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Alberta Farm Insurance

What is farm insurance?

Farming in Alberta can be tough. Whether you raise livestock or crops, Acera Insurance can help protect your:

  • Buildings including barns, storage, processing facilities and more
  • Machinery, equipment and tools
  • Farm and personal vehicles
  • Employees
  • Farm liability
  • Livestock, crops, or processed agriculture products
  • Home and personal property

Farm insurance is designed to protect your farming operation as well as your personal property. Essentially, it’s a combination between home, commercial property and liability policies with some extra farm-specific coverage. A farm insurance policy can be customized to fit your specific farm based on its size and what is produced.

Do I need farm insurance in Alberta?

Farm insurance is designed to minimize the financial impact of an unexpected disaster. It helps cover the costs of situations you couldn’t afford to pay for out of your own pocket. Most parts of farm insurance are not mandatory in Alberta, however, you may be required to carry:

  • Third-party liability, direct compensation for property damage and accident benefits coverage on vehicles
  • Worker’s Compensation coverage if you have employees
  • Property damage coverage on leased or financed equipment

Some contracts may also require you to carry certain types and amounts of insurance (usually liability coverage). All other coverage is optional but is recommended if you could not afford to repair or replace what was lost out of your own pocket.

Types of Farm Insurance in Alberta

Farm insurance is customizable based on the size and type of operation, whether you own a hobby farm or a large commercial enterprise. Depending on your needs and the insurance company, your farm insurance may be:

  • Endorsements added onto a home policy
  • A single farm insurance policy
  • Multiple policies and endorsements that work together to protect your farm

One of our farm insurance brokers can help you find the right coverage for your needs and budget.

What’s covered by farm insurance in Alberta?

Farm insurance can include the following coverage in Alberta:

  • Homes and personal property
  • Farm structures including barns, sheds, storage, and more
  • Machinery, equipment and tools
  • Livestock and crops
  • Produce or processed crops
  • Liability (legal expenses if you’re sued in certain situations)
  • Farm and personal vehicles
  • Equipment breakdown
  • Business interruption
  • Other protection such as additional living expenses, fire department charges, lock replacement, identity theft, and more.

What’s covered by farm insurance will depend on your individual policy. That’s why it’s a good idea to work with an Acera Insurance farm insurance broker to ensure you have the right coverage and that you understand your policy.

Farm Vehicle Coverage

Farm vehicles are used very differently than a personal or normal commercial vehicle:

  • They are often driven less kilometres
  • They are often only operated on a farm
  • They may have special equipment.

This means farm vehicles may require unique coverage and may qualify for special rates. Otherwise, farm vehicle insurance is like a regular car policy. You’re required to carry a certain amount of third-party liability, accident benefits and direct compensation for property damage coverage.

Equipment Breakdown Coverage for Farms

Equipment breakdown coverage can help farms repair or replace essential equipment if it suffers from a mechanical or electrical breakdown. It can also provide coverage for business interruption to cover the essentials while your equipment is down.

Here are some types of farm equipment that can be covered:

  • Well pumps for irrigation and livestock
  • Water heaters
  • Generators
  • Refrigeration units
  • Boiler and pressure vessels
  • Milking collection equipment
  • Heating, cooling and ventilation systems
  • Motors and pumps
  • Electrical distribution systems
  • Computers, GPS, and other electronic farm equipment

Mechanical and electrical breakdown is usually not covered by regular farm insurance, so equipment breakdown coverage is a valuable add-on!

Business Interruption Coverage for Farms

Business interruption coverage offers farms assistance if they have a covered claim. This can help cover essential expenses as well as extra costs associated with continuing the farming operation.

The Cost of Farm Insurance in Alberta

The cost of farm insurance in Alberta varies depending on your province of operation, size of farm, and what type of farming you do.

What affects farm insurance rates in Alberta?

Here are some of the factors that affect farm insurance rates in Alberta:

  • The type of farm
  • The size of farm
  • Revenue of your farm
  • If you do custom farming
  • If you rent out any land to others
  • The claim rate of your area
  • The crime rate of your area
  • The distance to the nearest fire station
  • If you have damage prevention and mitigation devices, such as security alarms, water alarms, fire suppression systems, and sump pumps
  • If your farm is located near a lake or river
  • The type and construction material of buildings located on the farm
  • The heating, plumbing, and electrical systems of the farm’s buildings
  • The cost of rebuilding buildings on the farm
  • The cost of replacing personal property, equipment, machinery and tools
  • The number of employees
  • Your driving record (and that of any employees)
  • Your insurance history
  • Your credit rating
  • Your demographics
  • Your insurance options including coverage, policy limits, and deductible

Remember that every farm insurance company calculates its rates a little differently. Your farm insurance broker can advise you on how to get the best rates.

How to Get the Best Farm Insurance

Here’s our advice on getting the best farm insurance in Alberta when it comes to price and protection:

  1. Work with an experienced farm insurance broker. They will advise you on the protection you need and take care of the price shopping for you.
  2. Be honest. It is insurance fraud to lie on an application or misrepresent a claim. Being honest about your farm is the best way to get the right protection and have a claim to be covered.
  3. Balance price with protection. Don’t sacrifice coverage for a lower price.
  4. Implement mitigation measures. This can include emergency plans, processes that minimize risks, and more.
  5. Install mitigation devices. This can include fire suppression systems, security and water alarms, sump pumps, and more. These devices can be eligible for discounts.
  6. Upgrade your buildings, such as replacing older roofs and older electrical systems.
  7. Keep good records. Records can help if you ever have a claim
  8. Choose a higher deductible. The higher the deductible, the more you’ll pay out of pocket for a claim. But your farm insurance rates will also be lower.
  9. Bundle your insurance Many insurance companies offer a discount for having multiple policies.
  10. Contact your broker if something changes You should also review your farm insurance with your broker at least once a year.

Frequently Asked Questions About Farm Insurance in Alberta

Here are the answers to our most frequently asked questions about farm insurance in Alberta.

Yes, there are differences between hobby farm and commercial farm insurance:

  • There are more business protections if you’re insuring a commercial farm
  • There is more extensive operational coverage for commercial farms
  • Farm insurance can be more complicated for commercial farms.

The main difference in the insurance coverage is because a hobby farm may produce some income, but it is not the primary purpose of the farm. Hobby farms and commercial farms have different insurance needs and are therefore protected differently.

Contact one of our farm insurance brokers to find out if your property is eligible for farm insurance. Different insurers have different qualifications.

Yes, your home and other personal property can be covered under your farm insurance.

Crop damage due to weather can be covered, although this is usually an optional add-on to farm insurance.

The type of liability coverage included in farm insurance depends on your individual policy. Here are some common types that can be included with your farm insurance:

  • Personal liability –if someone is hurt or has their property damaged when visiting your home or due to your unintentional actions and sues, this protection may cover your legal expenses.
  • Commercial general liability – if someone is hurt or has their property damaged when visiting your farm or due to your livestock, this coverage may cover legal expenses.

Legal expenses include defence costs, judgement awards and settlements.

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