Janitorial equipment and supply stores are generally engaged in selling cleaning supplies and other equipment to maid services and cleaning companies, as well as companies with an in-house cleaning staff. You might also sell janitorial equipment and supplies to the general public.
Your products may include:
- Cleansers, carpet cleaning solutions, laundry soap, disinfectants, hand soap, degreasers, and other industrial solutions and chemicals
- Carpet and floor cleaning machines
- Trash bags, mops, other paper or plastic products, and trash and recycling bins
- Gloves and other personal protective equipment
Owning a janitorial equipment and supply store is probably the culmination of years of hard work and the investment of your personal time and money.
In order to protect your livelihood, you need to understand the types of risks that you face and how you can protect your assets and move forward when things go wrong.
Business insurance tailored to your unique risks can help you recover from simple claims for slips and falls on your premises, and even from the complete devastation caused by a fire or a tornado.
An independent insurance agent in your city can help you find customized business insurance solutions that fit your needs and budget.
Why Do You Need Janitorial Equipment and Supply Store Insurance?
If you own a janitorial equipment and supply store, you face a variety of business risks. One of your biggest concerns is damage to your physical assets, including the inventory of products that you sell. Many of your products are highly flammable chemicals, increasing your fire risk and the kind of damage that can occur.
What’s more, a severe weather event, a burglary, or vandalism can diminish or entirely destroy your inventory, leaving you no option but to pay to replenish it if you want to stay in business.
And if someone is injured on your premises or as a result of using one of your products, you can be assured that a costly lawsuit is not far behind.
In addition, any type of retail operation can face losses due to:
- Shopping carts or store fixtures causing injury or property damage in the store or parking lot
- Loss of income due to a catastrophic or unexpected event
- Equipment damage or breakdown
- Employee theft of cash or inventory
- Employee lawsuits related to discrimination or other claims
- Cyber breaches (data breach of your online store)
What Does Property Insurance Cover?
Cookie-cutter insurance coverage is not sufficient for your janitorial equipment and supply store. You need a package of business insurance policies that are tailored to your unique risk exposures.
Your first major risk is physical damage to your building or property caused by unexpected events like fires, lightning, tornadoes, wind, and hail.
Your business insurance should be made up of several basic policies to cover these risks:
- With so many flammable items like cleaning solutions, plastic and paper products, cleaning cloths and sponges, mops, and solvents, your store is especially susceptible to fast-burning, devastating fires. Commercial property insurance covers your building and its contents, including computers and cash registers, inventory, equipment, furniture, fixtures, and more. It helps you rebuild or make repairs when an unexpected event—like a fire or severe weather—destroys your merchandise and your physical space (structure).
- After a property loss, you’re likely to need some time to replace your inventory and fixtures and rebuild your store. Business interruption coverage compensates you for lost business income and pays for certain operating expenses if you must temporarily close after a covered loss.
What Does Liability Insurance Cover?
You also have a significant liability risk, which means that you are responsible for compensating any customer or member of the public who gets injured on your property or as a result of buying something from you.
Commercial general liability (CGL) insurance pays for claims of bodily injury and property damage to third parties due to your negligence.
Your CGL policy offers two specific kinds of coverage:
- Premises liability protects you when someone gets injured or sustains property damage while on your premises. This comes into play when you have a simple slip-and-fall incident in your store.
- Products and completed operations coverage protects you when someone is injured or sustains property damage after coming into contact with a product from your store or as a result of your services (completed operations). An expensive carpet cleaner could malfunction and destroy a customer’s carpet. Or an improperly labeled chemical could cause a serious lung injury.
Claims for product-related damages are usually related to manufacturing or production flaws, design defects, or defective warnings or instructions. If you are negligent—and even if you are not—you can be sued and required to pay for medical costs, compensatory damages, attorney fees, court costs, and more.
The product liability insurance in your CGL policy covers your financial responsibility for losses or injuries to a user, buyer, or bystander caused by a defect or malfunction of your product.
In some circumstances this coverage may not be sufficient. An independent insurance agent can help you determine how much and what type of product liability coverage you need.
What Other Types of Insurance Do You Need?
You might also want to consider endorsements (coverage add-ons) to your basic janitorial equipment and supply store insurance policies. Or you might need some additional stand-alone policies that provide the following types of coverage:
- Commercial umbrella insurance provides excess liability protection to any of several other policies you might have. If a customer injury in your store leads to an expensive lawsuit that exceeds the limits of your commercial general liability policy, your commercial umbrella policy kicks in with higher coverage limits.
- Workers’ compensation insurance is typically required for any business that has employees. It pays for lost income and medical expenses for employees who are injured on the job. If an employee drops a commercial-sized container of bleach and becomes ill from the fumes, workers’ compensation insurance pays for related medical costs and compensates the employee for time away from work.
- Crime coverage protects your business if an employee or a group of employees engage in theft, forgery, or fraud that damages your business.It also offers coverage in cases of shoplifting and vandalism.
- Sign coverage pays for damage to outdoor signs that are not attached to your building when the damage is caused by weather, vandalism, fire, etc.
- Utility interruption coverage provides income protection if you are unable to operate due to a covered utility (water, electrical) interruption.
- Pollution liability insurance may be needed if you use and dispose of certain chemicals or other pollutants.
- Cyber liability insurance is necessary if you sell cleaning products or janitorial equipment online. It helps you protect your business and your customers’ privacy by paying for investigative expenses, notification expenses (the cost to notify your customers of the breach), future credit card and fraud monitoring services for your customers, your legal defense, settlements and judgments, and even PR and other related expenses.
How Much Does Janitorial Equipment and Supply Store Insurance Cost?
Insurance for a janitorial equipment and supply store 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
- The value of the inventory and other business property you keep on your premises
- The types of coverage and amount of coverage that you need
If you are a sole proprietor with just a few employees, you can expect to pay far less for your business insurance than a multi-location business with numerous employees, a warehouse, and a large and valuable inventory.
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 insurance 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 janitorial equipment and supply store insurance. They’ll walk you through some handpicked policy options and explain the details and options.
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 leave out 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
©2020, Consumer Agent Portal, LLC. All rights reserved.