Looking to change your auto insurance, cover your home for damage or get liability insurance? An independent insurance agent can help you with all of these needs.
What makes independent agents different from “captive” agents, who represent a single insurance company? More importantly, what can an independent agent do for you?
The advantages of an independent agent
One of the biggest reasons to choose an independent insurance agent is that they can place business with multiple insurance companies. They also represent insurers that don’t sell directly to consumers. As a result, you’ll have access to many different companies and get competitive insurance quotes from a single source.
Here are some other good reasons to consider an independent agent:
- Independent agents will talk through your best options. Since they aren’t attached to a single company, they can recommend the top insurers for the type of coverage you need. They’ll spend time learning about your specific needs, then shop the market to find companies that can meet your requirements. This saves you the time and frustration of conducting your own hit-or-miss search.
- Independent agents know the insurance market. Insurance can be complicated. For one thing, not all insurance companies write coverage in every market. For another, insurance companies don’t always want to take on new risk, or they may have strict underwriting standards that make coverage limited or expensive. Policy language, the amount of coverage available, deductibles, and risks excluded from coverage may vary as well. An independent agent can navigate the maze of insurance to come up with solutions that meet your budget and your needs.
- Independent agents can place hard-to-find coverage. Many independent agents specialize in niche markets and hard-to-place coverage. Whether you own a rare classic automobile, vacation home or high-value art collection, an independent agent can find you coverage.
- Independent agents are committed to their clients. Many independent agencies are family-run and have been in business for several generations. They pride themselves on providing a high level of service and supporting their communities. Because they know you can switch agents, they focus on building long-term relationships and providing personalized service and fair, honest pricing.
- Independent agents represent companies that don’t sell directly to consumers. You’re probably familiar with some of the nation’s largest direct insurance companies from commercials. But there are many smaller, regional carriers that don’t advertise as much and that distribute insurance only through independent agents. These companies may have better pricing than the big insurers, but you’ll need an independent agent to place the coverage for you.
- Independent agents stay informed and have a wealth of experience. To better serve their clients, independent agents stay informed on market trends, policy changes, compliance developments and new products. They often sell both personal and commercial lines of coverage and can create a comprehensive insurance plan that includes more than a single policy or coverage.
You have lots of options when it comes to insurance. You can buy many types of insurance online or over the phone. But with so many choices, it’s difficult to know whether you’re getting a reasonably priced policy that’s right for you. An independent agent will take the time to understand your needs, your budget and your situation before suggesting options to help you protect your family, property and assets.