1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

GL Insurance

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by Matthew Bowman, Aug 10, 2003.

  1. Is anybody else having a hard time getting GL for next season?
    Last year being the first year on my own, I found it extremely difficult to get, however I did eventually find an agent who could help me. Now I have already received my "non-renewal notice" and my current agent does not think that he will be able to get it for me next season. I have been calling every agent that I can, and I have a few that are working on it, but they don't sound very encouraging. I feel that the reasons for my difficulty are:

    1. At this time I am a snow only business

    2. The properties that I service are considered high risk
    (strip malls and such)

    3. Now I have a claim ( long story, classic insurance company giving $$$$$ to avoid a lawsuit)

    Most of the agents I talk to think that since its so difficult to get insurance for, that I should just give it up. That is not an option in my mind, and I look forward to growing my business in the years to come, however if I can't get GL insurance I will have to do just that.
    For those that service these high risk properties, do you all have another business (landscape, etc.) that make it easier to obtain the necessary insurance?
    Anyone that can give me any suggestions, or agents that may be able to help it would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Two suggestions:

    1st - Split the liability. As you noted, you want to have another business listed such as landscaping. This will also lower your insurance premium.

    2nd - Join SIMA if your not a member already. I say that not just as a pitch for SIMA, but to show your professionalism. The first year I plowed (just three years ago), the agent was doubtful since I couldn't show a history of plowing experience. I asked aboutd membership in a professional organization. I had to explain what SIMA is, but being a member of an industry professional organization is the factor that got my insurance policy.

    PS: My apologies to those tired of the "join SIMA" refrain.
  3. John Allin

    John Allin PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,327

    I'm not tired of it Mick....

    And, yes you can get the coverage. Keep trying. Call every agent you can find. It can be done, but it will be difficulty.

    If it was easy... everybody'd be doing it.
  4. Thanks for the replies, keep them coming. I am currently a member of SIMA, but I never thought of mentioning that to any of the insurance agents. The big problem that I have right now is that this is the time for submitting bids and targeting additional properties for next season. How can I make accurate bids with out knowing what my insurance costs will be or if I will even be able to find it?
  5. DAS

    DAS Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Try this... If you are at all handy with a hammer and nail.... add carpentry or handyman to your business and then include snow removal. Carpentry GL insurance is cheap and it will help you get your foot back in the door.
  6. JustUsDe

    JustUsDe Senior Member
    Messages: 181


    My Personal insurance Liberty Mutual dont offer any commercial or GL insurance. I called several brokers in my area Monday got answering machines at all of them, Left messages and haven't recieved one return call yet. I called Erie and my luck they don't have a license in Delaware. Any delaware people on here if you don't mind could you give me the name of your insurance people. If you want just email me the info. Any help from anyone would be appreciated.

  7. JustUsDe

    JustUsDe Senior Member
    Messages: 181


    I just got my first quote back from a broker I called last week. Just liability for the truck while plowing is 3,000 for 6 months. A 1million gl is 1,500 for the year. I told him I need full coverage on the truck since it is financed and he will call back with a new quote. The gl price doesn't seem bad. Not real have with the truck insurance price. Hopefully I will get some better quotes this week.

  8. sschario

    sschario Member
    Messages: 44

    I just started last year and got Progressive Commercial for the truck and Auto Owners for the GL. They were both pretty reasonable. I can get the details if you are interested, but I don't remember off the top of my head.

    I have NOT had a claim with either one, however.

  9. JustUsDe

    JustUsDe Senior Member
    Messages: 181

    I am interested!!!! If you want you can pm me the info or email it to me.

  10. sschario

    sschario Member
    Messages: 44

    The key for me was how I classified myself (as mentioned by DAS). I got a lot of negative responses and very high quotes until I explained that I do have a tractor and therefore could cut grass in the summer and plow in the winter. My agent did a lot of research into this for me and found that the vast majority of their clients that have snow plowing coverage are landscapers. He said that it makes a lot more sense to the insurance company that a landscaper would plow snow rather than an "IT Manager by day and snow plower by night". I am not encouraging you to make any false statements, the last thing you want is to have a claim denied on account of fraud. Besides, it would not take much to cut a few lawns here and there to make it all legit.

    I got the liability truck coverage thru Progressive Commercial. $300K CSL for about $690 per year and $500K CSL for $750.

    I got the CGL thru Auto-Owners Mutual. It is a $500K policy for $312 per year. I know this is not a lot and many places require at least $1M. It also depends on if you are incorporated and what your revenues will be. I have an individual policy and I believe my revenue projection is at $10K.

    I don't know what all states these companies will write in, but the landscaper approach may be worthwhile.

  11. JustUsDe

    JustUsDe Senior Member
    Messages: 181

    Thanks! I will call progressive tomorrow. I wouldn't be bending the truth about landscaping. My license includes landscaping and property maintenance. I do cut two of my neighbors lawns as a courtesy. I own a 42inch deck 17hp Sears rider, 3 echo weedwackers, and a blower/vac. I do need a 1mill gl for 2 accounts I just landed. Plus I have bids out that require the same. Thanks for your advice.

  12. yako

    yako Member
    Messages: 37

    same old problem

    i am hoping that someone from michigan can help me out here. yesterday i called 8 companies for gl and of course not one that carries it for snow. i just called everyone in the phone book, i left a lot of messages hopefully someone will get back to me, if not is thereany company in michigan that carries gl for snow. this is a headache, heading for advil then back to the yellowpages.

    PINEISLAND1 PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 664


    check your email ! I have a good contact for you in our state.