Why You May Not Want to DIY Your Insurance Coverage

(And how an independent agent can help)
Written by Candace Jenkins
Written by Candace Jenkins

Candace Jenkins is a licensed insurance advisor with over a decade of experience. She is also a writer and loves to write on all things insurance. Candace writes for TrustedChoice.com on a continuous basis and is here with the facts about all your insurance inquiries.

Reviewed by Candace Jenkins
Reviewed by Candace Jenkins

Candace Jenkins is a licensed insurance advisor with over a decade of experience. She is also a writer and loves to write on all things insurance. Candace writes for TrustedChoice.com on a continuous basis and is here with the facts about all your insurance inquiries.

Independent insurance agents vs online diy

Maybe you're the type to do it yourself, but insurance yourself isn't always a good idea. You don't know what you don't know, and that could put you in a world of exposure when it comes to your coverage.

At TrustedChoice.com, they make it easy to connect with a local independent agent, saving you time and money. The short game DIY online coverage may seem appealing, but it's pretty risky.

What Is an Independent Insurance Agent?

An independent agent has access to dozens of carriers. This gives you more options and better pricing. Independent agents are known for their ability to engage quickly, respond accordingly, and find you an unbiased option that's best for your insurance needs. 

While online DIY may sound quick and easy, just think about who you're going to have to turn to when something goes sideways. Everything is good when there are no problems, and it's when a claim arises that your independent agent truly shines. 

Is Buying Online Better than Using an Independent Agent?

This is the million-dollar question. Is it better to DIY online or use an independent agent for your insurance policies? You'll need to weigh the pros and cons to make an educated decision. 

Pros of Using an Independent Agent 
Pro: You'll be working with one trusted advisor instead of calling a 1-800 number.  Working with one person who is licensed and can answer the tough coverage questions is a benefit. If you are stuck calling a 1-800 number, you may find yourself on hold and speaking with a different person each time you call.
Pro: Your independent agent is local; they know your town and work with carriers that are competitive in your area. An online company is a far cry from local, and they may not be the best deal because they're not the only deal.
Pro: An independent agent has dozens of insurance carrier options that your agent sifts through comparing coverage and price on your behalf. This will leave you with the best deal in town and is worth the minor wait.
Pro: Your independent agent has a personal touch. Instead of being miles or even seas away, they are right down the street in most cases. When a catastrophe occurs, they are the first ones there and the last one to leave. Their job is making sure you are taken care of and holding the insurance company accountable to what they said they would do.
Cons of DIY Online Insurance Coverage
Con: You don't know what you don't know, to put it plainly. There is a reason that you have to be licensed to sell insurance. Policies can be complicated, and unless you've been moonlighting in insurance education, a licensed independent agent is the way to go.
Con: Fast speed to obtain coverage in the beginning doesn't mean a rapid pace when responding to claims. Every carrier is eager to get your business, and just because they may be faster at getting you coverage doesn't mean they know how to retain it. An independent agent's whole livelihood depends on not only making you a satisfied client but maintaining that satisfaction for the long haul. An online carrier DIY option may get you in the door quickly, but they treat you like a number. 
Con: Working with a carrier that's solely available via online or phone may be a struggle if you are in a time crunch. If it's after hours of operation, an online source is usually offline unless it's a serious claim. An independent agent has availability no matter what time of day for reasonable requests with a typical motto being, "if it's important to you, it's important to me." 
Con: Pricing may be lower on the front end with a DIY online carrier, but it's unlikely to maintain. A single insurance company has to increase coverage all the time due to a variety of factors. An independent agent can move you to a different company all without you having to do a thing.
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How to Choose an Independent Agent

If you've decided that it might be best to check coverage options with an independent agent, whom do you choose? There is a sea of agents selling insurance, but not all are created equal. An independent agent worth picking should have the following essential qualities:

1.) They are responsive during business hours. Your agent should be responsive during hours of operation. They should also be available when you have a time-sensitive issue or change. 

2.) They make it a point to understand your business or personal assets by asking inquisitive questions.  If they are only asking a few, vague questions, they don't know enough to insure your most valuable items or livelihoods. 

3.) They have a process for handling claims already established.  Every agency should have a repeatable process for claims. If they have a hard time answering this question, don't walk — run to another agent. 

Where Do I Find an Independent Agent?

You've come to the right place. TrustedChoice.com has direct access to independent agents in your area. They work with the best independent agents around the country and have a matching tool that can connect you in moments. So go on, get connected, and save the DIYing for your next house project.

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