How many times have we gone to the purchase something and we’ve bought solely on price? I’m a big offender in that area. However, I’m learning that not everything that is the cheapest is the best deal. This certainly applies in insurance as well.
There have been numerous times, we’ve had potential clients come into our office and say they want a quote on their Oklahoma Home Insurance or their Oklahoma General Liability policy. When our agents get to talking with the client about why they’re looking for a new quote or agent, we hear all too often that their premium is just too high. I understand that we’re in a bit of a business slump right now and things may be starting to look up in certain areas, but as a whole, most people are still struggling. Price does matter, but it shouldn’t be the deciding factor.
Example, we had a client that had a homeowner’s policy with us for many years. Their premium went up $100 for the year. This averages out to less than ten dollars a month in additional premium. If your agent is providing a great policy, is it really worth it to move your established policy to another company and agent with less coverage? Usually, it’s not.
Another example, we had a client that had been with our agency again for numerous years. He was a great client that loved our agency and what we had to offer. He knew he had several great policies and he was well covered. His premium increased several $1000 in one year. Unfortunately, we were not able to find another company in our agency that was comparable to what he had originally. He did find another agent and company elsewhere and had to move. He was said to leave our agency and told our agents how much he loved being with RCI Insurance but he just couldn’t afford that much of an increase. He still refers potential clients to our office.
Maybe when we’ve developed an agent/client relationship that makes a difference in if you decide to stay or go over $100 premium increase. I don’t know. What I do know, is that most companies are taking large rate increases due to the crazy last few years we’ve had in Oklahoma. Claims have been through the roof. If you’re company hasn’t raised your premium, that’s great! Just be aware that at some point, ALL companies take some form of a rate increase.
Find an agent that works for you. Make sure they understand what they’re selling. Make sure you understand what coverages you have and what coverages you do not have. Sometimes, it’s the little extra coverages that can really save you in a time of need. Take into consideration the agency’s customer service. If they have horrible customer service, but they have the cheapest rate, are you really going to be willing to deal with customer service agents in the future. Chances are, you won’t. Again, should price really be the deciding factor?