Many domestic home insurance policies may be adversely affected when you switch to home based employment, so it is vital that you check to see how your work might alter your cover.
Home workers face three main issues that are likely to increase the risk levels to their home; the first being the business equipment you keep at your property, the second being the people who visit your property because of your job and the third being the nature of your employment itself.
If you keep valuable equipment or materials in your home, then the risk of theft is dramatically increased. Even if the material or equipment is excluded from your cover, the risk to your personal possessions will still be elevated by proxy. There is also a higher risk of forced entry and subsequent damage being done to your property. If the items you keep in your home are flammable or prone to causing fire, then the fire risk is also likely to go up.
When you have a large number of business visitors frequenting your home, whether they are partners or customers, then the likely hood of theft can also be elevated further. The chances of a guest causing damage to your home goes up and the possibility that someone might be hurt while on your property also increases dramatically. Public liability claims can be very costly to an insurer, so this type of aggravated risk is not looked upon favourably.
The type of business you are undertaking from your home and the extent your property is used for work activities may both be considerable factors. The main factors that should be disclosed to an insurer are usually concerned with the volume and frequency of visitors you receive, alongside the amount/value of any equipment or stock you keep in your home. It is important that you are honest about this to be sure that your level of insurance is adequate.
Liability to the public rarely stretches to include anything that arises from medical, surgical or dental treatment/advice, so if your employment lies within these areas you should seek specialist industry-specific insurance. Accidents to domestic staff will not cover receptionists, locums, assistants, nurses and various other types of staff so further employer’s liability insurance will be needed in these cases.
Home insurance will almost never cover business stock, and insurance is likely to be invalidated by its presence in your home when you don’t disclose it to your insurer. Even if you do disclose it, there is a good chance that a standard home insurer will be unable or unwilling to cover you. Home business insurance quotes can be obtained from specialist non-standard insurers, but a home insurance policy is no substitute for any other commercial insurance you might need.
Mark Ford is a home based business owner, information publisher and a marketer who shares information on a wide range of homeworker topics with people interested in building a business working from home.