Consumer Guide: Auto & Homeowners Insurance

Auto & Homeowners Insurance

Finding the right auto and homeowners insurance can be a daunting task, but working with an insurance agent can help make the process easier. However, not all insurance agents are created equal, and choosing the right one can make a big difference in your coverage and premiums. In this guide, we’ll provide tips on what to look for and what to avoid when working with an insurance agent, so you can find a professional who understands your needs and can help you protect your assets.

Auto and homeowners insurance is an important part of protecting your assets and providing financial security in case of unexpected events. A good insurance agent can help you understand your coverage options, select the right policies for your needs, and make sure you’re getting the best value for your premiums. However, choosing the wrong agent can result in inadequate coverage or higher premiums than necessary. In the following sections, we’ll offer expert tips on how to find an insurance agent you can trust and how to make the most of your working relationship. 

Tips From the Experts: Key Factors to Consider When Working with an Auto and Homeowners Insurance Professional

Note: Any item listed with an asterisk (*) below is a NAOSA Gold Standard of Professional Practice™ and is required for NAOSA professional membership. For more details, please visit the NAOSA Consumer Guides page.

Look for an agent with experience and expertise

Look for an agent who has been in the insurance industry for several years and has experience working with clients who have similar needs as yours. An experienced agent can help you navigate complex insurance policies and provide valuable insights into coverage options that you may not have considered.

Choose an agent who represents multiple insurance companies*

An agent who works with multiple insurance companies can provide you with a range of coverage options and help you compare policies and premiums. Unlike agents tied to a single provider, who may have limited offerings, an agent representing multiple companies can offer you a broader spectrum of coverage plans and pricing structures. This not only increases the likelihood of finding a policy that perfectly aligns with your requirements but also provides you with the flexibility to compare and contrast various offers. Moreover, such agents prioritize your interests above promoting a single company's products, guaranteeing unbiased advice and a commitment to securing the most suitable coverage for you. In essence, opting for an insurance agent representing multiple companies empowers you with choice, customization, and an unwavering advocate for your insurance needs.

Be clear about your coverage needs and budget

Let your agent know what coverage you're looking for and what your budget is. This will help your agent find policies that meet your needs and fit within your budget.

Ask about discounts and savings opportunities

Insurance companies often offer discounts and savings opportunities for things like safe driving, bundling policies, and installing security systems. Ask your agent about any discounts that may apply to you and take advantage of them to save money on your premiums.

Review your coverage regularly

Review your insurance coverage with your agent on a regular basis, such as once a year. This can help ensure that your coverage is up to date and that you have the right amount of coverage for your needs. If your circumstances change, such as buying a new car or renovating your home, let your agent know so they can update your coverage accordingly.

If Replacing an Existing Policy Insist on an Apples to Apples Comparison*

Policy replacement and comparison is a critical part of managing your insurance coverage and ensuring that you're getting the best value for your premiums. However, comparing policies can be like quoting apples and oranges if you're not careful. Insurance policies can vary significantly in terms of coverage limits, deductibles, exclusions, and other factors, making it difficult to compare them side by side. To effectively compare policies, you need to have a clear understanding of what each policy covers and what it excludes, as well as what your specific needs are. A good insurance agent can help you navigate the complexities of policy comparison and replacement and provide you with valuable insights into coverage options that may be a better fit for your needs.

To maintain NAOSA membership, all members are required to possess expertise in policy replacement and comparison and give accurate quotes ensuring a side-by-side comparison. This ensures that when you work with a NAOSA member, you can have confidence in their ability to navigate the complexities of insurance policies and provide you with informed recommendations.

Are you a professional in the auto and homeowners insurance business?
We welcome your constructive input to assist in the protection of all consumers. Please contact us.

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NAOSA requires members to act in utmost good faith when working with clients. Members must agree to act in a fiduciary manner in a way that the member reasonably believes to be in the best interest of the client. In addition to compliance with all federal and state regulations, each professional member of the National Association of Senior Advocates must also follow and act in accordance with the NAOSA Consumer Guides published herein.  Members who are found not in compliance with these standards will be censured, with membership subject to revocation.


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