6 Best General Liability Insurance for Handyman

Thang Truong
Thang Truong
Updated on:

Handymen often work with dangerous tools and equipment, along with harmful chemicals, around expensive, fragile, and breakable items. This often results in costly damage to client property that they could be held responsible for paying to repair or replace.

The best way to address the risk that you could be forced to pay for legal costs and damages associated with damaging client property while doing your work is by getting handyman general liability insurance. In this article, we’ll reveal the top 5 general liability insurance providers for handyman businesses and explain everything you need to know to get the coverage that’s right for you.

In this article, we’ll reveal the top 6 providers of handyman general liability insurance and explain what you need to know to get the right coverage for you at the best possible price.

Top 6 providers of handyman general liability insurance

We researched many insurers offering general liability coverage for handyman businesses. Here are our recommendations of the 6 best providers for different reasons. 

  • CoverWallet: Best for handyman business owners who want to compare quotes quickly
  • Next: Best online experience
  • Hiscox: Best for handymen with unique insurance needs
  • Simply Business: Best for the right general liability coverage at the right price
  • Thimble: Best for startup handyman general liability insurance
  • Progressive: The best for discounted handyman general liability insurance

CoverWallet: Best for handyman business owners who want to compare quotes quickly

CoverWallet is a cutting-edge insurance provider. The firm has developed its own state-of-the-art platform, based on its own algorithms, to ensure it is able to connect handymen and other types of small businesses with all the business insurance they need, including general liability coverage, at the most reasonable price. The platform makes it quick and easy to get quotes from several providers at once, making it possible to compare quotes from highly reputable insurers all on a single screen.

The firm’s experts have used their extensive experience to make sure you only have to input the information needed to generate quick and accurate quotes. The entire process should take less than ten minutes.

You can feel confident knowing that CoverWallet is a part of Aon, an established company that provides advice to businesses on things like risk, health, and retirement.

Once you get your quote, CoverWallet makes it easy to purchase a general liability policy or complete business insurance package online or through an agent. When you get your general liability policy through CoverWallet, it’s simple to manage your coverage online, including downloading a certificate of insurance, filing a claim, renewing your insurance, and more. 

Here is a sample handyman general liability quote from CoverWallet.

Next: Best online experience for handyman

Next is changing how handyman businesses purchase general liability insurance and other coverage.

Their operation is focused on delivering the ultimate online insurance experience. Because of this, you’re able to purchase a policy, file a claim or get a certificate of insurance any place, any time, 365 days a year. Even though Next is an online insurer, you can get expert help over the phone when you need it. The firm is also known for being able to make most claims decisions within 48 hours.

Even though Next is a relatively new and innovative company, you can rest assured knowing it has an excellent rating from A.M. Best, an insurance company rating agency. All the company’s policies are backed by MunichRe, an established insurance company and reinsurer. More than 10,000 business owners have turned to Next for their insurance needs. The firm has earned a solid 4.7 customer rating. 

Here is a sample quote from Next.

Hiscox: Best for handymen with unique insurance needs

Hiscox offers specialized insurance coverage for handymen.

It’s easy to buy business insurance for handymen from Hiscox online. A rep can also help you customize your coverage to meet your unique business needs.

If you choose Hiscox for your business coverage, you can rest assured knowing you’re entrusting your protection needs to a firm that’s been in operation for 120 years. It exclusively offers insurance for small businesses and more than 400,000 smaller companies and individuals trust Hiscox for their insurance needs.

Hiscox is known for tailoring unique insurance solutions to the individual requirements of small businesses. The company offers top tier service, provides fast quotes, instant coverage and quick claims processing.

Simply Business: Best for the right general liability coverage at the right price

Simply Business is more than a company name. It’s how the organization approaches small business insurance. The firm takes pride in making insurance for handymen clear, simple, and affordable.

The firm was founded in 2005 and is headquartered in Boston and London. It’s an online insurance brokerage that specializes in protecting small businesses.

No matter the size or scope of your handyman operation, Simply Business is committed to helping you find the right coverage at the right price. With Simply Business, all you have to do is input information online about your handyman business, and it will present you with quotes from top insurance providers. This allows you to compare costs and coverages and select the best insurance for your business all in a single place. It’s the simplest way for busy handymen to get coverage.

Here is a sample general liability quote from Simply Business.

Thimble: Best for startup handyman general liability insurance

Thimble calls itself quick thinking insurance for fast moving businesses. That certainly applies to many handyman operations. The firm prides itself on being able to provide businesses with coverage fast. Thimble may be a relatively new company, but it’s an A rated insurer that’s earned a 4.7 out of 5 rating on Trustpilot. 

Thimble is able to provide insurance per project for startups and scale coverage as businesses grow. You can modify, pause, or cancel coverage anytime with no hidden fees. This could be a good thing for handyman businesses that are just getting getting off the ground.

Here is a quote from Thimble.

Progressive: The best for discounted handyman general liability insurance

Progressive may seem like a less-than-serious company because of its ongoing series of commercials featuring Flo. You might feel concerned about entrusting your handyman operation to the insurer.

The truth: It’s a reputable company that’s been in business since 1937. Progressive is known for its flexibility, great rates and highly responsive service.

Progressive is famous for its discounts, which could help you save on your handyman general liability and other business insurance. You can earn discounts for things like:

  • Purchasing multiple coverages
  • Implementing safe work site practices 
  • Paying annually rather than in smaller increments 
  • Agreeing to autopay.

It’s easy to get a handyman quote online from Progressive. It should take you less than five minutes. 

Here’s an example of a handyman general liability insurance quote from Progressive.

What is handyman general liability insurance?

General liability insurance for handyman businesses helps protect them against claims of damage to other people’s property, bodily injury, and other issues. This coverage is often referred to as business liability insurance or commercial general liability insurance. Incidents often happen to people who do handyman work during the normal process of conducting business. 

Some examples include:

  • You’re removing brush from a client’s garden and accidentally remove and throw away some of the client’s prized heritage roses.
  • A client slips, falls, and hurts her back, while visiting your business location to sign contracts. She requires hospitalization. 
  • You break a client’s valuable vase while painting their home.

In all these cases, handyman general liability insurance would pay replacement, repair, medical, and legal costs resulting from the incident.

Is handyman required to have general liability insurance?

If you answer YES to any of the following questions, you probably have to buy handyman general liability insurance:

  • Does your state require insurance to conduct home repairs?
  • Do you plan to work in apartment complexes that require proof of insurance before you can get started?
  • Are you planning to work on bank-owned properties?
  • Are you planning to get a contractor’s license?
  • Do you do plumbing and electrical work?
  • Do you have to wear a helmet when you work?

Even if you didn’t answer in the affirmative to any of these, it could still be worth getting general liability insurance to protect your livelihood.

What does handyman general liability insurance cover?

General liability insurance helps pay for property and other types of damage that occur as a part of doing handyman work. It also helps cover injuries that happen on your business property. 

Typically, general liability insurance can help cover claims related to:

  • Third party property damage caused by you or an employee while conducting business 
  • Medical costs if your customer or client gets hurt when visiting your business
  • Reputational harm resulting from malicious slander, libel, wrongful eviction, violating a person’s privacy, and more
  • Advertising issues, such as copyright infringement and mistakes on your website.

What does general liability insurance not cover?

General liability insurance provides very specific types of coverage. It doesn’t cover all aspects of your handyman business or the risks it could face.

Here are some examples of things that are definitely not covered:

What other types of insurance do handymen get?

While some people offering handyman services will only need a general liability policy, there are five other types of coverages worth considering. Learn more at handyman insurance: cost, coverages, and providers

Commercial auto insurance

If you drive a business owned vehicle or a personal one for business reasons, you’ll need commercial auto insurance. A personal auto policy won’t cover damage or injuries that happen while conducting business. Commercial coverage for your car, truck or van typically runs between $150 and $200 per month. It will help you rest assured knowing you won’t have to pay for vehicle damage or injury related medical costs out of pocket if you’re involved in an accident while working.

Commercial property insurance

Do you have a lot of inventory or tools, whether at home or in a separate business location? Then you should consider commercial property insurance. It will protect you from theft or property damage caused by fire, accidents, or natural disasters, including things like your tools and equipment when they’re stored away on your property. If your items are damaged while at your home, your homeowners policy won’t cover them because you use them for business. You’ll need commercial property coverage.

Workers’ compensation insurance

If you have employees, workers’ compensation insurance is required in most states. It covers your employees (and you) if anyone is injured or becomes ill because of work related reasons. It pays medical expenses, disability, and a portion of lost wages or funeral expenses if someone dies on the job. Having workers’ comp will protect you from certain lawsuits that injured employees could file against you.

Workers’ comp is likely not required for self-employed handymen with no employees. However, if you’re in this situation, you may want to get it because it provides a level of financial security if you become injured on the job and can’t work for a while.

Tools and equipment insurance 

Handymen need their tools to get the job done. It can be devastating if something happens to them. The good news is that tools and equipment insurance can cover them if they’re damaged or stolen from a job site. Coverage is typically under $50 per month, depending on the types of tools and equipment covered. This could be a smart investment for most people working in the handyman trade.

Professional liability insurance

This coverage is also known as errors and omissions (E&O) insurance. It protects against claims of negligence while conducting business. If you ever provide a client with advice that isn’t correct or complete, or perform a handyman service someone isn’t happy with, and they sue you, professional liability insurance would pay legal and settlement costs.

Learn more at the best handyman insurance companies.

Why handyman businesses should get general liability insurance

States don’t require businesses to carry general liability insurance, however most clients and some lenders or landlords will. No matter the case, it’s a good idea for handyman businesses to have it. 

Think about it: If a visitor slipped and fell at your business and was injured, could you afford to pay their medical bills? Would you be able to pay to repair damage to a valuable painting if it’s caused by you or an employee while working at a client’s house?

The answer for most handyman businesses is NO and NO. That’s why general liability is one of the most popular business coverages, for handymen and other business types, after workers’ comp and commercial vehicle insurance.

How much does handyman general liability insurance cost?

The price of general liability coverage can vary more than almost any other type of business insurance. It’s dependent on many factors, including type of work done, size of the operation, experience, and the specific risks faced by the business. The cost of this coverage can range from several hundred to many thousands of dollars a year.

On average, handyman general liability insurance costs $210 a month. Below is the summary of the handyman general liability insurance costs that we get from several providers:

CarriersHandyman general liability insurance cost (monthly)
NEXT $183.39
Liberty Mutual $47.00
Markel $41.67

The best way to ensure you’re paying a fair price for your general liability coverage is to get quotes from multiple providers. That way, you can compare coverages and costs to find the best combination for you. If you have any doubts, speak with an experienced insurance agent. 

How do I find cheap handyman general liability insurance?

Here are some tips to help you find the coverage you need at a fair price:

  • Shop around for the best value. Get quotes from a few companies or compare the multiple quotes generated by a service like CoverWallet. 
  • Don’t stop shopping around. Make sure you get new quotes before you renew your policy.
  • Take advantage of discounts. If they’re not offered to you when getting a quote, ask about them, whether you’re buying online or through an agent.

Taking these steps will help ensure you’re not paying too much for your handyman general liability coverage.

Thang Truong

Thang Truong covers small business insurance and small business success at BravoPolicy. He is a licensed P&C insurance agent. Previously, he held product leadership positions at realtor.com, Capital One, NerdWallet, and Mulberry Technology. He holds a MBA degree from UC Berkeley - Haas School of Business.

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