When you’re a business owner, you’ve reached a level of making your dreams happen, doing a job you love, and creating or providing something you’re very proud of. Wouldn’t you want to protect all of this after working so hard to get to where you are? Today, we are going to be talking about commercial property insurance!
Hello Charleston, North Charleston, Summerville, and all of our readers in South Carolina and beyond! Welcome back to the Abri Insurance Blog! We hope you’re doing well, and are properly covered for every aspect of your personal and professional life. No matter where you are in life and no matter how careful you are, accidents are bound to happen. Mother nature decides when a natural disaster is going to happen, and human error is a way of life. Being from South Carolina, we know the realities of the weather, once hurricane season is here, a hurricane of any magnitude or a tropical storm could happen when you least expect it. We’ve briefly touched on homeowners insurance in our blog, and we’ve talked a good deal about hurricane insurance. You spend time and money investing in your home’s safety during these times, why wouldn’t you do the same for your business, no matter its size? This also includes when you work from home, a proper business insurance policy will cover your business both on and off your personal property. Think about what your company produces or offers. Think about how devastating it would be to lose anything in your office to hurt or stop your business, even for a short amount of time. Think about how damaging it would be if your work from home situation was brought to a halt due to an accident, flood, fire, vandalism, and much more. Not only would your home be damaged, you could potentially be harmed, and your income could also be put in jeopardy. That’s where commercial property insurance comes into play. You’ve worked so hard to have your own business, why wouldn’t you want something working just as hard for you?
What Is Commercial Property Insurance?
The basic definition of commercial property insurance is that it covers every physical aspect of your company. It’s something that every company needs no matter its size and no matter if you lease, rent, or own the building your company runs out of or if you work from home. It’s important to have because so many small businesses and startups simply don’t have the cash flow to cover anything if damage or disaster would happen to any of their business assets. According to fundera.com, there are currently 28.8 million small businesses in the United States, employing over 55 million people. When it comes to all businesses in the United States, 99.9% of them are small businesses. With these kinds of numbers, that’s a huge part of every community that needs protection from whatever might happen. For many business owners, they know it’s not a question of if something will happen, but when. Being prepared for when something will happen is one of the best things you can do for your employees and your company. Generally, many businesses will have a commercial property plan that is bundled with other forms of insurance to make sure it is the most well-rounded plan with the most protection possible.
What Does Commercial Property Insurance Cover?
Before getting in too deep, it’s very important to understand that you need to buy the right kind of insurance plan for your company. Buying a cookie-cutter plan that’s not specifically tailored to you will be a waste of money and a waste of your time. Make sure that when you sit down with us at Abri Insurance that you share with us exactly what your business is, what you do every day to operate successfully, and what moving parts the company is made up of. This way we can create a plan that covers exactly what you need, so you’re only paying for what you need. Also, when disaster strikes, a tailored insurance plan will help you recover from the whole process. It will not leave you with giant gaping holes that you’ll have to cover yourself.
As we mentioned before, commercial property insurance is used to cover and protect your company’s equipment and property from the risk of accidents and disasters. One of the best things that commercial property insurance helps is to protect your building, what’s inside of it, along with fences, doors, outdoor signage, and even exterior fixtures. The plan itself covers all of that and all of your physical assets from vandalism, fire, explosions, burst pipes, water damage, theft, and storms. This is everything your common policy will cover. This means it will help cover the loss and damage of things like your office equipment, computers, inventory, other’s property, important documents, and more. However, there are still some things that everyday plans won’t cover like earthquakes and floods. This will need to be added on if these elements are common to where you work and live. Also, there are multiple different kinds of commercial insurance, since there are so many different kinds of risks your face when you own a business. Depending on what kind of business you own, you might need a few more additions than your peers or fellow business owners do, and that’s okay! Safety first!
Compare a big tech corporation to a big coal corporation. A coal company would not need to protect its documents and information stored on its cloud as a tech company would. On the other hand, a tech company would not need to have the type of intensive coverage for their employees and machinery that is used in a coal mine that a coal company does. However, this is why it is so common to see commercial insurance plans bundling multiple options. What are the different types of commercial insurance that you can find?
- Commercial Property: This is what we are talking about today, the protection of your physical assets.
- General Liability: This covers any injury and property damage caused by the business operations and products or any injuries that happen on the company’s property.
- Professional Liability: This covers errors in job performance or damage done by lack of performance and general neglect of doing one’s job properly.
- Commercial Auto: This covers the vehicles used for a company’s performance and operation.
- Employment Practices Liability: This covers situations when an employee’s rights have been violated within the company like sexual harassment, discrimination, and wrongful termination.
- Commercial Umbrella: This is an increased liability for the companies that need it.
- Workers Comp: This covers the care of an employee hurt on the job and covers lost wages and medical bills.
- Cyber Liability: Helps with very sensitive situations if personal information is leaked due to acts of cybercrime.
- Business Interruption: This covers a company’s business and its employees if production is stopped or halted due to natural disasters.
Please note that unless you specifically set your plan to do so, your commercial property insurance won’t cover your assets when they are off of your property. They will usually not be covered when they are over 100 feet from your office. If you need protection on things like your work equipment, computers, cameras, and anything else you take off your property to work elsewhere, please speak to your insurance agent to make sure you have the coverage you need.
How Much Does Commercial Insurance Cost?
Just like there isn’t a one plan fits all situation for every company, there is no one size fits all price either. How much you will be paying will depend on a lot of factors.
- First of all, the location of your company will come into play, along with what natural disasters are common in that area. The location will also include what kind of neighborhood you’re in.
- Next, you will need to consider the value of the property you are covering as well. This covers the value of your business’s building, even if you don’t own it. It also includes everything inside of it that you do own and is part of your everyday operations.
- You will also need to consider the condition of the building you’re working out of. How old are the appliances and the HVAC system? What about the bathrooms? Also, think about the electrical systems and their age, and if they will need to be replaced in the future or not!
- Your price will also depend on the industry you’re working in and the occupancy. High-risk companies like laboratories will need more coverage than a restaurant.
- You will need to consider the fire and theft protection that is already installed in your building, or not. If your building was built with fire retardant materials, you could be saving money.
- Finally, the price will also depend on the overall deductible that you select and your coverage limits.
- All of these aspects that you need to think about will determine how much you will be paying every year for your commercial insurance!
There is still so much more to consider when it comes to commercial property insurance, this is just scratching the surface. As you know, there are so many working parts to your business and your industry. This will lead to needing a lot more coverage than you might think. For veteran business owners make sure to stay up to date with your policies and to let them grow alongside your company. For our new business owners, please do your research, and make sure to sit down with us at Abri Insurance to make sure you get the best insurance plan possible for your company! Until next time, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions or comments. We are here and excited to talk about your insurance policy! We’re Abri Insurance and we are here to make sure you have the best coverage for life in the Lowcountry!