Property Damage Insurance—Essential Coverage for any Restaurant

Having the right property damage insurance for your restaurant is essential. Imagine your restaurant premises is damaged by fire, perhaps by a fire that starts in your kitchen or in an adjoining business. Property damage insurance provides coverage for your restaurant’s building, interior décor and furnishings, and all contents. Property damage insurance may also contribute to loss of income, for both your business and your employees. As with all restaurant insurance the effectiveness of the policy will be in the detail.

How much coverage your property damage insurance gives your restaurant will vary: 80% is typically the lowest coverage, but you can insure your business for up to 90% or 100%. Premiums for 80% will be lower, but will that coverage be sufficient when your restaurant is closed thanks to catastrophic damage? Or when you are looking at the cost of replacing your kitchen equipment or dining room furniture and fittings?

After considering the percentage of coverage, it’s important to consider what value is insured. Are you covered for actual value or replacement value? The former will pay out for the value of replacement less depreciation; the latter will cover the cost of buying new at today’s prices.

Does your insurance give you coverage for your employees’ salaries? Is that coverage for all your employees’ salaries or just key workers? And who do the insurers consider to be your key workers?

Are all causes of damage to your restaurant covered or are there exclusions? Some of the more common exclusions in restaurant insurance policies are flood, earthquake, normal wear and tear, and employee dishonesty. But how about fire, theft, wind or ice damage? When you talk to your agent about property damage insurance, be sure to consider all the factors and whether or not you need to add any enhancements or endorsements.

Being able to accurately prove what contents you have is vital when it comes to filing a restaurant insurance claim. You may know exactly what’s in your wine cellar, your walk-in freezer, your kitchen, but will you remember in the heat of the moment, and can you prove it? Taking pictures of the contents, retaining receipts and storing all documentation in a safe, preferably off-site, place will be invaluable when the worst happens and you are faced with filing a claim.

Finally, be sure to get the right amount of insurance for your restaurant—you don’t want to skimp and find that your coverage is insufficient when it comes to replacing or repairing damaged property. Nor do you want to waste money being over-insured or because you have policies that overlap in coverage. Talk to your agent and take the time to understand the details.

Contact Vozza Agency for restaurant insurance in New Jersey.