Opening and operating your own auto garage can be an extremely rewarding business venture. However, like most businesses, owning an auto garage comes with a variety of risks. Many of these are shared with other small businesses. However, there are also some unique concerns when it comes to operating an auto garage. This is why it’s crucial to be fully prepared when opening your auto garage. Auto garage insurance is a must, from theft and fires to ensuring your employees are safe. On top of this, you are handling customers’ vehicles, many of which are near and dear to them and necessary to live their day-to-day lives. Luckily, isure has everything you need to know when it comes to auto garage insurance and getting the proper protection.

What exactly is Auto Garage Insurance?

As mentioned above, owning and operating your own auto garage comes with a variety of risks that can put you, your employees and even your customers, at risk. This is where auto garage insurance comes into play. Auto garage insurance is a commercial policy that ensures a car repair business and their employees are protected against third-party claims. On top of this, it protects you from risks associated with employee bodily-injury, property damage and other exposures. Since you are responsible for your customer’s vehicles on a daily basis, having an insurance plan that helps you in case an accident occurs is essential to protecting your business.

Auto garage risks and exposures

If you’ve been in an auto garage before, you know there is a ton of exposure present. Additionally, many other amenities can affect your insurance. These risks include:

  • Company cars and shuttle cars
  • Heavy machinery
  • Oily surfaces
  • Damage to customer vehicles

Since auto garages aren’t the only places where garages are present, there are many other places that should take auto garage insurance into consideration. Detailing centres, dealerships and car washes also need to consider their risk and exposures. Thus, auto garage insurance plays a huge part in these types of businesses. Here are some types of insurance you should make sure are part of your auto garage insurance policy:

1. Garage Policy

When you have other people’s vehicles in your possession, making sure they leave in top-notch condition is key. However, we all know that sometimes unfortunate events can happen. From being hoisted up to being driven by workers for testing, there are many situations where an owner’s vehicle can be damaged while in your hands. This is where a garage policy comes into place. A garage policy will have the insurer pay for any damages that may take place while the car is in your possession. If you get into a collision while test driving or returning a vehicle, you will be given the same benefits as a general Ontario Automotive Policy. To sum it up, a garage policy protects vehicles that you are working on that are not yours.

2. Commercial General Liability Insurance

Every business, including your auto repair shop, is going to want to have general liability insurance. This is especially true in a space, such as an auto garage, where people are constantly working with tools, heavy machinery and in sometimes chaotic environments. Because a personal injury claim can be expensive to settle or fight, it’s important to have this as part of your policy. If a customer slips and falls while in your auto garage due to a greasy floor, you may be liable for damages. With CGL coverage, you can make sure you, your employees and your business, stay protected.

3. Professional Liability Insurance

Everyone makes mistakes here and there, but if an employee makes one on the job, it can put your company in some turmoil. A good example of where professional liability insurance, also known as Errors and Omissions, comes into play is if an employee of yours charges a customer an incorrect amount for a service. When mistakes like these happen, the client may look to file a legal claim due to significant distress and damage. As the owner of the auto garage, you put yourself at risk for scenarios like this. Luckily, professional liability insurance is available to keep you covered!

4. Commercial Auto insurance

Though not necessary for all auto garages, sometimes commercial auto insurance can be mandatory. In many cases, auto garages or dealerships will have temporary plates to put on vehicles if they do not have plates. As a result, you will need insurance! Many auto garages also offer complimentary courtesy cars or shuttle cars so that people can get to and from the garage with ease. These are all situations where it is important to have commercial auto insurance as part of your policy.

5. Commercial Property insurance

Owning a business property of any kind opens up a large window of situations and hazards. From major hazards, such as a fire, to something less dangerous, like graffiti vandalism, it is important to be protected. In the event that a fire occurs and destroys some vehicles that are not yours, the replacement costs are going to be hefty. Luckily, a commercial property insurance policy will help cover those costs, amongst many other perils.

At the end of the day, any business you own or operate should be protected by the proper insurance policy. Your auto garage businesses are important, and should be treated as such! Remember, if you are opening a business or in the market for a new insurance policy, contact isure today. Request a quote here!

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