Create an Inventory of Business Property for Your Massachusetts Small Business Insurance
As a business owner in the state of Massachusetts it’s likely you don’t need to be reminded of the unusually high number of insurance claims associated with last year’s natural disasters. If last year’s weather-related events impacted your business then it’s likely you won’t need to be told to prepare (since that’s usually how it goes). Unfortunately, it takes a negative experience for small business owners to realize the importance of proper insurance coverage’s, as well as detailed documentation of business assets.
Don’t be that business owner that has to suffer a significant loss before examining the insurance coverage you have for your MA small business. Really your coverage should be reexamined each year, especially if the business is growing. Helping your Massachusetts commercial insurance agent to fully understand the everyday functions of your business makes it much easier to ensure the correct coverages are provided. Being open and honest helps to ensure claims will be covered in the event of a loss; though exclusions will still apply.
For example, if a residential landscaping company is dabbling in snow removal services in the off season; your Berry insurance agent should be informed. You might be saving yourself a few dollars by keeping this tidbit to yourself but really you aren’t helping the situation. Why? Well, why do you have insurance in the first place? To protect you in the case of an unfortunate event, right? Well by omitting truth, you can void the coverages that your policy provides. The insurance company never agreed to write a policy for your snow plowing business, as the company wasn’t aware of that exposure when they issued a policy.
After your Massachusetts independent agent fully understands what your business does, it’s time to make specific records of what your business has. This is where your inventory of business property should be created. Once created, it’s all about updating the inventory, the time commitment is really involved in the initial making of the inventory.
To begin making the inventory, look around your business space. Office furniture, equipment, and essentially anything of value should be included. This doesn't mean that our small MA landscaper will need to count up how many leaf bags he has, since this item has a fairly average price and this is a rather small item when looking at the big picture. But those special hedge trimmers that would cost a few hundred dollars to replace… items like this should be included. This inventory should also include the amount paid for the item and when it was purchased since often depreciated values are used for reimbursement of damaged or lost property.
The appearance (hand-written or digital) of the inventory isn’t important, but ensuring that, if your business suffers a terrible loss this document will still be around, is! It’s actually the whole point! Whichever form you feel comfortable keeping your business inventory in isn’t the important part, WHERE you keep it on the other hand is! If when your desk lights on fire the inventory is in the top drawer and that’s the only copy; you are going to have a problem. Be mindful of the reason you are doing this in the first place - planning for the unexpected. Make sure you are taking that extra step to protect your small business from disaster.
*Authored by Amanda Spittell
For more information about this topic, or to get some answers about your current insurance situation, please visit our virtual insurance agency at www.berryinsurance.com, stop by one of our two locations, or give us a call at (800) 941-3317.
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