Should I shop for other options? This is a question many business owners struggle with about changing their commercial insurance. They want to ensure that they are getting the best value and the most protection. The market is very complex, making it hard for business owners to know how to manage the shopping process.
No one enjoys shopping for insurance.
Soliciting insurance quotes is nothing like shopping for your office supplies or internet service. You can encounter complex costs and coverage reports with no comparable options.
When using a single broker to solicit quotes, several challenges can present themselves.
Brokers often present proposals a day or two before the renewal. Because it takes a significant amount of time to review your insurance options, this can leave you feeling trapped. Additionally, you may be unsure if your broker is presenting all the options available. You may be left to wonder if your broker has access to all the insurance markets, or simply didn’t do the work to provide a wide array of options.
Should I use a single broker to shop my insurance?
Because of the challenges listed above, it is imperative when using a single broker that they have built a high-level of trust with you. Is your broker asking you to participate in developing your renewal marketing plan? Is your broker showing you a comparative review of all the options he or she receives? If the answers to these questions are no, then a single broker approach in the short term is probably not right for you. However, in the long term, finding a single broker you trust is invaluable.
It is vital that your insurance broker obtain intimate knowledge of your company over time. This overview allows them to recognize risks that would otherwise go unnoticed and strategize with you on long-term goals. A good broker is a business protection strategist, not a collector of quotes.
How do I manage my broker relationship?
It is important to keep in mind that not all brokers are created equal; they are not commodities. Initially, you may have to go through a few brokers until you find the right relationship for your company. The key is to find a balance between healthy competition and maintaining valued relationships with the best experts and companies. Once you find a top professional, consider whether you want them as a consultant or as a salesperson. If you value their knowledge, strategies, and enjoy working with them, turning them into a salesperson by shopping them regularly is generally not in your best interest.
How often should I shop my carriers?
There can be great value in maintaining coverage with the same carrier for long periods of time, especially if they are continually holding or even reducing rates. Conversely, if the entire insurance marketplace sees your application every year, they will soon view your business as a perennial shopper and lose enthusiasm to quote your account aggressively. Switching carriers often will eventually adversely affect the rates, claims adjustments, mid-term endorsement needs, and many other aspects of your coverage.
With that said, the insurance marketplace can be volatile. Therefore, it is a very healthy practice to check the marketplace every two to three years to ensure your current carrier is still offering terms consistent with current market conditions.
We highly discourage shopping in the middle of an insurance policy term. Our dedicated team of professionals at ProAction Insurance recommend only shopping mid-term when:
- The coverage gap was so dangerous that you were forced to make a change
- Your carrier cannot provide the coverage you need to complete a specific project or win a new client
- The current pricing is so high that you could be saving 30% or more
Interested in discussing your business’ situation?
If you are unsure whether your situation requires you to shop for other insurance brokers or carriers, we can help. Our team will discuss the specific situations you are facing and provide input on what to do next. We are not your typical commercial insurance brokers, we are trusted advisors who are specialized in your industry allowing us to give you a unique perspective on your coverage options. Either fill out your contact information here or give us a call at (951) 898-9892. Let’s get started!