Lessons from the Outer Banks

Imagine for a moment that you’ve fulfilled your lifelong dream of launching a business at the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Maybe it’s a paddleboard rental place, or maybe you make designer cupcakes for vacationing families. Either way, you’ve done it: you’re all set up in an idyllic location with a low-stress operation to ease you into your retirement years.

You planned carefully, understanding how seasonal your business would be. You probably allowed for the occasional hurricane or tropical storm putting a dent in your revenues. And of course you’re covered for fire or water damage, theft and all the usual hazards.

What you probably didn’t plan for is the contractor who just damaged two of the three power lines leading to the islands. Or the mass evacuation of tens of thousands of non-residents. Or the fact that it may take a month to get back to normal … a month right smack in the middle of your busy season.

Will you survive?

This really just happened, and it will be at least another couple of weeks before Hatteras and Ocracoke are back to normal. And therein lies the case for Business Interruption (BI) insurance. BI coverage is for things that are beyond your control. After all, you can take steps to better protect your business from fire, but you can’t make your main supplier do the same thing.

BI coverage is the answer to questions like these:

  • Could your business survive if that supplier had a fire that put them out of operation for several months?
  • Could you pay your employees if the same thing happened to the client who accounts for the majority of your work?
  • How will you pay your bills if a disaster closes the roads to your location?

BI coverage is available as a free-standing policy or an endorsement to your property coverage, and it can and should be customized to your specific exposures.

The lesson from the Outer Banks is this: you can’t imagine all the things that can threaten the well-being of your business, so take steps to insulate yourself from them. And sleep better at night.

Questions about Business Interruption coverage? Contact Consolidated Insurance.