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6 days ago · by · 0 comments

Understand Builder’s Risk Insurance

Builder’s Risk insurance, also known as Course of Construction insurance, covers property that’s under construction. As a contractor or construction professional, you must understand this important coverage.

What is Builder’s Risk Insurance?

A homeowner, general contractor or project manager can purchase a Builder’s Risk insurance policy during a home building project. The coverage protects the property from hazards and accidents that could occur.

What Does Builder’s Risk Insurance Cover?

The accidents and hazards a Builder’s Risk insurance policy covers include:

  • Burglary and theft.
  • Property loss during transport to the job site.
  • Scaffolding, temporary structures and construction forms on the job site.
  • Structure collapse.
  • Sewer or drain backup.
  • Site plans, blueprints and other valuable papers.
  • Fire.
  • Lightning.
  • Wind, hail or rain storms.
  • Explosion.
  • Impact by aircraft or vehicles.
  • Riot, vandalism and malicious acts.
  • Debris removal after a covered accident or hazard.

Most Builder’s Risk insurance policies include several exclusions, so read the policy carefully. Your policy probably does not cover:

  • Property others own.
  • Accidents.
  • Subcontractor actions or materials.
  • Professional liability.
  • Earthquakes.
  • Water damage.
  • Weather damage to property in the open.
  • Mechanical breakdown.
  • Employee theft.
  • Contract penalty.
  • Voluntary parting.
  • War.
  • Government action.

What is the Policy Length?

The typical Builder’s Risk insurance policy covers a construction project that lasts from six to 12 months. Coverage ends when the project is finished or the property is occupied.

While the policy may be extended due to construction delays, the insurance company may want proof that you are making progress. Also, only one extension is usually offered.

How Much Does Builder’s Risk Insurance Cost?

Expect to pay between one and four percent of the total construction budget for your Builder’s Risk insurance policy. The type of coverage and materials also factor into the cost. Your insurance agent will work with you to purchase adequate coverage you can afford.

Is Builder’s Risk Insurance a Requirement?

As a contractor, project manager or homeowner, Builder’s Risk insurance gives you peace of mind. However, it’s not usually a requirement. Read your project contract for details.

Purchase Adequate Insurance

As a construction professional, you should purchase the right insurance coverage for your business and projects. Insure the tools and equipment you own in case they’re stolen or vandalized. Also, purchase liability coverage that protects you if you damage the property or cause bodily injury. Be sure the finished project is covered, too, in case something goes wrong with the home you build. Provide copies of your insurance policies to homeowners, too. They need to know that you have the right insurance in case something goes wrong.  

Builder’s Risk insurance protects a new home that’s under construction. Understand this coverage as you protect your assets and construction business.

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4 weeks ago · by · 0 comments

Low-wage Labor Workplace Violations

An extensive survey of more than 4,000 low-wage workers in Los Angeles, Chicago, and New York City by the National Employment Law Project (NELP) reached these conclusions:

  • More than one in four workers surveyed (26%) were paid less than minimum wage.
  • Among these workers, 16% were underpaid by more than one dollar per hour.
  • More than three in four (76%) workers who worked overtime were not paid for their time. The average worker had put in 11 hours that were either underpaid or not paid at all.
  • Women and foreign-born workers were victimized more than anyone else.
  • The average wage theft was 15% of earnings.

Additional violation categories included:

  • Off-the-clock
  • Meal breaks
  • Pay stubs
  • Illegal deductions
  • Tips
  • Illegal employer retaliation
  • Workers Compensation violations

It is hard to balance this economic suffering with the fact some executives are making tens of millions of dollars during a failing economy. You don’t have to be of any political persuasion to realize that something’s out of whack. Not only do these employers deprive good people of a fair day’s pay, they’re also at war with companies who strive to grow their business the right way; perhaps even going above the call and actually empowering their workers rather than oppressing them. If we can fight overseas to assure basic human rights, we should be able to do the same here.

For more information on the survey, click here.

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1 month ago · by · 0 comments

To Bundle, or Not to Bundle

If you’ve ever shopped around for insurance, you’ve likely been asked if you want to bundle your policies—in other words, combine your home or renters, auto and life insurance policies with the same carrier. Although you have the option to shop around individually for each policy, it almost always makes sense to have the same carrier cover as many of your policies as possible.

Benefits of Bundling

  • The discount—Most policyholders bundle their policies because of the promise of a discount. The amount varies by provider but can generally range between 5-25 percent.
  • The option of a single deductible—With bundled policies, your deductible may be cheaper in the event of a claim that affects multiple policies. For example, if your home and auto policies are with two separate carriers, and a hailstorm damages your home and your car, you’re responsible for paying both your home and auto deductibles before receiving payment. But if you bundle your policies, your provider may offer you the option to pay only the higher of the two deductibles.
  • Less chance of being dropped—If you’ve made claims or gotten tickets, having your policies bundled with one provider can decrease the chance of them dropping you.
  •  

When it Doesn’t Pay to Bundle

It isn’t always better to bundle your policies with one insurance carrier. Here’s when it may be better to split them up:

  • If you have tickets or past claims that make your auto insurance expensive—In this case, it may be cheaper overall to buy each policy from separate providers.
  • When premiums increase—Bundling discourages people from price shopping, which makes it easier for providers to increase their rates. Most assume that you won’t go through the effort of shopping around when your policies renew.
  • If policies aren’t technically bundled—Some carriers may insure you with an affiliated company. Although you may get a discount with that company, you’ll lose the convenience of paying your premium with one familiar provider.

A Few Tips to Consider

Although discounts are the main reason people bundle their insurance policies, never assume that bundling is the cheapest option. Your needs and circumstances will dictate whether you should combine your policies with one carrier. Consider the following tips:

  • Shop for new coverage when your policies renew, and ask for the price of the individual premiums as well as the price of the bundled premium so you can decide whether it is worth it. Just make sure you compare the same coverage when shopping for quotes from each carrier.
  • Ask if the provider uses a third-party insurance company. Remember that you may save money but lose the convenience of dealing with one provider and a combined bill.
  • Ask an independent insurance agent to get prices from multiple companies so you don’t have to do the legwork. An agent that is loyal to a particular carrier may be able to offer discounts that you can’t get alone.

With multiple factors contributing to the price of your insurance premiums, it is important to shop around in order to get the best rate for your insurance needs. Feel free to contact Scurich Insurance to determine if bundling is right for you and help you take advantage of all available discounts.

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Scurich Insurance Services
Phone: (831) 661-5697
Fax: (831) 661-5741

Physical:
783 Rio Del Mar Blvd., Suite7,
Aptos, Ca 95003-4700

Mailing:
PO Box 1170
Watsonville, CA 95077-1170

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(831) 661-5697

Available 8:30am - 5:00pm