If you ask most commercial property owners if their properties are fully insured, they will likely answer “YES!” The sad reality, however, is that most are not. If you aren’t regularly checking in with a company that handles commercial insurance in Charleston, SC, you may be leaving one of your greatest assets vulnerable to costly loss. These are the most common things that property owners can overlook when they assess their insurance needs.
How Does Commercial Property Coverage Work?
Commercial property insurance policies can vary, but they are all categorized by an event that can lead to loss and what types of things you can insure against. A basic policy will cover losses such as theft, vandalism, explosions, fires, and damage to vehicles. However, there are other endorsements that you can add that give you additional protection. The key things you want to think about are your building, inventory, equipment, and any outdoor items that are assets to your business.
The First Step is to Inventory!
If you have been handing your commercial property insurance on your own, that might leave you at risk. Only a qualified commercial insurance Charleston, SC representative knows what is necessary to cover you completely. The first step in the process is to do an inventory of your assets, decide the replacement value of it, and determine what is and what is not worth insuring. The property you might want to consider are things like:
- The building that houses your organization, even if it is rented
- Office equipment like computers, furniture, and phone systems – to be safe, all must be covered whether you own them or lease them
- Any important company documents or records
- Processing and manufacturing equipment
- Warehoused inventory
- Landscaping and fences
- Satellites and expensive signs
Step Two – How Do You Want Things Covered?
The second step when meeting with an insurance agent is to decide how you want to insure your assets and valuables. Commercial property insurance will pay based on the cost of replacing what is lost, or they will pay for the actual value. Your agent can help you to decide which is the better option. The two differ by definition:
- Actual Cash Value (ACV) – The actual cash value will insure you by reimbursing you the cost that it takes to replace the item with new items that are similar according to quality and style, minus any depreciation.
- Replacement Cost (RC) – The replacement cost will cover you to make any necessary repairs, rebuilding, or replacing the item with comparable quality and materials. It does not deduct anything for depreciation.
When you insure your valuables using the ACV, it is usually a lower premium because it includes the cost of depreciation, whereas RC does not. If, however, you choose the ACV, it might not be enough to replace it, so it is a tricky balance to strike. Only an insurance expert can help you weed through the complexities of how to insure your assets so that you are protected but not paying more than you should.
If you think that you are fully insured as a commercial property owner, think again. Many things that likely would cost a lot to replace or repair might be left uninsured in an accident. The only way to know for sure whether you are fully protected is to hire a commercial insurance Charleston, SC expert like Abri Insurance to walk you through the process. Don’t leave yourself vulnerable – make your appointment with us today!