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Campervan Conversion Insurance

If you’ve spent time and energy modifying and upgrading a van into a camper, you’ll want campervan insurance that protects your hard work and efforts. To make sure you find a policy you can rely on when things don’t quite go to plan, here’s what to consider when it comes to campervan conversion insurance.

When does a van become a campervan conversion?

For your van conversion to be officially recognised as a camper (or a ‘motor caravan’ as it will be officially called) you’ll need to change its body type description on the V5C logbook. To do this, your conversion will need to include certain features and you’ll need evidence of those updates.

Features your converted van must have to be classed as a campervan, include:

  • Seating and a table.
  • Sleeping area.
  • Cooking facilities.
  • Storage facilities.

All these features must be fixed, although the table can be made so it’s removeable. Sleeping areas can also be converted from seating arrangements too.

You can only turn certain vehicles into a camper, although this includes most van type vehicles, from old ambulances to livestock carriers, so this shouldn’t be too much of an issue.

To reclass your van as a campervan, you’ll then need to send your evidence and original V5C to the DVLA. It’ll be up to the DVLA whether or not your conversion meets the criteria and can be regrouped as a campervan. You can find all the details you need about features needed and how to go about reclassification on the DVLA website.

Who needs campervan conversion insurance?

These policies are specially designed for vehicles that have been converted into campervans. They take into account the cost of modifications and the unique nature of your new camper.

You can find camper conversion insurance from mainstream insures but a specialist provider could prove better value as they’ll have a greater understanding of your needs.

Either way, it’s important to compare policies from all types of insurer so that you can be confident about finding cover to suit your exact needs.

What does camper conversion insurance cover?

Converted campervan insurance covers the same range of events and incidents as other types of campervan and motorhome insurance. You’ll be able to choose from one of three levels of cover:

  • Third-party only – compensates other people for damage or injury you cause in an accident. This type of policy doesn’t cover your campervan, so you’ll be responsible for covering the cost of your own repairs. It’s also the minimum level of insurance you can have by law.
  • Third-party, fire and theft – includes third-party only cover and will also cover the cost if your campervan is stolen or damaged by fire.
  • Comprehensive cover – as well as third-party, fire and theft cover, these policies also pay to repair or replace your campervan if it’s damaged in an accident.

Insurers will also usually offer a range of other features. These could be included as standard or can be added on as an optional extra – for example, windscreen cover or European cover.

A number of policies will also include agreed value. This is where you and your provider decide how much your campervan is worth. If your camper is written off or stolen, your insurer will pay out the agreed value instead of the market average which could be a lot lower.

Not all insurers offer policies with an agreed value, but it could be a feature well worth looking for if you’ve spent considerable amounts of time and money converting a campervan.  

Does campervan conversion insurance cover partial conversion?

Some specialist providers will also cover your campervan while you’re in the process of converting it. It’s not always an option so if this is something you’re looking for, always check to see if it’s offered first.

How much does it cost to insure a converted campervan?

The cost of your premium will depend on a number of different factors, including:

  • Your age – younger drivers are more likely to be involved in an accident according to research. It means drivers under 25 pay significantly more compared to other age groups.
  • Where you live – living somewhere with a higher than average crime rate can push up your premium, as can living in a busy, built-up area.
  • Security – good security can help lower premiums so if you can, off-road parking or keeping your camper in a locked garage is best. If not, you can also invest in an immobiliser.
  • Mileage – the more miles you do, the greater the risk of an accident, which can lead to higher insurance costs.
  • Your driving record – penalty points can dramatically increase premiums.
  • Your claims history – recent claims made in the last five years can increase what you pay.

It’s absolutely vital to give your insurer accurate information and up to date details. If you don’t, you risk invalidating your policy which means your insurer can refuse to pay out if you make a claim.

How can I save money on campervan conversion insurance?

Any policy you choose, should cover your needs first and foremost so while price is important, it’s not always the best gauge of value. However, there are ways to lower the cost of insurance without cutting back on cover, such as:

  • Paying for your policy annually not monthly.
  • Limiting the number of miles you do.
  • Adding a more experienced, named driver to the policy.
  • Upgrading security.
  • Increasing your voluntary excess.