A handyman is typically someone who handles smaller, simpler repair and maintenance tasks around the home. They offer versatility for a range of jobs. On the other hand, general contractors are licensed professionals responsible for managing larger, more complex construction projects. They often oversee teams of subcontractors and navigate building regulations.

The distinction between a handyman and a general contractor extends to their insurance requirements. Let’s look into the details.

Handyman Insurance Essentials

While handymen are often skilled and careful, accidents and unforeseen events can still happen. Here’s why handyman insurance is crucial:

  • Handyman Public Liability Insurance: This protects you against substantial financial burdens if a client or third party suffers injury or property damage during your work. Imagine if, while installing a light fixture, you accidentally drill into a water pipe, flooding a client’s basement. Public liability insurance could cover the costly repairs, legal fees, and potential compensation claims.
  • Handyman Liability Insurance: As before, this is the same concept as public liability in the Australian context, protecting against third-party claims resulting from your work.

Optional Coverages

Depending on the scope of your handyman business, here are some additional coverages to consider:

  • Tool Insurance: Protect your essential tools and equipment against theft, accidental damage, and loss. This coverage provides peace of mind knowing you can replace expensive equipment if something unexpected happens.
  • Personal Accident & Illness Insurance:  Safeguard your income if an injury or illness prevents you from working for a period of time.  This helps cover your living costs while you recover.
  • Product Liability Insurance: If you sell or supply goods as part of your services (like paint or fixtures), this insurance protects you against claims arising from defects in those products.

Click to read more about the importance of Handyman insurance for protecting the business

contractor works insurance 4Handyman Business Insurance

For more comprehensive protection, it might be wise to invest in a handyman business insurance package. These bundles often combine the core coverages above with additional options like:

  • Contract Works Insurance: Provides cover if the project you are working on is damaged or destroyed (e.g., by fire or storm).
  • Commercial Vehicle Insurance: Protects your work vehicle if you use it for business purposes.

If you are a handyman and want to know how much insurance will cost you, just fill out this form and we will provide you with a free quote. 

General Contractor Insurance Needs

General contractors shoulder significant responsibilities. They coordinate larger, more complex construction projects. Their role often includes:

  • Obtaining permits and ensuring code compliance
  • Hiring and managing teams of subcontractors
  • Overseeing project timelines and budgets
  • Ensuring quality control and safety standards

Due to the extensive nature of their work, general contractors typically require broader, more comprehensive insurance policies than handymen. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Public liability insurance: Higher coverage limits due to increased project risks. General contractors frequently work on larger projects with a higher potential for property damage or bodily injury. Therefore, they generally require significantly higher public liability insurance limits to adequately protect themselves financially.
  • Professional indemnity insurance: Protects against claims of errors and omissions. This insurance is crucial for general contractors. It covers financial losses arising from professional mistakes, negligence, or misrepresentation that cause a client to suffer damages.
  • Contract works insurance: Covers projects in progress against damage or delays.  Construction projects are vulnerable to unforeseen events like fire, theft, natural disasters, or vandalism. Contract works insurance protects the general contractor if a project in progress experiences damage or delays, preventing significant financial losses.

If you are a Contractor and want to know what will be covered and how much insurance will cost you, just fill out this form and we will provide you with a free quote.

Click here to learn about other types of Contractor insurance that contractors need. 

professional indemnity insurance 2Factors Impacting Insurance Choices

Beyond the basic distinctions between handymen and general contractors,  several factors influence your specific insurance needs:

  • Size and scope of projects: The scale and complexity of the projects you undertake directly impact your insurance requirements.  Larger, riskier projects necessitate higher liability coverage and more comprehensive policies.
  • State/Territory regulations: Western Australia may have specific legal requirements regarding the types and levels of insurance coverage for handymen and contractors.
  • Client requirements: Some clients, particularly for bigger projects, may have their own insurance stipulations. They might mandate specific coverage types or minimum coverage limits that you and your subcontractors must carry.

Navigating the complexities of insurance policies, especially as a tradesman or contractor, can be tough.  While the internet offers a wealth of information,  understanding the nuances of coverage and choosing the right plan specifically tailored to your business needs can be a challenge.

This is where an insurance broker specialising in tradesmen and contractor insurance becomes invaluable. They can:

  • Take the time to understand the specific services you offer, the size and complexity of your projects, and any regulatory requirements.
  • Translate complex terms into clear explanations,  ensuring you fully understand the coverage you’re getting.
  • Negotiate on your behalf to secure the optimal level of coverage for your specific needs.
  • Be a long-term partner,  available to answer questions, guide you through the claims process,  and ensure your insurance keeps pace with your evolving business.

sole trader insurance 5Tradies365: Your One-Stop Shop for Comprehensive Tradesman Insurance

At Tradies365, we understand the importance of having the right insurance coverage. We offer comprehensive insurance solutions specifically designed for tradesmen, handymen, and contractors operating in Western Australia.

Here’s what sets us apart:

  • Tailored coverage: We work with you to design a policy that perfectly aligns with your specific needs and risk profile.
  • Competitive Rates: We leverage our strong relationships with leading insurers to secure the most competitive rates for your coverage.
  • Expert Support: Our team of qualified insurance brokers possesses extensive knowledge of the trades industry and is dedicated to providing exceptional service.

Ready to find the right insurance for your trade business?

Contact Tradies365 today for a free, no-obligation quote and let our specialists help you navigate the complexities of insurance.  Ensure your business is protected and you can focus on what you do best – delivering quality work for your clients.


Click here to get a free quote

Note: The material offered here is for informational purposes only. It does not constitute legally binding advice and should not be a substitute for a consultation with an insurance expert.