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post #1 of Old 05-30-2012, 12:45 PM Thread Starter
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Cleaning Business Insurance

What are your professional opinions on cleaning business insurance?

I am looking at an insurance site now and am not convinced I need insurance, but not confident I am safe to be without.

From your experience what advantages does insurance bring?
What are your frustrations with cleaning company insurance?

If you want to see the site I was looking at, here is their link:
http://southernstatesinsurance.com/c...lear-and-easy/
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post #2 of Old 06-01-2012, 01:43 AM
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Cleaning Business Insurance

You definitely need insurance. Just like you have insurance for your automobile for protection, you need to protect you and your business. For commercial cleaning companies a typical coverage is $1.0 million max per occurrence and $2.0 million overall. You also need worker's comp and employee bonding against theft. The insurance link you gave looked pretty good but that looked like the coverage was for a residential cleaning company. I own a commercial cleaning company and the above insurance coverage costs me about $140 per month. I have only had one claim in the last ten years against my insurance but the insurance really saved me as the claim for a fall in a grocery store.

I hope this helps.

OSA Janitorial Services
Phoenix, AZ
602-451-9322
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post #3 of Old 06-01-2012, 08:55 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you! That's an amazing price on insurance! Would you recommend them? If so please send me a link to their website.
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post #4 of Old 06-05-2012, 06:44 AM
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Hi

The fact is there will always be issues and frustrations when coming to insurance, but it is always advisable to have one for your business as you do not know what will happen in the future.
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post #5 of Old 06-08-2012, 08:47 AM
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I have used both The Hartford Insurance nd Farmers Insurance. Both companies are very good and are very familiar with cleaning companies.

OSA Janitorial Services
Phoenix, AZ
602-451-9322
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post #6 of Old 06-20-2012, 08:38 AM
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For insurance, you have to contact to your local insurance agents. Keep in mind, insurance is there to protect you for property loss or against any liability claim.

long island mold abatement
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post #7 of Old 07-09-2012, 10:36 AM
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Most if not all companies you will be cleaning for will require you to have at least one million in coverage, so you do need it. That being said, it is mainly a rip off, the one time we used our liability in 14 years we were kicked off and had to find new coverage.
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post #8 of Old 07-09-2012, 12:03 PM
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Yeah, for commercial work or work such as cleaning empty apartments they will want insurance. Back when we did commercial we had to have it (so it covered both commercial and residential) and even when one of the girls broke something I paid out of pocket for the item broke. The reason... just as Jeff said... once you file a claim they screw you. Once I start hiring employees again I won't have insurance. If something gets broke I will pay for it. And if it costs too much (over $300) they can sue me. Plenty of work out there and they will probably cancel anyway if it cost very much because they will probably be mad. I'll tell you the trick though... I usually try and replace it BEFORE they get home. They never know and I keep a customer happy.
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post #9 of Old 07-23-2012, 10:50 PM
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The options for insurance are good to take. However, it is also important to look at the extra necessities that are a part of your cleaning needs and what types of services you are willing to offer as well as what should be covered with these services.

Bidvest Prestige Group
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post #10 of Old 10-03-2012, 07:28 PM
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SOAPrano's Cleaning

Yes you definitely need insurance and that is what may separate you from other companies as well and give the client a piece of mind. Plus its really not that expensive for a policy as I use Hartford as well and live in NY. Am also bonded which is even cheaper.

Jamel Dennis-SOAPrano's Cleaning LLC
www.soapranoscleaning.net
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post #11 of Old 10-17-2012, 12:36 PM
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Insurance Needs for Cleaning, Drying, & Restoration Contractors

In today’s world of insurance the insurance needs of cleaners, dryers, and restoration contractors is more confusing than ever.

So whats the history behind your insurance needs? In the early 2000's insurance company's being inundated by mold and bacteria loss claims where paying far to much in claims to have the Cleaning Drying and Restoration contractors business be profitable for them to provide coverage to. So basic risk management principles applied, either raise rates on the front end to make up for the amount of money they were loosing by paying out for claims or clean up the back end and payout less in claims. By 2006 the insurance industry chose the later and decide to create a universal mold exclusion, washing their hands of the industry and payout that associated with the huge rise in mold and bacteria claims. The Universal Mold Exclusion was thrown into all commercial General Liability and Property policies by 2006. Most insurance policies will read:

This insurance does not apply to:
Fungi Or Bacteria

a. “Bodily injury” or “property damage” which would not have occurred, in whole or in part, but for the actual, alleged or threatened inhalation of, ingestion of, contact with, exposure to, existence of, or presence of, any “ fungi” or bacteria on or within building or structure, including its contents, regardless of whether any other cause, event, material or product contributed concurrently or in any sequence to such injury or damage.

b. Any loss, cost or expenses arising out of the abating, testing for, monitoring, cleaning up, removing, containing, treating, detoxifying, neutralizing, remediating or disposing of, or in any way responding to, or assessing the effects of, “ fungi” or bacteria, by any insured or by any other person or entity.

What this exclusion does to the General Liability policy is it basically give any insurance company the right to walk away from a loss at anytime they feel the loss involves fungus/bacteria I.e.: Mold and category 3 water.

Anybody who is IICRC mold- certified knows that mold spores are omnipresent in the atmosphere. The first part of the exclusion becomes affected because mold is already present at the work site. The second part of the exclusion is what we in the insurance industry refeer to as the "you cannot be in the water restoration mold remediation or the ainti microbial cleaning business" part of the exclusion. This part of the exclusion states under the words in section B of the exclusion that any claim will not receive coverage ounce a contractor shows up to a job to "in any way access or respond to fungus or bacteria."

Wow! That’s a pretty far reaching exclusion. For example as soon as the contractor shows up at a job to access or respond to Category 3 water loss or to access the presence of mold, which we know is already present, technically the GL policy is void when he or she walks in the door. If the contractor causes a fire on a Category 3 water loss mold accessing job, the fire would be excluded even if there was no exposure to fungus or bacteria. That is because it is the job itself, not just a loss resulting from exposure to the pollutants that is excluded under section B of the fungus/bacteria exclusion endorsement.

The only way to fix the coverage gaps caused by the fungi or bacteria exclusion in the General Liability Policy that is sold to restoration contractors is to purchase a combined General Liability and Contractors Pollution Liability insurance policy from the environmental insurance market. Contractors seeking a state-of the-art solution for their liability insurance needs can now go to any independent insurance agent in the U.S. and access the customized insurance package that is essentially free of fundamental design flaws. Allstate insurance agents also have access to customized insurance programs for cleaning and restoration contractors but it requires a home office referral to access the product line. Good quality insurance for the cleaning and restoration business is readily available and accessible.

ARMR.Network is the premier insurance brokerage firm specializing in the restoration contracting industry. With the introduction of the universal mold exclusion, insurance and risk management for the restoration contractor became very complex. We have exceptionally qualified brokers working in offices coast to coast to assist you. We work through your local insurance agent. All of our insurance products meet Alacrity and Crawford Contractor Connection Specifications and with one call we can have a bench mark price for you based off of your projected annual revenues in seconds and with the completion on a simple application we can have a formalized quote for you within hours. Give the ARMR.Net team a call today to get custom insurance for your restoration business.


Harrison Scheider
Broker
American Risk Management Resources Network, LLC
7507 Hubbard Ave, Suite 200
Middleton, WI 53562

Direct: 608-836-9521
Fax: 608-836-9565
ARMR.NET
~ Better Insurance By Design
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post #12 of Old 11-03-2012, 01:45 AM
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You might have got the insurance by now but it is very necessary to get a safety cover over your work. There are always ups and downs in the business and remembering any situation could be faced in the future, so keeping a backup is useful for every venture.
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post #13 of Old 11-03-2012, 07:29 AM
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Hartford Insurance and Farmers Insurance both are good I have Hartford Insurance!!!
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post #14 of Old 11-15-2012, 03:51 AM
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Good to see the insurance field is now come in this cleaning field also. Very important to use this insurance facility while cleaning.
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post #15 of Old 11-16-2012, 03:22 PM
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This has been my experience with insurance:
I learned there are several types of insurance coverage.
I learned that agents will try to give you the most expensive policy that covers all kinds of things you would never file claims for.
It's cheaper, in my experience, to have a very minimal policy and pay damages out of pocket for inexpensive things when it comes to General Liability.
I was told by an insurance agent in California that General Liability only covers a customer getting hurt by something you do (i.e. slipping and falling on water that leaked out of a bucket). If I wanted insurance to cover items in the home like an expensive vase or LCD TV

I have had our housekeeping service for 4 years. In the first year we had to replace a stove-top and this last year we've had to have a marble counter-top (complete idiotic idea) resurfaced for scratches. The decals that mark the temperature of the electric stove had disintegrated by simply wiping away over time and the customer demanded we have the decals replaced. We contacted the manufacturer and they wanted $900 to put a new stove top! Jesus!
I did some research on the internet and it turned out to be a defect in the workmanship of the appliance. I had two choices at that point: Tell the customer to contact the manufacturer and provide them with printouts I found on the internet of people complaining that the stove had a defect and that even after they paid the company to replace the stove-top the decals came off again, or I could pay to replace it and save our reputation. We had barely started under our new brand and didn't want a stain on our business early on. As we all know, trust and reputation is everything in this industry.

We ended up negotiating with the customer. We offered to pay cash for half of the repair and to "work off" the balance (meaning the customer wrote them a check for the other half). "working off" the balance was of course cheaper for us and we ended up paying $160 in labor for what the customer paid $450.

The customer fired us after we worked off the balance as we had expected to part ways after this. My recommendation is have pre-made forms ready for when an expensive breakage happens and you plan to pay out of pocket. The forms should be a confidentiality agreement that they are not to speak or write about their past or future experiences with anyone. The customer I paid for could have gone online after I paid to fix the stove and left as a crappy review to which I would have been very upset. At least if you are willing to pay for it you know that's where the damage will stop.

The second incident we had about 6 months ago. A woman had marble countertops installed in her kitchen. The marble was very pretty but it is never a recommended thing to have for a kitchen counter because it is very VERY easy to scratch. I paid $250 for a professional to come and remove the scratches. Running total for damages in 4 years: about $900 between the stove and the countertops. My general liability coverage doesn't even cover this and i was paying about $750 a year for 1 Million in coverage. Of course if a customer slipped and broke a hip because of something we did that could be a $50,000 surgery (i'm guessing).

Insurance is a marketing gimmick. Licensed - Bonded - Insured. Sound familiar? We all pay insurance which is tax deductible as an insurance expense but almost anyone knows it's really a marketing expense until you have to actually make a claim.

I actually have some questions about workers compensation (workers comp) that I still have unanswered that I will post on my own thread rather than here. I asked some agents what it would cost to insurce 2 part time employees with only 21k in payroll. $7,000! Jesus that's 1/3 of my payroll? we aren't roofers for Christ's sake!
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post #16 of Old 01-27-2013, 01:09 PM
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FYI - association membership with insurance and bonding

Eco-Friendly Residential Cleaners Assoc. offers membership for as little as $379 per year - depending on the number of cleaners in your company. Membership comes with many perks INCLUDING - $1M general liability coverage and $10K bonding. It is a national program, so it doesn't matter where you live (the insurance covers all US states). There are some eligibility requirements on the website. Feel free to check us out (search our name - we're not allowed to put our web address on here). Hope this helps!
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post #17 of Old 01-27-2013, 04:27 PM
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I have seen and heard a lot of stories about euipmne tbeing stolen so I have been recommending to the contractors I repair equipment for to look into equipment insurance as well as liability and workmans comp
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post #18 of Old 01-28-2013, 02:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vandenbu View Post
Eco-Friendly Residential Cleaners Assoc. offers membership for as little as $379 per year - depending on the number of cleaners in your company. Membership comes with many perks INCLUDING - $1M general liability coverage and $10K bonding. It is a national program, so it doesn't matter where you live (the insurance covers all US states). There are some eligibility requirements on the website. Feel free to check us out (search our name - we're not allowed to put our web address on here). Hope this helps!
I just submitted membership. My next year of GI is expiring in march! I'm so happy I posted, thanks vandenbu
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post #19 of Old 01-28-2013, 09:55 AM
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We are required, by most property managers, to carry general liability. If you have employees, then you may need to provide proof of workmans comp.

It's not that expensive and is a good idea to have. The only problem with insurance is that it covers things like accidental damage. If you clean carpets, your insurance won't cover damage to carpets from cleaning but will cover a broken mirror that was damaged while cleaning. If you damage a sofa, while cleaning it, it won't be covered but if you damage the sofa, while cleaning the carpet, it is covered.

In 20 years of owning a business, I have never had to use my insurance for damages. The guy who bought my old business had damaged a area rug and sofa. Neither were covered. He had to pay out of his pocket.

Fred T. Gruber Jr.
On The Spot Carpet Care

Serving Apex, Cary, Holly Springs, Fuquay Varina and Raleigh NC
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post #20 of Old 01-31-2013, 11:00 PM
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Originally Posted by gachogavacho View Post
I just submitted membership. My next year of GI is expiring in march! I'm so happy I posted, thanks vandenbu
No problem! That is why we are here... to help!
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