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What Types of Insurance Does an Antique Store Need?

What Types of Insurance Does an Antique Store Need?

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What Types of Insurance Does an Antique Store Need?

Antique Shop Business Insurance Quotes

Costs for business insurance can vary greatly, and getting insurance quotes from multiple companies is recommended in order to get the best pricing.

Coverwallet and Hiscox offer easy business insurance quotes at affordable prices.

An antique store embraces the classic charm of days past, and it gives antique enthusiasts the opportunity for adventure. Each store, being vastly different, becomes a treasure hunt. You might find an Underwood typewriter in the store one week and the next week, a century-old hope chest. From furniture to old tech and sepia-toned photographs to classic records, the store has the potential to appeal to a variety of customers.

Because the store’s inventory is unique, this does bring a level of risk to the business if an accident, like a fire, should occur. An antique store relies on sales to secure income, but what happens when the inventory is lost? An insurance policy is essential to protect the business from financial hardships.

Related: How to start an antique store

What Are Some of the Risks for an Antique Store?

Some of the risks that an antique store may face include the following:

  • Fire damage
  • Extended closures
  • Customer injury
  • Accidental damage to client items
  • Employee injury

Although this list is brief, it sheds light on the need for insurance. Risks cannot be entirely prevented, but a business can prepare for them, and insurance is the solution for financial assistance when an accident occurs.

Fire Damage

Fire is a substantial threat to the business, whether the antique shop has a brick-and-mortar store or sells items at trade shows and online. A fire that damages the building could shut down the store for an extended period while repairs are made. And even more detrimental, antique inventory damaged by fire is hard to replace.

Extended Closures

Any damage done to the building or the inventory could interrupt the business’s operations. Antiques are unique pieces which means they are hard to replace quickly. A fire that damages the inventory introduces a unique challenge to replace one-of-a-kind, rare items.

Additionally, the store gains its income through customer purchases. If there is an interruption to the business, then the income is paused. An extended gap in revenue can harm the store’s financial well-being.

Customer Injury

Injury can happen to customers that come on-site or visit an auction. Some common injury claims involve slips, trips, and falls. The risk of customer injury increases if the store is crowded and cluttered. A designated walkway and clear staircases will help to improve the customer’s safety.

Accidental Damage to Client Items

In addition to selling antiques, the store may offer restoration and repair services in which clients bring their antiques to the store for refinishing. This service is an excellent way for the store to add supplemental income. However, the store will take on additional hazards of a financial loss if the client’s item is damaged, stolen, or lost while in the business’s care.

Employee Injury

An antique shop with employees is at risk of employee injury. Similar to customer injuries, slips, trips, and falls can harm a worker. Additionally, staff members that move and carry heavy furniture are at risk of strained backs or pulled muscles. Another employee-injury peril comes from refinishing work; for example, inhaling sanding dust or liquid stains and paints can be harmful.


What Types of Insurance Should an Antique Dealer Consider?

Accidents are not planned, but they can be planned for—a business plans for accidents by strategizing a course of action in advance. Insurance is a vital part of that strategy. It addresses the need for financial protection if an accident causes the store financial hardship.

The following are policies that an antique store should consider:

  • Commercial property insurance
  • Business interruption insurance
  • General liability insurance
  • Inland marine insurance
  • Workers’ compensation insurance

Commercial Property Insurance

Property damage provides coverage for the business when damage happens to its building, equipment, or inventory. Typically, a property damage policy covers perils such as fire, theft, vandalism, wind and hail, and water damage from leaking pipes. Carrying a property damage policy is significant for an antique store because it sells a considerable amount of high-value and hard-to-replace inventory.

The store may carry two standard property damage policies: an actual cash value (ACV) policy or a replacement cost policy. The difference between the two is the coverage limit.

For example, a replacement cost policy pays for the building, equipment, and inventory at the market value to replace the items. In contrast, an ACV policy accounts for depreciation and only covers the value of the items at the time of loss. Therefore, a replacement cost policy is more expensive because it provides a higher level of coverage.

The property damage policy could also be written as an agreed value policy. This policy sets a coverage limit based on what you and the insurance company agree on. This type of policy is helpful to ensure hard-to-replace items.

Here are a few tips to help evaluate high-value items:

  • Document your inventory, ideally with pictures or video.
  • Acquire certificates of authenticity when possible.
  • Get your items appraised.

A property damage policy is often bundled with other insurance coverages into a business owner’s policy.

Business Interruption Insurance

Business interruption insurance helps cover expenses and lost income when the business is closed for an extended period. This coverage applies to covered hazards, for example, a catastrophic fire. If the building is closed for repairs following a fire, the store loses the opportunity to earn income, but insurance helps cover the financial loss.

An antique store may face difficulty reacquiring lost or damaged items. Although this line of coverage doesn’t pay to replace the lost antiques, it does cover the cost of an extended shut down due to the extra time it takes to replace rare items.

For an agreed amount of time, the business interruption coverage pays for several costs:

  • Lost income
  • Temporary relocation
  • Coverage for loans and bills
  • Employee wages

Usually, this type of coverage is not a stand-alone policy and often is written with other policies, such as a business owner’s policy or a commercial package policy.

General Liability Insurance – Premises and Operations

A general liability policy offers coverage for lawsuits that arise if a customer is injured on the store’s property or because of the store’s negligence. It is essential to carry liability insurance because it provides payment for the cost of legal defense fees, settlements, and medical costs. Without this coverage, the antique store would be liable to pay for these expenses independently.

Regarding an antique store, general liability claims happen if a customer slips or falls in the store or at an auction. In addition, any lifting and carrying of furniture presents a potential for personal injury, especially for the back and knees. Thus, safety measures should be enforced to prevent customer injuries. Also, a robust insurance policy will cover expenses from an accident.

Inland Marine Insurance

An inland marine policy covers the store’s inventory and equipment off-site or during shipping. This coverage is important for items that move between antique shows and auctions or are delivered by the store. This coverage follows the items wherever they go and includes perils such as theft, damage, and vandalism.

Under an inland marine policy, the antique store can carry bailee’s coverage. This line of coverage offers protection for items that don’t belong to the store but are in the store’s care. For example, a store that provides repairs and restorations should consider this type of coverage.

If the client’s merchandise is stolen, damaged, or vandalized, the policy will reimburse the cost of said item.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

An antique store with employees may want to consider a workers’ compensation policy because it protects the store from potential lawsuits. Employees are at risk of work injuries—especially if they lift and move furniture.

Additionally, employees can be injured or become ill while restoring antiques. Therefore, proper education and training are just as important as insurance to protect against work-related injuries.

Some benefits that this policy offers include the following:

  • Medical payments
  • Ongoing rehabilitation care
  • Lost wages
  • Funeral expenses
  • Legal costs

How Much Does Business Insurance Cost for an Antique Store?

Factors that affect the price of a business insurance policy are coverage limits and deductibles.

  1. Check the limits of your coverage. A higher policy limit means the premium price is higher.
  2. Check your deductible amounts. The deductible defines the portion you would pay in the event of a claim. A higher deductible means a lower premium.

After assessing your coverage limits and deductibles, the subsequent influence on the premium is the store’s exposure to risk. The insurance company will ask you many questions about the store to determine your risk exposure. The bigger the risk exposure is, the higher the premium will be.

  • How big is your store?
  • How many high-value items need coverage?
  • How many customers come on-site?
  • What are the safety measures in place to protect items during shipping?

These examples are a few questions that an insurance company may ask. The best way to determine how much insurance will cost your business is to receive quotes from several insurance companies. Look for policies that can be written as a package, as these can save you money and administrative time—the fewer policy renewals to keep track of, the less time you spend thinking about your insurance.

What Types of Insurance Does an Antique Store Need?

What Types of Insurance Does an Antique Store Need?

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