At comparethemarket.com we want to make it really easy and fast to compare all the financial products that people need as part of their everyday lives.
We know that running your own small business and SME is fun, challenging and sometimes nerve-wracking. Because of that you probably don’t want to spend hours and hours reading and researching about the different insurance products your business might need.
Insurance is important though – it could save your business one day, and there are some types that you legally have to have in place. So if you need to understand a bit more about business insurance, and particularly office insurance, you’ve come to the right place.
Three main areas of cover
There are three main areas of insurance that you might be interested in if your small business operates from an office, and they protect three main things.
The first is the physical stuff - your premises and equipment (covered by buildings and contents insurance). The second is people – your employees (if there are more than just you!) and the general public. If your business has one employee or more you will need employer’s liability insurance and if you have customers on your premises you will need public liability insurance.
The third are your finances. Some people like to protect against something happening that stops their business from trading for a while. This is called business interruption insurance.
So if you want to compare office insurance with comparethemarket.com it’s pretty easy. Just choose the ‘office’ option on our business insurance page and fill in the form. A business insurance specialist will call you to talk through the options.
They’ll ask you a few details about yourself, your office and the kind of cover you’re looking for, explaining the finer details of the policies, and then give you some quotes from insurance companies.
Talking to an expert is important, because no two offices are the same. Insurers need to understand what your business does, your turnover, number of staff, whether you have customers on the premises…That’s because they need work out what kind of risks your business might face and calculate your premium based on that. The bigger your company, the more risks there are, so you might be more likely to claim. The claims could also be more larger amounts of money depending on your business details.
What might you need?
Let’s look at the different bits of office insurance in a bit more detail.
As we said above, you will need to protect your office with buildings insurance (if you own your office building) and contents insurance (if you have things in the building, like desks, computers, chairs – anything that would fall about if you tipped the building upside down). This way, if the building is damaged in bad weather or a fire, you can claim for repairs, and also for the cost of replacing your furnishings if you have taken out contents cover.
If you have customers visiting your premises, you need to have public liability insurance. As the owner, you’re responsible for making your office as risk-free as possible, but unfortunately accidents do happen. Public liability means that if someone is injured at your office or their property is damaged, you can claim on your insurance to cover any compensation due to them or legal costs if they take you to court.
If you have one employee or more, or even volunteers or freelance staff at your office, you need to have employers liability insurance – it’s a legal requirement. Again, this protects you if someone has an accident or their property is damaged at work and they are due compensation. The minimum level of cover in the UK is £5m.
Other types of cover
There are a few further options you might want to think about.
The first of these is computer breakdown. Here you should add how much money you would need to replace computer equipment at your office, whether you would want cover for the increased costs of working if you had a technology breakdown, and you can also insure the cost of recovering all your data and files if you lost everything.
If your business deals in cash, you can also select cover for your money. You can choose whether this covers money at the business or in transit during office hours, or left locked up at the office overnight.
As we said earlier, some people choose to buy business interruption insurance to provide funds if the company can’t trade for some reason. You will need to say how much cover you would want and how long a period of interruption you would want to cover.
Another option is legal cover. This option means you can claim for the cost of legal action against another party. Sometimes this can be included in your business policy, and sometimes not, so check the details if this is something you’re interested in.
Hopefully this information has helped you understand the different parts involved in an office policy. Now you can use comparethemarket.com to compare business insurance deals. One of our experts is sure to find a deal that suits you.