As the business world tries to “commoditize” insurance, there are more and more opportunities to differentiate and stand out. All risks are not created the same and you need to look a little deeper in those “contracts” you are selling (Yes, we are ultimately non-lawyers selling contracts). Different industries have different exposures and what may be a “hot” issue for one class of business, may not be for another.
One of the industries we specialize in is the Records Storage Industry. This class of business was a natural off shoot of our messenger and courier program since a number of the clients we write, are in both areas of the industry. One of the unique exposures of the records storage industry is the potential amount of time it takes to “recover” from a significant loss (Keep in mind that specific to this industry is a pricing structure where storage facility makes so much per box stored). Take the scenario of a records storage warehouse having a large fire. It will take time to do the debris removal, set up and operate a temporary location and rebuild the warehouse. All this is similar to other types of businesses. What is different is that the 10,000 boxes of records you had stored (that were lost in the fire) do not “instantly” show up when the warehouse is rebuilt and ready to open. In fact, it can take years to amass those 10,000 boxes of records and have the same “revenue stream” that you had prior to the fire. Many carriers that will write record storage firms offer extended period of recovery of up to 18 months, which most of the time is insufficient to protect these type of firm and leave the insured in a precarious position. Offering an option for longer extended period of recovery will help the client cover the deficit they will have till they accumulate more boxes of records. We were able to negotiate an extended period of recover of 3 years in our program.
It never hurts to ask if an endorsement can be modified or deleted (bought back). The worst thing the carrier can say is no. If you are able to get that enhanced or modified endorsement are you then adding value to your services to the insured? YES!!! Helps you to keep accounts too when you can point out enhancements to the coverage when going up against competing quotes. Many times it is worth taking the time to find out what the “pain” is in their current program and what keeps them up at night.