As for contractors who deal with insurance providers, there are two types of entrepreneurs, what I like to call savvy and learning entrepreneurs. The knowledgeable entrepreneurs tend to have several years of experience in seeking out their suppliers insurance, while learning entrepreneurs tend to be in their first two years of business. The skilled entrepreneurs are entitled to the point that gives their agents precise information and looking for exact coverage levels, which in turn make it easier to work with, while the learning entrepreneur can be difficult to cover properly. Insurance is a language that some people find difficult to understand, so that learning entrepreneurs do not seem to formulate their needs very well for their insurance brokers leaving room for error. As an insurance broker, part of our job is sure to protect our entrepreneurs to the best possible ability and to help them learn about which insurance is best suited to their specific needs. For this, both the contractor and the insurance agent must be on the same page. Here I will address some of the key points that I think will help entrepreneurs find the best insurance certificates available from their agent or broker.
First, you need to get an idea of what you want to insure. All contractors insurance is not the same. A painting contractor in Oregon may not require the same type of insurance that a General Contractor would have in California. Stop asking yourself what its exactly like you do. Think about what might be wrong with your business. Find out if your state has build-up laws that directly affect your type of work. Contact your state or local licensing center to find out what warranty of your products after the installation. If you find something, you want insurance that offers that coverage without excessive restrictions.
Know your insurance limits. This is different for everyone, but a good place to start is to look around and put up everything youre worth. Then take it as a starting figure and do not insure anything less. It would not be meaningful to be worth a million dollars and be insured for only fifty thousand. I always hear that my customers only want their contractors liability insurance to be $ 10,000 because their project cost is only $ 10,000 but they fail to understand that the project cost does not dictate the cost of a claim and a $ 100 job could cause $ 500,000 in damages.
Do not be shy about telling the insurance agent everything. Remember, we as insurance agents work for you. We are here to make sure you are insured for what you do. If you do not communicate with us what you need, we will not know giving it to you.
Make sure your broker works with your best interest in mind. Insurance agents are like everyone else and can be lazy. Make sure you get the most competitive insurance income. Ask for comparison quotes so you know theyre really about you and not just giving you the first quote as they come back. Ask your agent what type of contractual insurance experience they have. If it is not specialized in vendor insurance, it may be a good idea to look for someone who knows you know your specific needs. Question about the quote comes with some additional features such as free extra insured certificates, free exemptions from subrogation etc. I have heard customers tell stories about their former insurance agents who charge them for regular insurance certificates and because it is not submitted on the proposal insured sign, they could not do something about it. Finally, ask for different payment options. Together with the old salary at full opportunity, most carriers allow payments to be made throughout the year, reducing the financial burden on contractors insurance.
Being a knowledgeable entrepreneur seeking insurance will ultimately save you money and potential headache in the future. Just taking some time to do some research on your local construction requirements can lead to many costly issues along the way and help build confidence in asking your insurance agent for exactly what you need. Understanding entrepreneurs insurance is like learning a new language and may seem a little scary but do not worry, your insurance agent or broker is there to help you along the way. Do not be afraid to call and ask any questions you may have, its part of what you pay for.