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What kind of insurance do artisan contractors need?


Artisan contractors insurance graphic of bearded man with drill fixing door

Artisan contractors’ insurance is a tool you want to keep handy. It protects your business if you make a mistake, cause injury to someone, or damage their property. And there’s coverage to protect your equipment and staff too.

Read on for a run-down of the policies artisan contractors need, what they cover, and why you need them.

What insurance coverage do artisan contractors need?

You may offer carpentry, painting and decorating, tiling, handyman, plumbing, or electrical services. You may offer all of those and more. But whatever your area of craftsmanship, there are three policies you shouldn’t be without:

General liability insurance
Equipment insurance
Professional liability insurance

Plus, depending on the way your business operates, you may also want:

Workers’ compensation insurance (if you employ anyone)
Cyber insurance

General liability insurance for artisan contractors

You work at your clients’ properties, right? Then you need general liability insurance. It covers claims for:

• Injury to someone (other than you or an employee) – say a client trips over your toolbox, breaks an ankle, and needs hospital treatment. Your policy can pay their medical expenses.

• Damage to someone’s property – you brush past an antique vase and it topples, smashing on a newly laid parquet floor. Your policy can pay to replace the vase, as well as for repairs to the floor.

• Personal injury – you’re overheard saying something not-so-nice about a tricky customer. It gets back to them and they sue you for slander. Your policy can pay for an attorney to defend you and compensation if it’s due.

Of course, you’re careful. But accidents happen. And the trouble is, you can be sued even if an accident wasn’t your fault. General liability insurance protects you from claims for accidental injury and property damage, even if the case is groundless.

Equipment insurance

The tools of your trade are valuable. It’s hard to work without them. If they got lost, or stolen, could you afford to replace them immediately? If not, you could lose a job or two.

Business personal property insurance (BPP) protects your equipment from loss, damage, or theft. That includes laptops and mobiles you take with you on-site. What’s more, it covers the moveable things in your office (even if that’s at home). From your swivel chair to your potted plants.

Add BPP to your general liability insurance. That way, if you lose your equipment, you won’t lose any business.

Professional liability insurance

General liability insurance doesn’t cover faulty workmanship claims. You need professional liability insurance to cover those. And because you charge for your service, clients can sue you if they think your work wasn’t up to scratch. Even if the claim has no grounds.

Faulty workmanship claims can be expensive. If the case goes to court, you’ll have to hire an attorney to defend you. Then there’ll be legal fees and court costs to pay, plus compensation if the case doesn’t go your way.
Thing is, claims like these don’t just hit your wallet hard, they take up your time. And that’s time you could be working. So you end up losing income too.

Say you have a tricky client. He calls to say there’s a problem with the internal doors you fitted. You go back several times to fix the problem but he’s still not satisfied. He calls in another contractor to re-do the job and then sues you to cover the cost.

If that happens, your professional liability policy steps in. You’ll get an attorney to defend you, your legal fees paid and compensation, too, if necessary. Pretty handy, huh? Sure, it’s a piece of protective equipment you’ll, hopefully, rarely use, but it’s good to know you have it. Just in case.

OK. So those are the policies you definitely need. But there are a couple of others to bear in mind.

Workers’ compensation insurance

Do you have any employees? Even if you have just one person on your payroll, most states require you have workers’ comp insurance. It’s best to check your state’s requirements as penalties can be severe.

But it’s a good policy to have anyway. Especially for a small business owner. It protects you from the cost of workplace injuries. And in your line of work, accidents are a daily hazard.

If one of your employees is injured, needs medical treatment and time off work to recover, workers’ comp insurance can cover their medical bills and lost earnings. Plus, if the case goes to court – no matter who’s at fault – it can pay your lawsuit costs too.

Cyber insurance

If you own a website, use email, and transfer money online, you’ll want cyber insurance. Because for small businesses like yours, with less cash to spare for tough cyber security, you’re an easy target.

Cybercriminals are getting smarter. Nowadays, they don’t just hack into your system and hold your website to ransom. Email and money transfer fraud are on the rise.

If you get hacked, cyber insurance provides you with 24/7 technical support. Plus, the financial resources to recover from the attack. It means you’ll be back up and running, doing business again fast. And in the meantime, you and anyone who works for you, get training to help reduce the risk of an attack.

Artisan contractors’ insurance cost

Insurance costs vary from business to business. The price you’ll pay depends on factors like:

• the size of your firm
• where you’re based
• the limits you choose.

But there are ways you can save money. Choose to pay a bigger deductible (the amount you’ll contribute if there’s a claim) and you’ll pay less for your policy. Just be sure you can afford your deductible if it comes to it.

When you’re working out how much cover you’ll need, it’s always best to over-estimate. Think worst-case scenario, but pick a figure you can realistically afford.

Our general liability policies cost from $42 a month; professional liability policies start from $71 a month. But if you’d rather pay every quarter, or in one lump sum, you can. Choose the payment plan that suits you.

Artisan business insurance quotes

If you’re still not quite sure what artisan insurance you need, there’s more information over on our website. Or call us at 978.344.4215 and we’ll talk you through your options.

But if you’re all set and ready to get your quote it’ll only take a minute or two. Get your quote online now.

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