Insurance Help (Mn)

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by MnGreen, Jun 7, 2008.

  1. MnGreen

    MnGreen LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 354

    Farmers Ins came up with the coverage quote listed below.
    I asked them for 1 mil General liability for my upstart business here in Mn.
    Seems crazy in price to me especially being a 6 month season up here.
    Anyone have any direction for me as I see quotes on here from $300 - $700 for the liability coverage.
    My truck (non commercial) with them full coverage is currently $860 annually so I see a $1,300+ rate increase to commercial status and 1 mil liability.
    That seem in the park to you experienced LCO's out there ? Again I'm only looking @ a 6 month season commercially.

    "This is coverage for Liability at 1 Mil,
    your Truck (99 K1500) covered fully with a $500 deductible and $12,000 Equipment coverage- the annual premium would be $2189.- A couple of things:
    We need to cover your veh as a commercial vehicle, since you are using it as such. I need to know the year make and model of the trailer along with it's value as that would be covered like a vehicle instead of equipment."
  2. DA Quality Lawn & YS

    DA Quality Lawn & YS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,316

    Green - MN guy here as well.

    One thing to keep in mind - if you can afford to self insure anything on your own, do it. Not GL or Work Comp of course, but equipment coverage (and trailer) to me is definitely optional because I can definitely afford to self insure the risk. Just things to think about - your agent will want you to insure everything because he wants to make a buck, make sure you are in charge. Maybe you can insure only your biggest equipment items and leave the rest choose how to handle not him.

    As for GL - make sure you get quotes from independent agents as well as the dedicated ones like State Farm or Farmers. My GL is running me $135 annual for $500K thru Grinnell Mutual. I believe a mil would still be under $250-$300 annual if I were to upgrade. Keep in mind I am a solo op and do mowing and landscaping/no spraying. If your operations are more diverse, that might explain why your premiums are higher.

    So, seems to me you should be able to get GL for the low end of your range there. And, the Auto coverage does seem way high. If your truck is a 99, why don't you pull the full coverage off and save yourself a ton on liability only? Its almost 10 years old. Just an idea.....
  3. MnGreen

    MnGreen LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 354


    Thanks for the help on my insurance issue.
    I'm a solo upstart operation on a part time basis this season being so late to get started.
    Strictly mows and clean ups so far from diverse.

    Not big on insurance knowledge but self insure means what ?
    I have a new $5,000 W/B and $2,500 of other new equipment that I feel better off it was insured. The idea of dropping the vehicle to "liability" only is a thought any physical damage incurred would not make for a good looking business truck.

    Being your from MN what did you have to do to get reg/permitted in Rochester and how does a guy go about getting set up with a tax ID. ?

    Thanks in advance
  4. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    I use progresive for my truck. Their rates are great especially when you have a credit report.

    I have my Liability through Rockford Mutal out of Northern IL. They have a great plan and rates, you might want to check them out for your liability and other equipment.
  5. DA Quality Lawn & YS

    DA Quality Lawn & YS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,316

    Green - sorry about the insurance lingo, used to be in that business but have since went 'green' and love it.

    Self insure basically means to pick up the risk yourself, and not to insure with an insurance company. In other words, how much reserve do you have to cover a loss in case it happens? If you are able to self-insure some of your risk (this being equipment coverage, not GL or Work Comp - you never want to self insure this stuff), then I would do so. You can reduce your insurance premium that way. Remember - your insurance agent will cover everything under the sun for you if you let him, thats more $$ in his pocket.

    As far as your truck goes - you have to determine how much its worth. Remember, having it insured or not for Comp/Collision has no bearing on repairs you might have after a possible accident. You'll still get it fixed, its just you would pay the bill if self insured vs if covered by the insurance company. Just trying to help you save some $$...

    As far as permits go - no permit needed to mow anywhere here in Olmsted County. If you are concerned where you live, call the county where you do biz and just ask. Mowing does incur state sales tax - use this site to register for a sales tax ID

    Business tax wise - depends on your business structure. I am a solo op, sole prop - so I just use my SSN as my tax ID. If you are more complex than this, consult a tax pro or the appropriate State of MN income tax website.


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