Have you been in a situation where you desperately in need of a good physician, an extra ordinary lawyer or an understanding psychologist? Well, finding a good insurance agent is not much of a difference. You need someone that you can trust and has the integrity and experience to give sound advices. The same person must be able to tell you what you need to hear and not necessarily, the things that you want to hear.
While many insurance agents understand your needs to have the lowest insurance rate possible ever, this does not mean that he will hold on to this idea even if that inexpensive policy will never provide the coverage that you need.
Getting Any Few Referrals
Referrals are good and you can start out by asking your trusted friends, family members or relatives. Online referrals are getting popular these days but make sure you meet the agent in person. For all you know, this person will know your intimate life details and there is no substitute to a face-to-face communication.
What to Choose: Captive Agent or Independent?
Choosing an agent depends entirely on your needs and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. When we say “captive agent” it means that he is being employed to work in behalf of a certain insurance company. This person will most likely have a base salary, which means he will not try to upsell insurance policies that you do not need. On the other hand, the product line could fall short, which could not answer to the right coverage that you are looking for.
Do not get me wrong but a captive insurance agent may be good for you if you have multiple insurance policies from a single insurance provider and with a very limited claim history. For instance, if you have a life insurance and renter’s policy from Allstate or Farmers, and you are planning to add your auto insurance with them, the company could extend a discount for doing that. Keep in mind that you still need to have a good driving record to qualify.
However, if your driver record is not squeaky clean, or you have other special requirements as to your coverage, then an independent insurance agent is your best ally. If he is carrying multiple insurance companies at the same time, he will likely find the best policy with the best possible rates.
You cannot be an insurance agent if you do not have a passion for selling and the patience to help people understand what they are about to buy. Their incomes are virtually limitless and all depends on how rigorous and effective their sales presentations are. On the other hand, underwriters, claims handlers and adjusters are all based on a monthly salary and these are the type of people who understand the ins and outs of the industry.
Eventually, seeing the great opportunities of earning more, some of them will have to choose the career path of becoming into a sales agent.
Those people who have this basic understanding will become skillful and sensitive insurance agents. You can trust these people when it comes to combing for the right insurance policy for you. If you can find an agent that once worked as an underwriter or adjuster, then such experience will greatly improve his coaching ability.
Checking The Agent’s Credentials
Finally, always check the agent’s credentials you are dealing with. Your state’s Insurance Commissioner usually keeps the records. Look for the past complains (if any) against him and check if his license is not yet expired.