There are many elements encompassed within a combined trade insurance policy and some that you may or may not require. If you are looking for cheap trade insurance then you should speak to your provider about what is truly necessary for your business. If you want the most thorough cover to protect you in all instances then there are other elements available in addition to combined insurance that you could consider.
Engineering inspection cover
Many garages or MOT centres will require expensive equipment to do their daily jobs. This could include ramps or diagnostic apparatus. These items require inspection to ensure there are no faults, they are working correctly and that the employees are safe to use them. Equipment that is inspected regularly is favoured by insurers because risks of accidents are reduced. Therefore if there was an accident, fault or failure with this equipment you would be covered.
You can pay to have an inspector come out routinely (annually or every few years) to check all your equipment. They will sign everything off and this also gives you piece of mind that your equipment is in a fit state. This can be added to your insurance policy.
As with any vehicle on a personal insurance policy, motor trade insurance comes with an excess. Your typical excess on a personal policy would be £100-500 however a trade policy tends to have a larger excess from £1000-2000. This means if anything were to go wrong you would have to pay out a large amount of cash and sometimes the vehicles you work on may not even be worth the amount of your excess. Paying out up to £2000 can drastically affect your business profit so you may which to get excess protection cover in addition to your motor trade cover.
Excess protection means that essentially your excess gap is filled. If there was an accident you would have to make two claims but you will get the full amount back without having to do an overall pay out yourself. However you will have to initially pay your excess, retain proof of payment and then claim it back from the insurer. You will need to be able to produce the cash upfront so bear this in mind with any excess amount you agree to. This is an effective method to get your excess back and could work out cheaper.
This would probably be more useful for larger businesses that are more likely to make more claims. This avoids having to constantly pay out excess amounts.
You can of course pay to decrease your excess but this will vastly increase your premium. It may work out cheaper to buy extra excess protection as it usually pays for itself but this is something you will need to weigh up and speak to your insurer about.
Legal expenses cover
Legal expenses cover is also important because some of the most costly claims are as a result of legal costs. If you have employees or members of the public wishing to take you to court because of an accident or defective workmanship, the court fees can often end up costing as much as the pay-out. If you find yourself involved in legalities then legal expenses cover means that you will not take the burden of these court fees along with the stress of a court case as your insurance broker will cover these costs.
Legal expenses are more common than in private car insurance policies because you are handling other people’s vehicles and when handling a high volume of vehicles there is more chance of accidents and claims being made against you.
There are many added extras that you can opt in or out of including the above and other covers dependent on your business model. If you have a complex case or would like to tailor these elements within your policy then speaking directly to a broker is the best way to deal with this. Shopping around for motor trade insurance can be complicated and risky and you won’t necessarily end up with the appropriate cover.
Shopping around each year also reflects badly if you move between insurers year on year. This can result in insurers not quoting you each year. Sometimes if you are dissatisfied with your policy you can move brokers without changing your insurer to find a better deal. You can also request an upgrade perhaps from road risk only to a more thorough motor trade combined policy. Within your insurance your policy holder may give you the option to change elements of your cover and tailor it to your business needs which is something you do not get from shopping around.