By Netie in Salt Lake City, UT on 1/18/2005
Here's a few opinionated notes on Builder's Risk aka C.O.C. Insurance
As a former insurance agent (CA, WA & UT) your basic homeowners Builders Risk policy is fine - IF YOU ARE NOT HIRING ANYONE.
But keep in mind:
THEFT IS NEVER COVERED - the insurance companies do not trust contractors or you
Theft is SOMETIMES Covered - some co's offer it as an extended or add on coverage.
Theft ALWAYS has to be a proven forced entry - in other words you had to have it locked & secured & prove the break in.
and some other coverage don't apply - even if your policy says so - if
your place is "vacant" for over 30 days - verify their idea of vacant.
If your agent said it - it isn't true until you get it in writing.
An Umbrella policy is cheaper than a dumb lawsuit.
cannot get "Certificates of Liability" coverage on a personal policy.
If your agent is silly enough to manually type one up for you if you
bank is 'requiring the form' cosider yourself lucky.
forms reserved for commercial insurance - they actually extend your
liabity coverage to third parties - that won't happen on a small
personal policy because the insurance company isn't charging enough
money to cover any extra exposures.
You need to get these "Cert's" from your subcontractor's insurance co's naming you as an Additional Insured AND an Additional Interested Party - two very different concepts.
Don't hire anyone, get a state specific workers comp release form for all workers allowed on your job site - IF you really want to hire someone on an hourly basis - use a staffing agency. The extra charge is cheap compared to the possible nightmare.
There are both smart & dumb agents out there, trust your gut, ask lots of questions and GET IT IN WRITING.
loved my work but each policy is personal and you really need to ask
lots of questions. If your agent can't get the answers quickly - keep
looking - you want someone on top of their game in your corner.