Insuring a Collector Car: What You Need to Know

Having a collector car may make you the envy of the neighborhood, but it will also make you the envy of thieves. Not only that, but your hard work and investment can be susceptible to damage from a myriad of unforeseen problems. A comprehensive insurance plan is something you must invest in, but unlike your regular car, your collector car will require you to make special considerations when insuring it.

Insuring a Collector Car

Car Valuation

The first thing to note is that there are three different ways to value your car in case of total loss.

  • Actual Cash Value (ACV): This looks at book value at time of loss and is typically non-negotiable. You’d use this for an every day car, but obviously you don’t want current Kelly Blue Book value for your collectible.
  • Stated Value: You and your insurance agent agree upon a value and, should you suffer complete loss of your vehicle, you will get UP TO that amount. That means you can get still get a depreciated value and lose money on your investment.
  • Agreed (or Guaranteed) Value: Determined between you and your insurance agent, this is an agreed amount that you will get for the car. This is the only option that guarantees you can secure full value for your vehicle and it’s typically only offered by specialty collectible car insurance agencies.

Things To Know

When sitting down with your agent, you may be required to determine which type of collectible you have: vintage, antique or classic. That can affect whether or not you can purchase specialty insurance with the average company.

Carefully read your policy to see the extent of what it covers outside of total loss. Ask if they insure specialty requirements you may need: high cost restorations and paint jobs, spare parts and tools.

Policy Restrictions

You must also keep your eye out for restrictive rules inside your policy, such as not being allowed to drive your collector car for more than 200 miles a year or not being able to leave your vehicle unattended in a parking lot.

Other restrictions can include driver age, ownership of a daily driving vehicle and secure car storage to name a few. Each company’s requirements will vary. In addition, some companies won’t cover cars for racing and will only provide off-track insurance.

Insurance Agency Options

You have two options when selecting an agent to insure your collector car: buy specialty insurance from your standard insurance firm or hire a company that specializes in insuring collector cars. Those specialist agencies will save you time and money, and are more likely work with an agreed value. If you collect more than one car, you may be able to get a break on your premium and you may be only charged one liability fee – something standard companies will not provide.

In addition, companies that specialize in collectibles will speak your language. For example, NCM Insurance Agency not only provides collector car insurance, it’s also part of the National Corvette Museum. They cover any classic car, but you can be sure they know the ins and outs of Corvettes.

Finally, make sure that any agency you choose is ranked A- or better by A.M. Best Company, an independent insurance industry analyst. If you have a collectible car, a specialty insurer is going to be easier on your pocket and provide more peace of mind for the long run.

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