The building trade is a risky one, and roofers court a high degree of risk. Roofers work at a height and carry out tasks where the chances of slipping or losing one’s balance are ever present. A fall from a height can leave you or your employees injured. A fatality cannot be ruled out. Accidents may happen even when harnesses are used and all safety equipment deployed.
Roofing insurance is structured to cover against risks specific to this trade. General building insurance may cost less but will not provide you with the kind of cover that you actually need. With inadequate insurance, you may find that the cost of public liability and injuries to employees or self far outweighs any benefits of a low premium. You are a roofer and the risks you face are different and possibly higher than what a cement mixer or plumber working on the ground faces.
Choose the most comprehensive cover that you can for your roofing business. Your needs will vary depending upon whether you work alone or employ a team; the nature of work – hot or cold tiling; exposure to chemicals and the elements; and use of heavy-duty tools.
A comprehensive roofer’s insurance policy will include the following –
- Public liability insurance – Working on the roofs of houses and buildings is risky for the worker and for the unsuspecting people below. A person falling down risks permanent injury or death, an object or tool landing on someone can lead to equally bad results. Damage to the roof because of faulty material or poor technique may lead to unwanted expenses for the client. All these events have costs that you could be expected to meet. The costs may run into thousands of pounds. Regardless of whether you’re a self-employed roofer or the head of a roofing business, meeting claims on your own is a financially daunting proposition. Public liability insurance protects you from costs related to injuries and property damage to clients and third parties because of your work. According to the roofers insurance providers at Tradesman Saver, public liability insurance is the most vital piece of insurance that a roofer needs. So, ensure you get this one settled first.
- Contractor’s risks insurance – This insurance is cover against costs linked to damage from work you do as part of your contract. This cover assures you financial help in events such as natural calamities that damage a structure, offsite storage, temporary accommodation, debris removal, professional fees, and speculative building.
- Employer’s liability insurance – If you have employees working for you, then this is a compulsory insurance to have. Given the risks inherent in the roofing business, it makes business sense to have this cover so that employee claims arising from falls, repetitive stress, accidents, etc can be met through an insurance policy. This insurance is a precaution against incidents, major and minor, that can bring work to a grinding halt.
- Tools and equipment insurance/tradesman insurance – Roofers depend on their tools to get the job done. Drills, ladders, pry bars, caulking guns, knives, tape measures, hammers, and hatchet are some of the tools used by roofers. Tools, big and small, human-powered or power-tools, cost money. Insure your tools against theft and damage so that in the case of an eventuality, you do not have to pay for repairs and replacements from your own pockets.
- Personal accident and sickness – Roofers, whether sole tradesmen or heading a business, may get injured or fall sick. When this happens, it can have a deleterious effect on your business’s health. Pre-empt such situations by availing this cover so that you have ready finance for treatment and a source of income. The cover is active every hour of the day. This, effectively, makes it insurance against injuries even when you are not working.
When it comes to a trade as risk-laden as roofing, it is best not to cut corners and obtain appropriate insurance cover from a provider that understands the nature and extent of risks faced by roofers.