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bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motorhome

Discussions regarding bus to motorhome conversions are welcome here.

bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motorhome

Postby BusBrad » Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:09 pm

Hi all,

I realise there will have been some discussion on insurances, but have not found this issue addressed;
I am in the process of purchasing a mid-sized bus: a 1991 MAN 10.180 Austral (Midi), being rear engine, with 4 speed ZF auto transmission.

I’m purchasing this (ex school) bus with a long term plan of fitting it out as a mobile home (this will be my second conversion).

As it is still a ‘bus’, I’m initially going to have to register it as a such... and was intending to register ‘privately’ (not for commercial use).
I will de-registered it for the fit out period (saving the rego costs) until ready to re-register it as a 'motorhome'.

Yet the problem I’ve discovered is that:
None of the many companies I’ve contacted will insure it as a bus, unless for commercial / business use. And:
None of the many companies I’ve contacted will insure it as a mobile home, until fully (and in some cases ‘professionally’) converted, which is fair enough (other that the ‘professional’ requirement!).

I cannot find an insurer for this ‘in-between’ phase (between being a ‘commercially operated bus’, and a ‘motorhome’).
I.e. simply put, it seems I cannot insure it as a privately owned bus.

I need at least ‘third party property’ to drive it the 1,000 kms home (and around a bit). Though fully comprehensive for about $10G would be better.
And would prefer a policy that I can pay by the month, and be able to cancel when the 3 months rego expires.

I’ve considered registering a business name (and instead registering ‘commercially’), but this first requires an ABN of which the eligibility has become quite tough, requiring business plans, etc., etc.
Not sure what to do.

Can anyone offer any suggestions?

Thanks.

Kind regards,
BusBrad
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby slug » Fri Mar 24, 2017 9:25 pm

Ken Thame did mine it's covers for the purchase price while I do the conversion then have it valued when changed to a motorhome after the VASS sign off
KT also do breakdown/roadside policy as well
The value can be done online
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby Denv12 » Sat Mar 25, 2017 5:49 am

You could register it as a van by removing most of the seats.This was suggested elsewhere in this forum awhile ago.The vehicle would no longer be registered as a passenger bus.That should make your insurance cheaper because you arent using it to earn money.It should make your registration cheaper too.Your local rego authority will tell you what you need to do then you can contact your chosen insurance company.
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby BusNut23 » Sun Apr 09, 2017 9:07 am

Tried RACV?
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby ash w » Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:54 pm

I just contacted nrma who put me on to their commercial guys which then insured my bus no probs and it was cheap at around $600 for $19000
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby bagmaker » Sat Jun 10, 2017 5:32 pm

ash w wrote:I just contacted nrma who put me on to their commercial guys which then insured my bus no probs and it was cheap at around $600 for $19000


Interesting price, for around double the premium KTI had mine insured for $90k
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby ash w » Wed Jun 14, 2017 5:46 pm

Our bus is still classified as a bus as I have not as yet started the conversion other than removing the seats and starting to figure out how to get the stove in. I am in Wa and I can register it as a panelvan or motorhome the costs of which vary with the latter being the cheaper but I need to have my bed, stove and table fitted in order to get it certified as a camper. hopefully that will happen in the next month.
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby BusBrad » Sat Jul 08, 2017 6:53 pm

Thanks to everyone for your replies.
I eventually gave up...
No company was interested in insuring due to:
- being over 4.5T (which knocked out NRMA, RACQ and others)... okay for Coasters, etc.
- is a 'privately registered' bus (i.e. not a 'commercial bus', which knocked out BusInsure and other 'bus' insurers)
- wasn't yet converted (which knocked out the rest)
- some companies also said the vehicle would need to be 'professionally converted' to comply with their requirements.
Though Ken Tame did provide a quotation (I did become a member beforehand), though I realised from their website comments on vehicle requirements, that it must be converted first to comply.
Possibly anyone in the same predicament as me (over 4.5 T, privately registered, and still as a bus) that has insurance, may not have fully informed the insurance company.
Yet it is possible that some companies wrongly turned away my business... though I was very thorough and persistent.
I concluded that insurance wasn't worth anything if the duty of disclosure was not true.
Once converted I'll repeat (part of) the process... though think I'll try Ken Tame again first!
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby bagmaker » Sat Jul 08, 2017 10:27 pm

Did you try CIL Brad?
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby BusBrad » Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:41 pm

Yes I did try CIL, thanks.
I can't recall now why they wouldn't insure.
I'd tried over 20 companies, was relentless in following all leads (some repeatedly)... and exhausted all avenues.
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby boronia » Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:21 pm

Have you tried Shannons? They are very helpful to the enthusiast movement, and happily cover commercial type vehicles.
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Re: bus insurance (the in-between phase: commercial to motor

Postby BusBrad » Tue Jul 11, 2017 11:51 pm

Thanks.
Yes, I tried Shannon's first... as I've 4 vehicles insured with them, and have had an average of 2-3 insured since about 1990.
They were a definite NO.
I followed by trying APIA, as we've our little Prattline LoTow insured with them.
Then NRMA, RACQ, GIO, and every other conceivable insurer including all those suggested on CMCA and other forums, various government departments, etc.
I'd be interested in hearing from someone 'in the SAME predicament', that HAS insurance, AND has told the whole TRUTH to their insurer.
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