Florida has a lot going for it for small business owners. Not only does it have miles of beaches, funky art deco cities, and Disney World, but it also has low property taxes and no state income tax. It’s also the nation’s third-biggest state, population-wise, which means thousands of potential customers for your business. On the other hand, there were 384,556 property crimes in Florida in 2020, so you’ll want to protect your business with commercial property insurance.
- 6 best commercial property insurance companies in Florida
- What is commercial property insurance?
- What does commercial property insurance cover?
- How much is commercial property insurance in Florida?
- What factors affect the commercial property insurance cost in Florida?
- How to find cheap commercial property insurance in Florida?
- Do I need commercial property insurance if I just rent a space?
6 best commercial property insurance companies in Florida
Hundreds of insurance companies offer commercial property insurance in Florida. It can be overwhelming to find the best one. We have done the research and here are our recommendations of the top 6 companies in Florida.
- CoverWallet: Best for comparing online quotes
- Thimble: Best for short-term insurance
- Hiscox: Best for businesses with few employees
- Liberty Mutual: Best for multiple policies
- Allstate: Best for professional association discounts
- Travelers: Best for working with an independent agent
CoverWallet: Best for comparing online quotes
CoverWallet is an online insurance broker. They pull quotes from their partners to offer small business owners several quotes to compare, so you can see who offers the best deal. They don’t actually write their own insurance, but they do offer a “wallet” so you can keep track of policies from different companies in the same place. You can use the wallet even if you don’t buy your insurance through CoverWallet, but it will cost you $99.
CoverWallet won’t give you a quote for commercial property insurance by itself, but they will bundle it with general liability insurance and give you a quote for a Business Owner’s policy. As you can see, although CoverWallet says that they offer multiple quotes, they don’t always. This was the only quote they offered us for an accounting firm that rents an office in Miami.
Thimble: Best for short-term insurance
Thimble is an insurtech company that will sell you business insurance for as little time as an hour. They provide quotes quickly, and you can purchase insurance in minutes. They don’t underwrite their own policies, however—your insurance will actually come from a third party. A fun fact is that Thimble started as a drone insurance company in 2016 and then expanded to business insurance.
Thimble also bundles quotes for commercial property insurance with general liability insurance (Business Owner’s Policy). It also doesn’t offer insurance for rented space, although you can insure the contents of your business.
Hiscox: Best for businesses with few employees
Hiscox can offer you online quotes, but only for general liability and professional liability insurance. To get a quote for commercial property insurance, you’ll have to bundle it with general liability, but there’s no online option to get a quote. Also, Hiscox works with other insurance companies to underwrite some of their policies. You can get a discount if you buy more than one policy.
Hiscox will only cover businesses with less than 10 employees, so if you have more than that, you’ll have to look elsewhere.
Liberty Mutual: Best for multiple policies
Liberty Mutual has a wide range of business insurance policy types, so you are sure to find what you need. However, they only work through agents, so you can’t get a quote online. Interestingly, there is a button to get a quote, “Quote Now.” When you click on it, it tells you that Liberty Mutual has paired with Commercialinsurance.net to provide you with business solutions. Then it brings you to the Commercialinsurance.net webpage, which tells you they have paired with Liberty Mutual. Then you can either call or fill out a form and an agent will contact you.
Liberty Mutual was second from the bottom on J.D. Power’s 2021 U.S. Small Commercial Insurance Study—only The Hartford fared worse.
Allstate: Best for professional association discounts
Allstate was the number one company on J.D. Power’s U.S. Small Commercial Insurance Study. Another good thing about Allstate is that they pair with many professional and trade organizations to offer discounts to small business owners.
On the other hand, you can’t get a quote from them online, as they prefer that you work with one of their 1,400 insurance agents instead. Also, the reviews on Trustpilot are almost universally terrible, with 86% of the respondents giving them one out of five stars. These reviews are mostly about their car and home insurance, not business insurance, but it’s something to keep in mind.
Travelers: Best for working with an independent agent
Travelers is the second-largest business insurer in the United States. They tend to skew more towards larger businesses, but you may find they suit your purposes, even if you are a small business owner. You can’t get a quote online, though—you’ll have to work with an agent.
Travelers has many different types of business policies, so if you want to get all of your insurance with one company and don’t mind working with an agent, they might be a good fit. Travelers works with independent agents, which means they can sell you a policy from several different companies, not just Travelers. This may help you get a better deal, as the agent isn’t committed to any one company.
What is commercial property insurance?
Commercial property insurance protects your business from losses due to property damage, theft, water damage, or vandalism. It not only covers the building/location but the contents of it, like:
There are three types of commercial property insurance in Florida:
Basic Form: includes losses from fire, lightning, and other types of weather, plus the cost of removing property to protect it from further damage (ex: a flood)
Broad Form: includes basic, but broadens it to include roof collapse, riots, civil disobedience, etc.
Special Form: Includes all other losses except for those specifically excluded. In other words, unless something is mentioned as not being covered, it’s covered.
What does commercial property insurance cover?
Commercial property insurance covers the building, its contents, and things like the fence, the sign, the landscaping and the inventory. Typically, commercial property insurance covers you for damages from weather, fire, explosions, water damage, and vandalism.
Frequently, commercial property insurance also includes business interruption insurance. This is critical because if a fire damages your place of business and you can’t work for two weeks, you’ll need insurance to replace your income. It’s not a given that it’s included, though, so be sure to check your policy.
What doesn’t commercial property insurance cover?
Most commercial property insurance policies exclude things like:
- Intentional damage
- Acts of war
- Nuclear hazards
- Wear and tear
You’re probably thinking, the chances of an earthquake in Florida are pretty slim, but what about a flood? While damage from floods in not included in most commercial property insurance policies, you can get a specialized policy to cover it or add it as a rider. You can get most of the above exclusions covered with specialized insurance, except for wear and tear and intentional damage.
How much is commercial property insurance in Florida?
Before you get commercial property insurance, you should have your property assessed. That way you’ll have a record, and you can feel confident you have enough insurance. If you have antiques or artwork in your building, those should be assessed by a specialized appraiser.
The average cost of commercial property insurance in Florida is about $742 a year. The main hazards in Florida are the weather, with wind, rain, and hurricanes causing millions of dollars’ worth of damage a year. In 2018 alone, there were over a million insurance claims in Florida due to hurricanes.
This is just the average cost of the entire state. You quotes and your rates will be different. Be sure to shop around with a few carriers or work with a top broker like CoverWallet, ez.insure, or commercialinsurance.net to get and compare several quotes to find the cheapest one for your business.
Learn more about the details of commercial property insurance cost
What factors affect the commercial property insurance cost in Florida?
There are several factors that affect how much you’ll pay for commercial property insurance in Florida:
Age of the building: newer construction is less to insure because of stricter building codes, modern materials, etc.
Construction: What the building is made out of, such as wood, masonry, brick, etc. Non-combustible materials cost less to insure.
Location: You’ll pay more if your building is on the beach because of a greater risk of water damage and flooding. On the other hand, if you’re located next door to a fire department, you’ll pay less.
Alarms: sprinkler systems, burglar alarms, and security systems will usually earn you a discount.
How to find cheap commercial property insurance in Florida?
The easiest way to find cheap commercial property insurance in Florida is to get several quotes from a few different insurance companies. You could save hundreds of dollars a year.
Getting several quotes from several carriers can be time consuming, especially if they don’t offer quotes online. Working with a top broker like CoverWallet or ez.insure or commercialinsurance.net is a good way to get several quotes from many carriers in one place to compare and select the cheapest one for your business.
Do I need commercial property insurance if I just rent a space?
Yes. While your landlord may have insurance on the building, none of your equipment is covered by his/her policy. This means that if there were a fire and a total loss, you would have to replace everything out of pocket.
Also, keep in mind that commercial property insurance often includes business interruption insurance. This will replace your lost income if there is a catastrophic event. If you don’t have commercial property insurance, you might be on your own until the landlord gets around to fixing your office or until you find a new one.
Commercial property insurance is important, whether you rent or own a property. Don’t scrimp by skipping it, because you might regret it later.