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Overseas Yacht Insurance

John Jarvie

February 2018

February 2018
Miami Beach, Florida

In the VIP tent at the Miami Boat Show we got to sit down with John Jarvie, VP of Overseas Yacht Insurance to discuss the fallout from Hurricane Irma and the in's and out's of the Insurance business.

"Yeah, I think the phrase is the gifts of today become the expectations of tomorrow."

- We just wanted to see if you'd give us an update on Hurricane Irma and how that effected the yacht industry and more importantly, the insurance industry.

- Well, from insurance perspective we not only had Irma we had three hurricanes basically in a row. Yeah, we didn't just have our most devastating hurricane season by one storm, we had it by three. And then from an insurance industry perspective, we also had the fires in California, the earthquake in Mexico City. I mean there's a lot of things world-wide that impact the rates of insurance.

- So we had a pretty bad year?

- It was--

- Yeah, pretty harsh.

- We had a good year, but the insurance industry as a whole took some big hits last year. But, there's still so much capacity out there that there are many, many insurance companies who can still offer good coverage, who can put everything on the policy that needs to be there and for decent rates. But especially over in London, a lot of the Lloyd's carriers took probably the most massive hit and a lot of the U.S. carriers don't seem to be having as much as an increase in pricing--

- Right.

- As the non-admitted northern carriers.

- That's the knock-on effect though isn't it? You have a hurricane out there, so everyone pays out and your rates go up, right?

- Essentially, most boaters are going to feel some type of increase, even if they didn't have a claim. But, you know, marine insurance is one of the only parts of boating that has gone down every year for the last decade. While all other costs of boating have gone up. So this is the first time that it's finally sort of leveled out.

- It's the old adage though if you give something to someone, taking it away is kinda hard. So, are you feeling like your customers coming up for renewal now is it always like, John, what the hell? It's like listen--

- Yes.

- Do you have to have that song and dance now with your customers where you haven't had to have it in 10 years?

- Yeah, I think the phrase is the gifts of today become the expectations of tomorrow.

- Write that down.

-So, you know everything that is a benefit becomes expected in the future, not just for boat insurance, but for most things. But it's gonna take a little bit for owners to really, number one, understand what their hurricane coverage was and what it'll be in the future. There's been some changes to deductibles. Changes to some of the hurricane preparedness requirements. And we saw this after Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Wilma as well. So, it creates a little bit of a shakedown but it doesn't mean that you're uninsurable. If you had a boat sink in St. Martin and you're trying to buy a new boat. Can I get insurance? Everything is insurable.

- Everything.

- If your agent told you that it's not, you're talking to the wrong person.

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