Businesses in the construction industry, no matter if large or small contractors or even private handymen, will use insurance policies protect themselves. Why do they do this? They want to make sure that they, their job site, and their business are protected and insurance covers accidents. For those most part, these accidents will occur on the job site. As a few great examples of what could happen, someone trips on your tools, one of your clients believes that you damaged their walls, you get in an accident while driving on the site. These aren’t just over the top examples either, these are real things that could happen to you. Each of them can be covered by liability insurance, workers compensation, and commercial auto insurance.
General liability coverage and worker’s compensation are required to do business in the construction industry. What that means is that as a business owner of a construction business, you should at least have those types of insurance, if not more to be well protected. In general, your insurance policies should protect you from damage on-site as well as any personal injuries that occur, for example, a roofing contractor, getting hurt while working.
What are the important features of insurance?
1. Coverage Caps
One of the more important features of an insurance policy is the coverage that it provides you. For this reason, you should always make sure that you will be getting the coverage you need when looking at quotes and talking with agents. Business owners in the construction industry will have higher insurance costs because the industry has an overall higher risk of an accident. When you get free quotes, take a close look at the details of the insurance policy. You might see that some policies and companies will cap your coverage. You need to make sure you have what you need. If you don’t, you could end up with a bill that your company can’t afford. Keep in mind the higher the coverage, the less you have to pay out of your pocket when something happens. However, it is also true, the more coverage you pay for, the more per month you will have to pay.
Similar to a coverage cap, a deductible will either help or hurt you when something happens. It also has a high effect on the cost of the insurance per month and year. Deductibles will vary by insurance company and insurance coverage that you go with. To keep it simple, the deductible you choose will be how much you must pay before the insurance will help you. As an example, if your General Liability policy has a $1,000 deductible, you’ll be required to pay up to $1,000 should someone file a valid claim.
3. Ranges & Exclusions
When looking at the previous two examples, you should also think about what is included in these. What we mean by that is, what can you actually claim and what types of claims will get denied. You should always ask if this insurance will cover all the accidents that you need it to. This means that you will need to take a close look at where your coverage starts and ends. You should check to see if you will just be protected by your contractor’s insurance while on the job site or if it also covers you when leaving or even after the job is completed. In summary, first think about what types of insurance you need, then think about what exact scenarios you would like it to cover. This is also something that an insurance agent can be of great help with.
4. Free Certificate of Insurance
If you’ve worked in the construction industry before now, you probably know what a Certificate of Insurance is. You might have been asked to show your previous employers certificate to get jobs in the past. Now it’s your turn to get one and you should be able to do it for free and online. While not the main reason you should get insurance, it is one big reason why you will need to get general contractor’s insurance coverage for your small business. Even if you are not asked to show it, it’s a great way to stand apart. By showing them this, you will reassure them. They will know should something go wrong, they will be protected through your protection. A key point here is to ask an insurance agent if you can obtain proof of insurance for free from their company. Better yet, ask them if you can get it online and for free to save you time and money.
5. Tailored Policies
Your small business is unique in many ways, including the insurance needs you have. Just for a few examples of differences, you could have some someone else, a higher risk of data breach, a lower risk of medical cost, a need for excess liability insurance, or even no need for professional liability. Getting a tailored policy is the perfect solution to make sure you are getting what you need and not what someone else needs. There are insurance companies that offer one-size-fits-all policies both online and in physical locations. Much like one-size-fits-all clothing, they never work quite the way you think they will.
Rather than wasting your time looking into these options make sure to start by asking an insurance agent if they will be creating a custom solution for you. This agent should be able to answer by giving you the perfect combination of policies based on your needs.