Bed And Breakfast Insurance Alaska Policy Information
Bed And Breakfast Insurance Alaska. Many people, whether they are traveling for business or enjoying a vacation, much prefer the cozy and more personal atmosphere a bed and breakfast can offer to the thought of staying in a hotel. These small establishments provide not only rooms but also, as the name suggests, breakfast.
Bed and breakfast inns provide short-term lodging with a limited number of rooms. There may be common areas for guests to congregate, such as a living room, backyard, or porch. Often, the inns are converted dwellings or historical facilities that offer a romantic or rustic atmosphere.
Some are located in boats or lighthouses. Breakfast is included in the lodging charge, and other meals may or may not be offered. Some will have a full restaurant operation available to the general public, while others will serve only guests.
The inn can be an extension of a private dwelling with a room or rooms available, while others are full-time operations.
Limited recreational facilities may be available. If the inn offers rooms through both in-house and third-party websites, all room charges, including mandatory gratuity charges or "resort fees," must be disclosed to prevent allegations of deceptive advertising practices.
Websites should clearly state whether the facility and its guest rooms can accommodate those with disabilities.
Whether you are considering opening a B&B - and have perhaps already found the perfect property - or you already own and operate a bed and breakfast, you will already know that these establishments can easily grow to be successful small businesses to which guests return time and time again.
B&B owners also, on the other hand, face numerous risks. A multitude of unforeseen circumstances can put your business in jeopardy unless your AK B&B is armed with a comprehensive insurance program. What types of bed and breakfast insurance Alaska should be put in place, and why?
Bed and breakfast insurance Alaska protects your inn from lawsuits with rates as low as $47/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Why Do Alaska Bed And Breakfasts Need Insurance?
While you will do everything in your power to build a customer-oriented business and run a smooth operation, bed and breakfast owners should never overlook the fact that many things can go wrong. The fact that most B&B owners live within the property themselves only adds an extra dimension to the risks they face.
Like any other business, a bed and breakfast could, for instance, be affected by an act of nature, such as a hurricane, earthquake, or wildfire. Theft, vandalism, and accidents that cause fires or serious plumbing disasters are further examples of the types of perils that may impact a AK B&B. All these perils have the potential to severely damage your property and force you to temporarily close your establishment.
B&B owners also have to consider the possibility that someone could file a lawsuit against them. Situations that range from employees being injured on the job to unsatisfied customers and accidents in which you inadvertently damage another person's property could lead to costly and time-consuming litigation.
The list of threats your business faces is almost endless, but the one characteristic all perils share is that they saddle you with massive and unplanned costs. When you invest in the right insurance policies, however, you will not have to cover all these expenses on your own.
Besides the fact that some types of insurance are legally mandated, protecting your financial future is the most important reason to purchase the best bed and breakfast insurance Alaska you can.
What Type Of Insurance Do AK Bed And Breakfasts Need?
If you are finding it hard to determine what types of insurance you should carry, that is no surprise - each bed and breakfast has unique insurance needs influenced by factors like the location of your B&B, your number of employees, the size of your business, and the number of guests you receive.
Because of this, it is crucial to consult a commercial insurance broker who specializes in small businesses and who can help you craft the insurance plan that will best protect your bed and breakfast. With that in mind, the following types of bed and breakfast insurance Alaska are vital for B&B establishments:
- Commercial Property: This type of coverage protects you from ruinous financial losses in the event that your bed and breakfast - and its contents - is damaged due to an act of nature, theft, or act of vandalism. With additional business interruption insurance, your business additionally recovers some of the revenue lost due to temporarily closure following a major peril.
- Commercial General Liability: Should your B&B face third party bodily injury or property damage claims, such as if a guest were to fall down slippery stairs, this form of bed and breakfast insurance Alaska helps cover the legal costs, such as attorney fees and settlement expenses, that you may incur in the process. All businesses should carry general liability insurance.
- Innkeepers' Liability: B&B establishments are legally obliged to take reasonable care of their guests' belongings. In the event that items are stolen or damaged while in your care, these policies cover the costs.
- Workers Compensation: Even if you make health and safety a top priority, an employee may always get injured in the workplace. In such cases, workers' comp covers their medical bills and any lost income.
These important types of insurance form the core of your needs as a bed and breakfast owner. However, you may also need additional forms of bed and breakfast insurance Alaska coverage, such as commercial auto insurance. To find out more, talk to a commercial insurance broker.
AK Bed And Breakfast's Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure is high due to public access to the facility. The operation should meet all life safety codes to assure guest safety. To prevent trips, slips, and falls, the inn must be well maintained, with floor covering in good condition. The number of exits must be sufficient and well marked, with backup lighting in case of power failure.
Steps should have handrails, be well lighted, marked, and in good repair. Balconies should be regularly inspected and maintained. Rooms should be treated to prevent pest infestations such as bedbugs. Sidewalks and driveways should be free from defects and cleared of ice and snow in inclement weather. Locks should be changed frequently to prevent unauthorized access.
Lead paint should be contained. Personal injury exposures include allegations of assault, discrimination, false arrest, invasion of privacy, wrongful detention, and wrongful eviction.
Workers compensation exposure is moderate. Cleaning and maintenance operations can result in lung, eye, or skin irritations and reactions. Slip and falls, back injury, hernias, sprains and strains from lifting and working at awkward positions are common.
Food preparation operations can result in cuts, scrapes, and burns. Interaction with guests may involve situations that could produce injuries, such as assault. Employees should be trained in dealing with rowdy guests. Animals owned by guests can bite, scratch, or kick workers.
Property exposures can be high as most bed and breakfast facilities have been converted from older structures to their current occupancy. Conversions should be handled by professionals with appropriate permits and licenses obtained.
Electrical wiring, plumbing, cooling, and heating systems must be updated to current code. If there is commercial cooking, the kitchen should also be upgraded to meet NFPA requirements. Smoking and the use of candles in guests' rooms should be prohibited. Hard-wired smoke detectors should be installed in all guest rooms and common areas.
The age, condition, configuration, size, repair, and roof of the inn affect the potential for loss as damages must be repaired to match the rest of the structure. Business income may be high as there may not be backup facilities available to the owner.
Inland marine exposure is limited to accounts receivable if the inn bills for services, computers, and valuable papers and records for guest and mortgage information. Duplicates of all data should be kept off premises for easy restoration. There may be fine arts for antiques, paintings, or sculptures, or contractors' equipment for maintenance, repairs, and lawn care.
Crime exposure is from employee dishonesty and theft of money and securities. References and background checks should be conducted on all employees. Monetary transactions must be controlled through the use of receipts and regular monitoring.
Guest property coverage provides protection for guests' property from theft by employees, other guests, or trespassers. Access to guest rooms must be limited to those authorized to do so.
Business auto exposure may be limited to hired non-owned liability for employees running errands. If there are owned vehicles, such as those used to service units, any driver should have a valid driver's license and an acceptable MVR. Vehicles must be maintained and records kept in a central location. If guests are transported, the exposure increases.
Bed And Breakfast Insurance Alaska - The Bottom Line
To protect your property, employees and guests, having the right bed and breakfast insurance Alaska coverage is important. To see what policies are available to you, how much coverage you should have - and the premiums - speak to a reputable commercial insurance agent.
Alaska Economic Data, Regulations And Limits On Commercial Insurance
If you're an entrepreneur who is thinking about starting a business in Alaska, it's important to have a basic understanding of the state's overall economy before you set up shop. Regardless of how high-quality the products and services you are planning on offering may be, if the location where you open your organization doesn't offer a target market that your products and services will appeal to, chances of success are slim. Furthermore, if a workforce isn't available to support your business, you'll have a hard time staying afloat.
With that said, it's important for business-minded individuals who are thinking about starting a company in Alaska to familiarize themselves with the state's economy; it's also a good idea to have an understanding of the commercial insurance requirements.
Following is an overview of economic trends and commercial insurance policies that business owners are required to carry in The Last Frontier.
Economic Trends For Business Owners In Alaska
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate in Alaska was 6.1% in December of 2019. While that's significantly higher than the national unemployment rate, which was 3.4% in December, 2019, it's lower than it was one year prior, when the rate of unemployment was 6.5% in December of 2018. Though the workforce is growing slower than it is in other states, economists do predict that the rate will continue to decline in the coming years.
Despite Alaska's remoteness and cold climate, it's actually a great start to start a business. According to the Tax Foundation, Alaska is the second most tax-friendly state for business owners in the United States, as there's no individual income tax or state sales tax. Additionally, Alaska has the second highest rate of new business owners, as well as the second highest percentage of available employees (as per 2016).
As in most states, the best spots to start a business in Alaska are the state's biggest cities and the surrounding areas. This includes Anchorage, Juneau, and Fairbanks. Other key areas that are seeing a boost in business development in recent years include Homer, Sitka, Prudhoe Bay, and Ketchikan.
While there are several industries that are experiencing growth in The Last Frontier, specific sectors thrive more than others. Businesses that are related to the following industries are booming in AK:
- Fishing, which is also one of the largest contributors to the state's economy.
- Mining, which provides more than 4,500 jobs in Alaska.
- Petroleum, which is responsible for 34% of jobs in the state. In fact, Prudhoe Bay is North America's largest oil field.
- Tourism is the second largest private sector employer in the state. Each year, millions of people from around the globe travel to Alaska to marvel at the numerous natural wonders that can be found here.
Commercial Insurance Requirements In Alaska
The Alaska Division of Insurance regulates insurance in AK. Alaska mandates very few forms of insurance coverage by law. They enforce worker's compensation.
Alaska requires you to have worker's compensation insurance if you hire even one employee on a regular basis. This includes part-time employees, family members, minors, and immigrant employees. It is not required for independent contractors or domestic employees, though you should check to make sure any contractors you have are true contractors, and not employees.
Alaska also requires all business-owned vehicles to be covered by commercial auto insurance. Other types of business insurance that business owners should carry depend on the specific industry.
Additional Resources For Lodging Places Insurance
Find out what types of business insurance that hotels, motels and other lodging places should have to protect their varied operations.
All lodging places provide sleeping accommodations for their patrons. Dining facilities are common because those who sleep will want to eat.
Many facilities also provide extra features such as offering recreational and exercise facilities or possibly meeting rooms and convention arrangements. Property coverage is needed because of high building and business personal property values at risk that are subject to a number of potential causes of loss, chief of which is fire.
Liability insurance is absolutely necessary because of the number of guests and the potential for losses ranging from slips and falls to food consumption to loss of life in the event of a disaster.
Other liability concerns are the additional guest services such as swimming pools, exercise rooms, recreational activities, and bars. Crime losses involving the theft of guest property, inventory and supplies must also be considered.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Building, Business Personal Property, Business Income and Extra Expense, Equipment Breakdown, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, Employee Dishonesty, Guests Property, Money and Securities, General Liability, Employee Benefits, Liquor Liability, Umbrella, Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage, Hired and Non-Owned Auto & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Earthquake, Flood, Spoilage, Bailees Customers, Commercial Articles Floater, Contractors Equipment, Fine Arts, Signs, Special Floater, Computer Fraud, Forgery, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices, Garagekeepers And Stop Gap Liability.
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Also find AK local small businesses by General Liability Class Code and learn about Alaska small business insurance requirements for general liability, business property, commercial auto & workers compensation including AK business insurance costs. Call us (907) 531-9001.