The real estate industry is a multi-billion dollar industry generating thousands of jobs in Australia.
The industry faces many challenges ranging from changing market conditions, lending restrictions,
increased compliance, changes to commissions due to new technology and new business models entering the market.
Some of these changes will be positive, some will be negative and some will force businesses to operate more efficiently and a lot smarter.
As a business owner, insurance will be one of the tools you have available 10 you to minimise some of your exposure. Proper advice and service is important and could be the difference between being fully protected, paying thousands of dollars in compensation or risking loss of your business.
As a specialist real estate insurance broker, we can help you ensure your business is adequately protected.
Irrespective of the size of your business, some risks are shared by all offices and the following covers should be considered:
Covers building and contents against fire, water damage, wind damage, malicious damage and similar events
Covers theft from your locked premise
Covers money stolen from your premise such as money in trust/bond deposits, etc
Covers all glass as required by most lease agreements
If you supply phones, ipad’s and notebooks to staff away from the premise
In the event of property damage, your income will be covered and additional costs you may Incur
What can go wrong?
A fire caused a regional real estate agent to move offices up the rood. The rent was $6,000 more per annum. With the right cover and advice, the rent was covered as part of the settlement with the insurer; together with the damaged contents.
Dealing with clients (Liability & Professional indemnity)
Liability insurance for Real Estate firms is generally inexpensive but vital to any business, it covers amounts you may be liable to pay for personal injury or property damage to third parties, These may include clients who come into your business, or who may be at an open house inspection you are conducting.
Professional Negligence insurance is extremely important especially in an era where an agent’s every move is under scrutiny. The policy covers civil liability claims brought against your business for broach of contract, allegations of misrepresentation, poor property management and/or broach of statutory provisions under the various laws.
What can go wrong?
A vendor advocate failed to send written notice to the listing agent before the deadline that the consumer was opting out of the purchase and safe agreement per the inspection contingency in the contract. In another instant, an agent selling a high rise city apartment failed to disclose the uninterrupted view of the nearby garden would be obstructed by another building to go up next door.
Business Operation (managing a business)
A Management Liability insurance program is designed to cover the exposures and risks in managing a business (mismanagement of the business). As directors, without adequate protection, you expose not only losing your business but your personal assets if you are sued.
A number of covers are provided under this type of policy such as Director and Officers Liability where cover is provided to past, current and future directors, and those involved in managing the business for claims alleging a wrongful act where the business does not grant them indemnification.
The policy extends to cover the company against claims by staff for issues that may arise from Employment practices such as unfair dismissal, discrimination and similar accusations.
Statutory Liability Breaches such as Occupational Health and Safety are also covered, together with a Crime cover component to cover against theft and fraud by staff as well as Tax Audit coverage.
Some insurers now also offer an extension to cover Cyber insurance to protect the business against hacking and ransoms related claims.
What can go wrong?
A staff member complained verbally and in writing to the sales manager that she was being harassed by a fellow staff member, the sales manager failed to act, the staff member resigned and sued the company. $68,000 was awarded in compensation.