Contractor’s Insurance – The Basics

Insurance for ContractorsNo one wants to consider the work they do as “risky business” but, if you own a contracting business, you know the inherent risks your business faces daily. Not sure about that? Just think about the aspects of your work that could lead to an employee, subcontractor, client, or other affiliate being injured.  How many types of accidents do you have to avoid every day? What about theft or property damage- either yours or someone else’s? What would it cost to pay for these things? Your contractor’s business faces many unique risks, in addition to the common workplace risks any business has. While there is only so much you can do to lessen these risks, you don’t need to carry the additional burden of resolving them out of pocket.

Having the right contractor’s insurance in place when these instances take place can make the difference between a profitable year and an unprofitable one. Candidly, it can make the difference between sustaining your business or losing it. The best thing you can do for your contracting business is to work with an insurance agent who understands your risks and how to best safeguard your business against them. Every contractor’s business is different; therefore, contractor’s insurance options vary.

Who Needs Contractor’s Insurance?

General Contractors- Contractors that oversee the entire building or remodeling project.

Artisan Contractors– Skilled contractors such as masons, plumbers, carpenters, electricians, HVAC installers and roofers.

Handyman and Home Improvement Contractors

Landscape and Janitorial Contractors

Contractor Insurance Coverages

The specific type of insurance you will need to sufficiently protect your business is totally based on your business and the services you provide.

Let’s take a look at the basic types of contractor business insurance any contractor could benefit from:

General Liability– protects your business from claims of bodily injury, physical damage, slander and libel by a person or another business.

For example, if a client trips over your power cord and breaks an ankle while on your site, your general liability coverage will cover the costs associated with the injury. Or if you bring a sink into a clients’ home and drop it, breaking the kitchen tiles, this policy will cover the damaged property.

Business Property– Protects your business’ physical location and the furniture, tools, and equipment you use in your business from loss, damage and possibly theft.

Business Income– If your business is unable to operate due to a covered property damage, this coverage pays for the loss of income to your contracting business.

Professional Liability– Your General Liability policy won’t cover claims resulting from professional services so it’s important to have a Professional Liability policy as well. If, in addition to your contracting services, you draw plans or provide engineering and other professional services, your professional liability policy covers those services.

Builder’s Risk– This is coverage for a specific job site. It will cover property damage at that site, including the building under construction as well as the materials, supplies and equipment being used. Say, for instance, you installed marble tile on the main floor of an office building that is under construction, and it was vandalized overnight. Your builder’s risk policy will cover the loss.

Worker’s Compensation– Getting coverage to protect your employees if they are hurt or injured on the job is smart for any contractor and, in most states, it’s required by law. This coverage will pay medical benefits and some wage replacement if your employee is hurt, becomes sick or dies while working in the scope of their employment.

Commercial Automobile– Do you have a work truck or van? Company vehicle that you use for work related errands, tasks, or jobs? Then you should consider Commercial Auto as well. A business auto policy can include coverage that is not usually available in a personal auto policy.

Business Owner Policy’s (BOP) for Contractors

Now that you’ve read through the basic coverages, you’re probably thinking: “Do I really need THAT many different policies?!

If you’re a small business there is one policy that combines General Liability, Business Property & Business Income with several other coverages such as, Contractor’s Tools & Equipment, Employee Dishonesty, Cyber insurance and many more. It’s called a Business Owner’s Policy or BOP.  Best of all, these coverages come at a very affordable rate! The qualifications for a small business vary by carrier but if you have less than 100 employees you should qualify.

 

Understanding all the coverages your contracting business needs may seem overwhelming.  However, when you work with a professional commercial insurance agent who knows your industry and understands your specific risks, it can be much simpler for you.

Reach Out to one of our agents who will take the time to learn about your specific contractor’s business, shop with multiple insurance carriers and present you options for adequate, cost effective coverage today!