How To Reduce Insurance Premiums

The economy in the U.S. has many people wondering how to get the best value for the money they need to spend to keep their business running.  One of the largest expenditures is their commercial insurance policies.  Generally, each business look for ways to reduce coverage in order to reduce the premium.  Many times, I have talked with an owner asking to take away some of the items in their policy but when I start asking questions regarding need, I discover the true reason to reduce coverage is reduction in price. 

 

There are many ways an agent can work with the commercial client to help reduce premium.  Starting with coverage is a great way and must be addressed.  Is coverage adequate or over insured to value?  Insurance is designed to place an insured back into the same financial condition he/she was in before the loss occurred.  One needs to talk about replacing items if they were to be lost.  Would insurance cover the item?  Would it be replaced?  Valuations and replacement costs must be seriously evaluated but then a serious look at deductibles should be addressed.  Often by raising deductibles while doing a reality check resolves premium issues.  Then risk needs to be evaluated.  What causes of loss in the insurance policy is the insured exposed?  Sometimes a change of form is necessary to protect the client and achieve reduction in premium.

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Please talk with your agent or one of ours regarding coverage choices, deductibles and endorsements to your insurance policy.  We can help you make informed decisions regarding protecting your financial assets.

 

Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

 

Automobile Garages

Garages are so convenient, safe and help protect most people’s second greatest investment.  However, they can also be the most common culprit for loss.  In my garage, I store many items I do not want in my house, but do not want to get rid of.  For instance, I have paper items, a lawn mower, some power tools, and a small can of gasoline for my lawnmower and a few pesticides for my shrubs.  These are all common items and make excellent fuel for a fire.  And the catalyst may be my own automobile.

 

Garage Liability insurance is the general liability name for commercial facilities dealing with automobiles.  We all take our vehicles into repair shops from time to time, yet we rarely look around their shop to see what is stored there.  However, next to collision, fire is the most common cause of loss for automobiles. 

 

Garage Keepers insurance is the policy for commercial facilities storing vehicles overnight or longer.  There are many commercial facilities to store a vehicle.  Parking garages, service garages, and various storage garages are to name a few.  Insurance companies and agencies often help their clients by taking assessment of facilities and make suggestions to reduce the threat of loss due to fire.  Some of the things we look at are wiring, outlets, well maintained work areas, and storage of flammable items.  We will also make suggestions as to locations of vehicles meaning where and how quickly each can be removed if a fire breaks out.  We will look for fire extinguishers and a sprinkler system.  We wish to help all our commercial clients find ways to reduce both their exposures and Garage Liability and Garage Keepers insurance premiums.  Please talk with your agent or one of ours to help with your particular risks.

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

General Liability And Completed Operations

Most clients feel insurance policies are confusing in language.  I feel that way about my taxes.  However, this is the reason I employ professionals to file for me.  I understand insurance most of the time, because it makes good business sense.  Occasionally, there is an exception to that rule because the policy may include endorsements that either add or take away coverage.  This is the case of the part under general liability policy called “products and completed operations” for contractors.

 

The policy completed operations part intended coverage for property damage caused by the sub-contractors work but not for the contractor’s work.  However, in an effort to clarify intention, endorsements were added to define “your work”.  It has been my experience within the industry, when there are definitions added to a policy, coverage for those items are limited.  Because of the intent enormous claims began to arise, and insurance companies became compelled to define this coverage even further.  Two endorsements were made available:  Exclusion – Damage to Work Performed By Subcontractors on Your Behalf or Exclusion – Damage to Work By Subcontractors On Your Behalf – Designated Sites or Operations.  The latter is scheduled and not used frequently.  As you can imagine, these are confusing as to intent within the policy and many are still awaiting courthouse decisions.  If you have questions regarding your General Liability policy and Products and Completed Operations portion of your policy, please contact your agent or one of ours. 

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

Marine Insurance

Boat insurance is also called “marine insurance”.  Insurance for boats is available for liability, which covers injuries and property damage to others and physical damages to the boat hull.  There are incidental coverages available such as medical payments in addition.  Insurance for boats can be purchased as a personal lines policy or for commercial use.  There are policies available as a combination for both personal and business use in some cases.

 

As commercial use, one needs coverage for the fishing, travel or other operations .  Similar to a general liability policy, the commercial premise operations is the boat.  However, these businesses need the additional coverage for the hull.  There are many insurance companies who specialize in these risks but also locations the boat is stored or moored.  Coastal areas contain unique risks to be considered, and there are many insurance companies specializing in coastal risks.  If you have questions regarding your commercial marine insurance operations, please talk with your agent or one of ours.

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

Consultant Professional Insurance

One of the fastest growing businesses today is management consulting and the outlook for growth is expected to continue through 2018 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Large consultant firms have been able to obtain and afford professional liability insurance policies for all the risks these firms face, but smaller ones have not.  However, now there is a company designed with smaller firms in mind.  In particular, those with fewer than 10 employees.

 

The Hartford has a program targeted specifically for smaller firms and individuals to provide a comprehensive program of errors and omissions insurance at reasonable prices.  Coverage range from personal injuries, including libel and slander, negligence and punitive damages when allowed.  Polices also include failure to perform, advice and service.  As the U.S. economy continues to decline, this is one field that may continue to grow.  Yet expectations will increase.  If you are in need of professional liability insurance please talk with your agent or one of ours.

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 Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

 

Insurance For Pets

I want to continue talking about unusual insurance coverage.  Yesterday, it was about weather insurance.  Today  I want to talk about pet insurance.  Insurance companies have recognized pet owners value many of their pets as family.  And those family members are as vulnerable as we are to illness and accidents.  Pets travel in automobiles and are susceptible to injuries in accidents or may become ill at various times.  Progressive Insurance Companies have developed coverage available while pets travel in an automobile and will cover injuries to your pet if involved in an accident.

 

Additionally, while taking my Beagle for his annual checkup, I learned that health insurance is now available for my dog.  I questioned this, but find by answering a few questions regarding general health of my Beagle, I can apply for hospitalization and general health care for my dog.  These are all fairly new coverages made available to pet owners.  Given the rising cost of medical care, one should have alternatives of how a pet care is determined.  For questions regarding pet insurance, please contact your agent or one of ours.

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

Weather Insurance

Recently while meeting with a client, it was mentioned that everything can be insured.  The first thought I had, was no, it can’t.  When really thinking about it though, that statement is true.  At least it is true if one is ready to pay the price. The history of insurance was built on improbabilities and is still true today.  We employ actuaries to figure risk exposures and build our rates upon those. 

 

However, there is one type of insurance that until recently, I was completely unaware.  The insurance of which I speak is insurance for weather.  I find this interesting because it truly insures commercial operations such as agriculture, tourism, municipalities, aviation and certain small businesses dependent upon weather from extreme weather conditions such as heat, drought, freeze, and excessive rain and snowfall.  We have certainly experienced all of the above conditions this year.  Yet, once these conditions are confirmed, there are no claims to processes or difficult loss adjustments to be made.  The policy terms are very simple and payments are made.  For more information regarding weather insurance, please talk with your agent or one of ours.’

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

 

How To File An Insurance Claim.

Most policy owners never have to file a claim for damages and are unfamiliar with the process.  As the insured under a commercial insurance policy, there are several ways one may report a claim for damages.  When one is first aware there is a potential loss for which payment is anticipated, it must be reported to the insurance company.  This can be done through the agent from whom the insurance policy was purchased, or directly to the insurance company.  Most national companies prefer to take the notice of loss directly from the insured on their 800 #.  The reason is to collect first hand knowledge at first notice.  However, one may also be able to report notice on the company or agents website.  Whatever method a report is given has no effect on how the claim is paid. 

 

As a policy holder, you have the permission and duty to protect your property, auto, or other from further damage.  If you have a hole in your roof from a tree which fell through during a windstorm, you do not have to wait for the insurance company to view the damage before necessary repairs are made.  It is always a good idea, when possible, to take photographs of the damage for later review, but not necessary. 

 

While talking with the insurance company, be sure to write down the date, time, and persons name with whom you spoke and what was discussed.  Ask any questions about procedures, documents you may need to gather in addition to what has already been provided.  If you have any questions regarding this process, please talk with your adjuster, agent or one of ours for additional information.

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

 

Business Interruption Insurance

Business Interruption insurance is a coverage which can be written on a Commercial Property or Business Owners Package insurance policy.  This coverage usually covers the actual loss of income suffered by the business due to a covered loss.  This insurance coverage may be for the total or partial loss up to the limit allowed in the policy.  It may cover the profits the business lost due to cessation of operations.  It may also cover additional operating expense due to moving to a temporary location for operations.  Payment of this coverage is due to a peril of the policy being cause of loss. 

 

Reimbursement under this coverage generally has a deductible amount or a waiting period.  Most times are a 24 to 72 hours after loss.  Therefore a business needs to understand how this important insurance coverage works in order to make an informed decision as to what needs to be done after a loss has occurred and when.  Premium payments will depend upon the amount of coverage requested.  Please talk with your agent or one of ours to completely understand how this coverage works, before a loss occurs in your business.

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.

 

Contractors Equipment

Most contractors understand their equipment is not covered under the General Liability insurance policy or the Commercial Auto.  Most understand an inland marine policy should be written on their tools and equipment.  This is also referred to as a “floater” insurance policy.  Therefore coverage for tools and equipment are covered for almost any risk that may occur anywhere.  It is often referred to as “all risk” or “special causes”.  This applies to owned items, but can also refer to non-owned, hired or leased items.  The

Hired  or Leased equipment coverage is where I want to draw attention.

 

It is fairly easy for a contractor to remember what one owns.  But the various job sites may require leasing or the hiring of equipment.  Without this coverage wording in your contractor’s policy, there may or may not be coverage for damage to the equipment.  Please consult your agent or one of ours to discuss these coverage issues for your particular business.

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Commercial Insurance.Net, LLC Advisor is not an attorney, accountant or certified financial planner and makes no representations or warranties to that effect.  Always check with your chosen professional as to statements made in this blog for your particular situation.