If it’s time for you or your business to shop for a new insurance policy, there are several compelling reasons to work with an insurance broker over an agent. Brokers work directly on behalf of insurance companies and then directly with you and your company, which can save you a significant amount of time and money.
However, before you enroll in any new policies with a broker, it’s essential to speak with them ahead of time to explore and understand the ins and outs of their process. Read on for some of the best questions your broker can ask to make the most informed decision.
What Is Your Experience?
Many brokers have been in the industry for years, and many are just getting their feet off the ground. If working with a well-established company is important to you, this question should be top of your list. However, while they may not have years of experience, newer companies may have impressive certifications, educational backgrounds, or references to share that demonstrate their competency and success. You may find the perfect fit for you in a company without decades in the industry.
How Will My Plan Be More Cost-Effective?
Many who decide to try using an insurance broker do so because of the promise of lower overall costs. Ask your broker how these costs are contained, and try to be as thorough as possible when this topic comes up. Inquire about incentive programs, plan structure, coverage enhancements, and how costs will differ from your existing plans.
Will I Have an Account Management Team?
When it comes time to utilise your policy, it’s important to speak with a familiar voice who can answer all your questions, direct your next steps, and explain your benefits in the situation. Many brokers have a designated account manager, while others assemble a team that is assigned to you and your policy.
What Plans Do You Have Available?
A good insurance broker should have a variety of plans for you to choose from, but they should also be able to explain in depth the benefits and drawbacks of each one. The more informed you are about your options, the better you’ll be able to make a sound, final decision about your insurance policies.
Can You Tell Me About the Renewal Process?
It’s necessary to renew your insurance on a periodic basis, and different brokers have different approaches to the renewal process. One firm may offer an automatic renewal process, while another will reach out to you or your company about two months before it’s time to renew. At the time of annual renewal, brokers can also try to renegotiate costs to give you a better rate, so inquire as to whether this is something the firm does regularly.
What Are Your Fees?
Because brokers work closely with insurance companies, those companies offer brokers a commission when they sell their policies. However, though these fees are built into the costs you see when the broker shows you the rates of your future policies, the firm may charge additional fees on top of what your policy will cost you.
What Is the Best Way to Contact You?
Events that require insurance coverage are more often time-sensitive than not. Because of the nature of these situations, a timely and thorough response from your broker or management team is of the utmost importance. Make sure you know their preferred contact method, the one that will get you the answers, assistance, and action you need in the least amount of time. The timeline of communication is an important part of customer service, which can make your experience much smoother and easier.