Full-Timer RV Insurance

By Sam Lemna | February 17, 2021

If you’re living in your RV full time, it’s important to have the right insurance. This starts with being honest with your RV insurance broker. Let us know how you’ll be using your RV so that we can get you the coverage you need. If your situation changes, we can adjust your insurance as required. 

In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about full-timer RV insurance. 

What is full-timer RV insurance? 

Full-timer RV insurance is coverage designed to protect those who are living in their RV full time. Here are the six full-timer RV insurance coverage scenarios we’ve encountered: 

  1. You travel across the US and Canada full-time with no permanent residence. (Keep in mind you’ll need to insure the RV where it is registered and plated.) 
  2. You live 6 months in Canada in an RV and travel down to a residence in the US for winter. 
  3. You live 6 months in Canada at a permanent residence and use your RV to snowbird in the US (or a warmer area of Canada) for the winter. 
  4. You’re using your RV as temporary accommodation until your home is built.  
  5. You use your RV as a hotel or temporary accommodation for work purposes, but don’t work from your RV. (For example, living in an RV near a worksite.) 
  6. You are permanently parked in a resort or campground and live in the RV full time. (This type of coverage is harder to come by and insurance companies will have to approve this type of use.) 

The insurance you require will depend on your individual scenario. We’ll discuss this in more detail below. 

What insurance coverage do you need as a full-time RVer? 

When insuring your RV for full-time use, you may require the following insurance coverages: 

  • Comprehensive Personal Liability can help cover expenses related to someone who is accidentally hurt or has their property damaged by your actions. For those who you don’t have a permanent residence with tenant, condo or home insurance, you’ll need this protection to be included in your full-timer RV insurance.  
  • Contents Coverage covers replacing your RV’s contents if they’re damaged or destroyed by an insured peril like fire or theft. Make sure you have the amount of and type of coverage you need for belongings, as this protection can be limited unless you upgrade. We recommend keeping an itemized list as well as photos or videos of your belongings. 
  • Third Party Liability, Accident Benefits and Direct Compensation for Property Damage are essential coverages for motorhomes as they are required by law to carry this type of coverage if you are driving or parking on public roads (at least in Alberta and many other Canadian provinces). Third-party liability covers medical and legal expenses for others in the event you’re at fault in an accident. Accident benefits covers your medical and other benefits expenses. Direct compensation for property damage covers your repair costs if you’re not at fault or are partially at fault in an accident. Unfortunately, many RV insurance companies are not offering this protection for full-timers. If this applies to you, you’ll need to get physical damage and full-timer RV insurance with one provider and purchase third party liability insurance from a separate auto insurance company. 
  • Emergency Vacation Expense Coverage helps cover the cost of accommodation when you have a covered claim on your RV. This does not apply for maintenance or if the damage is caused by a peril that is not insured.  
  • Travel Medical Coverage helps cover your emergency medical expenses when travelling out of your home province. This is critical if you travel to the US due to the high cost of medical care.  

There are a few other things to consider when it comes to your full-timer RV insurance protection: 

  • Most RV insurance companies will only cover travel in the US and Canada (Mexico is excluded). 
  • Make sure you understand your policy exclusions, which is a fancy way of saying what isn’t covered. 
  • Ensure your policy limits are adequate to cover your belongings and RV. 

How to Get Full-Timer RV Insurance 

At RV Direct Insurance, we offer several options for full-time RVers. We work with a few different insurance companies to find you the coverage that fits your needs at the best possible price. 

In addition to basic questions about your RV, your insurance broker will ask: 

  • Are you travelling around or permanently parked? 
  • Are you planning to travel to the US? If so, for how long? 
  • Do you have a permanent residence in Canada (I.e. a rental, owned condo or home, park model)? 
  • Do you have a permanent residence in the US (I.e. rental, owned condo or home, park model)? 
  • Will you be living in your RV for temporary accommodation such as for work or as your home is being built? 
  • What is the value of all the belongings you keep in your RV?
  • Do you have any expensive items such as valuable jewellery, collectibles, electronics or fitness equipment like bikes?
  • Are you planning to work from your RV?
  • Will anyone else be driving your RV?

It’s important to be honest to ensure you get the right protection for your needs and that you’ll be adequately covered while using your RV. 

If you need to purchase separate third-party liability insurance or would like to get travel medical insurance, we can refer you to a trusted partner.