A comprehensive guide to the insurance you need to protect your craft business.
You have car and house insurance ‘just in case’ something happens, did you know you need the same for your craft business?
‘Just in case’ someone gets hurt because of something you have made and sold.
‘Just in case’ someone trips over at your craft stall or in your craft classroom and hurts themselves.
‘Just in case’ a craft fairs asks for proof of your insurance before they allow you a stand at their fair.
‘Just in case’ of anything going wrong really.
Whilst you can think ‘it will never happen to me’ and keep your fingers crossed is it worth the risk?
If anything does happen the injured party may be entitled to recompense from you.
If you have the right insurance you have nothing to worry about.
If you don’t then you may be personally liable for who knows how much.
The sensible and professional approach is to take out business insurance as soon as you decide to start selling your crafts online, at craft fairs or parties.
If you are already selling without insurance, don’t panic but please do get your insurance sorted today!
No craft business is exactly the same so the cost of insurance will vary as there are many different options and you need to choose what is right for your individual creative business.
If you want a ‘ball park figure’, normally you are looking at between £35-150 a year, which is well worth the investment for the peace of mind. It will vary depending on what you sell or provide and where you sell to and how you sell it.
All of this makes craft business insurance pretty confusing.
So let’s break it down and make it as simple as possible, so you know the cover you will need.
For craft businesses there are 4 primary types of insurance you need to consider.
Please note: this is a generic guide only to help you source the right insurance for you. Policies will vary from different providers. Please check the small print in your policy to know exactly what is included in any cover you take out.
If you work from home you will also need to inform your current house insurance provider.
If you use your car for business you need to inform your car insurance provider.
This may incur additional costs on your policies.
You need to check that your insurance policy covers you for all the countries you wish to sell too.
Other available insurance:
Tradesman Insurance – this is a tailor made policy which provides just the cover you need. Public Liability is the basis of the policy. In addition tools, stock, buildings, office equipment, contract works, plant and hired plant can be covered.
Accident and Sickness Insurance – if you are unable to work this can replace lost earnings, usually up to 65% for a maximum of 12 consecutive months.
Income Protection Insurance – very similar to Accident and Sickness Insurance except plans can cover earnings all the way up until planned retirement
Cancellation Insurance – this covers any financial loss from cancellation of shows or events.
Get quotes from (in no particular order):
Craft Insurance / Ian Wallace – craftinsurance.co.uk
Market Traders – http://www.markettradersinsurance.co.uk/
Artists Network – www.a-n.co.uk/AIR (Insurance is part of membership)
Intasure – http://www.intasureforbusiness.com/
GM Imber & Sons – www.gmisl.co.uk/
Simply Business – www.simplybusiness.co.uk/insurance/
Tradesmen Saver www.tradesmansaver.co.uk/
Direct Line – www.directlineforbusiness.co.uk/business-insurance
Combined Market Traders and Insurance Association – cmtia.co.uk/
Interested in hearing other crafters experiences with insurance companies?
I asked some crafters who have business insurance who they would recommend:
Jane Cameron Ian Wallace.
Teresa Bagnall Mine is through Ian Wallace too via craft organisers in the area. The other place you can try is Market Traders
Wendy John Market Traders, so easy.x
Suzanna Ashby-Martin Axapp
Fran Hancock I use Ian Wallace
Heather Barber I’ve used CMTIA for the last 2 years, but need to start looking elsewhere shortly, probably either Ian Wallace of GM Imber
Louise Lockhart Mine is with Aviva through Ian Wallace too and yes, I’d recommend. Easy application process online. Quick and helpful on the follow up phone call I made. Covered everything I needed including my US/Canadian sales (under a certain value).
Sue Harris For just public and product liability cover look at a-n, you get cover as part if your membership for £36.
Ruth Redgate Direct line and interest free monthly payments for the first year
Sue Harris Artists network, Is £36 p.a. there will be a link there for the insurance. I spoke up to the broker at length regarding sales to the US and they cover if you were sued through a British court, but no one would sue you in a foreign court anyway if you don’t have assets in that country.
Claire Perkin Direct line
Heather Barber worth trying Ian Wallace or GM Imber, you still need business insurance for selling online
Sue Harris NFU – because we both have business visitors to the home and these were the only people prepared to cover this event (although they don’t cover theft or damage when we have visitors unless there is forced entry). I’m happy with them, they cover my studios and work as well. The bit I don’t like is our stance on badger culling is opposed to theirs. I would use someone else if I could. Direct Line lied about what they covered (had it in writing) when I went to renew, thank heavens we didn’t need to claim!!
Vicki Hallatt I’m with Ian Wallace and would definitely recommend them – they’re really helpful and tailor a policy to your needs
Paula Sloan Same here
Vicki Gregory Me too!
A Crafty Moment Me too!
Nicola Raven-nee Barber I have mine with Intasure as I was with Direct Line and they went from £58 for the first year to over £300 the following.. Intasure charge me £16 a month for not only public/product liability but cover stock, machines, money in transit, items in my vehicle if I am out at an event and more..
Gemma Hook Hiscox. They are great and only £8 a month.
IMPORTANT – All insurance policies are different, read the small print and make sure you are covered for all eventualities that apply to you.
Just in case you aren’t yet convinced and you are thinking you’d rather save the few pounds and take the risk, here is a tale originally told in a private Facebook from a wonderful craft business lady called Sue – thankfully she had insurance!
“for those of you who don’t have insurance thinking oh it won’t happen, yes it can! I was in partnership with a wood turner and one of our cheapish things was a wooden pebble shaped keyring, used up the bits. He made, I sold at fairs. Some eejit bought one and gave it to her baby as a teether, then sued us because her baby got a splinter.
We had insurance, she had legal aid. It took over a year and a lot of stress from her venom (legal aid had a lot to answer for back then) before it got to court.
The bill was many many thousands and the judge threw it out in seconds saying he was sad you could not legislate against idiots!
Our argument was there was a clue in the title, it was a key ring. We got costs, but the local paper had got hold of it and we were not compensated for the damage to our reputation.
What if some ‘little darling’ pops something small from your stall in its mouth – I’ve had, frankly little brats, put beads in their mouth just to spite mummy who is not paying enough attention at a fair and it was not my fault, darling mummy handed the bead to the child to look at *gasp emoticon* then accuses me of harming her child – I counter-accused her with theft, but these people are out there and with legal cover included in most house insurance people will sue you if they want to, it is not hard to do so.
Of course, if you have independent means and thrive on adrenaline then fine take the risk.
Personally I would rather see, as in the US, ALL companies whatever size registered with the local authority, you then display your trading licence which confirms you have met ALL legal requirements. That way event organisers and customers could see who was meeting the mark and who was not.”