Small business owners are the only people who will work 80 hours a week for themselves to avoid working 40 hours a week for someone else.
With all of that hard work building your dream brick by brick, the scary and unfortunate thing is that is can crumble in a matter of seconds if you aren’t careful or well protected.
While we don’t mean this to be a doomsday message about the worst-case scenarios that could happen to your business, we do want to get you thinking about areas of exposure you might not have thought of, and gaps in your coverage that need to be addressed.
Let’s get started!
Why small business coverage should be as unique as your business
Small businesses have the versatility to be agile and operate quicker than larger ones, but unlike their counterparts, they traditionally have a tougher time recovering from a loss and the costs associated just getting back to speed. That’s a lot of revenue in the form of lost income, day-to-day operating expenses, not to mention the need to keep up payroll every two weeks.
If small business coverage seems like a daunting task and you don’t know where to start – don’t worry! Let’s begin by covering these three questions to get the ball rolling.
- Do I need Commercial Property coverage?
Depending on what type of property you have, whether you rent, own, lease or operate out of your own home – you will need to have commercial property insurance. This is critical because it doesn’t just cover your building, it insures for equipment, stock, technology, and even your landscaping outside.
An experienced broker with an extensive reach throughout the industry will help create a bespoke policy for you based on the risks you might face – and will even uncover areas you haven’t thought of.
- Do I have any Business Interruption coverage?
Small business owners need to think about what all of their costs would add up to if a fire, a flood or a break in rendered your operation immobile. The right policy will get you back up and running quickly and limit your downtime and costs that could take years to recover from.
Business interruption coverage isn’t always on a policy with a broker and there are various ones to cover you for the net income you lost when you had to suspend your operations. You can also get coverage for the period of restauration it takes to get you back up and running.
- Do I need Professional Liability Insurance?
Professional Liability is also considered Errors and Omissions insurance. This will protect you against claims related to your delivery of professional services. This type of insurance is required in the medical and legal fields, where it is more commonly called malpractice insurance. This will protect your company against claims that a service you provided caused your client to suffer financial harm due to mistakes on your part. This could also include privacy violations for people in technology, or errors and omissions for real estate professionals.
Brokers know the unique exposures of small business owners
Small business coverage is very unique, but policies in small to large commercial insurance can be a la carte. Whereas when you compare it to auto insurance, they all look pretty similar no matter where you buy it because the auto industry is highly regulated.
Here are a handful of examples to show just how unique a policy is.
What would you do if your refrigeration blew and you lost all your flowers? Or a flood wiped out your storefront for a few weeks? Business interruption coverage can help fill the gaps should this arise. Or what about covering your workers if they are out on delivery? You will need commercial auto insurance if you have workers making deliveries to clients.
There isn’t a one size fits all plan – it needs to be tailor-made.
Restaurants are tricky because there are a lot of moving parts, but coverage is beneficial for both you, your employees and your guests.
For example, equipment breakdown coverage doesn’t automatically get put on, which is the anatomy to a well-oiled restaurant. Then you have to think about coverage for slip and fall accidents, which actually accounts for over three million food service employees injured every year from falls.
Then there are other areas to consider like accidents with a deep fryer, high liquor receipts, or fridge malfunctions. You would need workers’ compensation insurance to protect the health and safety of your workers.
That’s why it’s imperative to have a plan that is malleable and covers these issues from all angles.
- Day care:
By its very nature, day care facilities are working with vulnerable and valuable things – and they need coverage to defend allegations of abuse or accidents. A liability lawsuit could cripple a business very quickly.
- Janitorial services:
A general policy might not cover all the nuances that a janitorial services business might need. What their stock would be? Their staff might be going to places with confidential and sensitive information in office buildings, and are they protected?
All of these are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to uncovering how unique a policy should be crafted, and there are exclusions and revisions to these policies you need to know.
So when you’re dealing with small business insurance that has many different dimensions to it, you want to work with a large and experienced brokerage team with access to top commercial insurance companies with equally large market shares.
How a broker helps customize a policy for you
A broker will bring the worst-case scenarios forward to make sure you are prepared for everything that could (and hopefully doesn’t) happen.
Experienced brokers know exactly what claims can look like, and what the unique issues
a small business owner might not think about and ultimately will need a quote for – because a simple insurance policy will not suffice.
As a small business owner, there is so much on your plates and you might not even realize the magnitude of what your exposure might be. Cash flow is critical and you might not be able to recover from a bad claim.
When you start thinking about Commercial Liability, Product Liability, Equipment Breakdown and Professional Liability insurance and how it all interacts with your business – it can sound very overwhelming.
We have the knowledge and capacity to handle the most complex commercial insurance risks and will work with together with you to design a coverage to suit your company’s requirements. Let’s get started today!