If you’re one of thousands of cabin owners in Alberta, it’s important that you regularly review your cabin insurance coverage, just as you would with a homeowners’ policy. Different occupancy patterns and lifestyles dictate different insurance needs.
Whether you’re going over your current policy or shopping for a new one, remember that cabin insurance in Alberta differs from home insurance in several key ways. Unlike your primary residence, your cabin is likely to be unoccupied for significant stretches of time. Many cabin owners also rent out their properties to visitors and vacationers for at least part of the year, creating additional insurance considerations.
The Three Basic Plan Types
Insurance premiums are calculated according to the risk posed by the policy details. Because most cabin owners leave their properties vacant for much of the year, insurers consider them to be at higher risk for theft, damage from weather, vandalism and perils related to neglect. Depending on your situation, the condition of your cabin, and the relative value of its contents, you should take the following major policy types into consideration:
- Basic cabin insurance. With basic coverage, you’ll be protected against named risks and hazards (known as “perils” in insurance industry lingo). You’ll have to name these perils when you take out your policy, but most basic coverage plans protect against fire, theft and damage caused by certain weather events.
- Comprehensive cabin insurance. Comprehensive home insurance covers you for all risks except for those specifically excluded from the policy.
- Broad cabin insurance. With this option, you can carry two different types of coverage: one for the physical building and another for its contents. This is also an excellent choice if the contents of your cabin are valuable and you want to be sure they’re properly protected.
A knowledgeable insurance broker can provide you with situation-specific information if you have questions about which type of coverage best applies to your case.
Important Information for Owners who Rent their Properties
Using tenants to generate additional income is a great way to pay off your cabin sooner, but if you’re using or planning to use this strategy, be sure you’ve got the right type of insurance coverage. In essence, you’ll have to supplement your existing cabin insurance with rental property coverage that provides the following additional protections:
- Liability coverage.
- Property coverage.
- Weather coverage.
- Negligence and disaster coverage.
If you protect your cabin with a rental property policy, its terms and conditions should also cover you if you choose to stay in it during the year. However, if occupancy patterns fluctuate, discuss your situation with a professional insurance adviser to make sure your protection is cost-optimized and complete.
Cabin Insurance Alberta: Some Final Tips
Here are some other helpful tips that can help you get the best price on cabin insurance in Alberta:
- If the cabin is jointly owned, be sure to put all owners on the policy
- Buying coverage through your existing home insurance provider can help you save money
- Carefully consider the difference between actual cash value (ACV) and replacement value (RV) coverage when evaluating policy details
- Given rural conditions in Alberta, it’s a good idea to inquire about snow damage, ice damage and damage caused by wild animals
- Senior citizens and retirees, claims-free policy holders and non-smokers may all be entitled to discounts
- If there are other structures on the property, such as guest houses, gazebos or sheds, they (and their contents) need to be included in the policy separately
- Reduce your premiums by opting for higher deductibles
Friendly Advice and Outstanding Customer Service from Lane’s Insurance
Lane’s Insurance is a leading Alberta-based brokerage, providing complete insurance protection for highly competitive rates to go with the province’s leading customer service and claims support. We’re able to shop around with the various insurance providers on your behalf, securing the best possible rate because the insurance companies are all bidding on your business. We also offer comprehensive customer resources and advice you can trust.
To learn more, or to discuss your cabin insurance needs in greater detail, please contact a Lane’s Insurance customer service representative.