Every homeowner and business owner has a long list of property maintenance, repair and improvement tasks that they'd like to complete. Of course, not everyone is a skilled handyman capable of completing all those tasks correctly and on time. That's why your handyman's professional services are crucial for our property's appeal, comfort and longevity. But working on your client's homes and businesses leaves you vulnerable to several legal risks that could have you paying out of pocket for litigation and settlement costs without the protection of the right handyman insurance.
Ontario handyman professionals aren't just at risk for legal woes, though—you have commercial equipment, tools and vehicles necessary to deliver your handyman services. Suppose something were to happen to render your commercial equipment unusable. In that case, you'd be forced to stop work until the damaged items or property were repaired or replaced, and that can be costly if you don't have access to insurance compensation from a comprehensive handyman insurance policy. With the help of the expert brokers at Morison Insurance, you can get the handyman insurance coverage you need to rest easily at night, knowing you have protection against unexpected expenses that could lead to significant financial setbacks.
Whether you have a team of employees and subcontractors working for your handyman company or as an individual contractor, having the right handyman insurance is essential. Ontario insurance professionals will tell you that anytime you're entering homes and businesses to complete a range of repair, maintenance and installation services, you put yourself—and your employees—at significant risk. Not only can your work be dangerous at times, but it's also very important to adequately protect yourself from general liability as well. It's essential to have customized handyman insurance to meet your business's specific needs. You don't want to be left financially ruined in the event of a claim if you're not adequately insured.
Every handyman should have handyman insurance. While it is impossible to eliminate all risks, it is vital to take the proper steps to protect yourself from unforeseen losses and damages.
Handyman insurance is appropriate for individuals providing a wide range of services, including:
Even if you're very careful, follow safety protocols, and work diligently to avoid errors, issues can still occur. A slight misstep can lead to significant losses.
Additionally, it's common for both residential and commercial clients to ask if you have handyman insurance before you start a project. Having the right insurance helps your clients feel more confident in your abilities and makes your company more likely to be hired. For many job sites, such as public buildings and large commercial clients, proof of insurance may be required before you can work.
As a business owner, it's your responsibility to have the correct handyman insurance. Being properly insured is a no-brainer—it encourages client trust and ensures your bases are covered in the worst-case scenario. You may struggle to recover from these losses if you have to pay for damages, medical bills or legal fees out-of-pocket and you don't have insurance.
During your work day, many issues could pop up. For instance, say one of your contractors knocked a hole in the drywall and accidentally damaged electrical wiring or a pipe. Or, while you're working, third-party trips on your tools that are lying about and injuring themselves.
If the client or third party decides to sue in these instances, you could wind up paying for expensive medical costs and legal expenses. With insurance, you can be protected from these risks.
Handyman insurance should be tailored to protect your commercial property, tools, equipment, inventory, business interruption, income, and more. After all, you want your handyman insurance to protect you from various perils. That's why working with a licensed, dedicated broker—such as the team at Morison Insurance is so important. Our handyman insurance brokers will ensure you have the best coverage possible, so you can relax knowing your business is protected.
A Morison Insurance broker can also help you troubleshoot what coverage you need. Likewise, another important distinction is that if you use an outbuilding, like a shed or detached garage, to store tools and equipment for your business, these tools aren't protected under your standard home insurance policy.
At Morison Insurance, we'll listen to your needs and help you develop a comprehensive insurance policy that protects you from various perils. Some of the coverages you may include as part of your handyman insurance program include:
This covers physical loss or damage to your buildings and contents caused by perils such as theft, vandalism or fire. An important distinction is that commercial property insurance does not provide financial coverage for daily wear and tear.
A commercial auto insurance policy is specifically tailored for your work vehicle. Many handymen work out of a vehicle that doubles as their personal vehicle. When you use your truck or van for your business, it needs commercial vehicle insurance. Coverages include third-party liability, accident benefits, comprehensive and collision coverage.
One of the most essential coverages, commercial general liability provides financial protection in the event your business is involved in a lawsuit and found liable for third-party bodily injury or property damage. Residential and commercial worksites can be hazardous; no matter how careful you are, there is always a risk that something might go wrong.
An example of a commercial general liability would be a third-party slipping and falling at your worksite. Perhaps a visitor to your worksite trips on a stack of tiles or slips because of a surface covered in drywall dust. You could be liable for their expenses if they get hurt. Another example is while carrying some flooring material into a client's home; you accidentally punctured a hole in an expansive painting canvas. Your client could choose to bring legal action against you to cover the cost of replacing the painting or repairing the canvas.
As a handyman, your tools of the trade are one of the most valuable assets you own. Should your tools be damaged or stolen, it's imperative that you can replace them right away so you can keep working. Tools, equipment and inventory protection ensures you're never out of a job because your tools were stolen.
As a business owner, you're also responsible for your own income and your employees. It can be very stressful if you're forced to stop operations due to an accident or disaster. However, business interruption insurance can temporarily assist with lost income.
You may wonder why you need commercial cyber insurance as a home service provider. After all, you don't work with computers as often as someone who works in IT, for instance. However, if you use a computer system as part of your business operations, like a CRM system, then you should have cyber insurance coverage. This coverage protects your handyman company in case you are hacked, and valuable information is lost—such as confidential client or financial information.
There's another important reason you should ensure you have cyber risk coverage as part of your handyman insurance. Ontario business owners, and those in other parts of Canada as well, are also required by law to have a plan to notify their customers in the event of a privacy data breach. The legal notification process can be costly. Cyber insurance also gives you financial protection against those costs up to the limits of your policy.
Most business owners don't want to consider the possibility that the employees they trust and work alongside could target their business with criminal actions. Still, the reality is that it can happen. For example, suppose you have an employee who manages your financial accounts. In that case, they're in a position to commit crimes like fraud, embezzlement and outright theft, which can go undetected for a long time and cost your business a considerable amount of money.
This coverage can include employee infidelity and dishonesty insurance. Although you likely hire the best of the best to work at your handyman business, you can never be too careful.
Depending on your needs, you might be inclined to protect your handyman business further by including a few add-on policies, such as disability insurance and life insurance. It's best to talk to your dedicated Morison Insurance broker to know what additional coverages you should consider. We'll ensure you have the right coverage for your handyman business' unique needs.
Business insurance is essential no matter your industry, especially for handyman contractors. If you don't have insurance and something goes wrong at your worksite, you could be responsible for damages, legal costs, etc. Paying out-of-pocket for these expenses can be financially devastating and leave your business in the red with no realistic way to recover financially to keep going. With the right handyman insurance in place, you can have the peace of mind that comes with knowing you are protected against major financial setbacks.
Aside from the necessary financial assistance for unexpected expenses, you can get from the right handyman insurance, there's another big reason handyman insurance is essential: many clients and contractors will simply refuse to work with you if you can't provide adequate proof of insurance. If you cannot produce a certificate of insurance with the right types of coverage and coverage limits, they will not be willing to take on the risk of hiring or working with you. That means you'll be forced to leave many vital contracts behind to be grabbed by your competitors, ultimately negatively impacting your bottom line.
Many factors can affect your handyman insurance rates, including the following:
When applying for a handyman insurance quote, it's best to be as prepared as possible. Part of that prep work is researching what questions a broker is likely to ask. These questions will help your broker understand the best coverage for you based on your handyman company's unique needs. At Morison Insurance, some of the questions our brokers will ask include:
Remember that some insurance companies may refuse coverage to a handyman who does plumbing or electrical work without specific licenses in those fields of work. Make sure to fully disclose all your business practices to your insurance broker so they can find you the right coverage from the right insurance company.
In addition to knowing what questions your broker will ask, you should also prepare the necessary information to make the application process as seamless as possible. Be sure you gather the following:
At Morison Insurance, we're a local, family-owned business. Thus, we treat all our clients with that same family-oriented mindset. We truly have your best interests at heart and are dedicated to finding the best coverage for your handyman business. We'll work with you to establish the best coverage to protect your business from a range of perils so that you can have peace of mind. Our goal is to build long-term relationships with all our clients. We will be there for you no matter what happens.
This content is written by our Morison Insurance team. It is provided for general information only. Insurance needs differ from person to person, and this article is therefore not a substitute for professional advice about your individual insurance needs which can be obtained by speaking to one of our brokers.