Volatile insurance market

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by Kinport, Jan 24, 2020.

  1. Kinport

    Kinport Senior Member
    Messages: 191

    There’s a story circulating on a couple other threads here right now about a guy who serviced a large number of accounts and had to shutdown midwinter, leaving his clients in the lurch. He said a 300% increase in overhead, mentioning specifically insurance costs, are what forced his hand in shutting down. Ethics and motives of the story aside, I’m super curious about what seems to be an unusually volatile insurance marketplace right now. He’s not the first I’ve heard of this season getting out due to an unmanageable increase in insurance. How are you guys feeling about your insurance this year? Have any of you experienced wild spikes in price? I’ve been on the phone with my agent this morning trying to pick her brain and see if there’s a huge jump coming down the pipeline. Didn’t get a lot of info from her so I thought I’d pick y’all’s brain.
     
  2. OP
    OP
    Kinport

    Kinport Senior Member
    Messages: 191

    PS my apologies if this has been discussed at length before I got here. Using the search function didn’t seem to turn up anything recent
     
  3. kevinjd

    kevinjd Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    My G/L (slip and fall) insurance this season, 6 month policy, went from $1500 to $2800, I do residential only and have never had a claim. My previous insurer stopped taking this market(Lloyd’s Of London).

    hope this helps.
    Kevin
     
  4. OP
    OP
    Kinport

    Kinport Senior Member
    Messages: 191

    Yikes! $1800 increase...that’s a lot of driveways! Was there any explanation given or was that because you switched to a new carrier and that was the new price they gave you?
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2020
  5. kevinjd

    kevinjd Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    Same agent, Lloyds stopped writing this market, my Agent shopped for a policy and this was the best deal. It is getting pricey, I would not operate without insurance.

    Kevin
     
  6. OP
    OP
    Kinport

    Kinport Senior Member
    Messages: 191

    right, as litigation could quickly become far more expensive than insurance. It’s a hiring requirement at most commercial sites as well so there’s no real way around it. I appreciate you sharing your experiences.
     
  7. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 25,720

    Insurance cost differs by location with population and risk of liability exposure being a factor. G/L for snow only cost most than having snow coverage added on to your coverage for your primary business focus ( lawncare, trades, etc....
    The cost for G/L back east especially New Jerky compared to the cost ootwest is huge mainly due to dense population and sue happy people looking for a settlement check.
     
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  8. BossPlow2010

    BossPlow2010 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,976

    Currently switching wc carriers. In Michigan if you’re under a certain payroll, you have only a small selection of agencies in what’s called a pool. My payroll is/ was at that number, but they audit you annually and if there’s any increase you pay out.
    We’re switching for a lower premium, currently with Travelers, was with liberty mutual
     
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  9. BossPlow2010

    BossPlow2010 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,976

    Wc is also based on rate for how many claims that job is likely to have. Roofers pay the highest.
     
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  10. OP
    OP
    Kinport

    Kinport Senior Member
    Messages: 191

    That’s how we do, it’s added onto our policy we carry for moving dirt. That, In addition to being out west in a small market, I imagine our rates are fairly low compared to others on here. I just hear stories or see things about exorbitant jumps in insurance rates and start imagining worst case scenarios. We’re already fighting deflating prices as a result of poorly run NSPs and the local low ballers, the thought of huge overhead increases stresses me out. I appreciate every bodies input and was just curious what everybody else feels about it
     
  11. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 34,163

    My G/L and vehicle rates finally went down this year. Had a few bad years but the insurers are getting a bit more competitive again, at least in Michigan.

    WC is through our state association...MHISWCF or something like that. I think @Ajlawn1 came up with the "abbreviation".

    Michigan is pretty good for slip and fall being the responsiblity of the slipper/faller. And it's even better on the west side...culture wise and grasping the concept of winter.
     
  12. 512high

    512high Senior Member
    Messages: 319

    You know what pisses me off? I have lived in New Hampshire all my life, I am not way up, but southern part, about 35-38 miles northwest of Boston, regarding snow here this season, well it sucks. What really upsets me is people that live in the "snowbelt" any areas that have cold temps and snow, DRESS FOR THE ELEMENTS! Few weeks ago one of my small lots, we had about 5-6" light moveable snow, I see this young lady, getting out of her Honda, and FYI lot was plowed and I was getting ready to salt, she is wearing 3" heels.

    I stopped, got out, and helped her to the door which was maybe 25 ft. away, she said" Gosh figured you would have started earlier and have this already salted!" I wanted to say, something but didn't , for the love of god, wear boots(winter) put your heels in a bag or whatever, all I saw was her falling or something, that's why I jumped out to escort, would have been great to tell the court light snow was ending, and she had heels on, give me a break, sorry OP

    And you wonder why insurance rates are where they are.
     
  13. Fourteen Contracting Inc.

    Fourteen Contracting Inc. Senior Member
    Messages: 649

    I can one up you with the lady in my instance was shopping on like a Tuesday evening in an active snowstorm for bomboniere (aka party favors) and just happened to have her newborn with her.
    As for insurance, it's an issue up here as well. Here's a link to a recent meeting held by our landscape trade organization...

    https://s.bluemail.me/ws/ODHUBVt3mGF

    Hopefully that link works / helps.

    Just actually spoke with my insurance broker... I'll just post the email, hopefully it works. My premium is the one for Fourteen Contracting (includes summer maintenance as well) the irrigation one is separate from snow / landscaping but all grouped into one premium.

    https://s.bluemail.me/ws/Hv7ytRXNpxF

    Also, what does WC stand for? Mean?
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2020
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  14. prezek

    prezek Senior Member
    Messages: 384

    Workers comp
     
  15. Fourteen Contracting Inc.

    Fourteen Contracting Inc. Senior Member
    Messages: 649

    Ah, you guys can pick carriers for that. Didn't know. Have to use the gov't sponsored one up here, no choice. Insert Canada joke.
     
  16. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 25,720

    That’s how they fund Trudeau’s craft donut habit.....
     
  17. OP
    OP
    Kinport

    Kinport Senior Member
    Messages: 191

    Read thru the meeting notes, what a great thing those guys have going. Would love to see legislation in my own state that would protect licensed professional contractors from overreaching litigation.
     
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  18. Fourteen Contracting Inc.

    Fourteen Contracting Inc. Senior Member
    Messages: 649

    Def. Just checked my premium last year... snow / landscape maintenance went up 100% and irrigation went up 53%. Haven't had any claims on either... ever (knock on wood)
    Also, auto policy went up 9%, there was a claim last year but wasn't our fault ( got rear ended) so yea, obv. a volatile market.
    Any of the more experienced guys go through this before?
     
    Kinport likes this.
  19. GMC Driver

    GMC Driver PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,187

    We went through alot of this a few years ago. Our provider was bought out, new ownership said no more snow. So we got a notice 5 months before renewal.

    Ended up with 3 options: 2 were to pay double, but had stipulations on who our client list could/could not include. Third option was to pay triple and carry on with our current client list. We chose to go with the third option.

    Now with a few more years under our belt, our premiums have reduced to about double where we started. Still a big pill, but somehow it all works out.
     
  20. Fourteen Contracting Inc.

    Fourteen Contracting Inc. Senior Member
    Messages: 649

    I think up here we need to get the legislation passed in order to affect the rates significantly... my MPP happens to be Stephen Lecce... seems a bit busy with the teacher strike at the moment.
     
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