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Return of the Agent: Why DIY Does Not Work for Insurance

Ron Martin - Monday, August 07, 2017
​The concept of "do it yourself" – or DIY - has caught on in many areas of the consumer economy during the past decade. Insurance is no different. People are taking it upon themselves, in notable numbers, to find and buy their policies. As reported by the Insurance Journal, Independent Agents wrote almost 35% of personal lines insurance and 80% of the commercial lines segment. 

But while some consumers try DIY insurance shopping and buying, let's look at the benefits of working with an independent agent. 

Independent agents offer a personal touch
As explained by the Insurance Information Institute, agents are either independent or captive: respectively, able to provide policies from more than one company or working solely with one company. You can also buy policies through an insurance broker, who functions much like an independent agent but is considered the customer's representative, rather than the insurer's.

Many customers find independent agents most understand and fulfill their needs. They are able to speak on your behalf because their top concern is the consumer. Your interests are their interests, so if you're having a problem with your coverage or encounter issues that prevent you from being fully satisfied, they're ready to go to the plate on your behalf.

And, since local independent agents work where you live they will know the area better and may offer friendlier, more customized service. Having an independent agent to find the best coverage choices for your needs can work very well for many consumers and businesses. 

One-stop shopping
Though there are independent insurance agents who specialize in one type of coverage, they usually deal with multiple products, including renters, homeowners, automobile and business. Bundling is a great savings tool, and unaffiliated agents can help you take advantage of this savings by finding you the right "package" of coverages from a single carrier. 

All too often people buy insurance only to learn they're underinsured when they need to make a claim. This is one of the risks of buying coverage on your own. Independent agents not only help you determine you're buying the right type of insurance, but also the right amount.


Trustworthiness and ethics
Agents devote their professional lives to insurance, making them extremely knowledgeable on the topic. Any experienced independent agent will have established a record of honesty and trustworthiness to anchor a long, successful career. Since independent agents aren't backed by big insurance brands, it’s the agents’ positive pedigree that plays a key role in getting them business. 

Independent agency create and deliver business and personal insurance solutions that best fit customers’ needs.
 
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