Every business carries some risk, and the owner has to determine how exposed they are and get as much outside protection as possible before they open their doors. In some industries, this may be a relatively easy process, as there are far fewer potential risks, but in others, it can be quite the challenge. If you're setting up as a new contractor in the property construction field, then you will have a lot on your plate, especially as this is a particularly competitive business.
You will not only have to accurately estimate how long each job is going to take and how much the raw materials are going to cost, but you will have to be prepared for losses caused by external forces. How can you put in place an adequate amount of protection so that you can do your business while sleeping at night?
Insurance Is Your Friend
Of course, you will have to take many tangible steps to protect your operation, its assets and its workers, but will also have to guard against intangible threats by taking out a comprehensive construction insurance policy.
Making off With Your Gear
This will help you to secure the building site, for a start, which is notoriously open and prone to vandalism. You may do your best to construct a fence or similar device to segregate the construction site, but it will not be as secure as the building undoubtedly will be when it is complete. Criminals know this and target construction sites looking for equipment that will have been left on site. They will find a seller for this on the black market in many cases, and to them, it's worth taking the extra risk.
Other criminals may not have such lofty goals but may simply be trying to express their frustration at life. They may see your building site and equipment within as a target for vandalism, or they may actually damage the building under construction. In this case, the project owner may turn to you to compensate them.
Some threats to your welfare could be posed by your own employees, albeit innocently. It's unlikely that you will have a fire suppression system in place during the early stages of construction at least, and workers could inadvertently cause an outbreak. While this would undoubtedly set back the project, losses could be significant and may be payable by you, without insurance.
Remember, your exposure may extend beyond your immediate control and be linked to the work of subcontractors and others. You need to get coverage that includes these extra risks and will name the owner of the property as an additional insured.
Make in Your Assessment
You may think that all of this is very complicated and could be prohibitively expensive. However, while you may well be surprised at the affordability of these products, you may also be required to provide proof of insurance by project owners and financiers in any case.
Figuring It Out
If a look into this now, you will put yourself at a competitive advantage when tendering for any work, versus those who haven't even thought about it. Just make sure that you explore all of your risks and potential exposure with the broker as you plan.