ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT INSURANCE (PART 2)

ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT INSURANCE (PART 2)

This article is all about INSURANCE, would enlighten you and speak a wide region of it

hope you read our previous article "ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT INSURANCE (PART 1)" this is the continuation of it

CONTENT
1.0. what is insurance?
2.0. principles of insurance
3.0. methods of insurance
4.0. types of insurance
 4.1.0. accident insurance
 4.2.0. car/auto insurance
 4.3.0. health insurance
 4.4.0. home insurance (2)
 4.5.0. life insurance (2)
 4.6.0. property insurance (2)
 4.7.0. injury insurance (2)
 4.8.0. travel insurance (2)
5.0. what are the advantages and disadvantages of insurance? (2)
6.0. insurance companies (2)

in our previous article 'ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT INSURANCE (PART 1)' we tried discussing;

  • what is insurance
  • principles of insurance
  • methods of insurance and
  • few types of insurance
we ended at Health insurance, this article would be the continuation of the content and we would discuss keys having '(2)' as shown above, at the content


4.4.0. HOME INSURANCE
HOME INSURANCE

whilst you think of home insurance, suppose protection. the majority, in reality, can not find the money for to rebuild their domestic and update the whole thing in it if there's a disaster, which is why home insurance is so important. here is what you need to understand about house owners coverage:


What is home insurance?

A home insurance policy can protect your own home in opposition to damages that arise to the house itself – and the property internal. home insurance also can protect some of your private possessions and you. It’s a package policy that mixes two sorts of coverage:

coverage in opposition to your home being destroyed or broken by using sure perils, inclusive of fireplace, theft and windstorm
insurance for liability exposure – for instance, a person being injured on your own home
for instance, if something sudden takes place, including a hearth or burglary, home insurance will assist pay for destruction and losses. similarly, a home insurance policy might also offer legal responsibility coverage for injuries that occur on your own home (together with both property harm and physical injuries incurred by touring guests) and can even cowl positive injuries that occur off your own home.

There are several distinctive insurance sorts built right into a home insurance policy, and it’s vital to know what insurance types practice to what damages. permit’s get into the specifics.




What does home insurance cover?

Now that you know the basic home insurance definition, it’s important to understand what a standard policy actually covers. Home insurance will help to cover damage caused by perils including:
  • Fire
  • Hail
  • Lightning
  • Windstorm
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
While other hazards, such as floods and earthquakes are not typically covered by standard policies, there are additional coverage options available.

What types of coverage do common policies provide?

A standard home policy typically provides the following types of coverages:

Dwelling coverage

Dwelling coverage helps protect the structure, built-in appliances and wall-to-wall carpet of your house from damage. In the terms of your home insurance policy, your “dwelling” means the entire structure of your home and any connected structures such as an attached garage or cellar. In the event your home is damaged by a covered loss, this will help to cover repairs or any rebuilding that needs to take place as a result.

Other structures coverage

Other structures coverage applies to structures on your property that are not attached to your dwelling. If an unattached structure such as a shed, garage or guest house is damaged, other structures insurance may help cover the associated costs.

Personal property coverage

Personal property coverage protects your personal belongings in your homes, such as furniture or electronics, if they are damaged or destroyed by a covered loss.

Liability coverage

Liability coverage may cover damage costs associated with bodily injuries sustained by guests on your property and other covered expenses that arise as a result of negligence. This could include the individual’s medical bills, loss of income, pain and suffering and more. It could also cover your legal defense costs in the event of a dispute.

Loss of use coverage

In the event you need to temporarily move out of your home due to a covered loss, loss of use insurance will cover additional housing and living expenses that you incur. For example, if you have to move out of your home while it is being repaired or rebuilt after a covered accident, loss of use insurance would cover the cost of a hotel or temporary apartment.
Check out the full list of home insurance coverage options available from Nationwide.

Is home insurance required?

Yes and no. Home insurance is not required by state law, like auto insurance. However, your lender may require that you obtain a policy and a certain level of home insurance coverage. Having home insurance is an important way of protecting your home and belongings from the unknown – and potentially avoid paying out of pocket for costly damages.



 4.5.0. LIFE INSURANCE
LIFE INSURANCE
in general life insurance is a service provided to you by an insurer, in exchange for a regular payment – normally monthly. This payment is known as the premium. In return, the insurance company will pay a lump sum to your family in the unfortunate event of your death.

For example, if you pass away whilst still employed, life insurance will protect your family from the financial suffering that could be caused by the loss of your salary.
Life insurance can also pay off debts left behind after your death. For example, if you have a car loan at the time of your death, your life insurance policy could give your successors enough money to pay it off.

There are two main types of life insurance: “Term Life” insurance and “Whole Life” insurance.

Term life insurance covers you for a set period of time, usually between 10 and 30 years.

If you pass away during this time, the insurance company will pay out a lump sum to your family, which can be used to cover funeral costs and support them in your absence. However, if you die after the term has expired, there will be no payout. Term life insurance gives you financial safety while you are earning money and supporting a family.

Term life insurance is useful if you only need life insurance for a certain period, such as while your children are living at home. This is why many people will take out a term life insurance for 18 years, between when their children are born until they are adults.

The single most important reason why people buy term life insurance is that their family is protected and continues to receive your income if you pass away during your working years. It is also usually cheaper than whole life insurance, as you are usually covered during your younger years.

Whole life insurance lasts throughout your whole life until you pass away.

Whole life insurance is most useful if you have people that are depending on you throughout their entire life. Whole life insurance can also be a requirement if you enter into a mortgage agreement with a bank or financial institution, so they are protected if you pass away.

Whole life insurance is usually used for wealth preservation and to make sure your family is financially well off if something happens to you.


HOW DOES LIFE INSURANCE WORK EXACTLY?

Life insurance is an agreement between three parties. These three parties are:
1. The insured: the person who buys the life insurance policy.
2. The insurer: the company selling the life insurance policy.
3. The beneficiary: the person receiving payment if something happens to the insured.
For example, a father of a family can buy a life insurance policy (the insured) from Ensure Insurance (the insurer) and if something happens to him, his family (the beneficiary) receives the agreed payment.
The insured person under the life insurance policy makes regular payments to the insurer. These payments are called premiums, and you might make them weekly, monthly, or yearly.
If the insured person passes away, the insurer then pays a lump sum of money to the beneficiary. The beneficiary is usually a family member of the insured, but this is not required and can be anyone whom you choose.
4.6.0. PROPERTY INSURANCE
PROPERTY INSURANCE
What is 'Property Insurance'
Property insurance is a policy that provides financial reimbursement to the owner or renter of a structure and its contents, in the event of damage or theft. Property insurance can include homeowners insurance, renters insurance, flood insurance and earthquake insurance. Personal property is generally covered by a homeowners or renters policy unless it is of particularly high value, in which case it can usually be covered by purchasing an addition to the policy called a "rider". If a claim is filed, the property insurance policy will either reimburse the policyholder for the actual value of the damage or the replacement cost to remedy the damage.
BREAKING DOWN 'Property Insurance'
Perils typically covered by property insurance include damage caused by fire, smoke, wind, hail, the weight of ice and snow, lightning, theft and more. Property insurance also provides liability coverage in case someone other than the property owner or renter is injured while on the property, and decides to sue.
Property insurance policies normally do not cover water damage caused by floods, tsunamis, drain backups, sewer backups, groundwater seepage, standing water and many other water sources. They also may not cover mold, earthquakes, nuclear events or acts of war, such as terrorism and insurrections.
IS PROPERTY INSURANCE DIFFERENT FROM HOME INSURANCE?
The answer is yes, but there are also similarities:
There are differences and similarities between a home insurance policy and property insurance policy. It's almost like taking a yellow circle and a blue circle and allowing a portion of them to overlap to make green. The green overlapping section represents the characteristics that both policies have in common. The yellow and the blue represent characteristics that are dissimilar.
Property Insurance
Property insurance is a first-party coverage. In other words, in an insurance contract, the first party is the insured and the second party is the insurance company. If there is a loss on a first party coverage, the insured gets reimbursed.
Property Characteristics
Let's pretend that the property policy is the blue circle. Property policies insure commercial buildings, homes and can also be found on boat and automobile policies. This section of the boat or automobile policy that reimburses the driver or boat owner for damage to her own car or boat comes from the property section. As you can see, a property policy is not just limited to the home.
Home Insurance Policy
A homeowner's insurance policy is a multi-line policy meaning that it has more than one type of coverage. In our example, the homeowner's policy is the yellow circle. It not only has property coverage but it has liability coverage, too. For example, if a home were to suffer a fire a loss, the insurance company will pay the policyholder the amount it takes to repair or replace the building. That is the first party, property section of the policy. The liability section of the policy, called third-party section, responds if someone trips and falls on your sidewalk and decides to sue you. The insurance company will defend the lawsuit and pay the injured party via the liability section of the homeowner's policy.
Comparing Property and Home Insurance
Now that we've defined the blue and the yellow circle, it's time to overlap a portion of the blue property circle, the part that insures homes, and overlap it with a portion of the yellow property homeowner circle, the first-party property section. These two aspects of each policy are the same. Anything outside of the green overlapping section, which remains blue or yellow, differ and represents the dissimilar portion of each coverage.
answer source "quora.com"
4.7.0. INJURY INSURANCE

INJURY INSURANCE

This insurance is not really on its own rather falls under an insurance like home/property insurance and also car/auto insurance
example of such is  'Personal Injury Protection (PIP)'


An automobile accident can damage far more than your car. Medical bills lost wages, and other expenses can add up quickly and put a serious dent in your bank account. Personal injury protection, also known as PIP insurance, can help defray such costs and even help protect your friends and family after a covered accident. Read on for the facts about PIP insurance coverage and get your personal injury protection quote today.

What is PIP?

With standard auto liability insurance, the insurance company of the driver responsible for an accident pays the costs resulting from a covered accident (up to the policy’s limits). Personal injury protection is a “no-fault” coverage and is required in some states. "No-fault" means that regardless of which driver was at fault, some of the medical expenses for the policyholder and others in the policyholder’s car may be covered by insurance.

PIP coverage can include medical expenses, lost wages and more

Personal injury protection may pay for as much as 80% of medical and other expenses that result from a covered accident, depending on the limits of the policy. This may include medical treatment of the injuries suffered by you and your passengers as well as medical expenses you might incur if injured as a passenger in another car or as a pedestrian. Additionally, PIP insurance may cover:
  • Service replacement of someone injured in a covered car accident
  • Rehabilitation costs
  • Funeral costs

Benefits of having personal injury protection

Following the initial shock of a car accident, one of the most frustrating issues can be the time it takes for insurance companies to determine blame, make payments and, if necessary, file a lawsuit. With PIP coverage, no blame needs to be assessed. If it is a covered incident, medical and lost income payments are made as soon as possible, and you deal only with your insurance company.

How PIP is different from medical payments coverage 

Personal injury protection insurance is similar to medical payments coverage but with an important difference. Medical payments coverage pays the medical costs for you and your passengers in the event of a covered auto accident, regardless of who’s at fault.
Unlike PIP, medical payments coverage doesn’t cover other expenses such as lost wages, rehabilitation services, funeral costs and services, such as childcare, that you may be unable to perform due to injuries from a covered accident.

4.8.0. TRAVEL INSURANCE
TRAVEL INSURANCE

What is travel insurance?

Many different people loosely understand travel insurance to mean many different things. However, travel insurance primarily falls into two broad categories:
  • Package plan that includes trip cancellation insurance.
  • Package plan that does not include trip cancellation insurance but primarily focuses on travel medical insurance.

What does trip cancellation insurance include?

Trip cancellation insurance is a package policy that includes various items such as:
  • Trip Cancellation:

    In case you need to cancel your trip for valid reasons prior to your departure, it will reimburse you the prepaid a non-refundable portion of your trip cost.
    If you have purchased the travel insurance sufficiently in advance of your trip and very close to your initial trip deposit, many travel insurance plans, most at a higher premium, will let you upgrade to cancel for any reason.
  • Trip Interruption:

    In case you need to return back home from your trip early due to covered reasons such as your house is on fire or flooded or your close relative passed away, it will help you pay for the additional expenses to make arrangements to return home early.
  • Emergency Medical Expenses:

    If you were to get sick or injured while you are on your trip, travel insurance will pay for the expenses. Your domestic health insurance you have may not cover you outside your home country or may provide limited coverage or it may be subject to higher deductible and higher coinsurance and higher out of pocket maximum.
  • Emergency Medical Evacuation:

    If you were to get sick or injured while on your trip, it would transport you to the nearest medical facility where adequate medical care can be given. Once you are stable enough to travel back home, it may also pay for you to return home under the 'Repatriation' benefit.
  • Repatriation of Remains:

    God forbid if you were to pass away while on your trip, this benefit would pay to send your remains back home.
  • Baggage:

    Various policies may cover things such as loss of checked luggage, baggage delay up to various amounts. Some policies may just pay for the additional expenses you incur due to the fact that you lost your luggage and pay for reimbursement of those items (up to their stated maximum amount) and ask you to collect the payment from the travel provider (such as an airline) because they lost your luggage.
  • Accidental Death & Dismemberment:

    This coverage would apply in case you were to pass away in an accident or were to lose one or two limbs (dismemberment) in an accident.
  • Other:

    There may be other benefits such as travel delay, assistance services, emergency cash transfer, concierge services, ID theft protection, rental car coverage, flight accident etc. They may vary among various policies.

What is travel medical insurance?

Travel medical insurance mostly does not include trip cancellation benefit but focuses primarily on medical benefits. It may provide better medical coverage than the trip cancellation insurance would provide. It may not limit the coverage strictly to major emergencies. This type of coverage is generally more suitable for people who are traveling for a longer duration outside their home country.
Many travel medical insurance plans also cover many of the benefits listed above under trip cancellation insurance section.

Should I really buy travel insurance?

Yes.
Unlike car insurance, as it is not mandatory to purchase travel insurance, many people think of that as an unnecessary expense. However, if you are traveling away from home, especially outside your home country, medical and/or emergency medical evacuation expenses can be significantly higher. It is extremely difficult for most people to pay $50,000 for emergency medical evacuation. Even if someone has that kind of money handy, it would still be difficult to make the arrangement for evacuation. Let the travel insurance companies handle that for you in such unfortunate events as you would have enough things to worry about.
Many people incorrectly assume that their domestic health insurance, or homeowner's insurance or insurance through credit card company would take care of everything and they don't need additional travel insurance. Make sure to carefully review what they cover so that you are adequately covered.

5.0. what are the advantages and disadvantages of insurance?
what are the advantages and disadvantages of insurance?




Insurance provides benefits to an individual, family, businessman as well as a society. The main advantages of insurance can be described as follows: -
  1. Provides economic protections:

    Economic Protection

    Insurance provides economic and financial protection to the insured against the unexpected losses in consideration of nominal amount called premium. It provides financial protection to the nominee in case of the premature death of insured. It also covers the loss of properties due to theft, fire, accident and other natural calamities.
  2. Shares risks: People are exposed to various kinds of risks and uncertainties which may cause large losses. It is impossible to eliminate risks and uncertainties altogether but it can be reduced or shared. Insurance is a co-operative device, which helps to share the risks among the insured. Thus, the insurance company reduces the risk of the insured in exchange for a small premium.
  3. Maintains a standard of living: Insurance provides financial protection against an unexpected risk of losses due to which people can maintain their living standard. The insurance company provides a safeguard in terms of money to avoid the unfortunate financial crisis.
  4. Encourages saving:

    Saving

    An insured person pays the amount of premium in time as stated in the agreement which encourages for developing a saving habit of persons. Hence, insurance is a means of encouraging regular saving as it helps to reduce unnecessary expenses.
  5. Eliminates dependency: Due to death or destruction of properties, the family suffers from unbearable and non-compensational table losses. The insurance protects against those unbearable losses. The life insurance policy gives full financial support to the dependent in case the death of the insured which helps to eliminate the dependency of people.
  6. Grants loan:

    Loan

    An insured can get the facility of a loan from an insurance company or can take loan from other financial institutions through the security of insurance policy. Thus, this provision of loan helps a person can also meet the need of fund. Bank and financial institutions prefer the insured assets as collateral for providing a loan.
  7. Creates employment opportunities: As insurance has become business in the modern day business world, hundreds of entrepreneurs and thousands of employees have been engaging in this line. Hence, by establishing and developing insurance companies, it has provided employment opportunities to thousands of people as per their qualification and caliber.
  8. Promotes foreign trade: The growth of the international trade of the country has been greatly helped by shifting of risk to the insurance company. A ship sailing in the sea faces some miss-fortune. A fire breaks out and burns to ashes all the merchandise of a businessman. But insurance is one of the devices by which these risks may be reduced or eliminated. So industrialists and exporter may devote their full attention toward the promotion of business which may increase the export activities
  9. Helps to operate business smoothly: A business gets financial compensation in case of loss or damage to the properties of the business through insurance. An insurance policy taken for the employees increases their motivation at work. Therefore, insurance plays a vital role to let the business run smoothly even in the situation of unfavorable events.
  10. Help to reduce inflation: 

    Inflation Reduction
    The inflation means an increase in the price of goods or service. Inflation gives painfully experienced to the citizen so it should be controlled. To control inflation, the volume of money needs to be reduced. An insurance company takes the money from the people in the form of premium, which reduces the volume of money in the market. Hence, it helps to control the inflation in the country.
  11. Help to develop economyInsurance companies collect premium through life or non-life policies which are invested in various development areas like trade and industry. Such investment helps to promote trade and industry in the country. Ultimately, it helps for the economic development of the country.

Disadvantages of Insurance

The following are the main disadvantages of insurance: -


  1. It does not compensate all types of losses which caused a business to insured by the insurance company.
  2. It takes more time to provide financial compensation because of lengthy legal formalities.
  3. Although insurance encourages savings, it does not provide the facilities that are provided by the bank.
  4. It intentionally tries to compensate as less as possible to the sufferer with the aim of maximizing profit rather than maximizing the well-being of the insured.
  5. It may lead to the crimes in the society as the beneficiaries of the policy may be tempted to commit crimes to receive the insured amount.
  6. Sometimes, the total amount of premium might be higher than the policy amount receivable on maturity.


6.0. INSURANCE COMPANIES
INSURANCE COMPANIES


according to 'businessdictionary.com'  insurance company is "A business that provides coverage, in the form of compensation resulting from loss, damages, injury, treatment or hardship in exchange for premium payments. The company calculates the risk of occurrence then determines the cost to replace (pay for) the loss to determine the premium amount"
            
Insurance companies may be classified into two groups:

Life insurance companies, which sell life insurance, annuities and pensions products.
Non-life or property/casualty insurance companies, which sell other types of insurance.
General insurance companies can be further divided into these subcategories.

Standard lines
Excess lines
In most countries, life and non-life insurers are subject to different regulatory regimes and different tax and accounting rules. The main reason for the distinction between the two types of company is that life, annuity, and pension business is very long-term in nature – coverage for life assurance or a pension can cover risks over many decades. By contrast, non-life insurance cover usually covers a shorter period, such as one year.

Insurance companies are generally classified as either mutual or proprietary company. Mutual companies are owned by the policyholders, while shareholders (who may or may not own policies) own proprietary insurance companies.

Demutualization of mutual insurers to form stock companies, as well as the formation of a hybrid known as a mutual holding company, became common in some countries, such as the United States, in the late 20th century. However, not all states permit mutual holding companies.

Other possible forms for an insurance company include reciprocals, in which policyholders reciprocate in sharing risks, and Lloyd's organizations.

Insurance companies are rated by various agencies such as A. M. Best. The ratings include the company's financial strength, which measures its ability to pay claims. It also rates financial instruments issued by the insurance company, such as bonds, notes, and securitization products.

Reinsurance companies are insurance companies that sell policies to other insurance companies, allowing them to reduce their risks and protect themselves from very large losses. The reinsurance market is dominated by a few very large companies, with huge reserves. A reinsurer may also be a direct writer of insurance risks as well.

Captive insurance companies may be defined as limited-purpose insurance companies established with the specific objective of financing risks emanating from their parent group or groups. This definition can sometimes be extended to include some of the risks of the parent company's customers. In short, it is an in-house self-insurance vehicle. Captives may take the form of a "pure" entity (which is a 100% subsidiary of the self-insured parent company); of a "mutual" captive (which insures the collective risks of members of an industry); and of an "association" captive (which self-insures individual risks of the members of a professional, commercial or industrial association). Captives represent commercial, economic and tax advantages to their sponsors because of the reductions in costs they help create and for the ease of insurance risk management and the flexibility for cash flows they generate. Additionally, they may provide coverage of risks which is neither available nor offered in the traditional insurance market at reasonable prices.

The types of risk that a captive can underwrite for their parents include property damage, public and product liability, professional indemnity, employee benefits, employers' liability, motor and medical aid expenses. The captive's exposure to such risks may be limited by the use of reinsurance.

Captives are becoming an increasingly important component of the risk management and risk financing strategy of their parent. This can be understood against the following background:

Heavy and increasing premium costs in almost every line of coverage
Difficulties in insuring certain types of fortuitous risk
Differential coverage standards in various parts of the world
Rating structures which reflect market trends rather than individual loss experience
Insufficient credit for deductibles or loss control efforts
There are also companies known as "insurance consultants". Like a mortgage broker, these companies are paid a fee by the customer to shop around for the best insurance policy amongst many companies. Similar to an insurance consultant, an 'insurance broker' also shop around for the best insurance policy amongst many companies. However, with insurance brokers, the fee is usually paid in the form of commission from the insurer that is selected rather than directly from the client.

Neither insurance consultants nor insurance brokers are insurance companies and no risks are transferred to them in insurance transactions. Third party administrators are companies that perform underwriting and sometimes claims handling services for insurance companies. These companies often have special expertise that the insurance companies do not have.


The financial stability and strength of an insurance company should be a major consideration when buying an insurance contract. An insurance premium paid currently provides coverage for losses that might arise many years in the future. For that reason, the viability of the insurance carrier is very important. In recent years, a number of insurance companies have become insolvent, leaving their policyholders with no coverage (or coverage only from a government-backed insurance pool or another arrangement with less attractive payouts for losses). A number of independent rating agencies provide information and rate the financial viability of insurance companies.

WHAT ARE THE FUNCTIONS OF INSURANCE COMPANIES?


The money you pay for your business's many insurance premiums might seem to be a waste, especially if you never claim a loss. But the primary function of an insurance company is to safeguard your business against such losses. The type of business you own determines the type of insurance you need. The government requires you to have certain types of insurance to protect the public, and lenders require insurance to protect their investment. Optional policies exist to protect your own interests if you suffer a loss.

Required Insurance

The government requires certain types of insurance if you are an employer. According to the Small Business Administration, you must purchase, at a minimum, workers' compensation and unemployment insurance. If your business is in Rhode Island, California, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, New York or New Jersey, you also must purchase disability insurance for your employees. These insurances provide your employees with a financial safety net if they are hurt on the job or lose their job. Your employees do not pay any part of the premiums for these plans. You can deduct the premiums you pay as a business expense when you file your taxes.

Liability Insurance

Liability insurance policies pay the legal fees and judgments associated with accidents, negligence and professional errors. The government requires some companies and professionals to carry liability insurance. For example, trucking companies must have general liability insurance, and physicians must have professional liability insurance. If you receive notice of a lawsuit, your insurance company's function is to hire lawyers to represent you in court. Your insurance company pays any settlements or judgments against your company up to the policy's limits. Manufacturers often have product liability insurance that pays if a product has a defect that results in an injury.

Property Insurance

Property insurance comes in three types: basic, broad and special, according to the insurer website. Examples of items covered by policies include your business's buildings, machinery, inventory and even your copyrights and trademarks. While coverage differs depending on the type of policy, the insurance company's function is to pay for damages or losses after storm damage or theft. Business interruption policies pay for your lost earnings if you have to close your business while repairs are made from storm or fire damage. Property insurance policies typically pay for either replacement costs or the actual value of the property before the damage or loss occurred.

Home-based Businesses

If you have a home-based business, you may think your homeowner's policy covers all of your insurance needs. This is not necessarily so. It may be possible to add an endorsement to your homeowner's policy to cover your business. If your revenues are above $5,000, clients come to your home or you have expensive equipment, you should talk to an agent about stand-alone policies such as a business owner's policy. The company insuring your home-based business is there to provide assistance if you are sued and pay for losses from theft and storms.

10 Things to Consider When Choosing an Insurance Agent


One might think choosing an insurance agent should be an easy task. Pick the one that offers you the lowest price, right? Well, that’s not necessarily the case and probably shouldn’t be at the top of your list of priorities when choosing the best agent. A lower price can mean inferior coverage and that’s fine until you experience a loss that isn’t covered.
Here are 10 things you should consider when choosing an insurance agent:
  1. Direct Writers Vs. Independent Agents: There are two different ways to get coverage from an insurance company. Direct writers are insurance companies that hire their own salespeople to write exclusively for that one company; they work for the company that employs them. Independent agents work for the insured, not the company. However, they have contracts with multiple insurance companies and can usually offer you more options.
  2. What type of insurance do you need? Some agents will offer many types of insurance and some will be limited in their offerings. For example, some might only offer personal lines insurance whereas others will offer both personal and commercial lines. If you own a business and are looking for an agent to write your commercial insurance, you want to make sure they have some experience in your industry.
  3. Technical Knowledge & Credentials: You should always ask the agent about their experience before trusting them as your insurance advisor. One indication of their technical knowledge is if they have letters after their name. These letters stand for professional insurance designations that signify a higher level of experience and competence. Some of the more common designations are CIC, CPCU, ARM, and CRM. Other things to look for our years of experience and education.
  4. Personality Traits: Agents get paid commissions by the insurance company, so it is important to find one that is honest and trustworthy. They also should be passionate and enthusiastic about what they do, and of course, you should like your agent. It’s much easier to do business with people we like than people we don’t.
  5. Questions to ask: It is okay to ask questions when looking for an agent. In fact, you should be asking questions when deciding who you want to work with. Some good questions are:
    • What are your areas of expertise?
    • What is your reach? Are you local? Statewide? Nationwide?
    • What is your experience in my industry? How many years have you been writing this type of insurance?
    • Do you have any client references?
    • How long have you been in business?
    • How many companies do you represent? Which ones?
  6. Do your homework: Before selecting an agent, you should first do your homework on the agent as well as the agency they’re associated with. Your first step is to google the agent’s name and agency. Are there any news articles about them? Have they faced any lawsuits? Are there any reviews? Have a look at their website. Is it professional? Are there any testimonials? You may also want to look at their social media pages (Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter, Instagram) for reviews and educational content.
  7. Expectations: A good way to gauge if the agent can live up to your expectations is by asking them for a quote before you commit to doing business with them. This should give you a good idea of how efficient they are (how fast they can get you a quote), how thorough they are when explaining what coverage you’re afforded in the policy, why the price varies if more than one quote is provided.
  8. Detailed written proposals: Once your agent gets quotes for your business, you should review them carefully. There are different types of carriers and coverages can vary dramatically. Some carriers may have exclusions on their policies removing important coverages. Make sure you work with the agent to ensure you have the coverage you need, even if that means paying a little more.
  9. What to expect after binding coverage: Your agent’s job is not done once you’ve bound coverage and your expectations of them should not end there either. Customer service is what is going to separate a good agent from a great agent. Say you purchased a new piece of equipment, built a new structure or underwent renovations—all of these things, along with many others, can affect your insurance policy. Your agent should be checking in with you periodically throughout the year to ask about any changes that might affect your policy. Your agent should be one that is approachable and reachable at all times because when things do happen, that is when you’ll need them most.
  10. Times change—stay active with your insurance coverages. As mentioned above, you need to stay active with your insurance coverage because things do change over time. Your agent should also be keeping you up to date on important regulations, new laws, changes with your career and anything else that might affect you as the end customer.
Of course there are other things you might want to consider when choosing an insurance agent (How close/convenient is their office? Are they licensed in other states if you ever decide to relocate or open another location?), but these are the 10 things we find to be most important when trusting someone to provide you with the best coverage for your individual needs. Remember, you can always switch agents, but it is much better to do your research beforehand and find a great one that you can work with for many years to come.
HOW CAN I FIND AN INSURANCE AGENT NEAR ME?

Well this is not a problem we can help you with that 
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