With the advent of the internet online purchases have created an incredible new distribution model for just about anything a consumer wants or needs. If it can be purchased, you can probably do the transaction over the internet. So, if you can buy your insurance online and cut out the middle-man (gulp, that’s me) then why should you bother talking to an agent. This question comes with some assumptions about agents and sales people in general.
The first assumption behind the question is that talking to an agent will increase your cost since he/she must be paid. Actually, the commission paid to agents does not increase your rate. Companies have to pay for online portals which is a similar cost so, either way you purchase your insurance will have a comparable expense built into the policy. Your rate is not higher, but you get the expertise of someone who understands the insurance policy and the claims process.
Another assumption here is that an agent is a sales person and all sales people will try to make you spend more in order to increase their commission. I can’t really defend against this since there are unscrupulous sales people who will always try to take advantage in any industry. Insurance is no different in that regard. But the agents I know would rather make a long term client out of you than have you shop your insurance again in 6 months and leave. It is expensive for me to gain a new client and I will generally bend over backward to keep a client. I would be shooting my own business in the foot if I consistently over sold people. My job is to educate you about what is available, what it would do for you and why you might want one coverage but not need another. That way you can make an informed decision.
The last assumption I want to bring up is that talking to an agent will take more time and you just want to move on to your next task. If this is your line of thinking then I highly recommend talking to an independent agent. Rather than entering your information onto a website or talking to 4-5 agents to get multiple quotes, an independent agent can save you time and money. You talk to one agent (your information is more secure and it takes less time) he/she brings you quotes from 4-5 companies (saves you time) he/she explains what each company has to offer (you can make an informed decision) and the agent is not trying to hard sell you into one company, you get to choose.
Finally, studies have shown that most people prefer to shop online but then buy from a person. So, my website is set up for both. You can shop by clicking the “Get a Quote” link and then call me so we can make sure you are getting the best bang for your buck.