Can you hear the Beach Boys’ music?  Depending on your age, maybe not!  There are a lot of ways for your clients to “get around,” and if they have homeowners and auto policies, then I’ll bet they’re assuming they’re covered by one policy or the other.  Let’s take a look at what property coverage the Insured has on a 1991 ISO HO3 for the machinery they use to get around.

Various vehicles and motorized land conveyances are covered by the HO3, and the coverage analysis is pretty easy.   These fall under Coverage C, which applies worldwide.


–          There is a $1,000 sub-limit for trailers not used with watercraft.

–          Trailers used with watercraft are subject to the $1,000 sub-limit for watercraft and all related equipment.

Motor Vehicles and other Motorized Land Conveyances

The Florida Special Provisions endorsement adds the following definition of “Motor Vehicle”:  self-propelled land or amphibious vehicle (yeah, like we all have one of those), or trailer towed by or hitched to one of these vehicles.  What if a trailer is not hitched to a vehicle and is just parked?  Then it has up to $1,000 coverage (subject to all the other policy provisions) as a trailer.

The HO3 policy starts out excluding all property coverage for motor vehicles and motorized land conveyances, but then gives coverage back for such vehicles not subject to motor vehicle registration if:

–          Used to service an Insured’s residence; or

–          Designed for assisting the handicapped.

What kind of vehicles could you use to service your residence?  Probably an ATV or maybe even a golf cart.  You could use them to move yard tools or trash cans around, take fence-fixing supplies out to the back 40, or gather up yard debris and move it to the curb for pick up.  If your Insured has a long driveway and he uses a vehicle like this to truck on down to the mailbox, is that servicing the residence?  My vote is no – that’s servicing the Insured!

Notice that the second covered category says designed for assisting the handicapped.  Could a handicapped person be using a golf cart to get around?  Sure, but the HO3 won’t provide property coverage for the golf cart because it wasn’t designed to assist the handicapped, and it’s not being used to service the residence.  Golf carts are used for all kinds of reasons, but they were still designed to use while playing golf.  Now, a motorized wheelchair was designed to assist the handicapped and would have coverage under C.  They’re expensive, so does your Insured have enough Coverage C? What about replacement cost coverage for contents?

If your Insured does have a motorized land conveyance that fits these narrow parameters, what property coverage do they get?  Answer: the Coverage C limit or any applicable sub-limit, subject to the occurrence deductible, and the list of covered Named Perils.

It’s quite possible the best coverage for the Insured would be a separate Recreational Vehicle policy, which includes liability protection.  I’ll tackle the holes in the HO3 liability coverage for these vehicles in the next blog.

Kathleen Davis, CPCU, CIC, ARM, API

About Kathleen Davis, CPCU, CIC, ARM, API

VP, Customer Relations
Tower Hill Insurance Group

Kat is a 1st Degree Insurance Nerd who started her career at Rollins Burdick Hunter (now AON) in Chicago, 1980. Kat spent 19 years in the brokerage/agency business in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Ft. Myers, FL. She was an Account Manager for most of this time handling retail and service businesses, and specializing in construction sub-contractors. Along the way she picked up her ARM, CPCU, API, and CIC designations (they were just lying around). Kat was hired by Tower Hill Insurance Group in 1999 to start their Training Department where she wrote and presented employee training and agency CE classes. In 2006 Kat moved to Underwriting to finally use her CPCU and picked up all kinds of great stories. She says: “Insurance is a laugh a minute, and I can’t understand why some people don’t see it.” In 2013, Kat was reassigned to Administration to assist Tower Hill’s Customer Service Department.