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Do you need rental truck insurance?

If you live long enough you’ll likely move around 12 times during your lifetime.



Clampett’s Rental Truck

Do you need truck insurance if you rent a truck?

Most people don’t move far. In fact, around 70% of people don’t leave their county. U-haul, the moving truck rental company, roughly estimates that three-quarters of all moves are done “Clampett” – (see Beverly Hillbillies) style by move it yourself with things loaded and strapped.

If you move a lot or don’t have much to move, moving yourself could save you some money

However, there are some pitfalls, like having to ask friends and family – then having to return the favor. Someone or you could get hurt. Your stuff could get broken and things damaged. Worse, your in an accident that your insurance policy doesn’t cover. Here is what you need to know.

Summertime is the busiest time to move.

According to U-Haul its North American trucks, trailers and tow dollies roll up enough mileage from renters daily to move a family to the moon and back about 10 times.

Summer is moving and recreational season and that puts a lot of trucks and trailers on the road.

It puts a lot of drivers on the road with little experience driving big vehicles.  People take their boats and trailers out for the first time – sometimes for first time in a few seasons.  It makes the roads kind of hazardous.

That is bound to lead to incidents and mayhem.

While U-Haul and the rest of the major moving truck renters won’t talk about specific accident rates, they are willing to talk about the kinds of accidents their customers usually have.

Hitting overhead objects, losing a mirror and damaging tires is common.

Your personal auto insurance doesn’t cover you for moving trucks and RV’s.  Your credit card won’t cover it either.

Tim Peddycoart, Truck Insurance specialist for, mentions that your insured personal vehicle would be covered if it were damaged on a rented trailer during transport — if you have collision coverage and liability extends.  However, you’d still be on the hook for the cost of the trailer.

What are your options?

You may want to consider hiring professional movers.  It may be more cost effective and efficient once all the time, possible injuries,trips back and forth, broken stuff and damaged premises are considered – not to mention the cost of renting the vehicle.

Your moving truck rental agreement or contract normally will include state minimum liability coverage , which is usually quite low, and that’s it. The rental company doesn’t require you to show proof of any other insurance to drive the truck away.

You are responsible for damages and many companies will charge for loss of use or rental opportunity – regardless of fault or reason.

Rental Truck Insurance

Rental companies generally offer insurance.

The policy details can vary, but they all offer the same basic types of coverages, which usually will include:

  • Damage waiver – Covers accidental damage to the rental equipment.
  • Cargo coverage – Covers the goods you’re transporting for damages resulting from situations such as collision, fire, windstorm and overturning of the rental truck.
  • Personal accident insurance – Gives you medical coverage for injuries from an accident as well as loss of life coverage.
  • Supplemental liability coverage – Protects you against claims made by a third party for property damage or liability damage sustained as a result of an accident with your rental truck. Limits vary (maximum usually $1,000,000).
  • Towing insurance – Damage waiver can include coverage for accidental collision damage to rental auto transport, tow dolly or rental trailer.
  • Also, the towed property coverage portion will typically cover any car, truck, van, motorcycle, ATV golf cart or lawnmower that is being towed with the rental equipment – up to the chosen limits.

Should you buy?

Do the math. The cost of the coverage varies and deductibles can apply.

All plans with all carriers have exclusions, so read carefully.

For instance, U-Haul’s Safemove coverage has an exclusion for a collision with an overhead object and cut, blown, or damaged tires — which coincidentally are two of the most common types of accidents reported by U-Haul.

Don’t make the move more costly. Contact your agent if you have any other questions.

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