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Insurance for Hotels and Other Lodging Businesses
From accidents and injuries to property damage, there are many potential issues that need to be covered by insurance. Here are the main considerations.
Protecting your property
What is accommodation or accommodation business without actual accommodation facilities? When you are in the lodging business, your physical assets are the most fundamental part of your business and need to be protected from damage. Property insurance is an important part of your insurance package and protects you against any intentional damage, such as vandalism, as well as unavoidable weather damage.
Remember, even a small, home-based lodging operation, such as a bed-and-fast or even a vacation rental property, needs to be covered under commercial property insurance. Limits vary from business to business, but essentially, you want to cover the worst-case scenario, so make sure all property and furniture valuations are as accurate as possible.
Terms you need to know: Replacement cost or ACV
When insuring your commercial property and its contents, you need to understand the difference between replacement cost coverage and actual cash value (ACV) coverage. The former covers the present cost of replacing all lost items, while the latter covers the actual cash value of all assets or items lost. Assets decline in value and the cost of purchasing replacement assets or items increases; This can create a significant gap between cash value and replacement cost. ACV rarely provides the coverage business owners need. Replacement cost coverage may be more beneficial, but you need to understand both coverage types to ensure you get the best coverage for your needs.
Artifacts and collectibles
Standard property insurance may be enough to cover basic damage, but when it comes to expensive, hard-to-replace furniture, artwork, and other interior finishes and furnishings, you’ll usually need another layer of protection. Standard coverage usually limits the replacement cost of such items.
While it should be noted that replacement cost coverage is generally the more prudent choice when it comes to antiques and collectibles, consider covering them for actual cash value. These items are difficult to replace and the cash value of these items increases over time; As a result, replacement coverage can leave you at a loss, or it can leave you stuck with your insurance company while you decide what is a reasonable replacement. In general, insurers always try to minimize their claims payouts.
What if your lodging business is unable to provide temporary lodging? This is not an uncommon occurrence; Severe weather or building wear can lead to long-term repairs and maintenance that leave no room for guests. This loss of revenue is often not covered by standard property insurance.
By adding business interruption coverage to your insurance package, you will be protected during periods when you are unable to continue business as usual. Knowing you have the protection you need will give you the peace of mind you need to maintain your business as needed while operations resume.
Know the landscape and climate around your business and talk to your insurance provider about which perils are automatically covered by your property policy; You may be surprised to know that some catastrophic risks require additional coverage. Events such as floods, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and mudslides are generally considered catastrophic risks and may require special insurance. It often depends on geography; While some risks may not be common in one part of the country, they may be very tangible elsewhere.
While planning for some of the special coverage that lodging businesses need, don’t forget to protect yourself with a good general liability policy! Any number of things can go wrong with guests staying at your hotel, inn, or other lodging business, including injuries, theft of guest property, or illnesses caused by food you serve. A general liability policy will protect you against property damage, bodily injury, or personal injury to your guests.
Remember that legal and litigation costs can add up to millions of dollars and seriously impact your business’s ability to succeed.
Commercial vehicle insurance
Do you use vehicles for business purposes related to your business? Perhaps transport or pick up maintenance supplies or as a shuttle service for guests? Keep in mind that such uses—however limited—are not covered by your personal auto insurance, so commercial auto insurance is absolutely necessary.
We hope you find these insights useful and keep your lodging business thriving.
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