Did you know that you have more control over commercial insurance premiums as a business owner? Knowing where to start with negotiating an insurance premium is 80 percent preparation and 20 perception discussion, but many people only go for the smallest degree of coverage available to them to save money. Protecting your business is your number one priority, and having the tools and knowledge of how to negotiate for the coverage you want will help you take your business to the next level.
Back to the basics: What is covered?
Commercial properties, such as real estate, investment properties, or income properties can be used to generate a profit through rental income. As a reminder, we will briefly look at what is covered for your business and what is not.
Your insurance will cover:
- Improvements done by tenants, including carpeting, painting, or lighting
- Repairs or replacements to:
- Building disasters
Your insurance will NOT cover:
- Unexplained disappearances of items from the property
- A property that has been left vacant for more than 30 days
- Everyday wear and tear on equipment
- Cash or security items
- Employee theft
Before you enter into negotiations, it is important to know the basics of what your commercial property insurance will cover and where additional insurance policies may be required. For a more comprehensive look at our commercial insurance options, check out our previous blog post!
Can I negotiate my insurance premiums?
As a business owner, you are in a unique position where you can negotiate your business insurance premiums. You are not alone in your negotiations, and at Sadler Insurance, we will help you find the best rate for your business needs. There are a few basics for preparing to negotiate your commercial insurance premiums.
- Read your contract thoroughly: When it comes to managing your business costs, the fine print of your contract can make or break your negotiating power. Things to look for include the length of the contract term, written agreements for a premium increase rate, premium rate freezes, and the notice of non-renewal.
- Stay up-to-date on your company information: If you are locked into an existing premium and are looking to renew each year, your company information for that year can impact your premium rate. Have the number of claims filed, current staffing counts, plans for new hires, and additional insurance policies ready!
- Plan ahead: Did you know you can ask for notices of premium increases beforehand? By contacting your broker, they can give you up to 2 months’ notice for an increase, allowing you to choose to continue with your current plan or meet with your broker to find a better insurance plan.
- What will you accept: Before you enter a negotiation, keep in mind what you are willing to accept as a premium as this will help with transparency between you and your broker. Don’t be afraid to engage in a discussion with your broker to find the right deal for your business.
5 Tips for lowering your premiums
The most common reason why business owners forgo commercial insurance comes from the cost. Individual commercial insurance policy premiums can start to add up, and we want to help you make the most of your money. Check out our quick tips for negotiating a lower insurance premium!
- Ask about promotional discounts:
- While discounts will vary depending on the type of insurance and the insurance provider, there are often many savings available for commercial insurance for property, auto, and general liability. Your insurance broker can help you navigate various options and the types of discounts based on your business and line of work.
- Whenever possible, bundle your insurance
- At Sadler Insurance, we want to cover every aspect of your business while keeping your finances in mind. We have various commercial insurance products available, and our insurance brokers can help assess what coverage plan will work best for your unique business needs.
- Raise the deductible
- Deductibles are the amount of money you are required to pay on a claim before your insurance provider can pay out a claim. If you are in a place where you can afford to pay a higher deductible, it will have a lower premium overall.
- Pay annually rather than monthly
- When insurance fees are paid in installments rather than a lump sum, there may be discounts available depending on your commercial property insurance. Take time to review your policy and payment plan to determine what is the best approach.
- Keep security front-of-mind and plan ahead
- When extra steps are taken to protect your property, every security measure implemented can help to lower your insurance premium. Simple steps include installing a sprinkler system, alarms, security cameras, and fire extinguishers.
- Plan with an insurance broker and shop for the best-priced insurance
- Working with an insurance broker is one of the most important tips for negotiating. Insurance brokers act as a go-between for clients and insurance companies and work to find the right policy for your needs rather than a one-size-fits-all solution and offer greater transparency at every step. At Sadler Insurance, we advocate for your needs in conversations to help find the right price for your policy.
As part of our commitment, you can expect unbiased advice from our experienced team, with a wide range of options that will save you time and money that can be invested back into your business. Request a quote today and learn more about our commercial property insurance plans.