Vermont Appliance Electronics Store Insurance Policy Information
Vermont Appliance Electronics Store Insurance. Appliance stores sell a wide range of electrical wares ranging from small kitchen and personal grooming items to larger types of household equipment such as washers, dryers, stoves, and refrigerators. Entertainment devices like audio systems, CD and DVD players, computers, radios and televisions plus related items such as CDs, DVDs, or computer games, may also be sold. Some specialize in a specific product line. Appliance stores generally offer repair services, either for the items they sell or for all related appliances. Repairs may take place at the store or on customers' premises, depending on the size of the item. Some stores recondition and sell used appliances.
Stores selling larger appliances may offer delivery and installation services. Delivery may be on owned vehicles or may be contracted out to another carrier.
From the newest cell phone to the most cutting edge technology built into a refrigerator, there are countless ways electronics are making their way into homes today. With the increased popularity of these goods, if you own a store that sells appliances or electronics, it's important to protect your business and inventory. While you can certainly install a security system, the very best protection comes in the form of a comprehensive commercial insurance package.
By working with an experienced insurance agent, you can put together the most ideal plan for you and then enjoy the peace of mind of knowing you're covered. In the meantime, it's beneficial to familiarize yourself with the types of Vermont appliance electronics store insurance coverage that are available, many of which are listed below.
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With the appliance and electronics industries pulling in billions of dollars each year, it's easy to see why you want your business to thrive. In order to help ensure this happens, coverage for your property is one of the most important parts of your appliance and electronics store insurance policy. This will help protect the building where you house all of your goods, in the event that an accident or disaster were to occur. The types of property coverage include:
- Flood/Earthquake Coverage: Many business owners are surprised to learn that earthquakes and floods are not covered under business property insurance. For this reason, it's important to speak with your insurance agent to determine if you're at risk of either of these disasters and require extra coverage.
- Business Property Coverage: From the appliances to the cash registers, this insurance will cover everything inside of your store. Situations where coverage would apply include: fire, vandalism, theft, severe weather, and other events specified in your insurance policy.
- Bailee Coverage: If you provide repairs for appliances or computers, this insurance will protect you in the event a customers' property is damaged while in your custody.
- Building Coverage: This insurance is required if you own the building where your business is located, as it protects the structure from damage. If you are under a lease, it's important to refer to your contract to determine if you are required to cover the structure with this insurance as well.
Added Protection For Appliance & Electronics Store Insurance Policies
If you're looking for complete coverage, then the additional policies listed below are well worth discussing with your agent.
- Workers' Compensation: In the event that an employee were injured on the job, whether from being hurt during a delivery or slipping and falling, this insurance would protect you from lawsuits while providing medical care and paid time off for the injured person. This is a legal requirement if you have more than one non-owner or partner employee.
- Business Income: This insurance would cover you in a situation where you were forced to close your store due to a disaster. In addition to paying employee salaries, it would provide income for other expenses until you were able to open your doors and resume normal business (normally for up to 12 months).
Vermont appliance electronics store insurance protects you in the event that you are sued or face any other type of liability exposure. Even if you ultimately win your case, this will help ensure you can pay for damages, legal fees, and other expenses without damaging the financial health of your business. Types of this insurance include:
- Auto Liability: If you own vehicles used for deliveries, repairs, or other services, this insurance would offer liability coverage when they're being used for services related to your business. However, it's also crucial to make sure you have a commercial auto insurance policy for protection as well.
- Employment Practices Liability: This will protect your business in the event that you're sued by an employee for discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment, or other illegal business practices.
- Cyber Liability: For businesses that offer credit cards, store credit, or financing, this insurance is crucial. It will protect you in the event your business is hacked and the sensitive information of customers (such as social security number or driver's license ID) are stolen.
- Commercial General Liability: This is the main type of insurance that commercial policies will include. It will protect you from many exposures, including:
- Product Liability: If you're sued because a product you sold is faulty or contributes to property damage or injuries, this will protect you from losing money due to legal fees and other expenses.
- Premises Liability: If someone were to be injured while on your property, this insurance would cover property damage as well as care for the injured party.
- Completed Operations Liability: When providing services such as installation or delivery, this insurance will protect your business in the event an employee causes damage or does not do their job properly.
Building the Right Insurance Package
With so many insurance policies and additional coverage options, it's crucial to discuss your individual needs with your insurance agent. By doing so, you can determine the coverage and limits that are right for your business and budget. Additionally, they can help you understand more about any other beneficial policies, such as life or health insurance. With their partnership and knowledge, you'll have peace of mind knowing your business and investment is fully covered in any situation.
Given the vast range of protections that may be essential for protecting your business, your products, your workers and the people who visit your store, it's important to work with a seasoned insurance agent. This professional can review your risk profile and can recommend the best options for your company according to his or her findings. This is important to do even if you already have commercial coverage in place. A thorough review of your current insurance portfolio could reveal critical vulnerabilities that might have a negative and lasting impact on the long-term health of your business.
Vermont Appliance Store Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure comes from slips and falls due to public access to the premises. Aisles must be adequate and free of debris with flooring in good condition, no frayed or worn spots on carpet, and no cracks or holes in flooring. Steps and uneven floor surfaces should be prominently marked. Sufficient exits must be provided and be well marked with backup lighting systems in case of power failure. Appliances should be kept on easily reached shelves so that customers do not pull items down on themselves.
Parking lots and sidewalks need to be in good repair with snow and ice removed, and generally level and free of exposure to slips and falls. If the business is open after dark, there should be adequate lighting and appropriate security for the area.
If delivery and installation services are offered, customers' premises may be damaged.
Personal injury exposure can arise from apprehending and detaining suspected shoplifters. The use of closed-circuit camera systems prevents such incidents from evolving into a "he said, she said" situation. Employees must be trained to deal with such delicate situations properly.
Products liability exposure is normally low unless the store reconditions and sells used appliances or there is direct import of products. Foreign-made items should come from a domestic-based wholesaler. Any direct importer should be considered as a product manufacturer. Installation of purchased goods at the customers' premises must meet all manufacturers' specifications. If the store sends customers' items to others for servicing, certificates of insurance should be obtained as evidence that the other party carries appropriate coverage.
Workers compensation exposures are from lifting that can cause back injury, hernias, sprains, and strains and from slips and falls. Employees should be provided with safety equipment, trained on proper handling techniques, and have conveying devices available to assist with heavy lifting. Shelves should be easily accessible for storage.
Housekeeping in storage areas, especially during peak times, is vital to prevent trips and falls. Electrical shocks, cuts, and burns are hazards to repair or service employees. In any retail business, hold-ups are possible. Employees should be trained to respond in a prescribed manner. Drivers of delivery trucks can be injured in accidents, be crushed by falling heavy appliances, or fall on stairs or from tailgates.
Property exposures come from the heavy fire load, electrical wiring and flammables such as lubricants, oils, degreasers and solvents used in repair operations. The electrical load is very heavy due to floor models being plugged into numerous outlets for customers to try out prior to purchase. Wiring must be up to date and meet current codes. Plastics used in product casings, peripheral items, and packaging will cause an oily smoke that permeates items, reducing any salvage opportunities.
Circuitry in some appliances can be easily damaged from smoke, water and heat, resulting in a total loss even with a small fire. Forklifts used inside the warehouse should be recharged in an area with good ventilation, separated from flammables. There should be no smoking on premises.
Small appliances are easy to shoplift. Higher priced appliances become target items since there is a demand for them in the marketplace. Appropriate security measures should be taken, including physical barriers to prevent entrance to the premises after hours and an alarm system that reports directly to a central station or the police department.
Business interruption is a concern because sales may peak at particular times during the year.
Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty and loss of money and securities either from holdup or safe burglary. Background checks should be conducted on all employees handling money. There must be separation of duties between persons handling deposits and disbursements and handling bank statements. Money should be regularly collected from cash drawers and moved away from the collection area, preferably to a safe on premises.
Bank drops should be made throughout the day to prevent a buildup of cash on the premises. Shoplifting detection devices in packaging, video surveillance and requiring customers to leave bags at the front door when entering the store help reduce shoplifting. Two employees should be required to confirm the accuracy of deliveries from vendors.
Inland marine exposures are from accounts receivable if the store offers credit, bailees customers if the store checks bags from customers or repairs customers' appliances, computers to transact sales and monitor inventory, equipment floater for forklifts used in the warehouse, goods in transit if the store makes deliveries, and valuable papers and records for customers' and vendors' records. Backup copies of all records, including computer records, should be made and stored off premises.
Commercial auto exposure comes from pickup and delivery of customers' goods. Domestic appliances may be delivered on congested streets to residential areas with children present. All drivers must have valid and appropriate licenses and acceptable MVRs. Vehicles must be maintained with records kept.
Vermont Economic Data, Regulations And Limits On Commercial Insurance
For business-minded individuals who are either thinking about launching their first organization or established entrepreneurs who would like to expand their operations, there are several factors that need to be taken into consideration before proceeding. Of those factors, top on the list of importance is location.
The target market and demographics of a location must be favorable for the industry in order for a business to be successful. By analyzing the unemployment rate of a specific state and the key industries that are flourishing with that state, business owners can determine whether or not the will amass the success they are hoping to achieve.
In addition to understanding the economic data of a state, it's also important for proprietors to know what type of commercial insurance they are required to carry.
If you're considering Vermont as the headquarters of your operation for a branch of your already existing business, read on to for an overview of the economic data and commercial insurance requirements in the Green Mountain State.
Economic Trends For Business Owners In Vermont
In December of 2019, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the unemployment rate in Vermont was 2.3%; 1.2% lower than the national average of 3.5% during the same time period. While the state's unemployment rate did rise slightly – it was 2.1% in July of 2019, for example – these statistics sill indicate that Vermont has a healthy economy that is conducive for business owners and residents of the state.
The favorable tax climate, the healthy environment, and the overall quality of life in Vermont are just some of the reasons why the economy in this state is booming.
As in most states, densely populated urban areas offer the most promise for businesses. These regions offer a larger workforce and market than smaller suburban and rural areas, they're easier to access, and they are more closely connected with surrounding states and the region of New England, as a whole.
With that said, the top places to start a business in Vermont include:
Several industries are seeing significant growth in Vermont. At the time of writing, the following sectors were seeing the most growth in the state:
- Food and beverage
- Health care
- Hospitality and tourism
- Professional services
Commercial Insurance Requirements In Vermont
The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation regulates insurance in VT. Vermont mandates very few forms of insurance coverage by law. They enforce worker's compensation.
Vermont 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.
Vermont 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 Retail Insurance
Read valuable small business retail insurance policy information. In a retail business, you need to have the right type of commercial insurance coverage so that your store, employees, and inventory are protected.
- Adult Novelty
- Antique Dealers
- Appliance & Electronics Store
- Army Navy Surplus Stores
- Art Dealers
- Art Gallery
- Arts & Crafts Supply Stores
- Bicycle Shop
- Boat Dealers
- Book Store
- Bridal Shop
- Candy Confectionery Store
- Carpet Store
- Cell Phone Stores
- Clothing Store
- Collectibles Memorabilia Store
- Consignment Stores
- Convenience Store
- Cosmetics Store
- Costume Stores
- Dry Cleaning
- Embroidery Services
- Equipment Rental
- Fabric Stores
- Fish Markets
- Flea Markets
- Funeral Home
- Furniture Store
- Gift Store
- Greeting Card Stores
- Hardware Store
- Harness & Saddle Shops
- Home Improvement Store
- Infant, Baby & Children's Clothing Stores
- Jewelry Store
- Lamp Stores
- Lingerie Store
- Luggage Store
- Meat Market & Butcher Shop
- Men's Clothing Stores
- Music Store
- Office Supply Store
- Paint & Wallpaper Store
- Pawn Shop
- Pet Store
- Pharmacy Liability
- Plumbing Supplies Fixtures Store
- Poultry Dealers
- Rent To Own Stores
- Scrap Metal Dealers
- Sewing Store
- Shoe Store
- Sporting Goods Store
- Stationary Store
- Thrift Store
- Ticket Agency
- Tire Store
- Tobacco Store
- Toy Store
- Travel Agency
- Trophy Stores
- Tuxedo And Formal Wear Rental Store
- Vending Machine Operators
- Wig Store
- Women's Clothing Stores
Retail stores are susceptible to premises liability claims because of customer traffic, but large department and specialty stores are more susceptible than most.
All retail stores have significant property exposures. The on-hand stock represents a considerable investment, but the amount on hand fluctuates seasonally. For this reason, physical damage insurance on this property must be arranged carefully. When the insured occupies a non-owned building, insurance coverage must be arranged for the insured's interest in extensive improvements and betterments made to the premises.
Crime insurance, in the form of employee theft and money and securities coverage, is also very important.
The businessowners policy was designed with retail exposures and operations in mind. For this reason alone, it should always be the first type of package coverage to consider. However, for those risks not eligible for the business owners policy program, the commercial package policy (CPP) is a practical and convenient way to combine a number of coverages into one policy.
Retail businesses generate income through interaction with customers. This interaction is also how a customer can sustain an injury and then sue the retailer for damages. Hazards, exposures and operations both on premises and off are important and must be covered, but liability the retailer may incur because of the merchandise sold must also be considered and insurance protection arranged.
Inventory or stock is the major property exposure for most retail operations. Because stock values tend to fluctuate or have significant peaks at certain times of the year, value reporting or peak season valuation options should be considered. Business income coverage, including business income from dependent properties coverage, may mean the difference between a retail operation staying in business or being forced into bankruptcy following a loss.
When the insured occupies a non-owned building, insurance coverage must be arranged for the insured’s interest in extensive improvements and betterments made to the premises.
Most retail businesses offer endless opportunities for a variety of criminal activities. For this reason, the coverages needed must be carefully evaluated. Holdup and robbery losses may be the most obvious concerns but employee theft, fraud and counterfeit money losses are also serious issues that cannot be dismissed.
Retail businesses are gaining greater exposure to international issues because of the growth in sales via the internet. As these sales increase, the added exposures faced by these retailers must be evaluated. While their operating horizons are expanding so are their potential loss exposures.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Business Personal Property, Business Income and Extra Expense, Equipment Breakdown, Employee Dishonesty, Money and Securities, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Employee Benefits, Umbrella, Hired and Non-owned Auto & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Building, Earthquake, Flood, Leasehold Interest, Real Property Legal Liability, Computer Fraud, Forgery, Bailees Customers, Goods in Transit, Jewelers Block, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices, Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage and Stop Gap Liability.
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