What type of insurance?

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by TexasFire221, Mar 31, 2008.

  1. TexasFire221

    TexasFire221 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Posts: 479

    Im trying to find out what type of insurace I sould have. I talked to my agent also about being bonded and he pretty much told me to stay away from that and it really wasnt worth the hassle. Could someone explain it to me briefly and point me in the right direction.
  2. JimmyStew

    JimmyStew LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 367

    You will need commercial vehicle insurance AND a commercial liability policy (aka general liability). Depending on the size of your company and what accounts you have, you may consider an umbrella policy. As far as the amounts go, discuss this with your agent, but the old saying is, get as much as you can afford!

    As for being bonded, you may find that you need to be bonded as a prerequisite for bidding some accounts. I find this to be highly unnecessary and have passed on several bids for that very reason.
  3. grassman21

    grassman21 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 30

    I am in the same shoes, considering bonding. From what i understand why not add bonding to show to customers, two services bid on a job and are close i would assume that being bonded would play a large part in who would get the job and why limit yourself if some commercial accounts require it
  4. VBsnow

    VBsnow LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    What kind of bond? If your customers have no clue what they are asking for, then go get a theft bond which costs very little. Yeah, it's a waste of money for most LCO's but if it sells the job, then it sells the job.

    You need General Liability, Equipment coverage(Inland Marine, Commercial Auto coverage including your trailer for coverage, and Workers Compensation.

    Now work in reverse and determine what you actually want to buy and can afford at the moment. General Liability is the obvious starting point.

  5. kyle39

    kyle39 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 33

    I just talked to my insurance guy. !000000 general 2 million aggregete. 350 dollars a year. I would think that amount would satisfy most comercial clients.
  6. southernturfguy

    southernturfguy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    That is what they are usually looking for, but sometimes the customer's are going to want to be added as Additional Insured and some insurance companies charge for that.
    Just be on the safeside and ask your agent what the charge would be,
  7. VBsnow

    VBsnow LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    We have a winner!

    That is the best peer to peer advice I have ever seen given on this site.

    The additional insured runs anywhere from free to several hundred dollars a piece. The AI's are not all the same. Different people you do work for, that is the commercial guys, will ask for more complicated things. These obviously cost more.

    Just as important as how much they cost is if the Ins company will offer you a 'blanket' of this coverage. For example, one company I sell for offers individual vicarious additional insured status for $35 a pop. You can buy unlimited for the year for $150.00

    Most agents fail to ask their underwriters about this due to inexperience. It is the ultimate hidden charge. You cannot blame the agents though, it is the people you work for who ask for it. In VA, realtors are automatically added as an additional insured yet they ask for a special form that you are charged for. Even when confronted with this information they ignore it. They don't care, it's your money.

    Great topic for commercial guys.
  8. southernturfguy

    southernturfguy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    Good point but you may be careful with this also as some companies limit some of the coverages if it under a blanket.
    I could really bore you with specifics, but just make sure you show your agent all of the insurance request from different customers.
    Quite honestly everything is negotiable if they want you bad enough
    Good luck !
  9. VBsnow

    VBsnow LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    "companies limit some of the coverages if it under a blanket."

    Sorry, I guess I wasn't clear. It is not that type of blanket. I meant you pay one flat charge for additional insureds. Nothing else.

    "just make sure you show your agent all of the insurance request from different customers."

    Excellent advice. Try to keep an eye on what may be coming down the pipe as needs change.

    "Quite honestly everything is negotiable if they want you bad enough"

    This is just not true. I have seen clients who pay 100K and have never had a claim shown the door for simply making late payments. On a state form, nothing is negotiable. I may be misunderstanding though. Do you mean that your client will negotiate if they want you? If so, that can be a slippery slope in today's competitive world. If you can command that type of respect, you da' man.
  10. southernturfguy

    southernturfguy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    I agree that the market is very competitive.
    I was talking about the customer wanting you bad enough.
    The companies (customers) are asking for more and more insurance coverages from you to shield themselves from lawsuits ie... waiver of subrogation,additional insured, primary non contributary blah blah blah.
    Quite honestly here in Florida the customers attorneys aske for all of this stuff but no one can get it so they relax requirements a little. Sometimes!
    A good agent that knows your industry is worth a alot.

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