Warehouse Insurance – Warehouse insurance is vastly different from retail insurance. The number of products, employees and general risk factors are much higher than with retail. Furthermore, warehouse employees pose greater liability risks than their retail counterparts.
The first thing to consider when shopping for warehouse insurance is the type of property you have and the products you store. The value of your property and products will play a major role in determining the cost of your warehouse insurance. If you have a high-value inventory, you’ll pay more for coverage than someone with low-value merchandise.
Second, consider how you move your products around the warehouse. Do you use pallet jacks or forklifts? Is it mostly done by hand? What type of property do they traverse? Do they move over concrete or gravel? These factors will play into the cost and type of coverage required.
Third, consider who works in your warehouse and what they do. Are there people working in areas where forklifts are operating? This can be a major concern for insurers because forklift accidents result in injuries on a regular basis. Does anyone work on ladders or scaffolding? These also pose significant risks to workers and should be considered when buying insurance.
Finally, consider special requirements for your facility like sprinklers and fire.
Risks in Warehousing
Warehousing insurance or storage insurance is a specialized coverage that helps protect building owners or businesses that store goods in a warehouse.
Warehousing risks are not typically covered under standard commercial property policies. If you own a warehouse yourself, or if you run a business that uses one, warehousing insurance can help cover the costs associated with damages to the building and its contents. As an example, it might also cover spoilage of goods inside the building due to a power outage caused by a storm.
There are several types of warehouse operations, and each type brings unique risks. Common coverages include:
Property coverage for the building and equipment (e.g., forklifts) used on-site to move stored items around; this may include “contents” coverage if you store certain types of items
Liability coverage for claims brought against you for damage or injuries that occur on your property
Exposure to theft and other crimes committed by employees, clients or visitors on your property
Spoilage of perishable goods due to loss of temperature control in refrigerated warehouses.
Saving Money On Warehouse Insurance
The cost of warehouse insurance is determined by a number of factors, including the size and type of warehouse, the materials stored in it and its location. The range of coverage options available to you will also make a difference to the cost.
A key way to save money on warehouse insurance is to shop around for quotes from different providers. But there are other things you can do to keep costs down, too. Let’s look at some of them:
Raise your deductible. Your deductible is the amount you pay toward any claim before your insurer steps in. That’s why it makes sense to have an increased deductible — because it means less risk for your insurer and therefore lower premiums over time. Just be sure that you have enough cash on hand to cover a larger deductible should you need to file a claim
Combine policies. If your business has multiple properties, such as warehouses and distribution centers, consider combining them all under one policy. You’ll save money by eliminating duplication of effort, as well as by qualifying for a volume discount
Add security features. Most insurers offer discounts for various types of security features installed in commercial buildings, including warehouses. Common examples include intruder alarms and smoke or fire detection systems
A few small changes in your warehouse operation can mean thousands of dollars in savings. Having the right insurance coverage from the start is important but most businesses do not have adequate coverage. Don’t wait until an insurance event occurs to discover your warehouse insurance gaps. Collecting and documenting data can help you determine if you need more warehouse insurance and how to avoid costly losses.