Small Business Insurance
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Are you a small business owner? Or are you thinking of starting a small business? In either case, you’ve probably thought about risks and opportunities as you wrote a business plan.
It’s estimated that 52% of lawsuits target small companies on an annual basis. In today’s lawsuit-happy environment, you need to protect your business and personal assets.
Any business, no matter its size, can benefit from one or more business insurance policies. Here are some reasons to buy business insurance, and how to choose the best policy. Talk with one of our agents or get a free business insurance quote online today.
Why You Need Business Insurance
No one wants to experience a lawsuit or natural disaster, but in reality, they happen to small businesses all the time. Even if a business owner does everything possible to avoid them, unforeseen challenges can emerge.
Life’s unpredictability makes being well-insured a wise choice. Although it may be tempting to skip the added expense of business insurance, don’t! Even frivolous lawsuits cost money to fight, so it’s important to be prepared.
You will be grateful you made the investment in insurance coverage if disaster strikes- a pandemic, for example, or a malicious competitor. Don’t expose yourself to risk without a safety net: a good policy that offers the right coverage.
Types of Business Insurance
The history of business insurance began in 1752 when Benjamin Franklin established The Philadelphia Contributionship for the Insurance of Houses from Loss by Fire. Over the years insurance evolved from simple property protection to coverage for life and accidents.
Actual business insurance finally became popular with the Industrial Revolution in the 1800s. This era also saw the origination of disability insurance for workers facing injury or illness.
Today, small business owners can choose from various types of commercial insurance plans. Here is a quick summary of common types of business insurance you can choose from.
General Liability Insurance
General liability insurance is a broad category that covers lawsuits, property damage, financial judgments, and more. Small business owners often combine this type of liability coverage with another more specific policy.
Property insurance protects your physical assets from liability. It includes your office building as well as any vehicles and equipment you use in your business.
This type of insurance covers your business if you work from home. Home-based business insurance is sometimes offered with a homeowner’s policy, so do your research.
Product Liability Insurance
A Product liability policy protects from defective product claims. It is usually carried by manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers.
Professional Liability Insurance
Professionals should always protect themselves against errors, omissions, and charges of malpractice. This type of liability coverage is always carried by licensed professionals, and almost always by businesses that provide services to customers.
How to Choose the Best Policy
A quick internet search for “business insurance” brings up an endless list of options. So how do you decide which policy to choose? Which company should you trust with your financial future?
It’s normal to feel overwhelmed when trying to make a choice from so many different possibilities. Here are a few helpful tips for choosing the best business policy.
Assess Your Business Needs
Use your business plan to guide you as you consider buying coverage. If you can reasonably expect risk, then insure accordingly.
Consider the pitfalls your business may encounter, as you do your research. Also, think of the future and what you plan to do with your company. Are you expecting to grow? Will you need to hire employees, or move to a bigger location? What will happen if you decide to go entirely remote, and everyone works from home?
Asking questions like this doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be able to anticipate every bad possibility. It does, however, move you in the right direction towards choosing the right business insurance and staying protected from liability.
Study Similar Businesses
Another option is to talk to other business owners and ask them about their insurance coverage. Try to find someone who works in a similar type of business if you can.
It’s always a good idea to network with other small business owners, current or retired. They can offer a wealth of advice about topics that may never have entered your mind otherwise. If you’re lucky, you could even ask them to recommend a good business insurance company that they’ve worked with and can vouch for.
Talk to a Professional
Never underestimate the value of talking with an industry expert. Call someone in the industry and pick their brain. Let them know you are not planning to buy anything from their company, but you would like to hear their honest opinion.
Next, take what they tell you and compare it to everything else you know so far. It’s a great way to discover additional details about business insurance and cross-check your current knowledge.
You can rinse and repeat if you’re not satisfied with the results. The key is to keep asking questions until you feel satisfied that you have a good grasp of your options.
The number one place most amateur researchers start is online. If you’re curious about what kind of business insurance you need for your business, search for companies with good reviews and start there.
A good company will usually have great reviews from both customers and employees, and in some cases will have been in business for a very long time. If you get a good vibe from their website, that’s always a plus. You’ll want to see a well-organized and user-friendly site that presents an air of expertise and authority.
If you want to check an insurance company’s financial situation, there are rating agencies you can refer to. You can also check the National Association of Insurance Commissioners website to look up details on a company before you purchase from them. They publish their findings in the Consumer Information Source.
Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, contact the companies and request quotes. This is often the last step business owners take before a decision is made. It helps business owners assess which company offers the best value.
We Can Help You Find Affordable Policies
With all the different options for business insurance that exist, it’s important to get personalized advice. Guessing your choice of insurance coverage could lead to disastrous consequences!
We’d love to talk with you and discuss the needs of your company. You can request a business insurance quote on our website, and look over the types of insurance coverage we offer. Looking for more information to read? Read some of our Blog Articles such as Business Insurance And Your Small Business