Choosing an insurance agent might seem like an easy thing to do. Most people just go for the lowest price. But whether you are insuring a car, a home or small business, it will take more than only considering the bottom line. In fact, Bankrate’s Jack Hungelmann says the most important component of insurance-buying is selecting the right insurance agent to get things right from the start. A lower price can mean cheaper coverage, yes, but it can also mean a lack of coverage and service. Here’s a look at how to better understand what it takes to find the right insurance agent in Indianapolis.
An insurance agent is obligated to obtain insurance coverage for you that is appropriate for whatever you’re trying to cover, be it a car, home or business. An agent must ensure that the policy you choose includes everything you’ve requested, and go over, in full detail, any discrepancies. An insurance agent signs contracts, called binding agreements, with insurers. From here, contracts allow agents to sell different kinds of policies that you get to choose from.
Finding An Agent
To this day, nothing beats word of mouth. With access to social media, information online, and just good old fashioned conversation with those in the know, the best way to find an agent is through referrals. Friends, neighbors, insurance company websites, and colleagues and business associates can all be used to help in a search for coverage in any state.
If you have found a possible insurance agent, it’s best to do a little more digging on your own than just set up a time to chat. If you meet with an agent before you feel comfortable or before you have enough information, you may be pressured into choosing an agent and a policy you’re uncomfortable with. First, make sure the agent has a valid license. State insurance department websites allow you to check the status of an agent’s license through a search tool. You want to make sure the agent’s license is active and also make sure that he or she is licensed to actually sell you the type of insurance you’re looking to buy.
Going Online To Meet In Person
The Internet is a great source for making big decisions like this. Information is everywhere online, and that includes insurance agencies. Most insurance agencies or independent agents have websites, social media sites, or have been reviewed on sites like Yelp. Do a little digging on things like biographies of company principals and employees. This should give you a good feel as to who the people that might represent you actually are.
Now that you have all the information you need to be prepared, it’s time to meet with a possible candidate in person. The agent should have at least the basic, day-to-day knowledge of the policies that you are looking to choose from. Industry knowledge is also key to determining if the agent is right for you. Always check to see how long the agent has been conducting business, and even feel free to ask them about the company they work for in terms of change, leadership, and successes. And, like mentioned above, having referrals goes a long way. Ask the agent to provide contact information for customers who have been loyal or businesses that still use the agent or the agency.
Business owners, car owners, and every-day homeowners may have to go through this process a few times. but it’s better to be safe than to be stuck with an agent in a contract that you are uncomfortable with or that doesn’t serve your needs. Make sure to communicate exactly what you want and don’t be afraid to set up terms.
About McClain Matthews Insurance
At McClain Matthews, we specialize in providing comprehensive insurance solutions for
Indianapolis residents, business owners and beyond. For the last 69 years, we have established relationships within our community and pride ourselves on tailoring coverages as needed by our clients. For more information on how we can serve you, contact our friendly experts today at (317) 298-7500.