Construction Industry Issues Takeaways from the CAGC Summer Summit

Nearly 800 contractors, suppliers, service providers and guests attended the Carolina’s Associated General Contractors (CAGC) Summer Summit last month to discuss issues impacting the construction industry throughout the region. The topics discussed at the conference were focused on the building, utility and highway divisions of construction; however, several trends permeate the entire industry and even other industries with a similar workforce and/or risk exposures.

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Personnel Record Disclosure Requirements Change in Virginia

At the beginning of this month, a change in Virginia Code became effective impacting how Va. employers release employee records.  The types of records impacted by this law cover several personnel areas, but I want to highlight that it includes information surrounding workplace injuries. The below post from Hancock Daniel, provides further detail surrounding the amended statute. Please contact me or another one of our Risk Advisors in Virginia with any questions about the updated law or best practices for record keeping of workplace injuries or incidents.  Continue reading

Property & Casualty Market Outlook for 2019-2020

At Scott Insurance, our clients often ask us to predict how their property & casualty insurance costs will change year-over-year. While each company has their own unique characteristics that affect pricing, we can make some general market observations to help clients prepare for the future.

Looking back, 2017 brought near-record highs in U.S. catastrophe losses due to the hurricane trifecta of Harvey, Irma and Maria. While 2018 saw a reduction in these losses (down to $37 billion versus $53 billion*), hurricane Michael and historic wildfires in California made it the second highest loss year since 2011. Despite two near-record-setting catastrophe loss years, carriers are posting lower combined ratios due to a combination of diligent underwriting discipline, moderate price increases, favorable loss development and higher interest rates.  Continue reading

Addressing the Exposures of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit

A topic of continual discussion with our Affordable Housing clients is the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC).  This critical tool is fundamental to success in the industry, but as it is currently administered, it creates significant exposures that must be addressed – both with proper insurance coverage and also with appropriate lobbying efforts to hopefully foster future change to alleviate some of the risk.

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Managing Cash Flow in Construction

We were always focused on our profit and loss statement. But cash flow was not a regularly discussed topic. It was as if we were driving along, watching only the speedometer, when in fact we were running out of gas.”  – Michael Dell, Founder & CEO of Dell Technologies

It takes a broad skill-set to run a successful construction business and navigate the significant risks inherent in the industry.  Not only do you need to know the ins and outs of construction, you must also be skilled at business management and finance.  From executing contracts to understanding the bid process to managing resources, not the least of which is cash. The quote above from Michael Dell about cash flow is very timely and applicable for contractors.  A large surety company recently listed its “Top 10 Reasons Contractors are at Risk of Failing,” with Insufficient Cash Flow as #4 on the list.  Cash flow issues have historically been at the top of similar lists of construction industry risks.  The ability to quickly access cash is the universal resource to fix just about any issue that arises.

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