If you're not working directly in the insurance field, odds are you don't know that much about it. This lack of knowledge can make purchasing insurance seem a bit overwhelming. First, there is the jargon. Words such as exclusions, endorsements and premiums are bound to send you running to Google and the definitions you may find there provide little enlightenment.
Secondly, what should you buy and who with? There are many types of policies such as motor, home, and life, to name a few, and some classes even have varying limits of cover. HUH?!?
Take a deep breath…in through the nose…out through the mouth and relax. This blog will teach you some essential things to consider when selecting an insurance provider. Having quality insurance policies with a quality insurer is a necessary part of life.
The time spent completing documents or listing contents to be insured is relatively diminutive compared to the disruption of having a significant health episode, losing everything in a house fire or being severely impacted by a hurricane.
So, the big question is, "How do I choose the right insurance company?"
- Check their history
Before you make that final choice, do some research and learn about the insurance company's reputation and history. This information can also give you valuable insight into their character. The things to consider are:
- Length of time in the business
- Types of reviews they receive
- How they contribute to their community
- Can They Pay Their Bills?
This is a reflection of financial strength. When you choose an insurance provider, you want to be confident that when the time comes for you to make a claim, they can honour it as quickly as possible. Check their claims history to see how their claim settlement ratio stacks up against others. This will give you a better idea of how many claims they have settled out of the numbers they received in the year.
The amount of coverage the insurance company offers for their plan is important. Select a company that provides appropriate coverage for all your needs. Be specific, ask what is covered and for an explanation of the 'exclusions' before you sign on the dotted lines. This will prevent disappointment if you must make a claim on your policy.
Price is important, and while you might want to shop around for a bargain, be mindful that you get what you pay for. Prices vary among insurance companies. A lower premium may be enticing, but it may also indicate that you are getting less coverage and inadequate service. However, a higher premium may be attached to a policy offering more comprehensive coverage with a company committed to providing an enhanced customer experience.
Remember, costs may also be directly related to the risk evaluation and your specific circumstance.
- Deals and Discounts
Now that you've reviewed the price, is the insurance company flexible by offering payment plans? We've identified that insurance is essential, but the cost can be prohibitive for some, especially if the full payment is required upfront. So, when you're shopping for your insurance company, you can ask what the payment terms are. Also, what are the discounts, such as no claims bonuses, offered if you are a good driver, for example?
Does the insurance company offer packages if you have several insurance policies? This is always good stuff to know.
- Ease of doing business
How easy is it to do business with your insurance provider? Are they available to you when you need them most? Here are some things to consider:
- Hours of availability
- Access to policy information
- Online quotations
- Online chat
- Roadside assistance
- Online payments
- Online claim reporting
- Knowledgeable staff
How willing are other people to recommend the insurance company? If a company comes highly recommended by its clients, that will indicate if it is a good choice. Talk to policyholders about their experiences or check out their website or social media pages to read honest reviews.
- Customer Service
Customer service is vital; it can make or break a company. Does your insurance company have customer service representatives to provide information about services or help in situations where customers need that personal touch? When you need someone to guide you through the process for a deductible, a claim or renewing a policy, it helps to know someone is accessible. A representative with information is just a call or email away, especially when you need that information quickly.
- Digital Capabilities
Digital technology makes doing business remotely so much easier. It presents the option to make payments and submit documents from the comfort of your home, office or on the road. Does the company you're considering provide the convenience of filing a claim, paying for your policy or having a question answered with a few clicks on the keyboard?
Now that you know how to choose the insurance company and policies that are right for you, we're recommending that you start your journey right here at ICBL. Speak with an insurance professional using our Live Chat, call 434 -6000 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We could be the one for you!