Insuring your small business is never easy. It takes awhile, and it can be challenging finding a firm that represents your needs and understands the challenges you face in your niche industry. With current economic hardships, many companies are cutting back on their insurance, a strategy that could mean financial ruin given a bad enough disaster, such as a fire or flood. Many businesses never reopen after such losses, and having insufficient insurance can mean a total loss of assets. Insuring your business with ample coverage from a qualified broker can increase your odds of long term success, even in the event of losing your building or equipment.
Check the reputation of existing insurance companies before committing to a policy. Getting a policy with the wrong company can be not only expensive, but when push comes to shove, your policy may even prove to be worthless. Do your homework by checking online insurance provider comparison sites and the Better Business Bureau, along with web sites and trade papers dedicated to insurance issues as they are related to your industry.
Liability coverage is essential. If you do not have enough to cover lawsuits and property damage, you could find yourself borrowing money to pay back the damages, owing large amounts of interest on an amount of money too large for you to ever pay back. In these types of situations, bankruptcy seems to be the only way out, and less than satisfactory coverage can mean more paperwork for even the most frivolous lawsuits, leading to lost productivity.
Businesses rely on insurance companies that are easy to work with, and meeting with agents should be easy to arrange, not hard. An open schedule and a competent staff of field agents assigned to specific policyholders allows companies greater freedom and flexibility when it comes to handling insurance issues. Insuring your business with the right people is paramount. It is good to avoid the newer companies until they’ve had a chance to prove themselves. This is particularly true if your business is a recent start-up.
Some online companies portraying themselves as insurance brokers are actually scam artists, so basic things like checking for a working phone number and email address, along with other evidence of an active and healthy insurance business, are a must. Being able to trust your insurance company with the practical realities of your business, and having the option of adding additional coverage, such as fire, flood, and earthquake insurance, is essential to a good working relationship with them as a policyholder, and is also essential to your future and long term success.