Independent handymen (handypersons) put their livelihoods at risk every day they’re on the job. They work with dangerous tools, use hazardous materials, climb ladders, carry heavy things, and perform duties around expensive, fragile, and breakable items.
The best way for independent handymen to protect their livelihoods is to get the right insurance coverage against the risks they face.
This article reveals the top six insurers for self-employed handymen and explains what you need to know to get the coverage that’s right for you at a fair price.
- The 6 best self-employed handyman insurance companies
- Is handyman insurance required for the self-employed?
- What type of insurance do self-employed handymen need?
- What other types of insurance do self-employed handymen get?
- How much does self-emplyed handyman insurance cost?
- How much coverage does a self-employed handyman insurance policy provide?
- How can I find affordable self-employed handyman business insurance?
The 6 best self-employed handyman insurance companies
- Simply Business: Best for comparing multiple handyman insurance quotes in a single place
- Next: Best for handymen who need insurance fast
- InsurePro: Best for temporary handyman business insurance
- Hiscox: Best for handyman insurance from an established provider
- The Hartford: Best for handyman coverage from an ethical company
- Progressive: Best for discounted handyman commercial auto coverage
Simply Business: Best for comparing multiple handyman insurance quotes in a single place
Simply Business isn’t a direct insurance provider. Instead, it acts as a broker, connecting handymen with insurance companies that offer coverage for them.
- It’s relatively easy to get several quotes from different insurance companies through Simply Business.
- Simply Business regularly reviews the insurers on its platform to ensure they’re reputable.
- Policy underwriting, claims, and customer service is handled by third-party insurers, not Simply Business.
- It can be less expensive to get independent handyman coverage directly from an insurance company than through Simply Business.
BOTTOM LINE: Simply Business makes it easy for handymen to get several quotes from reputable insurance companies all at once.
Next: Best for handymen who need insurance fast
Next Insurance is a next-generation business insurance company that allows handymen to get fast coverage online.
- The easy online application allows handymen to secure coverage in minutes.
- You can earn a ten percent discount on bundled policies.
- Handymen who prefer working with agents may find Next’s digital claim process uncomfortable.
- Next may not always be the cheapest insurance provider for self-employed handymen.
Bottom line: If you’re a handyman who needs coverage in a pinch, it could be wise to check out Next.
InsurePro: Best for temporary handyman businesses insurance
InsurePro is another insurance broker specializing in finding temporary coverage for small businesses. It’s one of the few insurers that allows you to get coverage on a per-project basis or to turn off your insurance when you don’t need it and turn it on when you do.
- InsurePro makes it simple to get handyman insurance coverage in minutes.
- You can get coverage for a few days, few weeks, or for a particular project
- Affordable rates
- InsurePro is a relatively new company compared to the others on this list.
- InsurePro may not offer the specialized coverages some handymen need.
Bottom line: InsurePro makes it easy for handymen to get temporary or ongoing handyman insurance coverage fast.
Hiscox: Best for handyman insurance from an established provider
More than 400,000 small businesses choose Hiscox for their insurance needs. It’s an insurer that exclusively offers coverage for small companies and independent contractors.
- Hiscox will customize coverage to meet the needs of different kinds of handymen.
- It is a well-established insurer, offering insurance coverage since 1901.
- Hiscox sells insurance in the United States, but it’s based in the United Kingdom.
- It’s not always the lowest-cost handyman insurance provider.
Bottom line: If you want handyman insurance from a solid and established firm, Hiscox could be right for you.
The Hartford: Best for handyman coverage from an ethical company
The Hartford is a leader in property and casualty insurance. It has a 200-plus year history of offering insurance protection, and is known for the excellent service provided by its employees, sustainability practices, trust, and integrity.
- The Hartford is a highly reputable and ethical insurer. Self-employed handymen can feel confident getting insurance from the provider.
- More than one million businesses get their insurance coverage from The Hartford.
- The Hartford’s insurance coverage can be more costly than other providers.
- The company’s online application system isn’t as modern and fast as those from newer and more tech-savvy insurers.
BOTTOM LINE: If you want to buy handyman insurance from a respected and ethical insurance company, The Hartford could be the right solution for you.
Progressive: Best for discounted commercial auto insurance for handymen
You probably have known that if you use your vehicle for business purposes, ie. traveling from your client’s house to another, or going to Home Depot to buy stuff, you must have commercial auto insurance. Your personal vehicle insurance doesn’t cover you. Progressive is the leader in commercial auto insurance and has been offering insurance for more than 80 years. They are known for offering several discount programs.
- Progressive offers many discounts that could help save you money on your commercial auto insurance
- Progressive is a reliable and stable insurance company.
- Progressive doesn’t underwrite most of its handyman insurance coverage.
- It doesn’t offer all discounts in all states, so it’s essential to check with other insurers to ensure you’re getting all the handyman insurance discounts you’re entitled to.
BOTTOM LINE: Progressive is a top U.S. insurer. You owe it to yourself to check it out for your self-employed handyman commercial auto insurance.
Is handyman insurance required for the self-employed?
- Do you plan to work in apartment complexes that require proof of insurance?
- Are you planning to work on properties owned by banks?
- Does your state require insurance to do home repairs?
- Are you planning to get a contractor’s license?
- Do you do plumbing or electrical work?
- Do you have to wear a helmet when you perform your handyman duties?
If you answer YES to any of these questions, you probably need handyman insurance.
What type of insurance do self-employed handymen need?
The primary type of protection a handyman should purchase is handyman general liability insurance. It helps pay for damage to a client’s property that happens when you’re working. It can also cover injuries to customers at your place of business if you maintain one. For example, general liability insurance pays if you accidentally flood a client’s basement and it causes damage.
In short, it protects you from being financially liable if you cause harm to a customer’s home or business location or someone is injured while visiting your business location.
While many self-employed handymen on tight budgets are concerned about the cost of getting insurance, the truth is that they really can’t afford to be without it.
Ask yourself: Would you be able to pay to repair a client’s property if you cause significant damage to it? How about the legal and settlement costs if they sue you over it?
Typically, these expenses are large enough to bankrupt an independent handyman. However, handyman liability insurance could cover most, or all, of these costs should something unfortunate happen while you’re working
What other types of insurance do self-employed handymen get?
While some people offering handyman services will only need a general liability policy, here are five other types of coverage worth considering.
1. Commercial auto insurance
If you drive a vehicle for business reasons, you need commercial auto insurance. A personal auto policy won’t cover damage or injuries while driving for business reasons. Commercial coverage for your car, truck, or van typically costs less than $200 per month. It will help you rest assured, knowing you won’t have to pay for vehicle damage or medical costs out of pocket if you’re involved in an accident while providing handyman services for a client.
Learn more at the best commercial auto insurance companies
2. Commercial property insurance
Do you keep inventory or tools at home or in a business location? Then you should consider commercial property insurance. It protects against theft or property damage caused by fire, extreme weather, accidents, or natural disasters.
3. Tools and equipment insurance
Handymen depend on their tools to get the job done. It can be devastating if something happens to them. The good news is that tools and equipment insurance can cover them if they’re damaged or taken from a job site. Coverage is typically under $50 per month, depending on the types of tools and equipment covered by the policy. This is a relatively small amount for the vital protection provided.
4. Professional liability insurance
This coverage is also known as errors and omissions (E&O) insurance. It protects against claims of negligence while conducting business. If you ever provide a client with advice that isn’t correct or complete or perform a handyman service someone isn’t happy with, and they sue you, professional liability insurance would pay legal and settlement costs.
Learn more at the best professional liability insurance companies
5. Workers’ compensation insurance
While most states don’t require self-employed handymen to get workers’ compensation insurance, it can be a good idea. If you become injured or ill because of work-related reasons, which is common for handymen, it pays medical expenses, disability, a portion of lost wages, and more. Be aware that your medical insurance may not pay for the care needed because of a workplace injury or illness.
Learn more at the best workers comp insurance companies
How much does self-employed handyman insurance cost?
Handyman general liability insurance is relatively inexpensive. The typical policy runs between $350 and $1,000 per year. The premium depends on several factors, including where you live and work, the services you offer, the level of coverage, deductibles, the insurance company, and how it calculates premiums.
Handymen that do construction and contracting work pay the highest premiums for general liability coverage. Those that provide less risky services usually pay less for coverage.
It’s a good idea to get a few handyman insurance quotes from different providers and compare coverages and costs. It’s the only way to get the protection you need at the best possible price.
Learn more at how much handyman insurance costs
How much coverage does a self-employed handyman insurance policy provide?
A typical handyman liability insurance policy will come with the following coverage:
- $1 million liability coverage per claim
- $2 million per year aggregate coverage limit
- $1,000 deductible.
Here’s what this means: If you file a claim, the insurance will cover up to $1 million per incident, with a maximum of $2 million of coverage per year. You will have to pay $1,000 out of your pocket with this deductible before your insurance coverage kicks in.
How can I find affordable self-employed handyman business insurance?
Here are some tips to help you get the coverage you need at a fair price:
- Shop around for the best value. Get quotes from a few companies, brokers, or agents and compare them to find the right coverage for you at a reasonable cost.
- Don’t stop shopping around. Make sure you get new quotes before you renew your policy.
- Take advantage of discounts. If they’re not offered when getting a quote, ask about them, whether you’re buying online or through an agent.
Taking these steps will help ensure you’re not paying too much for your handyman coverage.