Frequently Asked Questions
do I need an insurance broker?
In today's fast paced age of internet technology and smart phones, consumers
and business owners expect to get their information and results almost
instantly for most of life's daily decisions. Conversely, its easy to
become overwhelmed and frustrated with the many contractual intangibles of
insurance policies. This can cause the average buyer make hasty
decisions, which can lead to inadequate coverage... which, on the
wrong day, can lead to disaster. Your broker is there to be your
eyes and ears in the marketplace. He keeps you up to speed on rates,
trends, and happenings in the industry. He is the expert that you rely on
to protect the things you've worked so hard to acquire. He is peace of
the difference between an independent agency and all
those commercials I see on TV?
Most of what you see every nine minutes during your favorite movie or the
Super Bowl are advertisements paid for by large insurance companies that sell
policies directly to the public as "captive" agents. When you
pick up the phone to call them, your call will be answered by a
salesperson that represents only that company. One company, one rate, one
product. An independent agency, on the other hand, has access to many
insurance carriers. Independent agencies work for YOU,
the consumer. They can effectively scan the marketplace, obtaining
multiple price quotes to fit their clients' coverage needs and budgets.
They do the "shopping" for you while you take your kids to the park
or play a round of golf.
Why are my home and auto insurance policies so much cheaper than my neighbor's?
There are many criteria that factor into the insurance carriers' rating process. Credit score, driving history and the severity and frequency of claims are just a few. The weights the that the insurance companies place on this data can vary widely from one insurance company to the next. So even though your next door neighbor has the same style of house with the same car in the driveway, your premiums can be significantly different based on the historical underwriting information.
Do insurance companies offer discounts for combining policies?
Insurance companies offer "discounts" for a lot of things, and yes, purchasing multiple policies is one of them. Many times it can be very advantageous to keep your home, auto, and umbrella polices "under one roof". Aside from the obvious convenience of streamlined billing, "package" policies with the same carrier will often "talk to each other" and offer enhancements like combined deductibles and increased coverage limits.
My mortgage company handles my homeowners insurance... Do I still qualify for multi-policy discounts?
Yes. Mortgage companies will require proof of homeowners insurance at the date of purchase and they will build the premium into your monthly mortgage payment. You (the insured) will still receive statements from your homeowners insurance carrier, but the premium is paid by the mortgagee. It is not uncommon for these statements to be overlooked and discarded by homeowners, and this can be a major problem. Annual coverage reviews are extremely important to make sure your coverage is adequate and your premium is competitive. The WEM Insurance Agency team will work with you and your mortgagee to provide accurate and reliable service.