Car Storage Insurance Tips

Determining the right coverage for your seasonal vehicle

A snazzy summer-only sports car. The convertible you keep at your winter home. A heavy winter truck that you use only a few times a year.

If you have a vehicle that you keep in storage, you may be looking for ways to reduce your insurance costs. Removing all coverage other than Comprehensive coverage is one option. This is often referred to as Comp-only insurance, car storage insurance or seasonal vehicle insurance.

Comp-only insurance refers to Comprehensive coverage, which pays for non-collision damages to the insured vehicle and its equipment if the vehicle is stolen, hits an animal, is vandalized or damaged by fire or other natural causes. Comp-only insurance does not cover property damage, injury or medical expenses for you, a passenger or another driver if you are involved in an accident.

Because Comp-only coverage is limited, consider these questions when determining whether Comp-only insurance is the right coverage for your seasonal or stored vehicle:

  1. Does the state in which the vehicle is registered require liability coverage? Some states require specific coverage on vehicles. In these states, insurance companies are often required to report to the state the coverage you have on each vehicle. If your vehicle is not properly insured, you may receive a citation or have your license suspended.

    While your insurance company may advise you of state reporting requirements, it is your responsibility to ensure you have the coverage required by your state.

  2. When you are ready to drive the vehicle again, will you remember to call the insurance company and change your coverage? If you forget and are involved in an accident, you'll be responsible for damages not covered by your Comp-only policy. Even if you arrange to have coverage automatically begin after a certain date, if you forget and drive your vehicle just one day early, you won't have coverage if an accident occurs.

  3. How long will the vehicle be in storage? Some insurance companies will not insure a vehicle with Comp-only coverage for more than six months unless another vehicle with liability or full coverage is also on the policy. Ask your insurance company about time limits for seasonal vehicle insurance.

While seasonal vehicle insurance is an option, be sure the coverage matches your driving habits before choosing a Comp-only insurance policy. The right coverage helps you make the most of the time you spend in your seasonal vehicle, protecting you while you enjoy the ride.