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Protect your home-based business

Home is where the heart is–and now, for many–it’s also now where your business is.

According to a recent Harris Poll conducted by The Hanover, nearly 20% of homeowners say they started a home-based business in the last six months.

 

 

Comfortable environment, convenient commute

As a business owner working from home, insurance coverage may not be the first thing on your mind. However, it’s important to understand the risk of personal injuries, theft or damage of physical and digital inventory, and legal issues does not stop at your home’s welcome mat.

Will your home insurance cover your business? Talk to your independent agent about the protection you need. According to Insurance Information Institute, a typical homeowners policy may provide only $2,500 coverage for business equipment. Generally, other risks, including liability and lost income are not covered. Home-based business insurance could be an option to help you get the peace of mind you need. 

4 coverages to protect your home-based business

Hanover Home Business Solutions features four insurance options, which can be chosen individually.

  • Home-based business coverage: This offering is designed for businesses located within a primary residence, with up to three employees, and visits from customers. This coverage includes bodily injury, property damage liability, business property, personal and advertising injury, business income protection, and more.
  • Permitted incidental occupancies coverage: For sole proprietors or independent contractors with inventory in their homes to protect, but few or no visitors where business income protection is not needed or desired.
  • Business pursuits coverage: For employees or independent contractors who don't need property coverage but could benefit from liability coverage.
  • Home sharing coverage: Homeowners who occasionally rent their homes (up to 60 nights) through a home sharing platform such as Airbnb® or Vrbo™ and need protection against theft and property damage, this coverage provides protection of the landlord's furnishings, lost rental value and damage to the renter's belongings.

8 tips to provide safety

While your focus may be on running your business smoothly, take these eight steps to keep your employees, inventory and yourself safe.

  1. Clear the floor around where you work and keep it clean to avoid trip and fall accidents.
  2. Be strategic with where you place physical inventory and anything of monetary value.
  3. Consider investing in security cameras to deter and record any potential attempted thefts.
  4. Safeguard your digital assets by installing antivirus and malware software and encrypting your data and WiFi connections as an extra precaution against hackers.
  5. Consider interviewing local attorneys to have on standby in case your business encounters a legal issue. A lawyer in the area you trust will be more familiar with local laws in case your business is ever involved in a legal dispute.
  6. Practice good ergonomics and ensure your workers have an adequate workstation at home.
  7. Purchase a fire extinguisher and keep it in a safe, easy-to-grab spot.
  8. Install smoke detectors. Have them already? Test them regularly.

For more tips, see this complete safety list from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Need coverage for your home-based business?

About 60% of home-based businesses are uninsured or underinsured, according to Census.gov.

Talk to an agent to see how you are currently protected, and if it makes sense to add additional safeguards. The Hanover has options to strengthen your home-based business coverage.

 

Sources: 

Home Business Magazine

Small Business Trends

Insurance Information Institute

National Safety Council

Investopedia

 

This material is provided for informational purposes only and does not provide any coverage or guarantee loss prevention. Review your policy for the coverage provided.