Contractors that provide specialized skills in support of the completion of large building projects for a general contractor or exclusively in their respective trades, are a valued and substantial part of the American economy. Representing trades that span foundation, structural, finishing, mechanical and electrical contractors, their employment, as of May 2018, represents 4,602,000 US jobs.1 In early 2018, an industry survey reported 75% of all contractors planned to expand headcount this year.2
For the agents who work with specialty contractors, finding the best fit for the individual insureds can be quite challenging when reviewing the myriad of insurance options that are available. With so many markets now noticing the opportunities available in this space, the lessor experienced carriers can further compound the decision-making process. These providers, attracted by current growth, may not bring the level of expertise and stability that a program can offer and are often the first to opt out at the first signs of industry uncertainty.
If looking to source competitive, top-rated coverage and gain access to underwriters with long-standing specialty contracting industry knowledge, an insurance program provider can offer many benefits. Cricket Thomas, CRIS and SVP/Senior Underwriter for the Blue River Underwriters Contractors’ Elite Program notes several key benefits you should look for in a program specialist in this space:
- Access: In-house underwriting experience and industry knowledge readily available to assist agents on the best approach and offer insights that may save your specialty contractor from material adverse impact.
- Experience: With thousands of insureds served, specific requirements should be well understood and the service provided should be both professional and tailored to these contractors’ needs.
- Commitment: As a focused program team with tenured professionals on hand, the continued commitment to stay at the forefront of the specialty contracting industry best practices allows for ongoing program enhancements designed to meet the evolving industry expectations.
- In-Depth Knowledge: Familiarity working with numerous, diverse specialty contractors that may be very complex in their operations, regulations, equipment and risk types, such as commercial HVAC, mechanical, electrical, plumbing as well as landscape contractors - these insights garnered can benefit all sizes and types of insureds.
- Time-Saving: An all-lines coverage offering can streamline the process and potentially enhance the protection. Individual considerations will factor in, but having an experienced underwriting leader with substantial knowledge of the industry can be of great benefit in reviewing the options that are available.
If you are in the market to have ready-access to an underwriting team who will collaborate with you and your specialty contractors, a program partner may be the best fit for your needs. Understanding the benefits and service mindset they offer is a key step in the evaluation process. As with any new partner, one that demonstrates a responsive and informed approach, coupled with top-rated and competitive coverage, is a win for the agent and all involved.
For more information on the Contractors Elite program mentioned in this article or to reach Cricket Thomas, CRIS, please click here: https://www.blueriveruw.com/contractors-elite/