Navigating a Hard Insurance Market

May 13, 2022 | Trends in Iowa Education Jack Carra, AssuredPartners,

Have you had difficulty securing commercial insurance or noticed your insurance premiums increase in the last couple of years? If so, there’s a reason. For the last couple of years, we’ve been in a hard insurance market, which refers to a market cycle when rates increase, underwriting requirements tighten, and capacity is limited.

Severe weather events, large jury verdicts, COVID-19, and supply chain issues are all, in part, behind the current market cycle, which continues to present challenges. The rising rates for some lines have slowed, while others – such as cyber – are still experiencing double-digit increases. While we don’t know how long the hard market will continue, there are steps you can take to help you navigate the market.

Start the Process Early

Getting an early start with your insurance professional is a great start. When you begin the insurance process at least 120 in advance, you have time to address risks and exposures or determine a new strategy.

Make Sure Your Broker Understands Your Business

More than ever, underwriters want more details about your business. When your broker understands your operations, your safety initiatives, he or she can better negotiate on your behalf.

Regulary Review Existing Policies

Think about how your business has changed over the last 6 to 12 months. It’s likely that you have been responding and adapting to constant change, but is your insurance keeping up? Schedule time with your insurance advisor to conduct an annual review of your current policies to ensure your policies are providing adequate protection.

Boost Rick Management Efforts

Risks are everywhere. In addition to financial risks, cyber security, building and equipment, and employee safety are among the many risks that need to be considered. When you can identify your risk factors, you can create programs to mitigate loss. Structured, customized prevention programs are critical to combating the ever-growing exposure to risk and keeping costs down.

Know Your Loss History

Your risk management efforts should be priority one, but accidents may still occur. Investigate all incidents and near misses to understand what happened to prevent them from happening again. This information will be helpful during the renewal process because you may need to explain what factors contributed to a specific loss and what steps you’ve taken to mitigate future losses.

Many factors impact your commercial insurance rates and coverage, including business size, industry, and claims history. During a hard insurance market, decisions  regarding your insurance coverage may be difficult, but an experienced insurance broker can help you proactively address risk, control losses, and manage exposures.