Finding the right insurance for your appliance repair shop is an important step in protecting your business and achieving long-term success.
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When you run an appliance repair business, it’s important to be prepared for common hazards such as unintentional property damage or physical injury, auto accidents, or unexpected disasters like a fire. It’s a good idea to purchase business insurance coverage to financially protect your company from these risks.
What insurance coverage do I need for my appliance repair business?
There are many types of insurance coverage to consider, but these policies are particularly relevant to appliance repair businesses:
Appliance repair shops typically rent or own commercial space and may own specialized equipment or tools for use in repairs. If an unexpected disaster strikes and destroys key property, recovery can be difficult and costly. Commercial property insurance can help protect the value of your business property, providing funds to replace or repair damaged property in the event of a fire, storm, explosion, or other covered peril.
Commercial property insurance covers the following:
- Buildings belonging to or leased by your company
- Contents of the building
- Property of others while it is under your care, custody, or control
It’s important to note that the “property of others” portion of commercial property insurance typically has a low limit. It is likely not sufficient coverage for appliances that are in your custody to be repaired.
- An electrical fire breaks out at your appliance repair shop and damages your building. Your insurer would cover repairs.
General liability insurance is a common coverage that’s necessary for most companies and is particularly important for appliance repair businesses, as they frequently perform repairs at customers’ homes or businesses and may have a location that’s open to the public as well. General liability insurance protects your company from third-party bodily injury and property damage claims. It also features a personal and advertising injury component, which covers several risks, including libel, slander, and copyright infringement.
General liability insurance also includes products and completed operations coverage, which covers property damage or injuries that take place away from your business’s premises and are caused by your work after it has been completed. However, it’s important to note that products and completed operations coverage does not cover damage to your product or completed work itself; it only applies if the product causes damage to a customer’s other property.
- Property damage: While at a customer’s home repairing a refrigerator, your technician accidentally knocks over an expensive sculpture, breaking it. Your insurer would cover the damages.
- Bodily injury: A customer visits your location to have a vacuum cleaner repaired. She trips over an uneven entry mat and falls, severely spraining her ankle. Your general liability insurance would pay for medical expenses and legal fees if the customer sues.
- Products and completed operations: One of your repair technicians accidentally uses the wrong part while repairing a washing machine. Over time, the machine leaks and damages the owner’s floor. Your general liability insurance would cover the damages.
Many appliance repair companies offer a pick-up and delivery service or send technicians to perform repairs at customers’ homes and offices. If your business owns or leases vehicles, or if your employees use their own personal vehicles for business purposes, commercial auto insurance is a key coverage that is legally required in most states. Commercial auto insurance covers bodily injury and property damage if the driver of the vehicle is at fault in an accident, as well as the value of the vehicle itself if it’s damaged by a collision or another peril.
- While driving to a client’s home, one of your technicians becomes distracted and runs a stop sign, striking a pedestrian. The pedestrian suffers broken ribs and a concussion. Your insurer would provide funds to cover the pedestrian’s medical costs and any legal expenses if your business is sued.
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. Since appliance repair companies may use specialized equipment that is used or stored at various locations, it’s a good idea to consider this coverage.
- You are working on a large repair project at a client’s offices. You have stored some of your equipment at the client’s offices as the project will take a few weeks to complete. A fire ends up damaging the client’s offices, including your equipment. Your insurance would cover the damages to your equipment.
Bailee’s insurance is a crucial coverage for appliance repair businesses, as they may take customers’ appliances into their possession while performing repairs. When customers give their property into your care, they expect it to be returned safely, and you could be held liable if it is damaged, stolen, or destroyed. Bailee’s coverage will cover your business for losses to customer property.
- A severe storm damages your roof and causes it to leak, resulting in water damage to many appliances that are waiting for repair or pickup. Your bailee’s coverage will pay for the value of the items, covering customer claims.
Commercial crime insurance provides funds to reimburse you for losses caused by theft, robbery, fraud, forgery, burglary, and other crimes. This coverage applies both to crimes committed by outside parties and crimes committed by your own employees. Since appliance repair employees work at a variety of locations, there’s a possibility of equipment being stolen or employees committing a crime; commercial crime insurance protects you from those risks.
- A client has called you alleging that expensive jewelry and cash were stolen from his home during a recent repair call. He says he has security footage of your employees rifling through his dresser drawers and stealing the items. Your crime insurance policy would cover the losses.
Workers’ compensation insurance is legally required in almost every state for companies that have employees. Workers’ comp will pay for medical expenses, lost income, and rehabilitation for employees who are injured on the job or fall ill due to their work, and it will also provide death benefits and funds to cover funeral costs in the case of a work-related death.
Workers’ comp is an important coverage for those in the appliance repair industry, as working with heavy machinery and equipment and visiting various client sites increases the risk of injury. Regulations for workers’ comp benefits vary widely by state, so it’s important to make sure that your business is complying with local laws.
- One of your employees injures her back while moving a refrigerator. Your workers’ compensation insurance would pay for her medical expenses and a portion of her lost income if she is unable to work for a time.
- A business owner’s policy combines general liability, property, business income, and extra expense coverage into a single package. For smaller appliance repair businesses, this type of insurance could help you obtain a wide range of coverage. 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.
- Employment practices liability insurance protects your business against lawsuits by prospective, current, or former employees accusing your business of wrongful treatment such as discrimination, harassment, or other employment-related issues.
Pricing and Quotes
Pricing for appliance repair business insurance will vary based on the type of insurance coverage and the risk profile of your business. Insurers consider factors such as:
- Business size
- Number of employees
- Claims history
Businesses with higher risks will have higher premiums than those deemed lower risk. For example, an appliance repair shop with a history of frequent claims will face higher premiums. Premiums also rise as you increase the limits of insurance. Different insurance companies have different models for rating risks, so it is worth comparing pricing across different insurers.
In order to get an accurate estimate on pricing, it’s best to get a quote from a reputable insurance company. Below we’ve highlighted a few of our trusted partners who offer coverage for appliance repair shops:
|Provider||Business Interruption||Business Owner's Policy||Commercial Auto||Commercial Crime||Commercial Property||Cyber Liability||Employment Practices Liability||General Liability||Product Liability||Professional Liability||Workers' Compensation|
In the course of doing business, appliance repair companies face many risks. It’s important to consider your business’s needs and purchase a range of insurance that will financially protect you from common sources of liability, including losses due to property damage, auto accidents, or a slip and fall injury that takes place in your offices. This will ensure that if an unexpected disaster occurs, you can feel confident that your business will recover.