How Picking the Right Hardware Store Insurance Can Help Your Business Thrive
Choosing the right type of insurance for any type of business is a challenge. Understanding potential risks and exposures, the different types of hardware store insurance you may need, and other types of services that can help you protect your business can help.
National Ladder Safety Month
Before we jump into the ins and outs of hardware store insurance, we wanted to spotlight a lumber and hardware-related observance this month. March is National Ladder Safety Month! To help educate people and spread awareness about ladder safety, the American Ladder Institute is sponsoring weekly webinars focused on different ladder-related safety topics. The 2022 topics include:
Choosing Your Ladder
Safety Before the First Step (Inspection and Set Up)
Safety While Climbing
Safety at the Top
We are promoting National Ladder Safety Month because we agree with their mission: that with evolved safety and training, we can all work together to prevent potential ladder-related injuries and fatalities. Many hardware stores both sell and use ladders as part of their day-to-day operations, and we want to make sure you and your employees are staying safe. If you’d like to learn more about any of the 2022 topics, you can access National Ladder Safety Month’s resources and webinars on their website.
Although prevention is one of the best ways to protect yourself from injury, you also need to have a plan in place should an accident ever happen. That is why the best kind of hardware store insurance does both. A quality hardware store insurance plan should assist in prevention and planning, helping you minimize risk and cost, while making sure protocols and systems are in place so you can handle anything that comes your way.
Why Hardware Store Insurance Should Be an Integral Part of Your Operations
While many aspects of your hardware store will be managed like any other business, hardware stores offer unique challenges that are particular to the type of merchandise and services they provide. The customers that come into your hardware store include a wide variety of people, ranging from do-it-yourself homeowners to handymen and maintenance repair workers to professional contractors. Your products may include pesticides, saws, ladders, or machine parts, and your services may include repair services for items you have sold, key making, or even blade sharpening.
Although your hardware store is providing a necessary and helpful service to your community, running a business also opens you up to liability. To keep your hardware store profitable and able to do business, it is important you acquire the right kind of hardware store insurance to protect yourself from potential financial losses.
Potential Risks & Exposures
Being aware of potential risks and exposures can help you prepare for the worst and keep your business safe from liability. Some examples of unforeseeable costly accidents include:
A customer slips and falls into sharp objects or shelving, causing serious injury
An employee error or power surge causes a major piece of equipment to malfunction or fail
An employee gets into an auto collision while delivering merchandise in a company vehicle
An electrical fire damages your merchandise, equipment, and store
A faulty ladder leads to an employee falling and becoming injured
While hardware insurance itself doesn’t help to prevent accidents like these from happening, having the right kind of coverage will make sure you’re covered if they do. Identifying and discussing potential issues with your insurance agent before they happen can help you determine what kind of hardware store you need to keep you and your business protected.
Types of Hardware Store Insurance
A hardware store, like any other business, requires a range of coverage to protect different areas of operations. There are several different types of hardware store insurance you may need, including:
Commercial property insurance
Business income insurance
General liability insurance
Commercial auto insurance
Commercial crime insurance
Workers’ compensation insurance
No two businesses are exactly alike, so it is important you find the right combination of insurances to fit your needs. There are even more specialty types of hardware store insurance available, so it is important you consider every part of your business to make sure you are covered across every step of your operations.
Commercial Property insurance not only covers the building your hardware store occupies but also your equipment and merchandise. This type of insurance provides financial protection should you suffer any damages to your business property from causes included in your coverage, including inventory, shelving, and even cash registers.
Business income insurance covers costs you may incur if you have to temporarily shut down your business due to a covered cause. This coverage includes net profits, property rent, taxes, and salaries, preventing you from sustaining substantial financial losses while your income is disrupted.
General liability insurance covers costs associated with accidental incidents that result in bodily injury, product liability, or personal injury. This includes coverage of financial losses and legal fees in the event you get sued by a customer. There are several instances where general liability insurance is crucial to have, including if a customer gets injured while on your premises and sues, if one of your products results in injury or property damage of a customer and they sue, and even if a customer sues for violation of non-physical risks like false arrest or discrimination.
Commercial auto insurance covers accidents that occur in company vehicles. If you use a vehicle to make deliveries, you need a comprehensive auto insurance plan that will take care of liability, damage, and medical expenses that result from collisions or other covered risks.
Commercial crime insurance covers financial losses that result from criminal acts like burglary, forgery, and theft. This type of coverage also extends to employee dishonesty and would cover any financial losses from employee theft of both cash and merchandise. Your hardware store relies on monetary transactions for valuable, high-cost products, so it is essential you protect your business from crime by investing in insurance as well as comprehensive security measures.
Workers’ compensation insurance covers both medical expenses and lost wages for employees that sustain work-related injuries. Although workers’ compensation insurance is not required in Texas, having workers’ compensation insurance protects your business from suffering any losses due to an employee injury and provides protection for your employees when they need it most.
Services To Keep Your Hardware Store Safe and Your Insurance Costs Manageable
We know that there are a million and one things you need to consider when running a business, but there’s no getting around your bottom line. Finding ways to control your current costs is part of any good business strategy. Although improving safety and minimizing costs may seem like a simple strategy, implementing new and efficient practices into your business can be challenging.
Having sufficient compliance and safety measures in place will help you not only minimize potential accidents and missteps, but that clean record will help you be viewed as a more favorable risk when it comes to getting insured.
Here at Lumber Insurance Services, we believe helping our clients evolve is just part of the process. As part of our LIS 365 services for hardware stores, we provide return to work programs and safety program review & development.
Return to Work Programs
One of the LIS 365 services we provide for hardware stores is implementing return to work programs. In doing so, we help you take care of your employees and your store by helping you manage costs. If you workers are ever unable to execute certain tasks and fulfill their typical obligations while at work due to an injury, you’ll have a plan in place you can rely on.
Our return to work programs will not only help you keep up with unforeseen costs and expenses but also help you meet your employees where they are. Whether they need to reduce their duties to temporary, limited, or light, you’ll be able to keep them engaged so you can maintain productivity through their recovery. Particularly if the injury is due to a work-related injury, it is important you have a strong return to work program to help manage costs and keep things running smoothly.
Safety Program Review & Development
With the many risks that come with running a hardware store, part of our LIS 365 services is safety program review & development. Whether you already have a plan in place that needs to be improved upon or you’re starting from scratch, we can help you design a comprehensive management program to help keep you, your employees, and your customers safe.
Our program covers every aspect of implementing safety protocols in the workplace, including:
A quality safety program will help you minimize potential losses and, over time, can lead to a positive track record that will help lower your overall cost of insurance, saving you both money and headaches. During the review and development process, we will monitor how your safety management program is performing, from implementation to operation, to determine any shortcomings and opportunities for improvement.
Consult a Hardware Insurance Specialist
Choosing the right insurance plan for your business is an important decision, but a hardware store isn’t like any other business. There are special risks and considerations you need to factor into your decision-making process. We know there are many insurance agents out there and making the right choice when it comes to investing in insurance can feel like a big decision.
Working with someone who knows the particulars of your specific business can help you feel like you have a partner you can trust. That’s why we recommend contacting a specialist. Unlike more general insurance agencies, a specialist has specific knowledge of the services, operations, and risks that are necessary to running a hardware store business.
Our team at Lumber Insurance Services covers everything from lumber insurance to hardware store insurance, so you can rest assured you are being taken care of by industry experts who are invested in helping you make your hardware store a success.