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Freedom for home workers - but at what cost?

Working from home gives Shropshire entrepreneurs an incredible sense of freedom – but it comes with a whole host of risks too.

That’s the warning from Dave Williams of Henshalls Insurance Brokers in Newport and Shrewsbury, who said home businesses needed some very specific protection.

“Running a successful enterprise from home – whether it’s just you working on a laptop or it’s as grand as running a beauty salon in the spare room – is hard work and entrepreneurs have to be motivated and committed.

“But it can be risky too – an accidental flood, burglary or even a customer being injured on your premises could have serious consequences, and you need to have the right insurance cover in place.”

Dave said entrepreneurs working from home probably already had contents and buildings insurance in place through their home policy, so it may be possible to combine the two to save time and money.

“Contents insurance covers any equipment that is lost, broken or stolen, and a home policy will typically cover furniture, computers, mobile phones and TV screens.

“When it comes to running your business, you may also have specialised items such as video or photography equipment, and if these are out of action for any reason you could lose valuable income, so protecting these kind of items is a must.”

Dave said building insurance would cover aspects of your home such as walls, ceilings, lights, and fittings.

“But if you have a room you use as an office, you could put this under your buildings insurance so if there’s a fire, flood or vandalism, your insurance will pay for any repairs or replacements.”

He said entrepreneurs should also consider liability insurance – both employers’ liability and public liability cover. “Employers’ liability protects any staff you may employ and the public liability cover will protect your customers.

“And professional indemnity insurance is a consideration too because if you’re giving advice or treatment from home, whether you’re a dentist, therapist or financial adviser, this cover will protect you if your advice leads to suffering or loss of income for a client.”

“So as much as working from home has many pluses including no rent to pay and no commuting, it’s vital that you protect yourself and your business from the potential risks too.”

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