I’m new to Orchid, and don’t know whether this subject has been
beaten to death previously, but am looking for suggestions.
We recently moved to Maine and got homeowners insurance.
I am just starting up a very small jewelry business at home. I asked
our agent to confirm with the insurance carrier that (a) they would
not have a problem with my having a small studio even though I hope
to turn a small profit on it eventually, and (b) I will be using an
enameling kiln, soldering torch (acetylene/air) and a glassworking
torch (oxy propane) in the studio.
At first they didn’t seem to be concerned with the fact that I will
be selling what I make (though not at the house).
But, they said I could not have torches in the house. I said, okay,
I’ll move them to the standalone garage, though it’s a major hassle
to have to go out there every time I need to anneal, or solder, or do
glasswork, and I don’t heat that workspace constantly or to a very
warm temperature (heating up here in Maine is a major expense), so
it’s uncomfortable and I worry about rust.
Nevertheless, even though I agreed to what they demanded, I received
a letter from the agent today saying the carrier will be sending me a
notice of non-renewal in about two weeks.
My question is whether any of you have a homeowners insurance
carrier that permits you to operate your studio in your house, and if
so can you share the name of it?
Secondly, our agent said that in talking with a jeweler friend to
get some background, he or she advised her that my tanks should be
outside. I can see the point, since propane is heavier than air, in
the event of a leak. However, outside at our house, the regulators
would be subject to rain, snow and ice, not to mention the hassle of
going outside to turn off the tanks each time I’m finished using
them. The oxy/propane system is a Little Smith, which has a carrier
for both tanks, and looks like it was designed to be both portable
and used inside. The acetylene tank is slightly taller and is used
with a Smith air/acetylene torch head. It seems to me that if the
tanks, regulators, hoses and torches are in good shape, set up
properly, tested for leaks, and the tanks secured so they cannot tip
over, it is not unreasonable to keep them inside. Your experiences,
opinions, and advice would be helpful.
Finally, I looked briefly online at one insurer of jewelers, but all
that seems geared much more toward commercial jewelers that have
thousands (or much more) in inventory, and employees, and on-site
customers (none of which I’ll have, although I do have some expensive
equipment I want insured–kilns, rolling mill, shear,
grinder/polisher). And I haven’t seen any indication that even with
such coverage, it would make the homeowners insurance carrier any
Thanks in advance for your insights.