Consumers are able to find all of the necessary information needed in order to obtain insurance by a simple click of the mouse. However, certain circumstances arise when the services of a licensed insurance agent are required. Below are seven (7) of the most common reasons why an agent is needed.
- Help in decision making. Sometimes, too much information creates confusion in consumers. There may not be enough time to review them all. Having an agent on hand helps you narrow down those choices faster.
- Extra knowledge. Insurance agents have the additional information necessary to process policies and claims accurately and efficiently. They know which sources to use to resolve issues and to answer questions when the time comes because they are trained to know what to expect in the situation.
- Special discounts and rates. Even though comparing rates online is easier, it is not safe to assume that the cheapest rates are the ones on the internet. It is a myth that an insurance agent’s commission is affected by a company quote, so it is beneficial for agents to offer special, unadvertised rates.
- Missing criteria. On most insurance comparison sites, a basic profile is required before quotes are offered, however, special criteria not listed may affect the rates given. Also, certain states may not have quotes available online and consulting with an agent is advisable in this case.
- Correct coverage. Most people may actually find the right insurance agent from the right insurance company online, but they may either get too much coverage, too little coverage, or incorrect coverage. Consulting a licensed insurance agent to review policy choices and multiple carriers beforehand is a good idea.
- Outdated information. Because of new developments in insurance regulation and service updates, coverage information and rates online may be outdated. It may be difficult or impossible to find out when the website was recently updated, so double-checking with an agent is a better idea.
- Claims processing assistance. If a tragedy has occurred that requires an insurance claim to be filed (accident, death, theft, etc.), people are going to need the personalized services of an insurance agent to advocate for them during this difficult time to handle forms processing, filing, and negotiations.
Having an insurance agent provides consumers with the security of knowing that there is someone available in the event where extra consulting services are needed when complicated legal matters are present, and when unexpected circumstances arise. Also, the agent keeps track of changes in the insurance policies and procedures and review policy information with consumers prior to renewal, a special service not offered online. In short, basic insurance information and quotes are obtainable online, but special services and expertise are only available from a licensed professional.