If you work from home, it’s important to make sure your business is covered in case something goes wrong. While business protection insurance isn’t a specific product, it’s an umbrella term used to describe the different insurance policies available for businesses, so identifying the cover you need is a must.
However, ensuring that your cover not only protects your business, it can also give you an edge over your competitors. In fact, there were over 5.8 million small businesses at the start of 2019 – an increase of 200,000 from 2018. With these growth rates in mind, it’s now more important than ever to make sure your business is prepared for all possibilities.
What types of insurance do I need if I work from home?
Whether you’re legally required to take out a specific type of business insurance depends on the business you have, how big it is, if you have any employees, and if you come face-to-face with customers.
See below for more information on some of the insurance types you can get:
Product liability insurance
If a customer makes a claim against you for a product you sold them, product liability insurance can compensate you. It’s designed to cover your back if someone gets injured or their property is damaged because of a product you sold, whether you’ve made it yourself or bought directly from the manufacturer.
Product liability insurance can be a great thing to take out if you work from home and sell items or services which come into direct contact with your customers. For example, if a customer has a bad reaction to a handmade bath bomb, or a hairdryer you sold through your home-based hairdressing business had an electric fault and caught fire.
Employers’ liability insurance
This type of insurance is designed to protect you against a claim if an employee became injured or ill as a result of working for you.
If you do work from home, you may not employ other people. However, if you do, then you are legally required to have employers’ liability insurance – even if you only hire one other person.
For example, you would need this insurance if you run an at-home catering business with an employee, or hire staff to help you run your bed and breakfast business.
Professional indemnity insurance (also known as professional liability insurance) can help cover the costs of compensation and/or legal action if another business suffers a loss as a direct result of your business.
Thanks to growth in the self-employed and freelance markets as well as improved online product distribution, there’s been a steady rise in the number of people taking out this type of insurance.
For example, if you create a marketing campaign for a client’s brand which has direct negative consequences to their reputation or earnings, they could sue you for compensation. With professional indemnity insurance, you’ll be covered from risks such as this.
Specialist vehicle cover
If you have a vehicle for business use, you’ll need specialist commercial vehicle insurance to cover you in the event of a claim. Depending on the type of policy you get, your insurance could cover for theft of tools in a van, sat-nav, replacement locks and keys, and provide a pay-out if your van is damaged or stolen.
You may need specialist vehicle insurance if you run a home-based floristry business and need a van to transport products to venues, have a small van which stores your equipment, or for any other profession which relies on you transporting your equipment and/or wares.
Public liability insurance
Even if you work from home, there may be some occasions where you interact with the public. In these cases, you would need protection in case a member of the public injures themselves or suffers property damage on your premises or while you’re on another site.
For example, if you run a business selling homemade jewellery from your residence, you may decide to sell your wares at craft fairs from time-to-time and need protection in case someone hurts themselves at your stall.
Will my home insurance cover me?
A standard home insurance policy may not cover you if you work from home, however, you can get home business insurance policies that will cover the business equipment in your home such as laptops and printers.
You may need specialist business equipment insurance if you have expensive equipment such as trade tools or photography gear.
If you have an existing home insurance policy, you’ll need to check with your insurer to see if you’re covered and, if not, how much it would be to amend your policy. If it’s too much to upgrade or your provider cannot cover your business needs, it might be time to switch providers.
How do I find the best deals?
There’s no singular ‘best deal’ for all businesses – but there is a deal out there that’s just right for you. Once you know the type of insurance you need, it’s a good idea to do your research and compare policies before committing to the first deal that looks good. If you need multiple types of business protection insurance, you may save more money by getting a deal through one insurance provider.
Online Money Advisor can help you find the business protection insurance you need by matching you with an insurance expert for a free, no-obligation chat. All the insurance experts they work with are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and are fully qualified to give you advice.