Remodeling Your Home

The Sorgi Insurance CompanyRemodeling Your Home

Preparing To Remodel Your Home

Before you hire a contractor, ask to see their:

DIY and Insurance1. References

2. Power tools

3. Proof of insurance

Checking a contractor’s references is always a good idea, and it’s nice to know they have power tools. However, making sure your contractor has appropriate insurance can protect your assets during a renovation and ensure that you are covered after the job is complete.

Who is on your team?

Your agent insurance agent is an important part of the renovation team before, during, and after completion of the work.

Have him or her:

· Help you decide how much the renovation will increase the value of your home.

· Provide insight on additional coverages you may need at the beginning of the renovation and upon its completion.

· Determine if your contractor’s certificates of insurance provide appropriate coverage for the work being done.

By the time work begins on your renovation, you will either have hired a general contractor to oversee the entire job, or you will have chosen to act as the general contractor yourself. In either case, you are likely to find your home full of sub-contractors (plumbers, carpenters, painters, etc.) who will work on specific parts of the project.

Contractor-Subcontractor Agreement Form

Worker’s Compensation And General Liability

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Worker’s Compensation

Worker’s compensation insurance provides coverage to the workers (the general contractor and his/her employees) for job-related injuries. Worker’s compensation is required by most states and is usually governed and regulated by each state’s lawmakers.

General Liability

General liability insurance covers a negligent act or omission that results in property damage or bodily injury (to someone other than the general contractor, his/her employees, and the subcontractors he or she hires).

Both of these forms of insurance cover the policyholder (in this case the general contractor) because s/he is the first person to be found liable if something goes wrong. However, the premises where the work is being performed belongs to you and if the general contractor fails to carry appropriate insurance, an injured party is likely to sue you as well.

Depending on the type of renovation planned, your general contractor may also need to provide a builder’s risk policy. This coverage protects your existing property and the new construction during the course of the renovation, as well as uninstalled appliances, cabinets, carpet, and other items related to the renovation.

Proof positive – Get a Certificate of Insurance

When you hire a general contractor or subcontractor, ask for a copy of the worker’s compensation and general liability certificates of insurance.

The following details should be on the certificates:

· Effective dates of coverage (If they are about to expire, request an updated certificate.)

· Name of insurance company

· Name of insurance agent

· Amount of coverage purchased (called limits)

· Names of insured parties (Check to make sure the general contractor’s name appears on the certificate. A sole proprietor can exclude himself/herself from their own worker’s compensation policy.)

Your insurance agent can help you determine the proper limits for the kind of renovation you are planning.

DIY Home Projects and Home Insurance

When you take on the job of general contractor, you also take on the liability. Your coverage needs can vary greatly depending on the extent of the renovation, and the number of people who will help you do the work.

Each of the following situations could trigger the need for insurance coverage beyond your existing homeowners policy:

· Hiring subcontractors

· Hiring paid help

· Using non-paid help such as family or friends

· Potential loss or damage to building materials prior to use

Raising the roof

You may require additional insurance coverage if the planned renovation opens your home to the elements. Tearing down exterior walls, replacing windows, doors, a roof, or a chimney can leave your home exposed to theft and weather damage liability. Most homeowners policies do not cover this kind of exposure when it is created by the homeowner.

Call your agent. Your Agent is your best source to make sure you are covered.