1 in 5 Insurance Claims in Florida are from Fire, Is your Business Safe?

1 in 5 Insurance Claims in Florida are from Fire, Is your Business Safe?

According to the Insurance Journal, 75% of businesses in the United States are underinsured, and 40% of small business owners remain uninsured.

On most occasions, these businesses find themselves with no insurance to cover their claims when filed with a lawsuit or disaster.

As per The Hartford, the top 5 insurance claims filed in U.S in 2017 based on the claim amount were as follows:

  • Reputational harm: $50,000
  • Vehicle accident: $45,000
  • Fire damage: $35,000
  • Product liability: $35,000
  • Customer injury or property damage: $30,000

As you can see, fire is a major contributing factor to insurance claims in the U.S.

We have been assisting our potential clients to file commercial insurance claims over five years and we could confirm that Fire has been the most frequent and expensive cause.

This post features a checklist of factors to consider when choosing business insurances and preventive measures while considering commercial fire damage.

Insurance policy selection

Most small businesses struggle when it comes to getting the right advice on fire damage insurance. Fortunately, standard commercial property insurance policies in the United States usually cover fire damages.

While keeping this in mind, consider the following insurance policies to ensure protection from all the possible angles.

Commercial property insurance: With commercial property insurance, you can insure your business in the following two ways:

  • Its replacement value: what it would cost to replace everything with new items or
  • Its actual cash value: what it would cost to replace everything with used equivalents to what you have now

This insurance type if available at different levels and hence considered budget-friendly.

Business owner’s policy (BOP): This commercial insurance type is deemed budget-friendly as it gives the business owners an option to bundle general liability insurance with property insurance. There are certain criteria that you need to satisfy to be eligible for a Business Owner’s Policy. Risk exposure can be a major factor that can influence your eligibility for the BOP.

Business interruption insurance: This policy is a godsend to business owners who are forced to shut their doors due to fire. The policy can cover the rental of the new office and even the salaries of your employees and other ongoing expenses as long as you are unable to operate.

Preventive measures

Fire is an unexpected and unwanted hazard for any business. Make it a point to prepare yourself for this unforeseen hazard by following some basic guidelines. Satisfy the below checklist to keep the concern of fire damage at bay.

  • Train your employees to use fire equipments like fire extinguishers and blankets
  • Periodical fire system inspection which includes fire extinguisher, fire exits and sprinkler system inspection
  • Routine commercial cooking and manufacturing checks
  • Electrical equipment inspections and banning risky electrical appliances

Fire damage in Florida is one of the top five causes for commercial insurance claims both while considering the cost and the frequency of the claims. As a business owner ensure that you do the following three things right to minimizing the possibility of damage and maximizing the odds of recovery:

  • Choose the right insurance policy/ Get the right advice
  • Take necessary precautions
  • Document the aftereffects

Need assistance with finding or filing commercial insurance claims? Talk to us today.

Benefits of hiring a general contractor

8 Benefits of Hiring a General Contractor

Construction projects are complex irrespective of their type. Any construction project will involve a considerable amount of workforce each of who might have to complete some unique tasks. The race against deadlines, the availability of resources, and the resource allocation often contributes to the complexity.

This is where a general contractor can turn out to be a godsend.

What is a general contractor?

A general contractor can be the main or prime contractor who is in charge of the routine supervision of the construction site. The general contractor brings all the vendors, trades, and other stakeholders under one umbrella to ensure clear-cut communication and the deadlines are met.

If the above explanations are not sufficient, read on for some points that will answer your question “Why should I hire a general contractor?”

Saves time

Construction projects can span from a few months to years. Unforeseen circumstances like bad weather or lockdowns could slow down or even bring the project progress to a standstill. This is where the expertise of a general contractor can come in handy.

An experienced general contractor always has most of these unforeseen barriers on the cards and can schedule his subcontractors efficiently. He would also have the expertise to handle issues that may arise promptly and his negotiation skills can help manage most setbacks.

Saves money

Store A sells the construction material that you need for $$ and is of high quality and Store B sells the same material that you need for $ but is of moderate quality.

An inexperienced contractor would go for Store B. However, an experienced contractor, with his connections and negotiating skills can get material from Store A at a discounted rate thereby ensuring quality and affordability.

Moreover, subcontractors are known to charge more when working under the building owner. To subcontractors, general contractors are a major source of continuous projects, which makes them charge less.

Moreover, general contractors are in the position to place projects on bids, which creates competition and thereby reduces the project budget further.

Adds versatility to project planning

With his network of subcontractors and vendors, you could pull off any construction project type with the assistance of an experienced general contractor. This gives you an option to be flexible even if you need some minor improvisations during the project.

Moreover, you also have the option to share your ideas and requirements with a general contractor and he can come up with some custom options to choose from.

Covers licensing and insurance

Hiring a licensed general contractor contributes to the smooth functioning of the project. This ensures that the project is progressing as per the rules and regulations put forward by the state or county. With liability insurance, you won’t be responsible for any construction site accidents that may occur.

Single communication point

Dealing with a plethora of subcontractors and vendors can be a hassle. Imagine getting the overall project status from a single experienced contractor who can answer all your questions and seems to have things under control. This is exactly what you’ll get if you hire an experienced and licensed subcontractor.

Constant updates and feedbacks

Constant progress updates are vital to ensure that the project meets the deadline. Your general contractor can offer constant updates and even offer some suggestions to improvise as per the market conditions.

Experience

Your general contractor is your eyes and ears in the market. His experience will allow him to foresee scenarios and act smart to ensure that everything is under control. For example, news related to a ban on certain construction material could reach his ears before the ban is in place.

Even if the material is not banned straight away, working with an alternative material will help you prevent chaos in the long run.

Better budget control

With the proper management of vendors, subcontractors, and other stakeholders, you could expect the project to be completed in budget or even less than the budget on some occasions. This is where the excess money can flow back to you.

Hiring a licensed general contractor could be the ultimate means of having total control of your construction project, especially if you work around the clock.

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What does home insurance usually cover?

Most people underestimate home insurance, while some consider it a luxury, others overlook it completely. In the real world, home insurance is never a luxury but a necessity.

The fact that there are several home insurance providers and different respective schemes can be a bit intimidating. Often, a homeowner with limited experience finds it difficult to differentiate the right plan from a dodgy insurance scheme for their home. This facilitates the thought process and the actions from a homeowner’s perspective to overlook home insurance as such.

This post features the standard 3 essential home insurance coverage types and some additional related pointers worth understanding and acting on.

Actual cash value

The actual cash value is the cost of replacing any damaged or stolen property minus the depreciation of the respective property at the time of loss.

Literally transformed, it is the actual value for which the property can be sold at that time and condition and it’s always less compared to the cost of replacing it.

Replacement cost

Replacement cost is a preferred insurance scheme that covers the actual cash value of your home and without considering any deprecation.

This scheme essentially lets you reconstruct or renovate your home or damaged property to the actual value.

Guaranteed/or extended replacement cost/value

This coverage scheme factors in the inflation-buffer and pays the policyholders to rebuild or repair their home, even if the costs exceed the policy limit.

The fact that this scheme offers compensation that exceeds your policy limit makes it popular and usually, insurance providers set a cap limit which is 20 to 25% higher than the actual policy limit.

Whats usually covered

Homeowner insurance in the United States usually covers the following:

  • Damage to your house and any adjacent properties like the garage or other buildings
  • Loss of personal possessions and belongings example: furniture due to incidents like theft
  • Coverage incurred as extra living expenses for incidents where you are forced to move out of your house temporarily due to incidents like flood or storm damage

What can you include in your coverage schemes?

You may decide to include coverage for the following with your homeowner’s insurance scheme:

  • Property damage or third party physical injury caused due to negligence
  • Accidents in your name, in and away from your home
  • Personal properties in storage
  • A limited coverage for possessions like gold, jewelry and antique collections

What are the key takeaways to consider when home insurance policies?

Homeowners’ insurance policies usually cover damage/loss of the possessions and both the interior and exterior damages to the property.

The three basic levels of home insurance coverage to look at are actual cash value, replacement cost and extended replacement cost/value.

The rates of the policy chosen are calculated based on the following factors:

  • Your historical claims related to home, possession damages/loss
  • The condition of the house

Trying to resort to a professional insurance provider should be your priority. In cases of a loss or damage to your property, presenting your claim professionally is crucial to ensure that your insurance provider is not underpaying you. This is where dealing with professionals like Titan Restoration Construction can be a remarkable decision.