As a senior living professional, do you ever feel like insurance companies are getting the best of you? You may have gone years without a claim, yet the rates keep going up year after year. Hardly seems fair, does it?
It’s no secret, business insurance is often a large expenditure for senior care facilities. Although assisted living facilities, skilled nursing, and personal care homes are subject to higher liability rates than most industries, there are still many cost effective options available. Implementing the following 5 simple, yet often overlooked, tips will help to dramatically reduce your business insurance rates.
1) Consolidate your coverage and purchase your insurance as a “Package” policy.
All too often, we run into assisted living, personal care home and skilled care facilities, that purchase liability and property insurance separately. This mistake can cost thousands of dollars worth of increased premium on the policies. Business insurance operates similarly to personal home and auto insurance in the sense that companies offer price credits for packaging. From an underwriter’s viewpoint, the larger the account, the more flexible they can be with pricing, so make sure you are combining as many lines of coverage as possible with one company.
2) Work with an agency that specializes in your industry and has multiple markets.
One of the biggest mistakes an assisted living or personal care home owner can make is working with an agent that only writes through one company. There are also senior care insurance companies that solely write through their own risk retention group or master policy. These types of policies pool together hundreds or thousands of similar types of businesses under one shared policy, subjecting you to the rates and claims experience of everybody else in the pool.
By working with an independent agency, you have access to dozens of companies that specialize in assisted living and personal care homes, and best of all, your policy will be rated solely on your facility’s claims experience. When working with an independent agent, the producer will also complete the rate comparison for you. If one company raises their rates, the agent will simply shop the other companies and determine which one will offer the best value. Choosing your agent carefully can save you thousands of dollars, but also saves you time and energy by completing the “shopping” process for you.
3) Ask what policy discounts are available.
Many companies offer insurance discounts for association members. From an underwriting perspective, association members tend to be more involved in the industry, up to date on rules and regulations, and attend more continuing education classes than the average owner. For these reasons, an association membership often results in a lower frequency and severity of insurance claims, which in turn allows the company to provide insurance at a lower rate to members.
Not an association member? No problem, there are plenty of other discounts are available. Some companies offer discounts for fire sprinklers, central station alarms, drug screening, and regular nursing assessments of residents.
4) Ask what optional coverages can be excluded.
Most insurance companies provide optional coverages on the quote proposal but don’t point out that they can be removed to save money. These optional coverages often add up to thousands of dollars for coverage that may never be used. Examples of additional optional coverages include; Employee Benefits Liability, Physical/Sexual Abuse, Hired/Non-Owned Auto, Data Breach and Identity Theft Coverage. It is up to you and your agent to determine the appropriate coverage for your facility.