You need Lawn Care Business Insurance to protect you, your employees, equipment and your customers from a significant loss or damage. Each business is different be it the size, amount of equipment, location, and the number of customers (total sales).
As a Lawn Care Business for the most part is a mobile service your shop being your home, if you run a small size business or a large shop/office in a rented or owned industrial building we will touch on both areas and the effects each has on different insurance needs.
Your Lawn Care Business Insurance requirements must be tailored to each individual business’ particular needs.
Lets’ start with a businesses location, you may have an office/shop building that your business is being run from. This building may need many types of insurance.
The following different coverage’s come under Business property in the form of a basic or customized coverage. Business Property Insurance covers property, contents and other items against damage, loss (fire or flood) or theft.
Specific coverage’s can be attained for the building (replacement cost), contents (replacement cost), exterior signs, computer systems etc.
If your business is unable to continue due to an insured loss you can get insurance protection for any loss of income that may result. This type of insurance is known as Business interruption insurance. It could cover up to 90 days of your pay roll and those extra expenses needed to restart business operations.
Another coverage that is a necessity is Liability insurance. This type of insurance will protect you in the event you are found legally responsible for injuries caused to another person, damage to their property of if your service causes damage or injury to a third party.
Liability insurance may also cover medical expenses, personal and advertising injury or your liability as a tenant in a multi-tenant building.
All the various types of insurance have a couple of elements attached to them that will affect the cost to carry (pay for) each policy.
These parts are your deductible and the insured amount. Your deductible, which is the amount you must payout to have a claim processed.
The insured amount is the highest possible amount that will be paid out once the claim has been settled. Both of these parts of each policy will affect what your premiums will be.
To give an example of what I mean consider the following. You have one million dollar liability policy; your deductible is $500.00 with a monthly premium of $250.00.
You could also have this same policy with a $1,000.00 deductible which would change your monthly premiums to $125.00. These numbers were just for example but you see what may occur when the deductible amount is increased or decreased.
As for the insured amount, obviously the higher the amount of coverage the more the premium will be.
Specific coverage’s that apply to Lawn Care Business Insurance are what are known as floater policies. These coverage’s are as follows: Miscellaneous property floater which protects specific items that are mobile (riding mower, push mower and trailer) and may not be covered under the business property policy.
All items would need to be listed with their specific cash values.
Another floater policy is what is known as a Tool floater policy which protects tools and equipment (that are used on a regular basis) in the insureds’ trade such as rakes, ladders, shovels, brooms, pruning shears, wrenches, ratchets etc.
Tools would be cover whether they were at to shop or on a job. All items would need to be listed specifically with their cash value attached.
Are you running your Lawn Care Business from your home? If so, your insurance company may offer what is known as Home Based Business Insurance. This policy would apply if you live at your home and it is your principle residence.
There may be restrictions to this policy such as maximum total sales, you are the only owner and run only this one business under the insured business name.
You will need to consult with your insurance agent as to whether your truck is your office or your house is and what the benefits of each are.
Benefits of this type of lawn care business insurance policy would be protection for business related property at your home such as computers, software, tools etc. This also may cover loss of cash on hand and business interruption expenses which will allow you to continue the business from a different place should your home be damaged or destroyed.
This would save you from losing your customer base should your Lawn Care Equipment be damaged.
There are many types of insurance to cover just about every area in the day to day existence of your business but there is one area that most of us overlook that we all need to consider, Business Estate Planning. What is this you ask?
Well Business Estate Planning is preparing “for the worst” so to speak. You need to establishing a plan in case you die or are unable to continue with your business or a there is a loss of a key person in your business such as your lead hand (crew chief) or partner if your business is a registered partnership.
How does insurance play a role in Estate planning? Life insurance would provide the cash to replace lost revenue which the key person would have provided during the down time and training of a replacement for that key person.
If you were involved in a partnership, life insurance would provide the funds for the surviving partner to buy out the shares of the business. This would be spelled out in a buy-sell agreement.
What is a buy-sell agreement? A buy-sell agreement is basically a written agreement providing for the sale of your business interests should something happen to you, the business owner or a partner such as disability, death or retirement.
It would provide an easier transition of the business to the remaining partner or new owner making sure that outstanding monies owed to employees, survivors and creditors were compensated. This could all be funded through a life insurance policy.
We all must carry the basic types of insurance such as those for our vehicles and lawn equipment but please don’t overlook making sure all your bases are covered. So that you don’t end up losing your hard earned business just because you “it” could never happen to you.
Please make sure you look around to find an insurance agent that is willing to take the time to sit down and listen to what your current needs are help ensure your business is properly covered to move forward.
I suggest that you consult with your friends, family and other business contacts to see who they would recommend for lawn care business insurance. I also suggest that where ever possible that you deal with an agent that is local. Start with your current agent that you have your home or auto insurance with already as you may qualify for multi-coverage discounts.
I would much rather deal with an Insurance Agent face to face than someone a thousand miles away on the phone.
You never know were your next referral may come from; remember a local insurance agent knows/meets people from all walks of life. I firmly believe in “what goes around comes around” (by dealing locally local people deal with you)
Remember to make sure that you get three quotes on your Lawn Care Business Insurance needs from different agents on exactly the same coverage before making any final decisions. (make sure you are comparing apples to apples as the old saying goes)
Having the proper Lawn Care Business insurance coverage may cost more but it makes life so much less stressful, but make sure you account for your insurance costs when figuring out your hourly rate.
“Keep It Simple to Succeed” lets get out there and make our lawns healthy and green!