If your Lodge is building an smoking porch addition on the property, it’s crucial to involve your property insurance agent or broker in the process to avoid problems like coverage misunderstandings, denied coverage for claims and losses, and underinsurance issues.

As of January 1, 2020, Lodges have become smoke-free. It’s a big change for members, and in many cases, it’s also leading to big changes for Lodge facilities, so it’s important to be prepared.

Going Tobacco-Free

With delegates voting to make all Lodges smoke-free on Jan. 1, 2020, many Lodges are adding space to their properties to give smokers a place to go. Whether it’s a new deck, pergola or smoking porch addition, this solution is a win–win, helping your Lodge provide a welcoming atmosphere for prospective members inside the Lodge, while still giving fellow members a comfortable place to enjoy a cigar, pipe or cigarette break.

Additions and Your Policy

Before you break ground on your addition, it’s important to consider your existing property insurance policy. There are three questions to answer:

  • What does your policy currently cover?
  • What will you need to cover during construction?
  • Will your existing policy provide sufficient coverage for the new addition?

Current Coverage

Most property insurance policies contain sections addressing additional coverage or coverage extensions. Carefully examine this language in your policy. Note that these sections may offer some coverage during and after construction, while also identifying the limitations of those additional or extended coverage.

During Construction

Even with a small project like a smoking porch, construction at your Lodge introduces new risks and a potential for losses or damages that aren’t always obvious. Consider these common limitations for properties undergoing construction:

  • Materials for new fixtures may not be covered under an existing policy until they are permanently affixed to the property.
  • Newly acquired, constructed or in-transit property may not be covered under your existing policy.
  • Damage to the existing property during construction of the addition may increase overall construction costs, which may not be covered.
  • Debris removal, pollutant cleanup and other such additional costs from construction may not be covered in the event of a covered loss at the property.
  • Theft, damage or loss of personal property, which may become part of the property after its installation, could be covered under a personal property policy, but is often excluded from property policies.

Updating Coverage

Be sure to inform your carrier of additions as the added value of new additions could cause your property to be underinsured. That can cause problems for an agent or broker as well as for the insured in the event of a claim. Ensuring your policy adequately covers your Lodge and its new additions or updates will give you peace of mind that you’re fully protected and ready for the future.

When you’re ready to start your addition, remember that Lockton Affinity can design customized business Property Insurance coverage based on the specific needs of your organization, working directly with your members to help you understand the coverage requirements you need for your property.

As your Lodge prepares for a smoke-free 2020, review your current property policy and check with your insurer to ensure any new additions are covered and that your policy is up to date.