Insuring what essentially is a hobby.

  1. jimbo84 Member

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    Chorley
    I knock up a few bits out of offcuts and scrap etc. candle holders, book ends, lamps and various bits that I've been asked to make by people.

    I've no issue making stuff for people I know but I'd like to sell some of my stuff on the likes of etsy.

    It isn't my main job and only want to do it as a sideline, I'd still declare any earnings.

    I want to be insured for the eventuality that say something I'd made fell off a shelf and injured somebody and they tried to claim from me I'd be covered.

    I've found that I need product liability insurance but they won't sell you this without public liability insurance.

    I'm having a nightmare with it, most won't insure it at all and then I've had quotes for everything from £50 up to over £200 but I'm not convinced I'd be covered by them as they really sound like they haven't got a clue what I do and are putting it down as a homecrafts company.

    I've already shelved the lamps idea as the requirements for making and selling electrical stuff sent to me by trading standards was ridiculous.

    There are shed loads of people doing this on etsy and ebay, how are they covered, or are they just risking it?

    Do any of you fellas/ladies on here do it and if so how are you covered and very roughly what are the insurance costs involved?

    Whilst it's unlikely for anyone to make a claim, for the sake of a few quid profit on an item I really wouldn't want to spend the value of my house proving that the claimant was a careless numpty and it wasn't my fault that they dropped it on their head.
     
  2. premmington

    premmington Member

    Messages:
    902
    Location:
    Norfolk
    From an insurers point of view - you are either a business or you are not a business...

    Small scale manufacturers suffer with costs (overheads) that make trading - not financially worth it...

    If you are gonna make something and sell it - an end product. Comply with every bit of legislation - you need to make loads of the end product and spread the overheads over a lot of sales/units.

    But loads of successful businessmen - have taken loads of risks - over the years - at the start up phase of the enterprise.
     
  3. JonE Forum Supporter

    Messages:
    75
    Location:
    Central Scotland
    We went through a similar situation with home insurance here just recently, due to my wife making glass art from home (and ramping up a bit since taking redundancy from the office job last year).

    We'd had NFU home insurance for a good few years anyway, but things all got a bit sticky this renewal when we tried to add their homeworker cover on and they decided 'it' wasn't an occupation they could cover - and therefore they couldn't insure the property at all! I believe it was the kiln use that triggered this.

    In the end it all came good, when they decided she was a 'craftworker' and not some massive industrial operation. Still a bit of a mystery how they decide, the only thing stipulated in the policy docs is a turnover of less than 10k, and they've upped the fire excess a bit (which seems fair enough). So other than a few fraught days trying to get it sorted out, I would still really recommend trying them.

    https://www.nfumutual.co.uk/insurance/home-insurance/standard-home-insurance/homeworker-insurance/

    Definitely one to watch out for would be LV, I was running through a quote with them when I came across this gem in their homeworker conditions "Nothing is sold, manufactured, repaired or restored from your home". That would seem to rule most things out then!
     
  4. Aesgarth Member

    Messages:
    311
    Northumberland
    Can you share a bit more information on this please? I'm about to go down a similar route to you... A couple of the products I'm looking to make include electrics, and I'd like to know sooner rather than later if I should bin that idea.
     
  5. brightspark

    brightspark Member

    Messages:
    25,744
    Location:
    yarm
    make up the lamps and sell the electrical kit to assemble themselves then its not your problem:)
     
  6. ukracer Member

    or import from China and its does not matter how bad it is Trading standards are useless then.

    However on the subject of insurance its not only worth making sure your items etc are covered but also how they are covered and not covered. For example I would expect extended articles to be covered outside your home. Not so...if they are in a car (I think this applies to vans as well but as I dont have one I am not sure.

    If they are in an estate car they are ONLY covered (at least with LLoyds) if they are IN A SECURELY LOCKED CONTAINER. Not sure how my fishing tackle is ever going to be covered in that case. They did state however that if they are locked in the BOOT they would be covered. (My rods dont fit) (even if I had a boot.

    Any one else fell foul of this problem. Thinking you are covered when you are not really!

    SO please check not only they cover you but what exclusions are in the small print even its an impossibility to do. For example My grandsons bike will never be covered when we go on Holiday as its excluded anywhere in the estate car and I cant lock it in a secure box.
     
  7. AdrianH

    AdrianH Forum Supporter

    Messages:
    1,712
    Location:
    near Blackburn.
    Watching with interest, now sort of retired.
     
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  8. galooph

    galooph Forum Supporter

    Messages:
    403
    Location:
    Alsager, UK
    It took me ages to find someone who'd cover my rented hobby workshop. No problem if I was running a business from there, but with it being non-commercial, a lot of insurers weren't interested. In the end, I got fixed up through https://www.insuranceprotector.co.uk, who tailored a policy to what I needed, even altering their standard welding terms so that I'd be covered even when working alone.

    They seemed happy to discuss custom policies, so might be worth a call.
     
  9. jimbo84 Member

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    Chorley
    Thanks for that link, I will have a look at them as they're one I haven't quoted with.

    I have an old shipping container as my workshop that is located away from home and that was one of the problems with some of the insurers as they wouldn't class me as a home worker/craft person because of that but equally they wouldn't insure the shipping container. I told them that I don't actually want the workshop insuring, just the products I make but it seems next to impossible to get one without the other. I do feel it would be easier if I did work from home insurance wise (definitely not space wise :D) but then as you've found that may cause problems with the home insurance as they're not keen on hot work. Maybe LV would be a good one to try then as the exclusions you found a problem for your wife don't apply to me.
     
  10. jimbo84 Member

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    Chorley
    I've found the email they sent me which I've copied and pasted below. The complex bit I found would be all the paper work and testing that would need to be completed for each lamp to conform to all the EU standards and be given the CE mark. Hopefully the links to the documentation should work.

    The first consideration in this context is that the Trader (you) takes on responsibility as manufacturer of electrical items and is therefore responsible for compliance with the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 2016 and Electromagnetic Compliance (EMC). In European law, manufacturers of electronic devices are advised to run EMC tests in order to comply with compulsory CE-labelling. EU directive 2004/108/EC (previously 89/336/EEC) on EMC defines the rules for the distribution of electric devices within the European Union.

    In addition to this there are the responsibilities on CE marking, Labelling, the provision of Safety Instructions, and the drawing up of suitable documentation for
    final product.

    The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive WEEE (a crossed out wheelie bin) relating to end of life electrical equipment also applies, but Trading Standard do not enforce this.

    Advice:
    Lancashire Trading Standards Service have advice sheets on these matters and I have therefore provided you with the appropriate links to the various pages, set out below:


    The first is a link to our advice concerning electrical equipment and also gives advice on correct labelling and other considerations as a manufacturer:

    https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/business/trading-standards/trading-advice-1/details/?doc_id=122652&cat_id=6

    The second is a link to our advice concerning safety of products – due diligence considerations:

    https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/business/trading-standards/trading-advice-1/details/?doc_id=280597&cat_id=6

    The third is a link to our advice concerning unsafe goods – liability:

    https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/business/trading-standards/trading-advice-1/details/?doc_id=280597&cat_id=6

    I trust that you will find the above both informative and relevant.

     
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  11. jimbo84 Member

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    Chorley
    Thanks for that link I will give them a call and see what they say. I think they'd class me as a business as the intention would be to sell some of the bits I make which tips it out of the hobby area although the small amount made would be just to cover costs really. My intention is to just make the hobby pay for itself, that is without leaving me open to getting sued.
     
  12. jimbo84 Member

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    Chorley
    If this is a legit way of doing it then it is an option although it would narrow the potential customers slightly.

    It's comical really that by getting people to wire it up themselves it gets you round the safety regs but actually makes the electrical item potentially more dangerous as the punter, who may have zero knowledge of what they're doing, is the one doing the electrical work.
     
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  13. JonE Forum Supporter

    Messages:
    75
    Location:
    Central Scotland
    I don't think this would quite apply in your case, but wonder if there is something similar that would...

    Before we worried about the home insurance, we worried about liability insurance, and she got what seems like a fantastic deal through joining an artists organisation. £38/yr membership for £5m PPL and £5m PI cover - https://www.a-n.co.uk/about/artist-membership-who-its-for/
     
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  14. gaz1

    gaz1 Member

    Messages:
    7,462
    Location:
    westyorkshire
    catch 22 most of the time with trading standards crippled before you start

    but yet they allow loads of china imported crap in the country thats unsafe
     
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  15. Aesgarth Member

    Messages:
    311
    Northumberland
    Thanks for that.

    I've already done a declaration of conformity for CE marking, but I need to give some more consideration to testing procedures.

    Time for lots more reading for me, and trying to avoid a headache...
     
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  16. premmington

    premmington Member

    Messages:
    902
    Location:
    Norfolk
    Interesting post this one...
     
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  17. harveyglen

    harveyglen Member

    Messages:
    60
    Location:
    west midlands
    Yeah i am also keen to get peoples views on this subject. Im working at a welding academy at the moment but i am looking at putting things in place to run a small full time welding and restoration school from home, i am also not 100% what insurances i will need putting in place so any help would be veey much appreciated.
     
  18. slim_boy_fat

    slim_boy_fat Forum Supporter

    Someone had a thread exactly on this scenario recently. A search should find it - it had lots of responses.
     
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  19. HughF

    HughF Member

    Messages:
    5,093
    Location:
    Work: Dorchester, Workshop: Corfe Castle, Wife's place: Frome
    Testing is pretty easy, book a slot at a testing house, test product, get certificate. Emc for domestic stuff would be a doddle.

    Another easy and safe way round it is to make the electrical item low voltage then supply a pre-approved and pre CE certified ac/DC apapter.

    We make lots of marine electronics, we take the product to the test house, they pick the frequency bands that they don't want interference in according to the end use of the product. I imagine for domestic it will be the FM radio band.
     
    bigegg likes this.
  20. Shedendman

    Shedendman Member

    Messages:
    3,333
    east sussex
    I sell a few things i make,i get asked to make them,they come and look,they either like it or not,when they do its a sold as seen,if it breaks(which has never happened)i'll fix it or return the money.
    BUT,if they use the item for not what it was meant for,tough.
    I dont declare what i make from them,why should i,bigger boys do it and pay sod all,its not that i'm knocking out 1000's a day,its pocket money fgs
     
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