Insurance and self-employment
The first year you set out as a freelancer can often be the hardest. There are financial hardships, and let’s face it, it’s more complicated than having an employer who deals with all the red tape. Don’t get me wrong. I love being self-employed. If I didn’t, I’d find myself a job with a regular paycheque. It’s just that my first income tax return brought me to tears!
Moreover, you also need to think about your insurance coverage, make sure you get paid within a reasonable amount of time, and act as your own boss. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by it all.
To make your life as a freelancer easier, here is some information about home and car insurance for the self-employed (this information does not extend to dental and medical/disability insurance, regarding which you’ll need to contact an insurer who specializes in these specific types of coverage).
Insurance tips for the self-employed
If your office happens to be a room or rooms inside your home, be sure to mention this to your insurer. Home insurance is not business insurance: I learned this from the Insurance Bureau of Canada. There are different sets of rules that apply, and one of them is that the physical place you conduct your business should not be on your home premises, unless your policy has been amended to include this aspect. Contacting your insurer is then a must, so your business does not impact your home insurance coverage.
Also, if you use your car for commercial purposes; you should have specific commercial insurance. You regular car insurance would not be valid… and this could mean that you’re actually driving uninsured! Having the right product that protects you is the key here!
If you share or rent an office, whether alone or with other people, your home insurance does not protect you. Contact an insurer that carries commercial insurance to inquire about securing coverage for the space you are occupying.
Being self-employed is complicated enough as it is; there’s no need for hassle when you know all your bases are covered!