It’s next to impossible to watch any type of TV programming without seeing a commercial advertising how you can save money on your insurance. So should you really purchase your insurance policy based upon the cheapest price?
Before I elaborate on this, allow me to ask you a different set of questions:
- Would you hire an attorney based solely upon who has the cheapest hourly rates?
- Would you hire a financial planner or investment advisor based solely upon their fees?
If you’re like most people, you probably answered these questions with a resounding “no.” Then why should making a decision on your insurance policy be any different?
Your personal insurance policy protects your most important assets against physical loss and protects you against financial ruin stemming from liability losses. Working with an insurance agent shouldn’t be much different than working with an attorney, financial planner, or accountant – all of them should be trusted advisors to you and your family.
Obviously the insurance purchasing process involves a number of factors but coverage and claims service should carry just as much weight – if not more – than price.
Some auto insurance companies that advertise solely on price – especially those that advertise state minimum limits of insurance – will only cover drivers who are specifically named on the insurance policy. In such instances, if anyone else drives your car (even with your permission), you will have no insurance coverage in the event of an accident. Is that really worth the premium savings?
In addition, some insurance companies advertise replacement cost coverage for your home’s contents as if this is some new and great coverage option. Do you really want to purchase a homeowner policy that depreciates your contents in the event of a claim? Again, would that be worth the premium savings?
Lastly, what type of service do you expect once you have a home or auto claim? The old adage “you get what you pay for” certainly applies to insurance, as many of the insurance companies who advertise solely on price have some of the worst consumer complaint ratios. On the other hand, insurance companies that utilize local independent agents and local claims adjusters tend to have a higher degree of customer satisfaction.
Since insurance isn’t a tangible object, it’s easy for people to focus on price. However, will a cheap insurance program provide you with peace of mind and confidence that you will be made whole after suffering a loss? Or will it leave you asking what you actually purchased once your claim isn’t fully paid or – even worse – denied?
Just as you rely on an attorney or financial planner to assist you with important life decisions, an independent insurance agent can assist you with finding the coverage that will best fit your needs…and your pocketbook.