A sewing machine repair shop helps customers and alteration businesses keep their machinery tuned up and stitching. As a business owner, the only way you can continue to offer these services is by purchasing the proper insurance.
Every business has different insurance needs, which is why working with an independent insurance agent makes finding the right business insurance an easier task. An agent can make sure you have the insurance you need to cover everything involved in your sewing machine repair shop, from the inside out.
What Risks Does a Sewing Machine Repair Shop Face?
At first glance, there may not seem like much risk involved in repairing a sewing machine. However, sewing machines have sharp objects, and repairing machines requires employees to work with a lot of moving pieces. If your shop repairs industrial machines, your team may have to travel and work on-site, putting employees at risk outside your shop.
In addition, there are the general unexpected risks. What if an employee trips while carrying a customer’s sewing machine and it breaks? Your shop could catch on fire and you’d lose all your assets and your customers' property. These are just a few examples of things that could cost you a lot of money.
Some of the most common risks a sewing machine repair shop faces include:
- Liabilities from customers
- Property damage
- Employee injury
- Crime and theft
- Faulty repair jobs
Important Property Insurance for Sewing Machine Repair Shops
When customers drop off their sewing machines to you, they’re relying on you, not only to repair their machines, but also to keep them safe while in your care. That’s why protecting the building where your repair shop lives is crucial.
Work with your independent insurance agent to determine which of the following property insurance options is best for your business.
- Business property insurance: The most threatening events to your property are those that are the least expected. Fires, hurricanes, and other natural disasters can wipe out your building and all the property inside. Property insurance provides financial relief should your business be affected by one of these events. It also protects against vandalism, crime, and other events that could damage your property. One thing to note is that business property will not cover your customers’ property should it be damaged from an event. That is a different type of insurance that we’ll discuss later.
- Business interruption coverage: Should your business have to close its doors for several weeks or months, business interruption coverage will pay for lost income as well as employee salaries and other expenses until your business is back up and running.
- Building insurance: If you own the building where your repair shop operates, then this policy is perfect for you. This plan will pay for any damage (caused by vandalism, fire, wind, or lightning) to the physical structure of the store.
- Flood insurance: If your repair shop is located somewhere prone to flooding, then you will want to consider flood insurance. Your insurance agent can let you know if you’re in a flood zone so you can purchase the proper insurance.
- Sewer and drain insurance: If a natural disaster causes flooding of your repair shop, then flood insurance steps in. However, if a pipe breaks and floods your store, you’ll need sewer and drain insurance.
- Earthquake and hurricane insurance: There’s no doubt that 100+ mile-per-hour winds will do some damage to your building. Earthquake and hurricane insurance is not included in general property insurance, so if your business is at risk you’ll want to make sure to add it.
Your Sewing Machine Shop Needs Proper Liability Insurance
While property insurance is crucial for any business, just as important is liability insurance. It protects your business from financial losses you could face due to injuries to a customer or employee. A good policy will protect you against a potential lawsuit and cover everything from legal fees to medical bills and lost income.
- Commercial general liability insurance: This offers broad protection for a variety of liability risks that your business is exposed to, from customer slips and falls to claims of advertising liability, slander, libel and more. If you or your employee has to visit a client’s home or another business in order to repair their sewing machine, this will also cover you for any bodily injury or property damage claims that happen while off-site.
- Errors and omissions coverage: Your clients are relying on you, not only to repair their sewing machines. but also to provide a fully functioning product back to them. Should you or your shop experience any professional errors that result in damage to a customer, you could be held responsible.
- Auto liability insurance: Adding commercial auto liability insurance is necessary if you provide a delivery service or operate vehicles specifically for your business. If employees use their personally owned vehicles to do work-related jobs, you can be held liable if they are involved in an accident while driving on these errands. In this case, you would need hired or non-owned auto insurance in order to be covered.
- Cyber liability insurance: This covers the financial burden that may be imposed on your sewing machine repair store in the event that criminals target your computer system and access customer information, including credit card numbers.
Additional Insurance Options to Consider for Your Sewing Machine Repair Shop
In addition to property and liability insurance, there are a variety of additional insurance options that may be of benefit to your sewing machine repair shop.
- Bailee’s insurance: Standard business property and liability policies only cover your own business property, you need special coverage for your customers’ property that is in your possession. Bailee’s coverage insures non-owned property that is stored at your shop or is in your possession.
- Employee theft and crime coverage: This protects you from instances of employee theft, fraud or other crimes against your business.
- Workers’ compensation insurance: This is usually required for any business that has employees, and it pays for lost income and medical expenses for employees who are injured on the job.
- Inland marine coverage: This protects tools, equipment and supplies that you bring off-site to make repairs. Commercial property and commercial auto policies typically exclude coverage for those items once they leave your business premises.
- Employment practices liability coverage: This protects you from employee lawsuits related to discrimination and other business practices.
How Much Will Insurance Cost for My Sewing Machine Repair Shop?
As with any business, the cost of coverage for your repair shop will depend on a number of factors. These include:
- The size of your business
- The weather and crime risks in the ZIP code where your store is located
- The value of your inventory and other business property
- The number of workers you employ
- The types of business insurance coverage you are purchasing
- How high you need your coverage limits to be
- Your store’s claims history
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.
A local independent insurance agent can obtain a variety of customized quotes on your behalf. That way, you can be sure that the policies you select are offered to you at a reasonable price.
Why Online Quotes Aren’t Always the Best Way to Shop
Getting your insurance quotes online can be tempting. Sure, it’s fast and easy, but are the quotes you are getting actually accurate? And are you getting quotes for all the different types of coverage your business needs?
Online quotes cannot give you the whole picture. They often leave out important coverage, which may result in you being unable to get compensation if something disastrous happens. And they can leave out cost-saving opportunities such as discounts and bundling opportunities that an independent agent can help you take advantage of.
Instead of getting an online quote, find an independent insurance agent near you, and schedule a one-on-one consultation to discuss your options for the best coverage for your repair shop.
The Benefits of an Independent Insurance Agent
Insurance policies can be complex, and searching through options can be confusing, time-consuming and frustrating. An independent insurance agent's role is to simplify the process.
They’ll make sure you get the right coverage that meets the needs of your sewing machine repair shop. Not only that, they’ll break down all the jargon and explain the details, so you understand exactly what you're getting.
And when it comes time to file a claim, you’re not alone. Your agent will be right there to help guide you through every last step and get your life back to where it all was. How great is that?