Insurance can cover a variety of catastrophes including natural disasters, fire, and theft. Providing good health coverage for your employees can help you retain them. However, these are not the only types of insurance available. You may be required to carry life, business interruption, or auto insurance depending on the nature of your business. Other types of insurance cover business liability or damage to your inventory. The easiest solution for new business is to purchase a business owners policy or package policy. These packaged policies cover the most common business insurance needs and are usually cheaper than buying the policies one-by-one. If there are specific insurance needs required for your business, such as product liability or professional liability, you can purchase these separately.
Banks, investors, and other lenders may require a business owner to have good insurance coverage before processing a loan; this minimizes their risk of losing their investment. Investors and partners may also require a business to have a “key man” insurance policy—life insurance on the owner or crucial employees—so the business can survive in the event something happens to these people.
Who Should I Call?
There are a couple of different ways to buy insurance for your business. Institutions you already have a relationship with—such as your bank, home insurance agent, or accountant—may be able to recommend an insurance agent. Ask fellow entrepreneurs who are in the same industry to suggest an agent. You can also reach out to your Local Chamber of Commerce. If you do not know anyone in the same field, visit a place of business and ask to speak with the owner.
Make sure you contact your industry trade associations; there might be specialized insurance companies that cater to your industry. Visit Web sites such as http://www.idealist.org to get a list of non-profit associations catering to your industry. Contact these associations for a list of insurance providers.
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