So now that we understand the difference between auto and RV coverage, let’s take a look at the specifics of what you get under an RV policy. Essentially, RV insurance acts as a hybrid between car and home insurance, offering additional protection for home and living essentials through specialized coverage plans. Depending on the policy you choose, it may include:
Fifth-wheel trailers offer similar accommodations and amenities to those of Class A or Class C motorhomes, but are towed behind a vehicle, so you don’t have to take them everywhere you go. Toy haulers are basically mobile garages, they can be used to store things like cars, motorcycles, and snowmobiles. Horse trailers, just as the name suggests, are towable trailers used to carry horses or other animals. Cargo or utility trailers are towable metal boxes that are strictly used to store your belongings.
According to the Insurance Information Institute’s table of Automobile Financial Responsibility Laws by State, 49 out of all 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, require you to have some sort of liability coverage for all vehicles on the road, including RVs. The only exception to this rule is the state of New Hampshire, which has no mandatory insurance law, and only requires financial responsibility from the person at fault in a car accident.
RV insurance can be very different from car insurance depending on the type of RV or motorhome you have and how much you use it. Whether you have a camper trailer for weekend getaways and day trips; a large RV for extended vacations; or a motor home that you use as your primary residence, The Hartford has RV insurance solutions that you can customize to meet your needs.
The best RV insurance is affordable, comprehensive, and flexible according to your needs. Because your RV functions as both a home and a car, insurance policies resemble a combination of home and auto insurance — and consequently, they tend to be somewhat more complex and expensive. Policy price will vary depending on your location, class of RV, age and condition of the vehicle, frequency of use, and more. We dig into the pros and cons of several stellar providers below, although RV insurance prices vary based on specific location and situations. We recommend getting quotes from multiple companies to see which offers you the best quote.
Bus-conversion homes are a popular and fast-growing trend within the RV lifestyle. City buses, Greyhounds, and even school buses are highly sought after and, once renovated, become non-traditional RVs that fall into the Class A category. While bus renovation projects are becoming mainstream, they can be difficult to insure. Buses, especially school bus-converted homes or “Skoolies,” are considered more of a risk due to their weight and balance limitations. Vehicles originally built for mass transportation do not have the same axle and weight distribution as traditional RVs, which are designed for sleeping and carrying additional living necessities.
Choosing the lowest price/inadequate coverage. The lowest prices will typically leave you vulnerable on the back end; should an accident or collision occur, your lower premium will require you to spend much more out of pocket. The same goes for inadequate coverage. Specifically, don’t cut corners when it comes to liability coverage; instead, shop around for the provider that will protect you most while also catering to your needs, lifestyle, and budget.
Tech-savvy consumers have probably heard of or have been inspired by the “digital nomad” lifestyle, where people have been ditching their office cubicles to work remotely. Social media strategists, photographers, and web designers can all work from the comfort of home, as long as there’s a stable internet connection. Hit TV shows such as HGTV’s Tiny House Hunters and Travel Channel’s Going RV are shining a light on younger couples and families that save money by downsizing to a motorhome for a non-traditional life on the road.
Progressive’s app has 3.4 stars in the Apple App Store and has the same functions as most other providers’ apps: You can report a claim, pay your bills, view your policy, get in touch with an agent, and request roadside assistance. However, out of over 600 current ratings, many users complain that the app is buggy and isn’t easy to use. If mobile access is important to you, Progressive may make a stressful process even more frustrating.
Both part-timers and full-timers can find coverage geared towards their type of RVing. Part-timers can opt for Progressive’s vacation liability coverage, which offers up to $10,000, with an upgrade of up to $500,000 if someone is hurt in or around their RV while they are on vacation, and emergency expense coverage, which provides $750 for transportation and hotel costs plus meals, again, if they are on vacation. Full-timers can enhance their coverage with Progressive’s full timer’s personal liability, replacement cost of personal effects, and total loss coverages.
Cash in on major life changes. Certain life events could translate to cheaper car insurance, so shop for quotes whenever something major changes in your life. For instance, many companies offer a lower rate for married couples or domestic partners. Or perhaps you moved to a suburb with lower accident and crime rates. If your risk for accidents goes down, your rates just might, too.
To ensure that providers’ financial affairs were up to snuff, we looked at independent evaluations from insurance rating and credit rating agencies A.M. Best, S&P Global, Moody’s, and J.D. Power. While each agency has its own rating scale, we required companies to have A or “above average” ratings from all four — solid indications that companies are in great financial health. Acquiring ratings from all four agencies also indicates that companies care enough about their business’ reputation to apply for these voluntary review processes. For an industry that’s centered around the principle of being there when you need help most, we found this focus on transparency to be the mark of a good provider. Smaller companies like Good Sam or National Interstate may provide seemingly better discounts, but they tend to only submit themselves for review to one or two agencies.
One of Progressive’s add-on coverages includes a “disappearing deductible” option. This means that each year you don’t file a claim, Progressive will drop your rate by 25%. With this method, the company boasts that you could eventually have a $0 deductible. But it only stays this way as long as you haven’t filed a claim — if you do, your deductible will go right back up. Safeco also incentivizes safe driving with low deductibles. Safeco will reduce your collision deductible by $100 each year you don’t have a claim, but this incentive caps at $500.
Jonathan and Ashley Longnecker, full-time RVers and bloggers of TinyShinyHome.com, sold their new and oversized 5th-wheel trailer for a much smaller, compact vintage Airstream. Although a family of six, their original RV was very heavy, long, and tall, which made it more difficult to travel long distances without worrying about parking, turning, and hitting low overpasses. The family decided they’d sacrifice the extra space in order to travel lighter and with greater peace of mind.
Many providers offer discounts as rewards for “good” customer behavior. Common ones include discounts for driving safely, paying your entire annual premium upfront, keeping your RV in storage for part of the year, switching from another provider, holding membership in an RV association, or taking an RV safety course. We noted if a provider listed generous discounts available to all customers. However, many discounts vary depending on location. To see if there are any specific to your area and to compare RV insurance prices, ask an agent.
A quick look at the company’s page on the Better Business Bureau shows just how satisfied consumers are with its customer service. Most insurance companies display a large amount of negative feedback online—it comes with the territory—National General, however, enjoys largely positive customer reviews and averages fewer complaints than many of its competitors. Baby Boomers highly value good customer service, and this level of satisfaction with National General can also be seen on other online review outlets.