Damage Insurance

Bumblebee the mower

LawnSite Member
Lexington, Ky
Tell me about your limits on damage liability insurance for a mowing business. I am thinking high deductibles will lower my premium. Practicing the utmost care while working is also very important. I mowed years ago as a side hustle with no insurance. I want to start my own company and could use your advice please.


LawnSite Senior Member
Hilo, HI
Tell me about your limits on damage liability insurance for a mowing business. I am thinking high deductibles will lower my premium.
Liability insurance does not have deductibles. You are confusing insurance to protect you in the event of damage/loss to your own vehicles/equipment/property, which normally does have some deductible, with insurance to protect other people from damage/injury you might cause which pays not only the entire amount up to the policy limits of any loss for which you are responsible but also pays legal expenses to defend you if you are sued for a covered loss.

Typically $1million is the minimum coverage for any commercial liability policy. It often does not increase the premium significantly to double or triple that amount, but whether it makes sense to pay for more can be a complicated question.


LawnSite Member
Exactly what aloha mowing said...when I first opened a policy, my agent set me up with 1mil liability, full coverage on the mower, a relatively open ended small equipment coverage (for theft, damage, etc), and a 30k addition for damages, that wouldn’t fall under liability. It was a few years back but I think it was about $500-600/year. Other guys in my area had a very similar policy, so it seemed to be the standard.


LawnSite Platinum Member
Pittsburgh PA
Yeah, I believe $500,000 is the minimum required (by the state?) amount for liability.
My agent said it would cost me about $5 more annually for the 1 million liability, so he doesn't even bother writing them up for the minimum amount.

They always offer additional coverage which I decline, as the risks (for me) are low.
Add-ons that cover my equipment/materials if damaged/stolen, and something that provides additional coverage for damage to property that is not covered by the basic plan.
(an example given was if I were to be moving a glass patio table to mow and I broke it, the enhanced coverage would cover that damage)

Just explain to the agent what tasks/services you anticipate doing and they can work out what coverage best fits your needs.
When I started out, I called a bunch of places for quotes. Most just threw a number at me - nothing else - no questions about the exact type of work I was going to do, and no questions about anything really - As soon as I mentioned "lawn care", they just quoted a price.
How good is that insurance going to be if you need it?

When I called Erie, the lady I spoke to went over several option after asking some specific questions about the work I would be doing. She said she had been working with people like myself for 20 years, and would make sure I was getting what I NEEDED, and not anything I don't need.

A few of the others had slightly lower quotes, but I didn't feel confident in them.
I ended up using Erie since they took the time to ask questions, and discuss my needs, and are local enough (this particular agent) for me to stop in the office if I need to.


LawnSite Member
Manitoba, Canada
shop for your agent if you can, as your operation grows so unfortunately will your insurance needs.
11 years one claim $13,000 it was an out right lie but I had to prove it was, not happy.
and as pipeline points out stash some coin for your self insurance if the claim is under a thousand and justified pay it or make it right out of pocket, it will save you $$$ in the long run.
as your equipment list grows document (serial number, bill of sale)and photo your stuff if you ever have a claim it will help.
if you get into commercial properties you may need to be able provide proof of insurance, having a person you can work with helps.


LawnSite Bronze Member
How much dollar for dollar does a premium rise? If I break a $300 window or slam into a a/c unit with a new walk on? 6k for an ac unit would have to have a huge rate hike before I payed that out of pocket. Or a $300 window, how much could they possibly raise for that.