What to Know About Car Insurance Agents Before You Buy
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UPDATED: Jul 15, 2021
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Most people start their search for car insurance by going online to their favorite search engine and getting quotes for a basic policy. While online car insurance companies offer easy, affordable, and adequate coverage there are times where you will have questions. If you need to know things like what liability coverage will work for you, or what discounts are available, or how to get help when involved in a car accident then you may want to consider talking with a car insurance agent.
TIP: You may decide that you don’t need an agent, however, it is a good idea to explore what one can do for you before choosing your car insurance policy.
The Initial Conversation with a Car Insurance Agent
Establishing a relationship with an agent may be your best bet in getting the type of coverage you need at the greatest savings. A short conversation with a knowledgeable car insurance agent might uncover gaps in your car insurance coverage that you were unaware of, or help you find discounts on your car insurance that you didn’t know were available to you.
As you talk with an agent, they will get information about you to better assess your car insurance needs. Among other things, you will likely be asked to provide details on your finances, marital status, driving history, how frequently you drive, and whether you are a student or in the military. As you work with your agent, they will be able to identify areas where you can save money, and areas where you may need additional insurance coverage. A good car insurance agent will help you flush out areas of need and give you the insurance coverage you need to manage your risks. And it is FREE!
TIP: Because it does not cost you anything, it is a good idea to have a conversation with an agent before making a car insurance decision. In addition to finding the best auto insurance coverage, an agent may be able to suggest insurance coverage for your possessions or home as well.
Your Continued Relationship with Your Car Insurance Agent
Once a good relationship is established with your agent, they can continue to assist you as your life circumstances and car insurance needs change by reviewing and updating your policy. Should you get married, have children, need to add drivers to your policy, or need to change your coverage to save costs, your agent will be available to talk to you and help you find the best policy to fit your new car insurance needs. Your car insurance agent can reduce the stress of adjusting your car insurance policy by doing all the leg work to find the best car insurance coverage.
Should you have a car accident, your car insurance agent will be your first point of contact. Since you have a relationship with that person, you may find that the process of filing a claim and reaching a settlement is smoother and more comfortable. Your car insurance agent will try to make the process easy and quick so you can recover your damages and get back on the road.
TIP: Although your agent will be friendly and helpful during the auto insurance claim process, remember that they work for the insurance company, and NOT for you. Your agent’s primary interest is saving your car insurance company money and time, even when helping you with a claim. This is not to say they are going to deceive you or take advantage of you, but it is smart to carefully, and objectively, review any settlement offer you receive before accepting.
Your priority should be getting a fair settlement, not maintaining a good relationship with your car insurance agent. Contact a car accident attorney if you have any questions about the claim settlement process.
Choosing Reputable Car Insurance Agent
Most agents are licensed by the state in which they sell insurance. Further education including insurance designation such as CIC (Certified Insurance Counselors) or CPCU (Charter Property Casualty Underwriter) signifies that the agent has furthered his or her education in the field of insurance giving them the expertise to help you with your risk management. In order to find the most qualified agent, you are free to ask to see the agent’s license and certifications before talking with them.
Ultimately, the decision to purchase car insurance online or from a car insurance agent is up to you. If you do not feel the need for a personal touch from your car insurance, then you do not need an agent. On the other hand, if you like the idea of having a point of contact, and source of information, then you will be better served with an agent to help. If you are looking for a reputable agent in your area that could provide you with a quote on your car insurance as well as discuss the possibility of other needs, click here to visit the Free Advice quote center.
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