Used book stores face some unique risks. Your unique selection of used books offers something for every book lover. But at any time, a customer or any type of visitor can get injured on your premises and sue you.
What’s more, your building and and highly flammable inventory can be damaged by fire, severe weather, theft, or vandalism.
The only way to ensure that you can repair, rebuild, and continue to operate in these situations is to purchase business insurance designed for used book stores. That means talking to an independent insurance agent about purchasing a comprehensive set of policies and endorsements that directly address all of your unique risks.
Why Do I Need Used Book Store Insurance?
If an unexpected event causes some kind of damage to your business, your used book store insurance is there to help you recover.
Consider all of the things that could go wrong (and result in serious repair costs, loss of income, or a lawsuit) during the course of your workday.
- Accidents, such as slips, trips, and falls in the store or parking lot
- Damage to your inventory (mostly paper products that are highly susceptible to fire, smoke, and water damage) due to some catastrophic or unexpected event (fire, smoke, weather, vandalism, etc.)
- Inventory damage due to careless shoppers or vandalism
- Damage to your building, computer systems, fixtures, and furniture due to fire, smoke, water, or weather
- Loss of income due to a catastrophic or unexpected event (a fire damages part of your store, forcing you to close while repairs are made)
- Shoplifting and employee theft of cash or inventory
- Employee injuries (falling off a ladder, back injury due to heavy lifting)
- Employee lawsuits related to discrimination or other claims
What Does Used Book Store Insurance Cover?
Used book store insurance should cover physical damage to your building and other commercial property. It should also allow you to take financial responsibility for any customers or members of the public who get injured on your property or as a result of buying something from you.
In order to get the comprehensive coverage you need, you’ll likely need to purchase several basic policies as well as a few customized endorsements (add-ons to basic policies) or additional policies that fill any gaps in your basic coverage.
Commercial property insurance: This helps you rebuild or make repairs when an unexpected event, like a fire, a flood, hail, lightning, or a tornado, destroys your merchandise and your physical space (structure). It helps you replace, rebuild, or repair computers, cash registers, inventory, equipment, furniture, fixtures, and more after a covered event.
Business interruption insurance: This compensates you for lost business income and pays for operating expenses if you must temporarily close after a covered loss (e.g., a fire damages your stockroom and part of the sales floor, and you must close your store during the rebuilding process).
General liability insurance (CGL): This covers claims against your business due to negligence on the part of you or your employees. If someone is injured on your premises or as a result of your operations, your CGL policy pays for medical expenses or repair bills for the injured party.
For example, if a customer sustains a deep laceration from a sharp edge on a display shelf, your CGL policy would pay for any related medical expenses. Or, if an employee collecting shopping carts in the parking lot accidentally hits a customer’s car and causes damage, your CGL policy would pay for any related repair bills.
If you’re sued by the injured party, liability insurance pays for your legal defense, court costs, and any settlements or judgments that you must pay.
You may be able to bundle your basic property and liability coverage together into a packaged policy (business owners policy, or BOP) designed for small businesses owners.
Other Insurance Coverage for Your Used Book Store
Talk to your independent insurance agent about your need for additional coverage, such as:
- Commercial umbrella insurance: This 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.
- Commercial auto insurance: This ensures that you’ll be able to pay for any physical damage or injuries you cause if you are in an auto accident while driving for business purposes. If you have a business-owned vehicle that you use for running errands, making deliveries, or for other business purposes, you will be covered by your commercial auto policy if you cause an accident.
- Workers’ compensation insurance: This is typically required for any business that has employees. It pays for lost income and medical expenses for employees that are injured on the job. Your employees could be injured while stocking shelves, opening boxes with a sharp box cutter, or repetitive motion.
- Sign coverage: This 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: This provides income protection if you are unable to operate due to a covered utility (water, electrical) interruption.
- Employment practices liability insurance: This covers you if an employee sues you for discriminatory employment practices.
Don’t Forget about Crime Coverage for Your Used Book Store
One of the most significant threats to your business is theft of inventory or cash. Nearly every retail store is likely to be the victim of a shoplifter at some point. What’s more, employees all too often steal property, money, and securities owned by their employers.
For a small used book store, even a small cash theft can be difficult to overcome. Crime coverage protects your business from vandalism, shoplifting, and employee theft and dishonesty.
It can be purchased as a stand-alone policy or as an endorsement on another business insurance policy. It covers things like vandalism, theft, and shoplifting, as well as employee acts like forgery, alteration, unauthorized electronic funds transfers, credit card fraud, and more.
How Much Does Used Book Store Insurance Cost?
The cost to cover your used book store with a comprehensive business insurance program will vary depending on:
- The size of your store
- Your store’s location
- The number of employees you have
- The types of products you sell
- The value of your inventory
- The types of coverage and the coverage limits that you require
- The crime and weather risk in your city
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 used book store insurance. They’ll walk you through the 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 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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