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Why do you need cleaners insurance?

In a whirlwind of dusting, sweeping, vacuuming, mopping – and sometimes a strong chemical or two – mistakes and accidents can be an unpleasant surprise. The good news? They don’t have to derail your entire business. Whether you work alone or with a team, cleaning insurance protects you against the costs of the unexpected.

  • cover against big claims such as accidental injury or damage to somebody else’s property
  • reassurance for you, your business, your employees, and your cleaning clients
  • personalised protection, from cleaning tools to business equipment to legal expenses
  • quotes start at £6.30* a month based on 2020 data
Start your quote

What does cleaning insurance cover?

We help you piece together your policy so your insurance covers exactly what you need it to. For most cleaners, this means a minimum of public liability insurance (and perhaps also employers’ liability insurance) in case you face unplanned medical or legal expenses. Beyond that? You choose what you include and what to leave out.

Public liability insurance for cleaners

In case your cleaning business causes accidental injury or property damage.

What’s typically covered by public liability insurance?

Claims against your business for:

  • you injuring someone else while you’re cleaning, or afterwards, as a result of your cleaning work
  • you damaging someone else’s property while cleaning, or afterwards, as a result of your cleaning work
  • injury or damage caused by your employee (remember, if you employ people, you must have employers’ liability insurance – it’s a legal requirement)

For example:

  • you drop thick bleach on an expensive carpet by mistake and the mark can’t be removed, so your client is holding you responsible for the cost of a new carpet
  • someone breaks their wrist by slipping on a wet floor you’ve just mopped or tripping over the power cable of your vacuum cleaner
  • your employee accidentally smashes an expensive Chinese vase as they’re vacuuming a client's house

Read more about public liability insurance

Employers’ liability insurance

In case something happens to your employee while they’re working for you.

What’s typically covered by employers’ liability insurance?

Claims against your business for:

  • injuries or illness experienced by your staff due to them being employed by your cleaning company

**Employers’ liability insurance is required by law if you have people working for you. Without it, you could be fined up to £2,500 a day for each employee.**

For example:

  • an employee suffers skin burns from the strong cleaning chemicals you’ve instructed then to use for removing a stubborn buildup of limescale
  • an employee slips on a wet floor and fractures their pelvis

Business and office equipment insurance

In case something happens to your business and office equipment.

What’s typically covered by business and office equipment insurance?

  • theft or loss of the equipment you use to run your business (specifically operational equipment rather than cleaning equipment) while stored at your business premises or out and about
  • flood, fire, or accidental damage to your business equipment

For example:

  • the tablet, laptop or mobile phone you use to manage your cleaning bookings is stolen from your business address or a client's house, so you need to replace the items

Read more about business and office equipment insurance

Tools insurance

In case something happens to your cleaning equipment.

What’s typically covered by cleaner tools insurance?

  • theft or loss of your cleaning equipment (especially handheld tools and portable electronic devices) while you’re completing a job, or while they’re stored in your vehicle
  • flood, fire, or accidental damage to your cleaning equipment

For example:

  • your vacuum cleaner and pressure washer are stolen from your van while it’s parked outside a client’s property
  • the electrics in your steam cleaner are damaged by a power surge at a client’s house, so you need to pay for a repair

Read more about tools insurance

Legal expenses insurance

In case you need to pay legal costs as the owner of your cleaning business.

What’s typically covered by legal expenses insurance?

  • the cost of resolving legal operational issues, including disputes with staff
  • the cost of claims relating to property damage, nuisance or trespass
  • tax and compliance investigations into your cleaning business
  • day-to-day support over the phone, from tax and legal advice to crisis communications expertise that could repair your business’s reputation

For example:

  • HMRC raise concerns about your company’s tax affairs, and you need help getting your bookkeeping in order and fielding questions about irregularities in your expenses for cleaning equipment
  • HMRC selects you at random for a full audit, so you need assistance from an accountant
  • you need to defend your legal rights following the dismissal of an employee

Read more about legal expenses insurance

Personal accident insurance

In case you or anyone you've covered has an accident.

What’s typically covered by personal accident insurance?

  • lost income, medical costs, and hospitalisation benefit due to injury or death (at work or outside of work) for the people you’ve specified in your policy

For example:

  • you trip over a bucket of water you’re using to mop, breaking your arm and leaving you unable to do any cleaning work for a month
  • your employee shuts their hand in a car door on the way into work
  • you sprain your ankle at a family event at the weekend

Read more about personal accident insurance

How much does cleaners insurance cost?

Find out how much you’ll pay by comparing prices from a range of trusted insurers. You choose what goes into your policy, so you only pay for what you need.

Prices start from £6.30 per month

Get your quotes in 7 minutes – prices are guaranteed for 30 days.

Get your tailored quotes in 7 minutes

Start your quote

How we work out example prices We take the highest price from the bottom 10 per cent of all our customers paying in monthly instalments (based on data from 1 July - 31 December 2020). Most customers pay more than this but some pay less.

Example cleaners insurance quotes, real prices

£6.06 /month

£40.61 /year

A domestic cleaner working in residential homes

  • 3-4 years' experience
  • Sole trader
  • No employees
  • Based in Wolverhampton

Public liability

£1,000,000


Employers’ liability

Not included


Tools

Not included

£55.03 /month

£489.12 /year

A small domestic cleaning business that works in residential and commercial properties

  • 5+ years' experience
  • Limited company
  • 3 employees
  • Based in Bradford

Public liability

£1,000,000


Employers’ liability

£10,000,000


Tools

£4,000

How we work out example quotes These examples are real quotes from our online system (created 10/09/2020). They’re based on a range of factors, like employees and location. Your own quote will be based on what you tell us about your business. Prices may go up or down from day to day, so the prices you’re quoted may differ to the ones you see here.

What kind of excess should I expect?

An excess is an amount you pay towards any claim you make on your insurance. For example, if your excess is £250 and you make a claim worth £1000, your payout will be a maximum of £750.

Insurance coverLowest excessHighest excess
Public liability£100£2500
Employers' liabilityNo excessNo excess
Tools£60£500
Business and office equipment£50£750

The figures above are for guidance only and any excess applying to your quote may differ. You’ll get a breakdown of the excesses for each quote when you compare with us.

How it works

  • Pick what goes into your policy

    Only pay for what you need

  • Get prices from a range of insurers

    Choose the best fit for you

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    Get your documents the same day

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We handle claims, so you can get on with business

How do I choose insurance?

Making sure you have the right type and level of business insurance can be the difference between getting a claim paid and having to cover the cost of an expensive accident yourself. Read our tips for guidance on what to consider when buying a policy.

Can I just cover my most expensive tools?

Make sure you cover the total cost of replacing all your tools or you’ll only get a proportion of your claim paid out if something happens to them. Learn about tool cover.

Which type of workers do I need insurance for?

Employers’ liability insurance is a legal requirement if you employ people.

If you have people working for you, including bona fide subcontractors (BFSC), labour-only subcontractors (LOSC), part-timers, or full-time staff, employers’ liability insurance is required by law.

Read on for our simplified guide to the difference between labour-only subcontractors and bona fide subcontractors.

Will tools insurance cover all my equipment?

Depending on what you use to do your work, you may need other covers.

You may need more than tools insurance – for example, business equipment insurance if you have a work laptop, plant insurance if you use machinery.

Does cleaning insurance cover my work correctly?

Make sure you're picking the right cover to protect you properly. It's important to know that if you have another trade or job, you'll need additional cover. For example, do you need to consider office cleaner or carpet cleaning insurance?

Do I need cover for other types of work?

If you provide these services alongside building work, make sure you’re covered:

Other types of insurance

Which public liability cover limit should I choose?

Think about the maximum possible loss your business could face in the event of a claim, and make sure you take legal fees and damages into consideration. You can choose from three levels of coverage – £1 million, £2 million, or up to £5 million.


Talk to an expert

Our team of UK-based insurance experts are here to help, Mon 09.00am - 05.30pm, Tues 09.00am - 05.30pm, Weds 09.00am - 05.30pm, Thurs 09.30am - 05.30pm, Fri 09.00am - 05.30pm, Sat 09.00am - 02.00pm

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FAQs

Find answers to common insurance questions

How do claims work?

Unlike price comparison websites, we take the hassle out of claims for you. We know how important it is to get your business back on track quickly – and with a minimum of fuss. That’s why you get access to your dedicated claims any time, day or night. Call them on 0333 207 0560 or claim online. They’ll do their best to be fair and supportive. The figure below is rounded across our range of products. Our claims process may vary for different products and operates on a ‘claim by claim’ basis.

£30 million in claims paid out in 2019

Paying 80% of settled claims within 24 hours in 2019

Example claim

Having cleaning insurance through Simply Business has saved cleaners thousands of pounds when the unexpected happened.

Eddie saved more than £11,600

After cleaning a customer’s second home, Eddie (not his real name) left the hot tap running in the bath by mistake. The customer returned some time later and found steam damage throughout the bedrooms, hall and landing, with mould on the walls, damp carpets, and fixtures that had to be replaced. It took a lot of work to restore the property to its previous condition, so Eddie was glad he had cleaning insurance to pay for the repairs.

Insurance payout

£11,660.36

Covering the cost of accidental damage


Eddie costs

£100

The excess amount stated in Eddie policy terms

Chosen by 800,000 small businesses

We started out as a team of five back in 2005. We’ve grown since then with 800,000 customers across 1,500 trades now trusting us to provide their business insurance.

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Cleaning insurance FAQs

Whether you’re new to buying business insurance or you’ve been trading for a while, here are the answers to some commonly asked questions about cleaners insurance. You can also check out our business insurance FAQs.

  • There are two key types of cover for most cleaning companies.

    Firstly – because your area of work involves coming into contact with other people’s property, many cleaners see public liability insurance as essential. It steps in to cover the cost of causing accidental damage to somebody else’s property or injuring them by accident. For this reason, some cleaning clients (especially offices and other high-value properties) may insist that you have public liability insurance before they’ll say yes to doing business with you.

    And secondly – if you have people working for you, you’re legally required to have employers’ liability cover.

    And you have several other options available too:

    Do you rely on digital equipment such as a business laptop, or specialist cleaning equipment such as a steam mop? You might want to look into business and office equipment cover and tool cover.

    Are you interested in going the extra mile to protect yourself and others against the financial difficulty that can follow on from injury and illness? That’s what personal accident insurance is for.

    Finally, are you looking for an extra layer of protection against court costs and compensation bills, especially when it comes to disputes with clients or employees? You can take out legal protection insurance.

    Still feeling uncertain about what insurance you need for your man and van business? You might find it helpful to read our guide on assessing the risks.

  • Thousands of self-employed house cleaners in the UK choose to take out insurance.

    It’s not a legal requirement unless you have employees (in which case, employers’ liability insurance is a must). But it does demonstrate professionalism to potential cleaning clients, and more importantly, it protects your business against the unexpected. When things go wrong, either in the process of cleaning houses or in the overall running of your business, the costs can quickly add up.

    Keep in mind, if you operate as a self-employed cleaner through an online marketplace, you may already be covered by the marketplace’s own insurance policy. If you’re not sure, you can always ask them.

  • Yes. You may start offering additional services that require you to use different skills or carry out different tasks. If you find yourself in this situation, it’s important to give us a call on 0333 043 8527 to update your policy before you take on this new work. If you don’t have the correct type of cover in place for the work you do, you may be unable to claim on your policy if something goes wrong.

  • You can choose the payment type that suits your business and cash flow best. Some customers prefer to pay in one go, while others prefer to pay a regular monthly amount, like you do with lots of other bills. Simply Business offer three ways to pay for your policy:

    • one-off credit or debit card payment
    • BACS payment
    • Direct Debit

    If you choose to pay by Direct Debit, our credit provider, Premium Credit, pays Simply Business the full amount for your policy up front. You then repay Premium Credit in 10 monthly installments.

  • If you change your business legal structure from sole trader to limited company mid-way through your policy, give us a call straight away on 0333 043 8527. It’ll only take us a few minutes to cancel your existing policy and replace it with one that correctly covers your new legal structure. It’s worth bearing in mind that your insurer and premium amount may need to change.

  • This will depend on whether you have employers’ liability insurance in place. Public liability insurance is designed to protect your business against the consequences of legal action brought by members of the public for injuries or damage to their belongings. But when it comes to your employees causing injury or damage, this protection only activates if you also have employers’ liability insurance.

    If you employ people, you’re required by law to have employers’ liability insurance.

    There’s one exception here. Family businesses that aren’t incorporated as a limited company are not legally required to have employers’ liability insurance. The government defines a “family business” as one where all your employees are closely related to you (as a spouse, civil partner, sibling, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, step-parent, stepchild or half-sibling). So if you run an unincorporated family business and you choose not to get employers’ liability insurance, it’s important to know that your public liability insurance wouldn’t cover you against damage or injury caused by your team.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always check policy documentation for details and seek professional advice. Read our full Terms and Conditions

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