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The motor trade is a large and important part of the UK economy and contains many separate sectors and niches. In fact, when the industry is booming, it is a sure sign that the British economy is in good health!
What should a motor trader look for when it comes to insurance?
First things first, to legally drive on British roads you will need:
Motor Insurance...If you're driving vehicles on public roads you will need at least third party motor cover. Since motor traders will need to drive various vehicles, both their own and their customers, this cover is essential.
Typically brokers and traders call this kind of cover Road Risks Insurance. Generally this will cover you for driving most typical cars and vans, but it may be worth speaking to your broker if you plan on working with larger vehicles (3.5 tonnes and over), motorbikes, imported vehicles, or powerful sports cars and the like.
If you employ any members of staff (other than yourself or perhaps a member of your family) you will need Employers' Liability. This will protect you and your business if a member of staff is injured or falls ill as a result of being in your employment.
Can I keep the costs down?
If you're worried about the cost of your motor trade cover, there are a few ways that can help you find a cheaper policy. Whilst multi-driver policies pose no problem, it is always hard to cover drivers under 23 due to the added risk they pose. Many brokers will not be able to offer quotes for drivers this young and the brokers that can will often charge much greater premiums -- wherever possible try to ensure that those driving vehicles on your policy are at least 23 years of age.
Of course, years of experience in the industry and no claims bonus (NCB) will also help you to find cheaper insurance, but if you're just starting out will not be at your disposable. However, some brokers will offer to mirror the NCB you may have on a standard private vehicle, which will be of help to you.
Postcode area will also have an impact on your insurance premium. If you're a trader about to set up, it may be worth considering where you want to start your business carefully. Metropolitan areas are often more pricey than rural environments, Unfortunately there’s little you can do change this if you're already operating in a particular postcode area.
Finally, the amount of indemnity you require -- how much cover you want -- will also have a large impact on the cost of your traders insurance. Remember it's important not to over-insure -- you don't want to pay a higher premium for no good reason.
With the above taken into account, it's time to explore other features you may wish to include when you take out your cover:
If you're looking to cover the building/buildings you work in and perhaps the tools and equipment contained on site, premises cover will be what you're after. This is useful for garages, dealerships, wheel specialists and other traders that operate at a fixed location. It is also possible for mobile traders to cover equipment and tools on a combined motor trade policy.
This is of use to car dealerships and sales garages in particular. Demo cover allows prospects interested in purchasing a vehicle to test drive the car providing they have a full UK licence. This can mean the difference between an interested prospect and a buyer!
Part time trader?
Not all motor traders work full time. In fact many work in the evenings and at weekends, often offering cheaper repair rates to friends and customers than larger garages. If this is the case for you, speak to your broker about a policy that may include cover for other occupations too e.g. building work, allied trades etc.
Public Liability insurance
Whist public liability is not a legal requirement (or at least it's not for motor traders), it is often recommended for any company interacting with the public. PL cover is bought to protect your business against claims from third parties who may have received accidental injury to themselves or their property. For example, an employee of yours accidentally drives over a customer's toes...
Are there any motor traders that need unique policies?
Generally most businesses involved in the automotive-world, including petrol stations and fuel forecourts, will need some form of traders insurance. Some businesses will need goods in transit insurance if they want cover for goods -- be it parts or vehicles -- whilst they're being transported from location to location. Some brokers view specialist breakdown recovery firms as HGV/Haulage risks as they often do little more with vehicles than load and unload them from their trailers.
Quite a few motor traders would benefit from standard business insurance too-- be that cover for business interruption, computer and office equipment or even an accident and sickness policy to protect employees repayments should they be unable to attend work for extended periods of time due to illness or injury.
Many businesses and homes in the UK are under-insured. This means that they are not covered for the real value of their possessions and should an accident happen, they will not be able to claim for their full loss. Don't let this happen to you or your business, use Quotiva for a quick quote comparison from motor trade insurance brokers.