Campervan Living is Cool – Just Make Sure It’s Insured
July 21, 2021
Are you considering hitting the Canadian highways and backroads and embarking on the campervan lifestyle? It’s an idea we’re sure many have dreamt of. After you watch inspiring YouTube channels featuring the travels of Eamon and Bec or Kara and Nate, you start to envision yourself campervan living! They make it look fun and easy – who wouldn’t want to give it a try!
But as you think about this new lifestyle, don’t forget to consider your insurance needs. You may assume your current auto insurance will cover your new campervan, or maybe that your renter’s insurance or homeowner’s policy will apply since your campervan is technically your home, too.
But insurance for campervan living is not so simple. It’s important to have the right insurance coverage in place. After all, your campervan is your car and home all rolled into one, and you likely have all your important belongings with you.
Here’s what you need to know about insurance coverage for campervan living. We’ll highlight some important considerations to weigh first, then when you’re finished, contact us at Duliban Insurance Brokers for more help!
All About Campervan Insurance
It seems automatic that insuring your campervan with your auto insurance carrier should be easy. After all, before you converted it, your campervan was just a van. But once you convert your van into a livable space, the insurance situation becomes much more complicated.
Auto insurance companies no longer view the risk in the same way since you are not only driving your vehicle, but you are also living in it. 24/7 occupancy brings with it a different and unique set of risks.
Have the Right Coverage for Every Stage of Campervan Conversion
During your van conversion, it is important to have the right insurance coverage in force for every stage of work. Consider your needs and the way you are using your van when you look for coverage.
- Before Campervan Conversion – Before you convert your van to a campervan, you may be driving it for your regular transportation or using it for a work vehicle. In either case, make sure you have an auto insurance policy to manage your risks. At this stage of your conversion process, your risks are similar to those of any other driver on the road.
- During Campervan Conversion – When you are working on your van to convert it, you may not be driving it much, if at all. Perhaps it is stored inside a garage or warehouse while you work on refurbishing it. You may be able to remove the mandatory road, liability, and accident coverage since the vehicle is not being driven. However, you should keep your comprehensive coverage in place on your van, though, since fire, theft, and storm damage are still risks.
- After Campervan Conversion – After you have put the finishing touches on your converted campervan, your insurance needs more resemble those of RVs or motorhomes than private automobiles. You now have exposure from driving the vehicle and from living in it.
Work with your agent to keep ahead of your needs during every step of your campervan conversion.
Insurance Challenges of Campervan Living
One of the challenges you may face after you have converted your campervan is finding insurance coverage. Many carriers do not want to insure converted vans as RVs because they were not originally designed and manufactured as an RV.
When you alter the design and intended use of the van as drastically as you do during a full campervan conversion, it changes the risks that the van carries and the exposures it faces. Some insurance companies are not prepared to manage or underwrite that type of risk, so they do not offer policies for campervans. Your current auto insurance company may not be able to insure your campervan once you have converted it.
How to Find Insurance Coverage for Your Campervan
Shopping around is a good way to begin your search for campervan insurance. It is a niche product in Canada, and not all insurance carriers offer campervan insurance – it helps to work with an agent who is familiar with this product so they can help advise you. Rates, terms, and policy conditions may differ between insurance carriers, so it is always smart to compare your options to find the best rate for your situation.
You will have to carry mandatory coverages like road, liability, and accident as well as any additional coverages. Carefully considering your needs and the ways you will use your campervan will help identify the insurance coverages you will need.
For example, will you use your campervan year-round, or do you anticipate staying in one location for long periods of time? Will you cross the border to the US or stick to exploring the Canadian wilderness? How many people will be driving the van and living in it? Will you use your campervan for any commercial purposes, like renting it out for others to stay in or for photoshoots?
All these questions can help you identify how much coverage you will need and what types. Spending time with your agent upfront to answer these questions and discuss your insurance needs will give you peace of mind once you hit the road. Just the thought of knowing you are protected should something happen with your new campervan is reassuring enough. Do not romanticize the campervan lifestyle without doing your research first – once you are prepared with the right insurance coverage, it will be much more enjoyable!
Deciding to live the campervan lifestyle is exciting! Make sure your insurance coverage does not hold you back by reviewing your options first. This can help guide you when you purchase your van and convert it to your dream campervan.
Having the proper insurance coverage in place for campervan living before you set off on your first epic adventure is important. We can help – call us before you start traveling, and we can review your current policy with you and point out any gaps for your campervan.
How do I Learn More?
To learn more about campervan insurance, contact the experts at Duliban Insurance Brokers. Our licensed experts will be happy to answer any questions you have.