Working from home is increasingly attractive for many self-employed individuals. Even if you work for a company and are not autonomous, many businesses are recognizing the benefits of letting people work from home. The evidence shows that people who work from home are more productive, have higher satisfaction with their job, and experience a greater work/life balance.
This does, however, mean that your home insurance may need to be updated, and you may need to think about your business insurance options even if you work from home.
A regular home contents insurance policy will likely cover some basic items that are part of your home business set-up, namely furniture and some home office equipment. Of course, this varies from company to company, so don’t just assume that your belongings are covered because you have existing home insurance coverage.
If you have specialist items, such as photocopiers, or audiovisual equipment that is registered to your business, this will likely not be covered by your home insurance policy. Always look at the small print, and see which items are covered by an existing policy, and which items are exempt. It is also worth seeing if you can get coverage that secures your business items when you are out and about. Ideally, theft and accidental coverage should be covered, and this should extend to items, such as a work laptop, that you need to take on business trips.
It’s hard to know just how much cover you should get, especially if you are a new business and not sure just how much you should be spending on insurance. This is why it is worth assessing the type of coverage you need and what you really need covering.
Create an Insurance Checklist
Once you have found an insurer that you think meets your needs, make sure that you have a checklist to go through, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Some of the things you should ask include an exact breakdown of coverage, the cost of premiums, if there is a no-claims bonus, the level of excess, and any additional insurance that they offer.
Evaluate the Type of Coverage You Need
If you require additional coverage, you need to confirm that your insurance provider is able to provide you with the coverage your business needs. Some of the business insurance plans that you may require includes:
- property and liability protection;
- staff retirement benefits;
- employee health plans;
- equipment coverage.
There are many types of coverage, and knowing what each plan means and how much it will set you back can often get confusing. If you don’t know the kind of coverage you need, you should certainly consider booking a consultation to assess the needs of your business.
Keep Track of Your Expenditure
You should always stay on top of all the costs of running your business. However, you need to make sure that you keep receipts of items purchased for your business, not only for your insurance claims but also to provide to the taxman. You may be able to claim tax back on business-related expenses such as the cost of a work laptop and office furniture.
Start by comparing quotes from various insurers, and see which one is best suited to you. Don’t just look at the insurance company that is the cheapest, as this will not necessarily benefit you in the long-run.
Consider Your Employees
You also need to assess the type of business you are running and the kind of coverage that is best suited to you. For example, you may need to consider public liability insurance if you have regular visitors coming to your house as part of your work. This isn’t compulsory but maybe something to consider if you want to protect yourself from loss or damage from claims made against you on your company property.
You don’t want to waste your money, paying a higher premium for over-insuring. That being said, you also don’t want to under-insure as you won’t receive the full compensation for making a claim. Failing to take out sufficient business coverage could prove catastrophic to your small business. Unlike large companies, who can absorb the cost of an event such as a fire or flood, small companies simply don’t have the resources. They need to rely on insurance to help them. Without this, a small business will likely run out of money while they are waiting for the business to get up and running. It is imperative to remember that the time it takes for you to receive revenue will be much longer than the initial period of commencing operations.
Know Where You Can Find Support
Having the right level of cover is important, but so is getting adequate support. If you have to go through a business insurance claim, it is helpful to have the wisdom and support of professionals who have experience in this area. If this is the first-time claim, you will likely be unsure of the steps you need to take, which can be catastrophic when it comes to making a claim. The professional support of a broker, insurer such as Amistad Insurance Services, Inc, or loss adjuster can make a big difference. They will have dealt with this type of situation on countless occasions and will be able to provide you with the facts and options available to you in a timely and professional manner.
What About Life Insurance?
Thinking about life insurance is often enough to make you want to move swiftly on to another thought. Putting this important coverage to the back of your head is not a long-term solution. It is much better to think things through logically to see what is best, not only for your business but for the people closest to you in life. Unlike most life-insurance payouts, business life insurance policies can protect your business should anything happen to you. Many types of coverage fall under the umbrella of ‘business life insurance,’ and it is certainly worth discussing with your potential insurer.