Insurance for Property Managers
A property manager is a person or firm hired by an owner to manage the rental and/or maintenance of a property. These individuals/firms add value by coordinating bookings, maintenance requests, and management of an owner’s property on their behalf. With this, property managers face specific risks and should be knowledgeable about what coverage they need to protect their business and employees. Here are the top five recommended coverage types for property managers:
- Professional Liability Insurance also known as E&O Insurance (Errors & Omissions): Professional Liability or E&O Insurance is important for anyone who provides a professional service and/or regularly gives advice to clients. One of our A-rated carriers indicates that covered risks can include: alleged or actual negligence, defense costs, personal injury (including libel or slander), copyright infringement, temporary staff and independent contractors, and claims arising from services provided in the past. Professional Liability / E&O can also protect against wrongful eviction or tenant discrimination claims. We cover more about E&O on our website.
- Workers Compensation: If a business has more than 5 employees, state law requires the business owner to carry work comp coverage. Even if that company does not have 5 employees, the exposure still exists. This makes it critical for property managers with temporary staff or independent contractors to be knowledgeable of the work comp coverage carried by anyone working for them as an independent contractor. We recommend that any independent contractors carry their own work comp coverage. This can help to reduce premium costs for the property manager’s work comp exposure. Learn more about and Work Comp on our website.
- General Liability Insurance: Business owners purchase general liability insurance to cover legal disturbances due to accidents, injuries, and claims arising out of negligence. General Liability insurance policies protect against bodily injury, property damage, medical expenses, libel, slander, the cost of defense, and settlement bonds. They can also cover the premises and operations exposures arising out of the location of the business as well as damage from defective products or operations performed. Other related coverages may also fall under general liability insurance. Coverage amounts are typically expressed in terms of $1,000,000 increments and form the corner stone of any business asset protection plan. If independent contractors carry their own GL insurance, this can also help reduce the property manager’s insurance premium.
- Property Insurance: We’ve mentioned Property Insurance coverage in previous blog posts. Business Insurance Now suggests that commercial property be one of the first types of coverage a new enterprise should look into. “This coverage protects you from some of the risk that the property your company owns could be lost stolen or damaged. If you don’t own the building where you do business, you’ll only need to cover the building’s contents.” Business personal property insurance protects items such as fixtures, furniture, office equipment, inventory, and supplies that are housed on or off site. Another critical property coverage is Business Income, which will reimburse a business owner for lost income due to a property loss.
- Cyber Liability: For property managers who handle any of their bookings, leases or rentals via the Internet, cyber liability coverage is incredibly important. According to www.irmi.com, “cyber and privacy policies cover a business’ liability for a data breach in which the firm’s customers’ personal information, such as social security or credit card numbers, is exposed or stolen by a hacker or other criminal who has gained access to the firm’s electronic network.” They indicate that cyber liability policies “can cover expenses such as notification costs, credit monitoring, costs to defend claims by state regulators, fines and penalties, and loss resulting from identity theft.” Cyber Liability is not to be confused with technology E&O insurance.
At SSIA, our account executives are well schooled in the types of coverage property managers should carry, and we are happy to provide a complimentary business review to make sure you are covered properly. Contact us to learn more (251) 923-4463!
Sources: http://www.hiscox.com/small-business-insurance/professional-business-insurance/property-management-insurance/; http://www.irmi.com/online/insurance-glossary/terms/c/cyber-and-privacy-insurance.aspx
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