The old saying, “location, location, location” can represent a key component of business success. However, our Fort Lauderdale property damage lawyers admire the good fortune of business owners who can operate from the comfort of their own homes.
Besides keeping costs down, home-based businesses offer many benefits — unless a fire, flood or other disaster requires them to file a property damage claim. That said, it is essential to understand the special insurance concerns of operating a business your home and take appropriate action to help prevent uncovered losses.
Homeowner Property Insurance May Not Cover all Business Losses
Just as the federal tax laws allow you to write off the portions of your home used solely for business purposes, property insurers view certain business-related property losses to be outside of your homeowner’s coverage.
A big concern is what happens if damage to your home causes an interruption to your business activities. Business operation-related losses, such as business interruption, won’t be covered under your homeowner’s insurance coverage. Likewise, homeowner’s insurance companies will likely also deny claims for the loss of your work-related furniture, computers, equipment, office supplies and inventory. These can be sizeable losses that, if not properly covered, can make or break the future success of your business.
Home-Based Business Insurance Coverage is Available
If you operate a home-based business, you have a number of options for purchasing the property insurance you need:
- Homeowner’s policy endorsement: You might consider obtaining an endorsement to your policy to provide coverage specifically for your home-based business. To help ensure that the insurer appropriately covers potential business losses, be sure to make your purpose clear when you purchase the endorsement.
- In-home business policy: You can also consider creating a customized separate property insurance policy for your business. In addition to covering property damage, these policies typically cover business interruption coverage, as well as liability.
- Business owner package policies: Commonly known as BOP insurance, these policies are offered in 39 states, including Florida. These are basically off-the-shelf policies, but some options are available. They typically cover standard types of losses, so they might not be appropriate for businesses with unusual risk exposure.
Even Standard Homeowner Policies Should Provide Some Coverage
We strongly recommend that you purchase any coverage you need to help protect your home-based business. Our property insurance claims attorneys often see cases of unfair denials for claims involving home offices. Before you sign off on a reduced homeowner’s insurance settlement offer that denies your claims for your home-based business losses, call us at (954) 928-9568 or use our convenient online contact form to find out if you are entitled to additional compensation.