Let’s tackle a subject no one likes to discuss: Insuring your portable toilet business. It’s expensive, and while there are ways to save money on insurance, having it is non-negotiable. But how much coverage do you need, and what risks should you be worried about?
Although pumper truck insurance is a given, you may try to cut costs by not insuring your whole fleet of portable toilets or opting for a smaller liability policy. These mistakes can leave you without a means of income or put you out of business altogether. Here’s what you need to know when insuring your company, buildings, and equipment.
Winter storms in warm areas, floods across the globe, and hurricanes, tornadoes, and wildfires are increasing property losses and contributing to higher insurance rates. According to the Swiss Re Institute, natural disasters in 2021 resulted in “insured losses of $111 billion,” which continued the trend of increasing annually at a rate of 5% to 7%.
The NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) disaster report found that 2021 had the second most disasters in a year (20), whereas 2020 was number one with 22. And these unexpected incidents aren’t the rarity they once were. In fact, 2021 was the “seventh consecutive year in which 10 or more separate billion-dollar disaster events have impacted the U.S.”
As a portable restroom owner, natural catastrophes aren’t your only concern. Portable toilet accidents, vandalism, and theft can leave you with a hefty bill while taking away the pumper trunk or toilets needed to earn income. Although you can (and should) set aside an emergency fund, few PROs can survive a multi-million-dollar lawsuit or afford to replace an entire building or hundreds of portable toilets.
For starters, it’s vital to work with an insurance company or agent familiar with the portable sanitation industry. They understand the risks to your business and the types of equipment you own. For example, general auto insurance may cover your work vehicle. However, an agent that isn’t familiar with portable toilet companies may not ask you about the various attachments you have on the truck.
Tangram and Heffernan Insurance Brokers are well-known in the industry. But it’s a good idea to chat with other PROs and product manufacturers for personal recommendations. They may refer you to lesser-known but equally reputable licensed agents. Regardless of which insurers you reach out to, remember to ask about their experience in the industry and weed out those unfamiliar with portable sanitation.
Most PROs benefit from having these types of insurance:
Licensed insurance agents should review your buildings, equipment, and vehicles for accurate coverage. In most cases, the starting coverage should be around a million dollars. That may seem like a lot, but one catastrophe can eliminate your tanks, toilets, trucks, and building. The cost of replacing these items today is much higher than when you bought them. It’s time to take stock of your insurance coverage, speak to your agent, and ensure you can weather the upcoming storms.
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