With access to just about all the information you need online to make purchasing decisions, do you really need an insurance agent anymore? The thought of interacting in person with a local agent seems like an obsolete way to buy insurance, for some. When looking for insurance, many thoughts can easily cross your mind when it comes to having an insurance agent:
- Agents only want my money
- It's cheaper to go online or buy direct
- Buying direct will help me cut out the middle man saving me time
- I don't need an agent's opinion - I know what I'm doing
Most of these make sense right? You may have your own reasons for believing these statements but realistically this way of thinking may cause you to actually pay more and could end up being much less convenient. We here at The Rathbun Agency want to encourage you to explore the previous statements so you can decide what the best decision is yourself.
AGENTS ONLY WANT MY MONEY
When you think about insurance agents, you often think about that slimy snake oil salesman you see in old movies. You know they are going to try to sell you something as soon as you contact them and once they do, you'll never hear from them again unless it is renewal time or they tell you to buy another policy.
We feel that if this is how insurance agents are portrayed then we have done a terrible job in our industry. Yes, insurance agents want you to buy insurance but it is provide you financial security and piece of mind. It only takes one day of being uninsured to lose everything. Good agents really want what's best for their clients' families and businesses. We are here to help you make the right decision on a service that you were already going to buy.
IT'S CHEAPER TO GO ONLINE OR BUY DIRECT
Technology has brought many new ways of business for the insurance industry. Many insurance companies are allowing you to buy directly from them via phone or online websites. It only makes sense that this would be cheaper right; insurance companies do not have to pay us commissions so rates should be lower.
Oftentimes, this is not the case. And frequently, we see individuals who have purchased insurance directly online and either improperly covered themselves or not applied all the proper discounts to receive the most competitive rate. We are trained to look for discounts that you as a customer may not be aware of or may not receive if you answer an online question in error.
BUYING DIRECT WILL CUT OUT THE MIDDLE MAN AND SAVE ME TIME
No one wants to deal with a middle man anymore. Who wants to call an agent to have them call a company just to wait for them to call you back with a quote? Sounds frustrating and who knows how long it would take. Theoretically, that makes sense. Upfront buying direct will save you time, but there are two very good reasons why you will want to go through an agent still:
1) Independent insurance agents will actually call multiple companies for you to get you the best quote they can find so you don't have to spend the time to get quotes from several companies.
2) When issues arise or questions with your policy come up, your agent can take care of you right away. Going directly to the company may mean sitting on hold for long periods of time and being shuffled around from person to person to get your questions answered.
No doubt if you want to save a couple minutes upfront then buying direct will be a better decision. But there are countless ways that will allow insurance agents to save you time in the long run.
I DON'T NEED AN AGENT; I KNOW WHAT I'M DOING
The internet will allow you to read up on any insurance policy you may need. You may even have worked in the insurance industry in the past. You know what you need and you can easily get quotes online so there's no need for an agent, right?
Believe it or not, agents can provide you with more than just quotes. You may have a similar home, family size and vehicle as your neighbor but have completely different insurance needs. An agent will help you find the right plan and avoid policies you do not need (yes, you can buy policies you don't need).
If you were once in the insurance industry, you may still want to go through an agent. Things are constantly changing in the insurance industry. New regulations are being put in place, new services are being introduced and companies make their own internal changes. Even with the knowledge and insights you already have, insurance agents can provide you with internal tools that will improve your insurance experience.
It's your choice. You can choose to go direct instead of going through an agent. But if you have someone on your side who can help you make the best, informed decisions, save you money, and is right here living in and supporting your local community, we think the choice is easy.