Stucco contractors are specialized masonry contractors.
Traditional masonry stucco is a cement-based plaster that is applied over walls and other surfaces inside and outside of buildings. It is made from cement, sand, and lime and hardens into a highly durable material that requires little maintenance. Stucco is installed by hand in layers; it’s a time-consuming, labor-intensive process that should only be done by skilled professionals.
Stucco contractors face a wide range of business risks, from employee injuries to causing property damage or injuries to third parties. What’s more, you risk loss to your property and equipment while your employees are out on the job.
Stucco contractor insurance is critical for protecting your business from financial losses when your property is damaged, your employees are injured, or you’re sued for some type of negligence.
Why Do You Need Stucco Contractor Insurance?
Stucco contractors are highly specialized professionals who apply the finishing touches to a home’s exterior or interior walls. Like traditional decorative plaster, stucco can be troweled, brushed, or otherwise textured to create a variety of finish effects. It is typically is applied by hand or with a machine over a galvanized wire mesh called lath, which helps the stucco adhere to the surface.
Stucco usually is mixed on-site and is applied in three coats.
Stucco contractors have a tremendous responsibility to ensure that the finish is used in appropriate conditions and to apply it properly in order to ensure its longevity. It is challenging both to apply and to repair, and should only be used in appropriate climates. Because of its brittle nature, it will crack in the wrong climate or if the foundation settles. Over time, if stucco is used in the wrong climate or is not applied appropriately, it can be prone to multiple large cracks and even chunks of stucco that fall off.
Stucco that fails is just one of the many risks you face as a stucco contractors. Some of the other business risks that you face as a stucco contractor include:
- Stolen tools and equipment
- Liability claims arising from injuries or property damage that occurs at a jobsite
- Fire, severe weather, or smoke that damages your office, warehouse, or storefront
- Causing damage to a client’s home or personal property
- Causing damage to another contractor’s work
- Worker injuries or illnesses
In some cases, you might think everything has gone to plan, but you can still be sued by a cranky property owner who can’t be pleased. For these and many other reasons, you need stucco contractor insurance to protect your livelihood at times when things go wrong.
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What Does Liability Insurance Cover?
Stucco contractors face risks from all sides. You can run into trouble at your office or shop, in a customer’s home or a commercial building, driving to and from a jobsite, while you’re working, or after a project is completed.
You likely have multiple employees doing work in various locations. They likely drive your trucks, use your tools, and perform work in your name. Accidents can happen, property can be damaged, and people can get hurt.
Any time you perform work for and around the general public, you face a serious liability risk. In your line of work, property damage and injuries are not uncommon, and you need to be prepared to pay when you are at fault.
Several different types of business insurance policies can help protect you from negligence claims and lawsuits.
- Commercial general liability (CGL) insurance: This protects you from the costs of liability claims and lawsuits. It can help you pay for property damage, medical bills, and attorney fees, court costs, settlements, and judgments. Most states require contractors to have a valid contractors liability insurance policy in place to get licensed, to bid on jobs, and to conduct any kind of construction work.
You probably have at least one if not multiple trucks or work vehicles that you use to transport tools, equipment, and employees to and from jobsites.
- Commercial auto insurance: This covers your vehicles and drivers in the event of an accident or other types of vehicle damage.
Talk to your independent insurance agent to see if you need excess liability coverage, which acts as an add-on to the liability limits in your CGL, commercial auto, and other business liability policies.
- Commercial umbrella insurance: This can cover you for claims that exceed the limits of your other liability policies.
You might also want to consider professional liability insurance. This coverage may be appropriate for your business if you consult with customers and recommend specific products or treatments. It's designed to protect you from the high cost of legal claims if advice or recommendations you provide result in loss to your customer.
What Does Property Insurance Cover?
In addition to protecting yourself from lawsuits when things go wrong, you need to protect your own property, as well. If you have a physical space from which you conduct business, you need to be able to pay for repairs if it is damaged or destroyed by fire, smoke, vandalism, or severe weather.
What’s more, you need to protect your tools, equipment, and materials while they are in transit and while they are at a jobsite.
Talk to an independent insurance agent who can help you decide which of the following types of policies you need to protect your business property.
- Commercial property insurance: This covers your office space, shop, warehouse, or other buildings and their contents from losses due to fire, theft, vandalism, wind, hail, and other losses that can occur.
- Business interruption insurance: This reimburses you for lost income and helps pay for certain ongoing expenses if you are temporarily unable to operate due to a covered loss (fire, weather, vandalism, etc.).
- Inland marine insurance: This protects your equipment, tools, portable computer equipment, and other supplies from theft, loss, or damage while they are in transit to and from worksites, such as in your work trucks. It is especially important if you store your tools and equipment in your truck or another vehicle.
- Consider adding an installation floater, which protects materials left at a jobsite to be installed but are damaged before you can do it. If, for example, you drop off scaffolding, tools, or materials to be used at a later date but find them vandalized and broken the next morning, an installation floater will likely cover your losses.
- A tools and equipment floater can normally be added to your property damage coverage. It covers any leased or owned specialized tools and equipment while they’re stored on the construction site. It can offer coverage for tools like handtools, power tools, contractors’ gear (hard hats, goggles, etc.), shovels, trowels, and wheelbarrows. It can also cover equipment like compressors, generators, excavators, backhoes, and scaffolding.
What Does Workers’ Compensation Insurance Cover?
Keeping your employees safe from workplace injuries and illnesses should be a top priority. Your employees are exposed to a wide variety of injuries, including falls, heavy lifting injuries, crushed fingers and limbs, repetitive motion injuries, and more. These injuries can be debilitating, costly, and lead to decreased productivity and time away from work.
Workers’ compensation coverage: This is required for most employers. It provides coverage for medical bills and lost wages when accidents or illnesses happen in the workplace.
Workers’ compensation insurance provides benefits to injured workers regardless of who is at fault for an injury.
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Do Stucco Contractors Need Construction Bonds?
Construction bonds, or surety bonds, are also essential protections for contractors and those with whom they do business. Bonds are essential to finding, securing, and performing work on all kinds of construction projects, and are often required by the project owner in order for your bid to be accepted. They serve as a guarantee for various aspects of the bidding process and construction contract.
There are several different types of construction bonds or contractor bonds, and each guarantees a different aspect of the bidding process and the contract.
- Bid bonds assure the project owner that the contractor can obtain a performance bond should the bid be accepted.
- Performance bonds, or completion bonds, promise that the contractor will perform the job as agreed upon in accordance with the terms and conditions of the contract.
- Payment bonds promise that the job will be completed free of all liens (all subcontractors will be paid in accordance with the contract). Payment bonds can be obtained individually or together with a performance bond.
- License and permit bonds are often required by state, municipal, or federal ordinance as a condition for engaging in a particular business or exercising a particular privilege. Examples include performance bonds, payment bonds, customs bonds, tax bonds and warehouse bonds.
- Maintenance bonds are usually obtained for larger projects. They promise that the job will be completed free of defects for a specified period of time.
How Much Does Stucco Contractor Insurance Cost?
Insurance for stucco contractors can range from several hundreds of dollars per month to thousands. It depends on:
- The size of your business
- The number of employees
- The types of tools and equipment you own
- How many trucks and drivers you have
- The size and scope of the projects you take on
If you are a sole proprietor with a few employees, working primarily on small residential jobs, you can expect to pay far less for your business insurance than a large stucco contractor with multiple employees and the ability to work on large industrial or commercial projects.
Ultimately the types and amounts of coverage you need to adequately cover your risks will dictate the cost of your coverage.
Find and Compare Quotes
An independent agent can work with you one-on-one to determine the types and amounts of coverage you need. Your agent can get quotes from multiple insurance companies so you can evaluate the cost and coverage options and make the best choice.
Benefits of an Independent Agent
Our agents simplify the search process for finding the right stucco contractor insurance. They’ll walk you through the handpicked policy options and explain the details.
Most importantly, they’ll be there for you when claim time comes. They know the ins and outs of the process and will make sure your claim is handled appropriately.
The Lowdown on Online Quotes
Online quotes can be tempting. They are fast and easy to get — but are they accurate? And are you getting quotes for the right coverage? For business owners, choosing speed over accuracy can cost you.
Online quotes can’t and don’t see the whole picture. They can omit important coverage that will leave you devastated if something unexpected happens. And they can leave out cost-saving opportunities that an agent can help you take advantage of.
Instead of getting an online quote, find an independent insurance agent now, and get one-on-one consultation and affordable options for the best coverage for your unique needs.
TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Paul Martin
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