Finding the right insurance for your carpet cleaning company is an important step in protecting your business and achieving long-term success.
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As a carpet cleaning company, you are exposed to many liability risks in the course of doing business. For example, since your employees enter the homes and offices of others to perform their duties, there’s always a chance that they may accidentally damage someone else’s property or cause an injury for which you could be held liable. Purchasing a comprehensive range of business insurance is a great way to protect your company from these and other risks.
What insurance coverage do I need for my carpet cleaning business?
There are many types of insurance coverage to consider, but these policies are particularly relevant to carpet cleaning companies:
General liability insurance is a critical coverage for carpet cleaning companies to consider. Your employees perform their services at others’ homes and offices, exposing your business to a host of third-party liability. If someone else’s property is damaged or a third party is injured in the course of your work, your business could be sued. General liability insurance covers these third-party bodily injury and property damage risks. It also features a personal and advertising injury component, which covers several non-physical third-party injuries, including libel, slander, and copyright infringement.
- Property damage: Your employee accidentally knocks over an expensive sculpture in a client’s home, damaging it. Your insurer would pay for damages.
- Bodily injury: While cleaning an office building, your employees spill a carpet cleaning solution in the tiled entryway. Before it’s cleaned up, someone who works in the office building slips and falls, breaking an elbow. Your insurer would cover medical costs.
- Personal and advertising injury: Your company designs a new logo to use on its website and in advertisements. It turns out that the logo is unintentionally very similar to another cleaning company’s logo. You are sued for copyright infringement. Your insurer would cover the lawsuit and any settlements.
Workers’ compensation insurance provides financial and medical benefits to your employees if they are injured or fall ill as a result of their work. This coverage also provides benefits to an employee’s survivors in the case of a work-related death. In almost all states, workers’ compensation is legally required for companies who employ others. Most states require you to obtain workers’ comp as soon as you hire your first employee, but requirements depend on a state’s specific regulations.
Workers’ comp is a no-fault policy and will provide benefits regardless of who caused an injury. Since carpet cleaning employees perform physical labor and may work with potentially hazardous chemicals, there is a higher risk that they may be injured or become ill, so it’s important to ensure that your company has comprehensive workers’ comp coverage.
- While cleaning carpets at an office building, one of your employees trips over a misplaced power cable and falls, fracturing his wrist. Your insurer would pay for his medical bills and a portion of lost income.
Commercial auto insurance is a must-have coverage when your business has vehicles titled under your company’s name. This coverage will pay for damages if you or your employees are at fault in a collision while driving a company vehicle. It will cover medical costs if the other vehicle’s occupants are injured as well as paying for damages to the other vehicle. Commercial auto insurance also covers your company vehicles if they are physically damaged or lost due to theft, vandalism, collisions, or other hazards.
- While driving a company van to a client’s home on a rainy day, one of your employees hydroplanes and collides with another car. Your insurer would pay for the damage to both vehicles and medical expenses if anyone is injured.
As a carpet cleaning company, you may run your business from an office or retail store, and you rely on business equipment and tools such as computers or vacuum cleaners. If your equipment or office building are damaged, it could cause significant losses for your company. Commercial property insurance can help you protect the value of your business property if it is damaged or destroyed. Repairing or replacing damaged property can be costly and inconvenient; the funds commercial property insurance can provide will help your business recover more quickly. Commonly covered hazards include fire, lightning, explosion, vandalism, windstorm, and hail.
Commercial property insurance covers the following:
- Buildings belonging to or leased by your company
- Contents of the building, including equipment, tools, and office furniture
- Property of others while it is under your care, custody, or control
- A fire breaks out at your offices, causing significant damage to your building as well as destroying your cleaning equipment, office furniture, and company vans. Your commercial property policy will pay for repairs to the building and the cost of replacing equipment and furniture. Your company vehicles would be covered by a commercial auto policy.
Inland marine insurance provides financial protection for your business property that does not remain at a fixed location and is not covered by a standard commercial property insurance policy. This could include equipment, tools, and other items that a company may need to transport from location to location or store at client sites. For carpet cleaning businesses, this often covers truck mount carpet cleaning machines that are installed on a work van but would typically not be covered by a commercial property or auto policy.
Since carpet cleaning companies may rely on specialized and high-value equipment, inland marine insurance is an important coverage to consider. In addition, bailee’s insurance is a type of inland marine insurance that covers your customers’ property when it’s in your care, custody, or control. If your business takes temporary possession of area rugs or antique rugs, bailee’s coverage can provide protection if this customer property is damaged or lost under your care.
- Your company is hired to deep clean the carpets at a commercial office complex. Because the project is so large, you’ve stored some of your equipment on-site at the client’s offices. Overnight, a fire breaks out at the office complex, damaging your carpet cleaning equipment. Inland marine insurance would provide coverage for your damaged equipment.
- Fidelity bonds for the cleaning industry may also be known as janitorial bonds, janitorial service bonds, cleaning bonds, or other variations. This coverage will protect your company if your employees commit theft, fraud, or other dishonest acts. These bonds can provide financial coverage for an employee that steals from a customer or an employee that steals from your own company.
- A business owner’s policy combines general liability, property, business income, and extra expense coverage into a single package. For small or midsize companies, this type of insurance could help you obtain a wide range of coverage in one convenient package. Premiums for a business owner’s policy are typically cheaper than the cost of buying each coverage separately.
- Business income coverage will reimburse you for lost income and operating expenses if your business is forced to close due to a covered peril, such as fire, storm damage, or other property damage.
When you operate a carpet cleaning business, you could be held liable for a variety of risks. It’s important to consider your business’s needs and purchase a range of insurance that will financially protect you from a number of liabilities, including losses due to property damage, automobile accidents, or workers’ compensation claims. This will ensure that you and your clients feel confident that your business will be able to cope with any major incidents that arise.