We will ask the following questions to make sure to get your classification and coverage right the first time: 1. What specific services do you provide?
A handyman does a little bit of everything, but some of those tasks have the potential to affect their classification and their rates. For example,
A client who maintains or secures real estate-owned property (i.e., property owned by a lender after an unsuccessful foreclosure auction) is probably not a handyman. They are in property preservation and require different insurance.
A client who modifies or repairs load-bearing elements, such as walls or foundations, is in structural remodeling. This classification also requires different coverage than a general maintenance worker.
Some handymen qualify for a Business Owner’s Policy, but a client whose work involves hazardous activities, such as climbing ladders or using heavy machinery, probably will not.
2. How many employees do you have?
Maintenance workers are typically sole proprietors, but that isn’t always the case. Recently, the industry has seen an uptick in franchises offering handyman services. Here’s what this means from an insurance standpoint:
Sole proprietors may be able to exclude themselves from Workers ‘Compensation Insurance. We will check your state laws to be sure.
A client who runs a handyman service may have employees who perform non-handyman tasks (e.g., administrative assistants or payroll specialists). Be sure every employee is classified correctly to minimize Workers’ Comp costs.
3. Do you travel to multiple sites?
Handymen who move from site to site have some extra risk exposures to consider. If our client drives to different locations for work, we will suggest they invest in Commercial Auto Insurance. Most insurers see commercial use and personal use as significantly different risks, so our clients should look into Commercial Auto even if they drive their own vehicle for work.
We will offer an Inland Marine Insurance policy to cover equipment and tools in transit or on a worksite.
As an independent agent, we know the importance of properly classifying our clients. And handymen can be especially easy to misclassify because they do so many odd jobs.