most insurers understand the value in offering great discounts to their customers when they have fitted recognised safety and security devices. Further discounts are often available for storing your caravan securely when it’s not being used.
The key to keeping your unit safe is to ensure you have done as much as you can to deter thieves, especially when the caravan is unoccupied. The easiest way to do this is to fit a wheel clamp or hitchlock - this is often a minimum requirement from an insurer.
Thousands of caravans are still stolen every year, so ensuring your caravan is secure is important. Security and tracking devices can appear expensive, but it is worth noting that this cost can be balanced out by a reduction in your insurance premium.
Towing a caravan can be a daunting experience, so it’s worth considering a caravan manoeuvring course. These are run nationally by both The Camping and Caravanning Club and The Caravan Club. They are designed to improve your towing and manoeuvring skills but also remind you how to correctly load your caravan. Upon completion, you could receive a discount on your insurance premium.
You can purchase a stabiliser to assist with towing, but it is worth getting it checked regularly by your caravan dealer to ensure it’s in good working order.
By its very nature, caravanning can involve quite a bit of driving, and with that comes the risk of a tyre blow out. If this happens, it can cause damage to your unit as the axle can penetrate the floor and your caravan could become unusable. It’s important to check your tyres regularly to ensure they are at the right pressure level and continue to be in good condition, especially after storage. You may want to consider fitting Tyron Safety Bands as they help keep the caravan stable in the event of a blow out or tyre deflation.
By servicing your caravan regularly, you will keep it roadworthy and suitable for towing. Within the service your gas and electrical systems will be checked to ensure all are in good working order for your next camping trip. Details of approved caravan and motorhome servicing can be found at: www.approvedworkshops.co.uk
When storing your caravan it is important the location is right - it should be secure and at the same time provide protection from the elements. Many insurers provide generous discounts when your caravan is stored securely when it’s not being used. In some cases, the excess may even be waived if your unit is stolen or damaged whilst being stored at an accredited storage site.
A good starting point when looking for quality caravan insurance is to visit the websites of the two national camping and caravanning clubs or search for ‘caravan insurance’ online.
The Caravan Club
East Grinstead House EAST GRINSTEAD West Sussex RH19 1UA
0800 328 6635
The Camping and Caravanning Club Club Care Insurance
Juniper House Warley Business Park Great Warley BRENTWOOD Essex CM13 3BE