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Office insurance

Whether you rent your office space or own the building, office insurance can be tailored to provide your business with the cover it needs.

Read our guide to learn about your office insurance options and how to find a great deal.

What is office insurance?

Office insurance could protect your business against unexpected eventualities related to your workplace.

This could include cover for the loss of, or damage to, your equipment in the event of a fire, flood or theft at your premises.

Office insurance could also protect your business against the cost of any legal claims made by your employees or the public.

Compare prices from 18 leading business insurance providers[1], including:

[1] Correct as of June 2024.

What kind of commercial office insurance do I need?

There are four main areas that an office insurance policy could cover. You may consider any of those if your business operates from an office:

  • Your premises and equipment – there’s no need for specialised office equipment insurance as these will be covered by buildings and contents insurance.
  • People – if your business has one employee or more, you’re legally required to have employers’ liability insurance. This could cover you if one of your employees becomes ill or is injured as a result of working for you. If you employ one or more people or are a limited company with multiple directors, it's a legal requirement to have cover. If you're not a limited company, it's not a legal requirement to have employers' liability insurance if the employees are immediate family members, though if a policy is in place it would still cover immediate family members working for you. If you have customers or clients on your premises, you might want public liability insurance.
  • Your reputation – if you provide advice or professional services to clients (accountants, architects and lawyers, for example), you may want to consider professional indemnity insurance. It could protect you if you’re sued for a perceived mistake in your work.
  • Your finances – if a crisis strikes and your business is unable to operate for a period, business interruption insurance could cover any financial losses during that time.

What office buildings and contents insurance will I need?

Whether you’ll need office buildings insurance, contents insurance or both, depends on whether you own the building or rent your office space.

Office buildings insurance

If you own your office premises, you’ll need to protect your property with office buildings insurance. If the building is damaged by bad weather or a fire, you can claim for repairs or even the total cost of rebuilding.

Commercial property insurance also covers permanent fixtures, such as kitchen units, toilets and built-in cupboards and display cases.

If you rent your office, you should check that your landlord has buildings insurance in place.

At Compare the Market, we don't compare complete office insurance packages. However, our business insurance products may cover parts of your office and/or its contents.

Office contents insurance

Office contents insurance essentially covers anything you’d take with you if you moved premises – such as desks, chairs and computers – and could provide protection against theft or damage.

Make sure you calculate the value of your contents accurately, so you have enough cover in place. Don’t forget any specialist equipment your business uses or artwork that you’ve chosen to brighten up the space.

It’s also worth checking whether your policy includes:

  • Accidental damage – including damage to glass or signage
  • Cover for the personal property of employees or visitors to your premises
  • Portable equipment – for example, mobile phones and laptops that are taken away from the office.

If you keep stock on the premises, you might need to cover this with a separate policy.

How much is office insurance?

The amount you’ll pay for your office insurance depends on a number of factors. While cost is a consideration, it’s important to consider what protection your business needs.

The cost of your office cover could depend on:

  • The size of your business – this can refer to how many employees you have, the size of your commercial office and the total value of your assets.
  • Type of business – if you run a high-risk business such as investments, property management or financial services, you may need specialist cover, which could be more expensive.
  • Level of cover – typically, the higher the level of cover you choose, the more expensive your premiums will be. However, if you’re willing to pay a higher excess, it could help to bring the cost down.
  • Add-ons – do you need extra cover for portable equipment or insurance against cyber crime? While these might be necessary for your business, add-ons will bump up the price of insurance premiums.

What other types of cover are available?

When looking at insurance for your office, there are a few more options you might want to think about, including:

  • Insurance for cash
    If your business deals in cash, you can choose whether this covers money at the business or in transit during office hours – and/or cash left locked up in the office overnight.
  • Business interruption insurance
    Business interruption insurance provides funds to keep you going if your company can’t trade for an unexpected reason.
  • Legal cover
    Allows you to claim for the cost of legal action against another party. It could help with situations like employment tribunals, tax investigations, legal disputes with customers or suppliers and debt recovery.

Do I need office insurance if I run my business from home?

If you run your business from home, your home insurance may not be sufficient to cover equipment, such as computers and any stock. And it won’t offer cover should a customer or colleague have an accident while in your home.

If you work from home it’s important to tell your home insurance provider, to check your level of cover and make sure you don’t invalidate your policy.

How do I find the right office insurance for my business?

No two offices are the same and the type of insurance you require will depend on:

  • What your business does
  • Your turnover
  • Number of staff
  • Whether you have customers on the premises
  • What kind of equipment and furniture you use in your office.

If you want to compare office insurance quotes with Compare the Market, it’s easy.

We’ll ask you a few details about yourself, your office and the kind of cover you’re looking for. Then, we'll give you a range of relevant office business insurance quotes from various providers to compare.

What do I need to get a quote?

Just answer a few questions about:

  • Your business
  • Your employees
  • The type of cover you want.

We’ll show you a range of quotes so you can compare and choose the right option for you.

Start a quote

Why use Compare the Market?

Get a quote in minutes Rated 4.8/5 on Trustpilot[1]

[1] As of July 1st 2024, Compare the Market had an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 from 43,115 people who left a review on Trustpilot. The score 4.8 corresponds to the Star Label ‘Excellent’.

Author image Mubina Pirmohamed

What our expert says...

“While perhaps less dangerous than a building site, offices have their own risks to protect yourself against. Modern offices are often filled with expensive tech, which means you're going to want to protect it against damage. Don't forget to cover the staff who work there, too.”

- Mubina Pirmohamed, Business and landlord insurance expert

Frequently asked questions

Do I need public liability insurance for my office?

If you have customers or guests visiting your premises, you should consider public liability insurance.

As the business owner, you’re responsible for ensuring your office is as risk-free as possible. But accidents do happen.

If someone is injured at your office or their property is damaged, public liability insurance could cover you for any compensation due to them. It could also cover your legal costs if you’re taken to court.

Do I need employers’ liability insurance for my office?

If you have one employee or more – even volunteers or freelancers working from your office – it’s a legal requirement to have employers’ liability insurance. This protects you if an employee has an accident or their property is damaged at work and they’re due compensation.

The minimum level of cover in the UK is £5 million.

Do I need professional indemnity insurance for my office?

This depends on the kind of business you run. Professional indemnity insurance covers you if one of your clients loses money because you’ve been negligent in your advice, designs or professional services. If you handle client data, intellectual property or offer advice, this kind of cover is a worthwhile consideration.

Some professional bodies insist that their members have this type of insurance in place, as do some regulators for certain businesses.

Do I need insurance if I work in a co-working space?

If you work from a shared working space, the owner of the building should have insurance. This usually covers the personal possessions of anyone using it, as well as public liability insurance to cover accident or injury.

However, it’s always worth checking to make sure you and your belongings are insured.

Do I need insurance against cyber crime?

According to a government survey, 39% of UK businesses reported a cyber security breach in 2022.

If your business holds sensitive data, such as names, addresses or bank details, a cyber security breach could come at a huge financial cost. It could also damage relationships with your customers and suppliers.

A good cyber insurance policy will protect your business against the risks of cyber-related hacking and fraud. It offers protection against everything from data breaches to the cost of business interruption in the event that your business is unable to operate.