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Songer Insurance Agency, Inc. Blog

All You Ever Wanted to Know About Insurance

Commercial Property - Risk Selection

When evaluating a commercial property submission, the underwriter looks at many criteria. Part of their evaluation is underwriting they COPE each property they were unsure. COPE stands for the construction, occupancy, protection/ both public protection class and private protection, and exposure to loss.

The underwriter Will want to know what type of materials are used in the construction of the building. Are they would, concrete, Block and wood or perhaps steel? Construction types are used industry wide and do not vary from carrier to carrier.

Occupancy is the second component of COPE. Occupancy is significant to the underwriter because it can help determine the combustibility of a particular building. Each time the occupancy of the building changes it presents a distinctly different underwriting situation and will need to be reevaluated by the underwriter. Occupancy is one of the essential considerations in connection with loss estimates. 

Protection is the 3rd part of COPE. The ultimate effect of the fire depends on its duration. Therefore the underwriter will evaluate the efficiency and adequacy of both private fire protection and public protection concerning the ability to control the type of fire anticipated within the building. 

Exposure to loss is the last piece. In addition to evaluating the actual building in the contents to be insured the underwriter will also look at the exposure in occupancies surrounding the building to be protected. The underwriter will determine whether an otherwise acceptable risk may be affected by the proximity or condition of exposing properties. 

This is a very brief synopsis of commercial property insurance and risk selection. If you own exchange property in Beckley West Virginia or surrounding areas we can gladly assist you to adequately insuring it. We have over 200 combined years experience amongst our office staff. So you can be confident we can properly insure any business and commercial property you have.