If you are looking for the best insurance coverage there are many questions to ask and decisions to make. Should you use an insurance agent or deal directly with a company? What type of insurance do you need? How much coverage is enough? A good insurance agent will be able to help you with these questions. We've put together this guide so that you know what to look for in an insurance agent or company and make the best decision armed with all the most relevant information.

Would it be best to buy directly from an insurance company or consult an insurance agent ?

What differences are there between using an agent or buying from an insurance company directly yourself? Agents can vary enormously in their expertise and how they sell you an insurance plan. As they generally work on commission they sometimes might try to sell you a higher priced policy than you require. Of course not all agents will do this and there are lots of honest, hardworking insurance agents that will try hard to ensure you purchase the right insurance coverage for you. Personal recommendation is one means to ensure that you deal with an insurance agent who has your best interests at heart!

If you do decide to employ an agent to help you find a way through the insurance maze, make certain you find out how long he has been in the business. A long serving insurance agent will have a lot of happy, repeat clients. Does he work for one company only? This could be both good and bad. If he sells for more than one company he could select the right policy for you from a larger selection, however an agent that only works for one company might be more committed and better trained in the products offered by that company.

Is the agent covered for his mistakes or omissions? If he does make a mistake he needs to be covered so that you do not suffer financially. Is he knowledgeable about the constraints on the coverage of the insurance policies he is promoting? Quiz the insurance agent in detail and be cautious if he is hard to pin down or not very knowledgeable about any of these factors.

Dealing directly with an insurance company

If you are dealing directly with an insurance provider do some research on their record of paying out on claims and their financial rating. Large companies will usually have an excellent rating but smaller companies, although they may have an inferior rating, may perhaps be much more helpful as they are competing in a very competitive industry. Find out the length of time the company has been in business and if there are any negative reports with reference to it. Find out if the company offers insurance plans that are for more than one year as you may be able to save money if you pay in advance.


Buying insurance is a big decision that will have consequences for many years so you must be sure that you buy the very best insurance coverage for you and your family. Research is essential so that you can make the best decision and not make a costly mistake.