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Pest control insurance – what you need to know for your pest control business

Handling pests and vermin has its challenges. Protecting yourself with pest control insurance means you’ll be fully prepared for any eventuality.

No matter how careful you are, if you work in pest control, there are always things that could go wrong. From accidental spillages when using harsh chemicals to injuries when removing a wasp nest.

Here, we’ll look at how pest control public liability insurance can help, and what kind of policies you’ll want to consider.

Why do I need pest control insurance?

Working with pests and vermin can be extremely rewarding, but it also brings with it some risks:

  • You’ll be working on a client’s property (whether a home or business premises)
  • Pests can be hard to reach – for instance, they might hide in roof spaces or under floorboards
  • You may use harsh chemicals, gases and poisons

As such, there are many things that could go wrong. Whether that’s damaging a client’s property, causing an injury to a client, or hurting yourself.

Just a few accidents that could occur include:

  • gases leaking out
  • harsh chemicals damaging a client’s carpet
  • falling through a ceiling while attempting to remove a wasp nest

No matter how careful you are, you can’t remove these risks altogether. Even a small mishap could lead to claims against you and your business. Leaving you financially drained. Or, if you find yourself unable to work due to an accident, you may struggle to keep your business afloat.

Having the right pest control liability insurance in place could help you avoid expensive payouts. And protect you financially if things go wrong. Our guide on whether businesses need insurance has more information.

Pest control business insurance – what do I need?

Some insurance providers offer specialist pest control insurance that’s tailored to the needs of a pest control business.

As a general guideline, here are the kinds of insurance you’ll want to consider if you’re a self-employed pest controller. Whether or not you operate as a sole trader or limited company.

Public liability insurance

Public liability insurance protects you in case you injure someone or cause damage to their property while carrying out work. That includes anything from a gas leak to someone tripping over your ladder!

If someone makes a claim against you, your public liability insurance will cover the legal costs of defending the claim. It will also pay compensation on your behalf.

Although public liability insurance isn’t a legal requirement, it’s important to think about what could happen if something goes wrong. Ultimately, it’s a small price to pay for the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re financially protected.

If you don’t have public liability insurance, you might also be excluded from some jobs and opportunities. Especially when it comes to larger contracts.

Plus, you’ll need it to become a Checkatrade member. When you do you could save around 20% off public liability insurance! Log in to our Members Area to see our latest offers.

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Professional indemnity insurance

Professional indemnity insurance often gets confused with public liability insurance, but they’re not the same thing.

Public liability insurance protects you against any harm you cause to people or their property. Meanwhile, professional indemnity insurance protects you if you make professional mistakes or if someone accuses you of negligence. For example, you might unintentionally breach your contract.

Just like public liability insurance, professional indemnity isn’t a legal requirement. But it’s helpful as it means you won’t have to dig deep into your own pockets if you make a costly mistake. Or even if you didn’t but your customer thinks you did!

If needed, it will help you with the cost of going to court, and of paying compensation. Even if you don’t end up using it, it can be a handy thing to have under your belt. This is because it can boost your trust factor with clients who might not work with you otherwise.

Pest control company

Personal accident insurance

If you run your own pest control business – particularly as a sole trader – you probably dread sick days. Don’t show up to work and, generally, that means you don’t get paid!

Personal accident insurance is there to protect you if you find yourself unable to work due to an accident. And as much as we’d all like to hope that doesn’t happen, it’s always a possibility. Especially if you’re exterminating pests in hard-to-reach places – like roof spaces!

Whether it’s a hospital stay or you physically can’t work, personal accident insurance can provide a weekly payout to replace any lost income. And it can even cover the cost of support staff.

Tools or equipment insurance

As a pest controller, you rely on the tools of your trade. If your equipment gets lost, stolen, or damaged, you’ll find it difficult to do your job. And forking out for replacements at short notice can be costly!

Tools and equipment insurance can make sure your work equipment is protected. Whether it’s your own gear or tools that you’ve hired for a specific project. Your insurance will be able to help you with the cost of repairs or replacements. So, you can get back up and running as quickly as possible.

Your insurance may even be able to help you with the cost of hiring a similar substitute item in the meantime. This will mean you don’t lose out on jobs and income while you’re waiting.

Equipment insurance isn’t strictly necessary but think how useful it could be if things don’t quite go to plan with your tools or equipment!

Employers’ liability insurance

Finally, if your pest control business has employees, you’ll need employers’ liability insurance. In fact, this is the only kind on our list that is a legal requirement (if you have employees, of course!). If you don’t have it, you could be fined up to £2,500 a day for each employee.

Employers’ liability insurance will protect you in case an employee gets sick or injured because of when working. For example, an apprentice could fall off a ladder trying to reach a wasp nest. Or they could even just slip on a client’s wet floor and injure their back!

The kind of compensation they could be due in these scenarios is very costly. Luckily, employers’ liability insurance is there to take on the costs, protecting your company as well as your employees!

How much does pest control insurance cost?

Pest control insurance can start at as little as £5 per month. However, the cost of pest control business insurance can vary hugely based on a number of factors. These include:

  • Size of your company
  • Number of employees
  • Type of pests you deal with
  • Which kinds of insurance you opt for (you can choose what goes into your policy so you only pay for what you need)
  • Level of experience
  • Location
  • Sole trader or limited company
  • Maximum payout
  • Excess

Although pest control insurance costs can add up, having the right kind of insurance is a crucial business expense.

This is regardless of whether you’re just starting a pest control business or you’re years down the line. And it’s something you’ll need to factor in when you’re working out your pest control business earnings and profit.

Save money on your pest control business insurance as a Checkatrade member

We want to help our members get financial protection and run their businesses for less. So, as a Checkatrade member, you could save up to 20% of trade cover. Find out more in the app!

Plus, you’ll be able to add optional extras such as employers’ liability insurance and tools cover. That way, you’ll have exactly the protection you need to suit your growing pest control business. Nice!

Checkatrade members get more for their money

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Content disclaimer: This content has been created for general information purposes and should not be taken as formal advice. Read our full disclaimer here.

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