Construction Bonds and Why You Need Them?

You may have heard the term bonded in advertisements for construction companies. You may have even wondered what that meant. If you are working on any form of construction, you should know all about bonds.

What Is a Surety Construction Bond?

A bond is a contract or agreement between the construction company, suppliers, clients, or bonding agencies who have a stake in the project. All bonds serve as a form of protection on the parties’ investment.

What Does a Construction Bond Protect?

There are different types of construction bonds, each serving a different purpose or interest in a project. The construction bonds protect:

  • Project developers for protection on a bid
  • Government agencies for protection against defective work
  • Developers for protection against defective materials
  • Subcontractors for protection against not being paid for the work
  • Suppliers and developers against nonpayment for materials

Although there are others, these are the main types of construction bonds.

Why You Need a Bond?

Developers, construction companies, and other agencies need bonds for a variety of reasons. One of the main reasons is protection, but in some cases, they are required by law. They often act as a form of guarantee or warranty against defective work or materials.

Construction bonds are an essential part of operating a construction business or hiring a construction company. They protect all of those involved in the transaction and save you time, and money should a project or bid go wrong.

Points to Consider When Hiring Temporary Employees

Companies hire temporary workers for a limited time when regular employees are absent for prolonged periods. Your business must comply with federal laws when hiring temporary employees.

When Should You Hire Temporary Workers?

Businesses hire temporary workers for a specific project or purpose while avoiding the cost of hiring regular, permanent employees. There are many reasons an owner might hire someone temporarily, including:

  • When a permanent employee is on maternity leave, family leave, or vacation
  • When there is a short-term need for a specific skill set, such as creative or computer expertise
  • When you desire to keep staffing levels optimal without overworking your regular employees

How Long Can You Employ a Temporary Employee?

A temporary worker’s time with your company cannot exceed 1,040 hours per year. The same employee cannot work at your company for more than two consecutive years.

Employers should specify both the scope of duties and length of time for temporary help. These employees should not perform the same responsibilities as regular, full-time staff indefinitely.

Why is There a Time Limit for Temporary Personnel?

Temporary workers do not qualify for health insurance or retirement benefits, and they typically earn a lower wage than permanent employees in similar jobs. Therefore, it costs companies less to employ temporary staff members. Laws are in place to prevent employment abuse.

Sometimes hiring permanent workers is the better solution, but for the right business at the right time, hiring temporary employees can solve short-term needs.

Professional Liability Coverage for the Real Estate Agent

As a real estate agent, you are the most effective when you know your clients, the property market, and your professional risks. It is easy to understand why you need to know the market and your clients, but you may wonder about your professional risks. Every business deal or transaction leaves you vulnerable to claims of negligence, errors, and omissions, or breach of contract.

Professional Liability Coverage

As a safeguard from the most common claims against your services, real estate agent insurance is a wise investment. Breach of duty and negligence suits are the most commonly filed complaints against agents, either for allegations that pertinent information wasn’t disclosed regarding a transaction or for failing to act in the best interest of the client. Professional liability coverage provides the resources to defend or clear your name.

Lack of Coverage

Professional liability protects you from risks, but not those that arise from any illegal activity. Intentional wrongdoing is another area where coverage will be denied. If you have employees or contract out parts of your job, this policy will not address physical injuries or property damage done. The coverage only extends to damages a third party may incur as a result of following your advice.

The cost of purchasing adequate coverage depends on things like your location, claims history, business size, and transaction types. Regardless of cost, it is most cost-effective to carry this insurance than handling a client lawsuit out of your own funds.

The Top Cyber security Practices for Architecture Firms

Architecture firms have become increasingly dependent on technology to assist in the development of new projects and manage day-to-day operations. With this rise in tech comes an increase in the need for a robust cybersecurity system. Knowledge of the best cybersecurity practices can protect firms from encountering cyber attacks.

Knowledge is Power

Security threats are difficult to manage because an attack can come in a variety of forms, including data breaches, malware attacks, and hacking. For this reason, it is important to maintain awareness of cybersecurity threats in the following ways:

  • Document all security breaches to prevent future incidents
  • Back up data to prevent loss
  • Managing employee access and revoking access upon the termination of employment
  • Installing anti-malware software and other security walls on all company devices

Educating Employees 

Each employee at a firm has a point of access to company devices, meaning that there are multiple points of vulnerability to that firm’s cybersecurity system. Whenever new employees are onboarded, it is important for management to educate them on safe cybersecurity practices to prevent the compromising of a firm’s system. Some of these practices include not opening suspicious emails or downloading Internet apps onto company devices. By taking the proper precautions, employees can assist in the protection of their firm’s infrastructure.

Know What To Expect From RV Insurance

Purchasing an RV is an exciting endeavor, full of endless adventure opportunities for you and your passengers. It is a home away from home that travels with you to your chosen destinations. You want to make sure you know what to expect when you purchase insurance for your new house on wheels, whether it is parked in place or traveling down the road.

RV Insurance Protections

Whether you purchase a motorhome, trailer, or 5th wheel, your new RV needs the protections required of other vehicles on the road, but it also has many of the same risks associated with a house. As such, an insurance policy for your recreational vehicle can have coverages similar to both auto and home insurance.

What Is Covered?

Protecting your RV and its contents from non-collision damages, such as fires, floods, theft or vandalism is an important component of your policy coverage. This is the protection that safeguards your camper and your belongings, even when it is parked.

According to recreational vehicle insurance experts, you can also expect the following accident damages to be covered in an RV policy:

  • Auto liability coverage
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorists
  • Medical costs (or personal injury protection, where required)

When you carry your home with you on the road, you want to ensure it is adequately protected. Getting insurance coverage tailored specifically for RVs gives you peace of mind to enjoy your new adventures, wherever the road may take you.

Possible Claims against CBD Manufacturers

CBD oils are giving cannabis manufacturers the type of positive recognition they seek to stabilize their image and assert their importance as an industry. The concern is with regulations varying from state-to-state; there is considerable risk of exposure in three areas for legitimate businesses. Insurance claims have the potential to wipe out business owners, due to a lack of uniform guidelines within the industry.

3 Risk Factors to Consider

  1. Malpractice: CBD products used for medicinal purposes are subject to strict regulations. Manufacturers who make claims that CBD can cure diseases to sell products leave the industry vulnerable to costly insurance claims.
  2. State law issues: States may allow the manufacture of CBD products with higher psychoactive properties than are permitted by federal regulations. This variance between state laws and federal requirements can result in lawsuits where products are produced despite being prohibited by law. The lack of uniform guidelines and oversight is troubling for manufacturers wanting to follow the rules and meet expectations.
  3. False marketing: Manufacturers are attempting to promote the legitimate benefits of CBD products while tamping down deceptive advertising. Some business owners are heralding CBD as a medical cure, capitalizing on recent successes for profit. These dishonest tactics subject many cannabis business owners to the risk of lawsuits for fraudulent CBD claims.

Cannabis manufacturers are getting important recognition as businesses that provide essential products for health and well-being. The next steps will be working to pass clear and uniform regulatory guidelines, so businesses that operate responsibly won’t have to fear unnecessary insurance claim risks.

Your Workers Compensation Rights

Workers compensation is an insurance policy taken out by an employer to protect employees in case they get injured while working. You should first check to see if your employer has workers comp, as not all states legally require businesses to cover their employees. If they do, it’s important to understand how workers comp can protect you and what your rights are in the event that a claim is denied.

What Are the Benefits of Workers Comp?

Workers compensation covers many things depending on the extent of your injuries and how the accident occurred. It can pay for all your injury-related medical bills, as well as any wages you might lose while unable to work during your recovery. If you become permanently disabled, workers comp will continue to cover you.

What If Your Claim Is Denied?

Your claim could be justifiably denied because your injury resulted from a fight with another employee or you were acting negligently on the job. However, sometimes your employer will unfairly deny your claim because of costs. While some companies are trying to make insurance more affordable, such as warehouse workers comp, it can still be something your employer doesn’t want to deal with. If this happens, you can contact an attorney to see if you have the option to sue.

3 Types of Financial Guarantees for Construction Projects

In the construction industry, contract bonds are a type of financial guarantee for the bills of the construction project. Also called construction bonds, these guarantees are backed by a bank or an insurance company for the completion of the project by the specified contractor. There are three primary construction bond types.

Bid Bonds

With a bid bond, the owner of the project is protected if the contractor does not honor the bid. The project owner is oblige on the bond, and oblige has the right to sue both the issuer of the bond and the principal in order to have the bond enforced.

Performance Bonds

A contractor will generally use a performance bond as a way to guarantee contract completion according to the terms laid out. If the contractor (or principal) defaults on the specified terms, the project owner may call upon the bank or insurance group (surety) to fill the contract. A new contractor might be brought in to finish the work.

Payment Bonds

Through this financial guarantee, all payments due to any subcontractors or suppliers on the part of the principal are covered. The owner is the real beneficiary of this bond type since it becomes a remedy for non-payment that doesn’t come from the owner’s pocket.

Bonds are a way to protect a contract and the financial expenses that accompany construction projects. They protect both the project owner and the contractor.

How to Avoid Financial Ruin With Construction Insurance

In the construction industry, there are a lot of risks. When you don’t have adequate insurance coverage, you could devastate your business with legal fees. Lawsuits can happen, particularly on a jobsite where there are several risk factors. Here is what you need to know about coverage for your company.

General Liability Coverages

General liability is a broad coverage. It generally covers property damage or injury. For instance, if someone falls on your construction site or suffers an injury on your site, you could be liable. This could be contractors, guests to the property or someone passing by. If someone suffers an injury on your site, then the general liability coverage will help you with legal fees.

Risk Coverage

The risks involved in construction are a serious variable to your coverage. While every company has to have its own customized coverage, there are some coverages that no construction company should go without.

These policies cover:

  • Materials
  • Equipment
  • Property

Damage to your construction site can occur due to vandalism, storms, theft, vehicular accidents and more. It is important to know the exclusions in your policy. For instance, some policies will not cover damages that are caused by earthquakes or water damage.

To protect your construction business, you need construction general liability coverage. Without it, you could financially devastate your business.

4 Tips for Generating Traffic to Your Insurance Website

Small businesses that want to grow their company with local leads and customers can develop a local SEO strategy for their website. This strategy works by marketing your brand, services, and products to a more relevant base of local customers than just improving your national search engine rankings. There are few easy ways to get started in optimizing your local SEO.

DIY Optimization

  1. Establish a Google My Business Account. The most touted way of increasing your visibility in local search results is through a business profile on Google. The information you list appears in local Google Search results, Google Maps, and the Google Search Knowledge Panel.
  2. Use Happy Customer Reviews. Have your satisfied customers leave enthusiastic reviews for your business in places like Google or Yelp. Local consumers look for online reviews in lieu of a personal recommendation.
  3. Incorporate Voice Search. Adjust the SEO of your content to long-tail keywords for voice search success. This helps reflect the conversational tone of someone speaking their request into Siri or Alexa.
  4. Use Local Information. Use your content to address local community concerns. This can establish your brands as an authority with local shoppers.

If you aren’t sure how to optimize your website content, consider outsourcing your website management. This allows you to focus on what you are good at, which is selling insurance policies.