Business insurance can be a struggle, especially for start-ups, with an array of covers available. Cutting corners and getting it wrong can prove costly, putting your business and even your personal assets at risk. The right cover will provide comfort – allowing you to focus on the business itself. Make it a priority after you’ve completed your company formation.
Learn your legal and contractual responsibilities
Ask yourself – are there any insurance requirements placed upon me? If you’re not sure ask your broker for guidance, they’re there to help.
Want to put a sign outside your new shop? You’ll likely need public liability. Working with a City bank? You’ll probably need professional indemnity. Employing staff? You’ll most definitely need employer’s liability (read more here).
From industry to occupation the cover you’ll require will change, so look at your business long and hard, conduct your research and make sure know what insurance you’ll need.
Ensure you’re covering enough
Many insurers will apply penalties if you ‘under insure’ items so it’s important to get sufficient cover in place. For example, say your equipment is worth £10,000, but you choose to only cover £5,000 (50%) as you doubt you’ll lose it all and you want to cut costs on the policy. A claim of £4,000 would be reduced to £2,000 (50%) before any excess deduction.
Always look at the bigger picture. A few pounds shaved off your policy cost could set you back hundreds, even thousands later down the line.
Seek a reputable insurer
Insurers are bound by several regulated duties, but the way they choose to carry these out may vary – so choose wisely. Researching your insurer is key here and with the web it’s easier than ever. Feefo is a good source of this research, as is consumer championWhich?. Cast an eye over sites like these and you’ll be better placed to make an informed decision.
Look for endorsements and exclusions
So, you’re on your way to building a policy with a reputable insurer, set at the right levels and fulfilling all of your requirements – what else should you look out for?
Insurers will often place certain conditions on a policy called endorsements and exclusions. You’ll usually find these highlighted or listed on your schedule and they can alter things that you might expect to be covered normally. For instance; you may find a flood exclusion means the stock cover you took out won’t apply if it gets damaged in a flood.
Bear in mind that as well as exclusions, other conditions may exist on the policy. Perhaps you’re required to carry out regular training, stock checks, audits and the like. You will only know by asking or carefully checking through your policy.
Ask where the added value is
Finally, you’ve found two policies that cover everything you need, both from reputable insurers and at prices that are almost the same. How do you choose between them?
A good way would be to search for the added value in the policies. Many insurers will include extras such as –
Legal advice lines for tax and HR enquiries
Seasonal stock increases
Personal accident cover (in case you get injured and can’t work)
Goods in transit cover
In short, take your time when choosing a policy and ask as many questions as possible. Although insuring your business can seem like a nuisance and something you want to get over and done with quickly, it’s important to invest ample time in picking that first policy – it’ll potentially provide greater security and peace of mind for years to come.To get your quote click here