The personal insurance offered through South Western Insurance Group Limited’s Elite Book extends to cottages, motorhomes, watercraft, and trailers. While the broad scope of coverage options is ideal for most leisure and lifestyle clients, the diversity of programs means the criteria for what makes a good submission can vary. Complete and comprehensive is the best way to go, according to underwriter Sunyna Dwivedi.
“A good rule of thumb for brokers is to remember that when we refer these risks, the market needs to know exactly what they are quoting in order to quote accurately. Providing us with as complete and detailed a picture of the property as possible is always a good idea.”
In the case of cottages and mobile homes, information on updates is essential – especially for older dwellings dating back more than 15 or 20 years. “If you have a 1975 cottage,” Dwivedi explains, “and there is no mention of updates to the plumbing, the roof or the electric, its age alone will likely preclude it from being a good submission. So, providing any update information is crucial.”
Photos are also a must for all types of older risks. And regardless of the age, risks involving woodstoves or oil tanks require a WETT certificate and questionnaire in addition to photos.
As far as mobile homes, watercraft, and trailers are concerned, Dwivedi notes that the market is really “cracking down” on submissions that don’t include the make, model, manufacturer, and serial number for such products. “And they require the age and type of engine, and registration and hull identification numbers for watercraft as well.”
These are just some of the little things that can get overlooked on applications, according to Dwivedi. But while a good Elite Book submission includes as much detail as possible, there are a few instances, she says, where a decline will be inevitable – and some situations that the company does not cover at all.
Because of the depreciation involved, Dwivedi explains that older cottages and mobile homes without updates and photos are likely to be a flat-out decline. Submissions for products where it is not possible to ascertain the manufacturer and model are also not typically approved.
“We also will not cover properties under construction, or homemade trailers and mobile homes not built by a commercial manufacturer. And we are not in a position to provide owner-occupied coverage for cottages or mobile homes with roomers or boarders.”
There is some good news on the rental front, however. As of May, South Western Insurance Group Limited’s trailer program offers a new feature permitting one-week rentals facilitated through outdoorsy.com. “Personally-sourced rentals are still a no-go,” says Dwivedi, “but rental exposure is being allowed in this very specific capacity.”
Elite Book coverages are mostly seasonal, leading brokers to look for even speedier turnaround than usual. “My best advice,” says Dwivedi, “is to remember that the more complete the submission, the quicker and more accurate the quote will be. If we have to request additional information, there is going to be a delay. When we get everything we need upfront however, our ideal turnaround is 24-48 hours.”