Plant Hire Insurance Explained (Hired In)

Hiring machinery can be one of the most productive decisions any business or avid DIYer can make. Therefore, when choosing to do so, it is worth understanding all the terms and conditions that you might just oversee when signing the dotted line. One of which is organizing temporary plant insurance for the duration of your hire. In this article, we will focus on bringing you up to speed with plant insurance, analyse the small print you might graze over, and finally some recommendations of some temporary insurance companies to investigate.

Plant Hire Insurance (The Basics)

In short, plant hire insurance is crucial. Whether done commercially or just for a weekend. Not only do these policies cover the protection of the equipment, but they can also be extended to cover liability associated with its use. Remember that the replacement cost for large plant machinery can exceed hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Whether you get your equipment from WHC Hire or another supplier, you’ll be entered into a legally binding contract, giving you full responsibility for the machinery. Plant hire insurance ensures that you are protected against any unexpected events during this period. Here is a short list of examples your plant hire insurance will cover you for:

  • Theft
  • Damage
  • Fire
  • Storm
  • Accidental
  • Malicious  

It is important to remember that the responsibility is on the customer to arrange their own plant hire insurance. It is best to weigh up what level of coverage you need depending on the value of the machinery and what you plan to use it for. Like any other insurance policy, it is crucial to read the small print of your agreement. Regardless of the level of coverage you decided; plant hire insurance is the safest way to protect yourself.

Must You Take Out Plant Insurance To Hire Machinery?

There is no legal requirement to take out plant insurance for your hire. Unless it is stated in the terms and conditions of the agreement of the company you wish to work with. Ultimatley, the decision always lies with the customer. That said, if you are using the machinery commercially, it is normally a common requirement.

Even after taking all the precautions you possibly can, no one can predict what might just happen when the machinery is left unattended. Every year, millions of pounds’ worth of machinery are stolen from building sites, lock-ups and even out of the rear of work vehicles. Only for the responsibility to then be dropped on the hirer to replace or repair the machinery.

In conclusion, plant hire insurance reduces the amount of financial and mental stress a hirer may go through if the worst-case scenario is to happen. Now let’s have a closer look at different types of insurance you might expect to find.

Different Types Of Plant Hire Insurance

There are multiple different types of insurance options for anyone looking to cover their hire machinery. Here is a breakdown of each individual option:

Temporary Plant Hire Insurance

Temporary insurance is designed specifically for the occasional user. As the name suggests, the policy covers you for the period during which the machinery is in your procession. This is normally for a week or so at a time. However, the policies are only temporary, and you only pay for the time that you require the equipment. They require a specific start and end date that you will need to correlate to. Meaning the equipment must be out of your hands by the time it terminates. No time for overrunning as a new policy will need to be organised if this is the case.

This type of plant hire insurance is ideal for the avid DIYer or small business that works on a cash basis (pay as you go) with their equipment supplier. This type of policy is not ideal for the regular hirer.

Hired Plant Insurance

If you are looking for more flexibility, then hired plant insurance will offer you a far more attractive proposal. Hired plant insurance is a policy that generally is paid annually and covers all the machinery that you hire up to a determined value. It is very important that before you commit to a policy that it covers everything you need to do so. In best practice, we recommend that you take a look at all the potential work you could undertake in the next 12 months. Analyse what machinery you are likely to use and ensure you can be covered for it.

Hired plant insurance can also be added to your current business policy, providing there is a facility to do so. Speak directly to your insurer to discuss the possibility of adding this feature to your policy. When opening a trade account with a hire company, you will be expected to provide your insurance documents, including your hired plant insurance.

Liability Insurance

One small fine print that you might find when organising plant hire insurance is a liability policy. If you have business insurance already, then you will have some type of liability insurance already. However, you MUST check that it covers hired in equipment also. Not all liability insurance policies cover the use of hired machinery.

Most hired plant insurance policies will come with an option to add liability as an extra or as part of a bundle. Just be certain that if ever you do need to use a policy, you are covered for every outcome possible.

Why Do Hire Companies Take A Deposit?

Deposits for the use of plant hire from rental companies act as a guarantee to the suppliers. This is normally charged at a rate depending on the value of the machinery and risk. Each individual supplier will have their own method of determining the deposit, so it is best to always enquire. Deposits are fully refundable after the hire has been completed. This is normally minus the hire rate and any extras such as fuel, transport and possibly a cleaning fee if the machinery is returned in a poor condition.

However, it is worth noting that account customers do not require paying a deposit for their hires. This is due to suppliers running credit checks and issuing credit limits to their accounts before opening. If you are looking to hire regularly from a supplier, it is always worth opening a credit account with them. This allows you to order faster and reduce the amount of friction from ordering to equipment arrival. Credit accounts generally have to be cleared within 30 days.

Temporary Plant Hire Recommendations

Here are some recommendations of temporary plant hire insurers that WHC Hire Services have worked with and can recommend to all our readers:

JCB Insurance

“JCB Insurance is an Insurance Broker, established in 1984 that is wholly owned by the JCB Excavator Group. This means that we have over 35 years experience in providing advice and Insurance solutions, tailored to the specific requirements of each customer, all at a competitive price.” Discover more about JCB Insurance by clicking here.


“We are a different kind of financial business. As a mutual, we have no shareholders to generate profits for. We’re here for our members, and it’s our job to be the type of business they’d like us to be. Through talking to them, we know that means acting responsibly, always doing the right thing, and making a positive difference – for the good of our members, our neighbours and our communities. We’re proud to deliver more than simply insurance. Educating young drivers, making farming safer, tackling rural poverty and enabling sustainable living are just some of the ways we do that.” Discover more about NFU Insurance by clicking here.

Plant Hire In Gloucestershire

WHC Hire Services loader hire

WHC Hire Services offer a large range of state-of-the-art plant hire equipment to Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, Oxfordshire, as well as the rest of the UK. With regular investments, WHC provides one of the most productive and highest-performing fleets in the country. Find out more about the equipment WHC Hire supplies here.  Or call 01684377977 today!

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