Shopping for insurance for the first time can be intimidating. But you can easily set yourself up for success by learning from the mistakes of others. Here's a quick guide to buying insurance for the first time, and how having the help of an independent insurance agent can make the process easier by a ridiculous amount.
Common First-Time Insurance Buying Mistakes
Keeping these common first-time insurance buying mistakes in mind when you embark on your own journey to find the right coverage will help you from doing the same. Here are just a few of the biggest mistakes first-time insurance buyers make, and how you can avoid doing the same.
- Buying the wrong kind of insurance: If you've never shopped for insurance before, it's understandable that you might not know exactly what you're looking for. Say you want to protect your car from being stolen, but you only purchase the bare minimum car insurance that's legally required. Without knowing that comprehensive or other than collision coverage is the only type that protects against theft, you'd be in trouble if your car got stolen.
- Paying too much for coverage: Many first-time insurance customers end up paying too much for coverage because they're unfamiliar with what they should expect to pay, or their options. Another reason is due to not knowing what kinds of discounts on certain coverages are available, or not asking the insurance company which ones are offered. Still, some customers may not know they have the option for cheaper premiums with higher deductibles.
- Not shopping around and comparing policies: Not only can comparing several insurance policies from different companies help you find the lowest rate, it can also help you pick the best quality of coverage in your area. Certain companies offer policies that have more exclusions than those from other carriers, and you might not get as much for what you pay depending on where you go.
- Not being honest on insurance applications: Failure to mention personal details or other necessary data when applying for insurance can result in you getting matched to the wrong policy or worse. Especially when applying for life insurance, it's critical to be completely honest on your coverage application. If an insurance company finds out you've been dishonest down the road, they could cancel your policy.
- Not working with an independent insurance agent: Independent insurance agents offer all kinds of benefits during the coverage shopping experience, especially for first-time buyers. Independent insurance agents can shop multiple policies and companies for you, to find you the right coverage at the most affordable rate.
Not only can independent insurance agents help you find coverage for the first time, but they can help you throughout the life of your policy. Independent insurance agents can contact your carrier and file claims for you, and also answer any questions you may have about your coverage.
Avoiding Common Mistakes when Shopping for Coverage
Before you shop for coverage, it's important to research what exactly you need. This can help you avoid the trap of walking away with the wrong policy. It's also important to compare policies from multiple insurance companies to see what specific coverages are offered and what each one might exclude under their insurance.
An independent insurance agent can help with every bit of this. Not only are they knowledgeable about which insurance companies offer the lowest rates, but they're also experts on insurance. They can help you figure out exactly which type of coverage is right for you by listening to your personal needs.
How Much Should You Spend on Coverage?
There are a couple of concerns when it comes to what you should be spending on insurance. One is how the rate you'll pay for your coverage compares to what others are paying for theirs, so you can avoid over-paying. The other is considering how your policy's premiums will factor into your personal budget. It's important to take advantage of those free offers for online quotes wherever possible.
In general, when budgeting your coverage, it's recommended to keep the cost of your insurance at between three and 10 percent of your monthly income. This allows you plenty of room for other expenses. If you have further questions about how much you should expect to pay or how to determine how much to pay for coverage, an independent insurance agent can help.
How Can an Independent Insurance Agent Help You Navigate the Insurance World?
Independent insurance agents are your greatest ally when navigating the large and confusing world of insurance. Here are just a few of the ways they can seriously aid on your journey to finding the right coverage for you.
- They shop and compare coverage: Independent insurance agents don't represent one insurance company, so they're free to shop and compare policies from many different carriers. Because of this, they'll help you find the highest quality coverage at the lowest possible rate.
- They know what to look for: Independent insurance agents aren't just personal shoppers, they're also experts on insurance. By listening to your needs, they'll determine exactly which type of coverage works best for you, and find the right policy to fit the bill.
- They stick around: Independent insurance agents don't just get you matched to a policy and then throw you to the wolves. They're around throughout the life of your coverage to answer your questions, file claims for you, and much more.
An independent insurance agent is like a partner in every way when it comes to your insurance. Not only are they there for you from the very beginning when shopping for coverage, but they'll be there down the road when there may be changes to your policy's terms.
They can assist in contacting your carrier and filing claims for you. Basically, independent insurance agents exist to make your insurance experience as easy and painless as humanly possible.
Where Can I Find an Independent Insurance Agent?
You can get matched to an independent insurance agent right through our matching tool. Beyond that, it's easy to find independent insurance agents online, and through many major insurance companies. Here are just a few examples.
|Major Companies That Work with Independent Insurance Agents||Star Rating|
|The Hanover Insurance Group|
|West Bend Mutual Insurance Company|
The Awesome Benefits of an Independent Insurance Agent
When it comes to getting customers matched to the right insurance for them, no one’s better equipped to help than an independent insurance agent. Independent insurance agents search through multiple carriers to find providers who specialize in every type of insurance, deliver quotes from a number of different sources and help you walk through them all to find the best blend of coverage and cost.
TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Paul Martin
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