Surveys waived for boats under $30K and 30ft

Starting April 15, Skippers’ Plan clients with boats under 30 feet in length that have a  market value of under $30,000 no longer require a marine survey.   This is an initiative we requested from AVIVA Elite Insurance Company.   All that is required are photos that show the condition of the boat above and below the waterline.


Surveys have been a standard requirement in the boat insurance industry on older vessels and we continue to recommend them if you are purchasing a boat.  Surveys provide boat buyers with peace of mind prior to purchase,   identify potential safety and maintenance issues and can provide an up-to-date value of the vessel, which helps to determine if it’s over insured or under insured.   However, surveying the boat every 5 years as some insurance company’s demand  can cost boat owners hundreds to over a thousand dollars depending on the size of their boat.

At Skippers’ Plan we are always looking for ways to make insurance easier and less expensive for our client’s.    Contact me to find out how we can make insurance easier and less expensive for you too.

Andrew Robertson



Clarification March 2016 –  In my original post I failed to mention that a survey is required to maintain agreed value (no depreciation on claims except for sails and covers over 5 years old) coverage even if the boat under 30 ft and $30,000 in value.   If the boat is insured on an actual cash value basis (depreciation applied on all claims) then the photos may be accepted in lieu of a survey.    The other issue is the photos must show the boat to be in good condition and the insurance company will make that determination based on the photos.  If the photos suggest the boat has not been well maintained then Aviva may still demand a full survey.   The last point is that a survey request is sent by Aviva even if the boat is under 30 ft LOA and/or $30,000.   If your boat falls within the guidelines for photos email them to us as soon as possible after you receive a survey request so we can confirm if they are acceptable.