Small business is the heart of the Ontario economy. From Ajax to Kitchener, from Toronto to Windsor, small business owners are the driving force behind the province of Ontario. These facts recently compiled by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce speak for themselves:
- “Small businesses are the backbone of the Ontario economy, making important contributions to local communities across the province
- There are over 400,000 small businesses in Ontario, providing important jobs and livelihoods for many Ontarians
- Small businesses make up 98% of all Ontario businesses and 30% of Ontario’s provincial GDP
- Small businesses employ over 3,000,000 Ontarians and two-thirds of all private-sector workers in Ontario”1
If you own or manage a small business in Ontario you likely wear many different hats. From the front lines to the behind-the-scene workings, managing tactical details while keeping your eye on the bigger picture is always on your mind.
Above all, you are constantly juggling details. This is why when it comes to insuring your small Ontario business, working with small business experts is so important.
About Small Business Insurance Ontario
There are lots to know about small business insurance Ontario and when searching “about small business insurance Ontario” in Google, Bing or any other search directory you likely won’t get the results and answers you are looking for as large insurance companies spend millions buying up keywords for products and topics that they don’t offer or really know much about. Thankfully there are trusted sources of information for terms like small business insurance Ontario and others and the expert insurance brokers at the commercial insurance brokerage ALIGNED Insurance. The insurance brokers at ALIGNED Insurance special in business insurance and know a lot about small business insurance Ontario as they serve the entire province from the Toronto and Waterloo (national operations centre) locations.
Why do I need business insurance?
Regardless of the type of business you operate, it’s always important to protect it against operational risks, liability claims, and lawsuits. Business insurance is designed to protect you against these types of incidents. Accidents can still happen despite precautions and established procedures that cause your business lots of money to remedy.
Whether you operate in a large or small industry or perform high-risk activities or not, insurance helps mitigate financial loss when accidents do occur. For example, if you’re cleaning a client’s window and accidentally break it, they could file a claim for property damage.
If you didn’t have insurance, the financial repercussions you face to repair the damages could be substantial. Insurance helps cover some of the repair and replacements costs and ensures the long-term survival of your business. Otherwise, your business could be left in trouble or even bankrupt.
What Is There To Know About Small Business Insurance Ontario?
Having a good understanding of the marketplace you are buying from is important as information is power when it comes to purchasing decisions, negotiating, etc. and there are some things about small business insurance Ontario that are good for everyone to know.
- Ontario is the largest P&C insurance marketplace in Canada
- Nearly 25% of insurance premiums nationally are from Ontario auto insurance which is over $10 Billion dollars annually
- Ontario has more P&C insurance head offices than all other provinces combined
- Whether it’s personal or business auto insurance Ontario auto insurance is a no-fault system which basically means each insurance pays for the physical damage to their own vehicle only.
- The average Ontario insurance brokerage is roughly 70-80% personal lines and with exception of ALIGNED Insurance very few are 100% business insurance-focused
- Due to its size and significance, the Ontario insurance marketplace is incredibly competitive and there are thousands of insurance brokerages and tens of thousands of licensed insurance brokers in Ontario. However, none are the same and none are created equal so please take the time to evaluate the broker and brokerage you decide to work with to ensure they are the best fit for you and your organization.
What is the average cost of small business insurance?
It depends on the type of coverage you have and how much coverage you have. A robust, comprehensive insurance policy will be more expensive than a basic package. On average, small to medium-sized businesses can expect to pay around $650 each year for small business insurance. Larger companies might have to pay more for insurance premiums.
Factors that impact insurance cost include:
- Number of employees
- The services you provide
- Business location
- Value and amount of equipment owned
- Annual and projected revenue
- Years of experience
- Historical insurance data
- Your deductible
What does small business insurance cover?
Small business insurance covers a range of risks that could cause your business financial loss because of third-party liability claims and lawsuits. It protects your business by covering some of the costs associated with these lawsuits or claims up to your policy limit.
For example, if a customer has a slip-and-fall accident, small business insurance covers medical bills and settlement awards. Here are some of the specific types of coverage you can purchase under a small business insurance policy:
- Commercial general liability insurance
- Professional liability insurance
- Product liability insurance
- Commercial auto insurance
- Commercial property insurance
- Equipment breakdown insurance
Want insurance insights that are specific to small businesses?
It’s important to understand your business insurance. The Ontario insurance marketplace is always changing and evolving. And as a small business owner, you can’t always keep on top of the newest coverages. This is why we regularly publish informative articles about small business insurance on our blog. Below, please find two examples of articles you may find helpful.
Run a small business in your Ontario home?
Some small business owners decide against acquiring commercial general liability insurance because they have a home insurance policy. In some cases, home insurance can cover some of the liability associated with running a small business if your insurance company has confirmed this to you in writing.
However, most personal insurance companies explicitly exclude any sort of business liability – in fact, if a client visits your home and becomes hurt or has their property damaged, your Ontario small business may not be covered in the event that the client files suit.
Is your small business covered for professional liability?
Also known as errors and omissions, professional liability insurance is designed to protect your Ontario small business in the event that a customer feels your company has failed to properly render professional services.
For example, if your customer files suit arguing a strategy you developed and recommended harmed their business, professional liability insurance could help the court and/or settlement costs. Professional liability insurance is particularly useful for organizations that provide services such as law, accounting, consulting, real estate, and financial advisory firms.
9 Tips | Insights for buying or renewing small business insurance in Ontario
Last but not least, whether you are renewing coverage or buying insurance for the first time, these 9 small business insurance tips from the Insurance Bureau of Canada can help you focus on what’s most important.
- “Speak to an insurance professional about the specific insurance needs of your business.
- Shop around to find the right policy to fit your unique needs.
- Review your policy at least once a year.
- Understand your policy. Know what your policy covers and your policy’s limits and deductibles. If you have questions, contact your insurance representative.
- Make sure your policy’s limits are appropriate. Check to see if you have the right amount of coverage for what you own and operate.
- Look into purchasing liability insurance. If someone were to slip and fall on your premises, you’d want to be sure you had adequate liability coverage.
- Ensure that you have appropriate auto insurance coverage. A personal auto insurance policy will not cover the commercial use of a vehicle.
- Look for ways to lower your premiums. Some insurers offer discounts if you take action to reduce risk. Ask your insurance representative about what you can do to lower your premiums.
- Consider errors and omissions coverage. If you are offering advice to clients, you will want to make sure you are covered if your advice goes awry.”2
Our National Operations Centre is based in Cambridge, Ontario and across the country, we support the needs of hundreds of small business owners. Talk to one of our small business insurance experts today to get the best coverage options lined up for your Ontario business.
DYK? We’re a small business too!
Like so many other Ontario small businesses, ALIGNED Insurance is built on an entrepreneurial dream.
We believe that aligning insurance experts to business needs is one of the most important things we do to support our clients throughout the province of Ontario.
Through our operations headquarters in Cambridge, Ontario and locations in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver, we support more than 1,600 clients across this country.
Here’s what some of our clients have to say about us…
Our team of experienced small business insurance brokers are experts in helping with all types of liability insurance products for small businesses and any other type of insurance that’s needed. Here’s what a few people have to say about why they choose to work with an ALIGNED Insurance broker.
“The ALIGNED team was great to work with! Easy communication, quick results and a great price on what we needed for insurance. Highly recommended!”Excerpts from: 5 Star Reviews: What people have to say about ALIGNED Insurance and More Google reviews about ALIGNED Insurance
“Super helpful people just to get a quote over the phone. Helped me a lot with my project and potential start up.”
“Could not help directly with our insurance needs but gave us a great referral and follow up. Would recommend!”
“I’ve worked with a number of Insurance Brokers in the past 10 years and ALIGNED has surpassed them all. They are knowledgeable, friendly and a great asset to have in your corner.”
Need small business insurance in Ontario?
You have landed on the right page. We’ve built our website with the specific questions that small business owners ask us the most in mind. Day in and day out, we are answering questions from Ontario small business owners.
So to help you get the answers you seek – and connect directly with the insurance products most needed by small businesses – we created a specific section on our website that’s 100% dedicated to small business insurance.
Check out these products that are built for small businesses:
- Auto Insurance for small business
- Credit Insurance for small business
- Cyber Liability Insurance for small business
- Directors and Officers Insurance for small business
- Employee Theft Insurance for small business
- Employment Practices Liability Insurance for small business
- General Liability Insurance for small business
- Property Insurance for small business
- Umbrella Liability Insurance for small business
Sources: 1 Ontario Chamber of Commerce: Small Business Week 2019;
2IBC.ca: Insurance tips for small business