Do You Really Need an Auto Insurance Broker?

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Shopping for an insurance policy isn’t exactly fun, and it may seem easier to pass off the task to someone else. But do you really need an auto insurance broker?

Before answering that question, you should probably familiarize yourself with all the different ways you can buy auto insurance.

1) Buy directly from insurance companies 

Perhaps you’re well versed in your insurance needs and have a preferred insurance provider. In this case, you can go directly to a carrier’s website, input your personal information, and purchase your insurance plan directly from the company itself. Even if you’re more or less set on a specific provider, you should still shop around for plans on Insurify to make sure you’re not overpaying. You might end up saving an average of $489 annually!

2) Talk to a captive agent

Captive agents are insurance agents who work for specific insurance carriers. They’re a good option if you already have a carrier in mind, but want to know more about what insurance plans, deals, and discounts the carrier offers. Remember: since captive agents work for specific carriers, they will only have quotes for that carrier.

3) Connect with an insurance broker

A car insurance broker works on your behalf to get you the best insurance deals. Similar to captive agents, auto insurance brokers will tell you about different deals and discounts you could be eligible for. But instead of working for a specific carrier, insurance brokers are more like independent contractors who spend their time looking for the best deals without any allegiance to a particular insurance company. They will also negotiate with carriers to get you a lower price, hence the “broker” in their title. They look out for your best interests, as opposed to those of any specific carriers.

Many people find insurance brokers to be an attractive option because they do all the legwork of finding and comparing multiple insurance quotes. But insurance brokers also have a few drawbacks you should be wary of before deciding to contact one.

Here’s a list of pros and cons to help you with your decision:

Pros of having an insurance broker

  • They understand industry terms. Reading through insurance materials can be a drag, especially when you have to regularly Google “what is uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage” and figure out if you really need it (side note: you might!). Insurance brokers, on the other hand, can figure it out for you. They’ve typically been a part of the insurance industry, and are well-equipped to understand various coverage options and explain them to you too.
  • They can assess your needs. Maybe you live in a state with a higher probability of natural disasters. Or perhaps you live in a state where a lot of drivers don’t have insurance. Insurance brokers can assess your needs based on information like your location and demographics, and help you find an insurance plan that fits your profile. Insurance brokers can also alert you when you’re eligible for certain discounts based on your demographics, whether or not you’re married, whether you’ve served in the military, and if you’re currently a student.
  • They are independent of any one insurance company. While State Farm’s agents have a vested interest in your purchasing a State Farm car insurance policy, auto insurance brokers have no such obligation to car insurance companies. This makes them ostensibly unbiased in their pursuit of finding the best price for your car insurance.

Cons of having an insurance broker

  • They work on commission. Most insurance brokers work on a commission—they collect about 15-20 percent of their clients’ annual insurance rates, paid for by the insurance carrier. So while insurance brokers don’t have an allegiance to any one carrier, they might push you to buy more expensive insurance plans, so they get paid more money.
  • They may be unnecessary. You probably don’t need an insurance broker if you have a safe enough driving record and aren’t looking for anything other than meeting your state’s minimum requirements. You could easily find auto insurance quotes on sites like Insurify, or by just reaching out to individual carriers.
  • Auto insurance comparison websites work better. Insurance comparison websites like Insurify use the latest technology and artificial intelligence to display free quotes that fit your profile and are tailored to your specific insurance needs. They also allow you to find and compare insurance quotes across 20 different insurance providers all on the same page—all for free.

Chances are, you’ve already spent too many hours surveying insurance websites trying to figure out which insurance carrier is going to give you the best deal. But instead of spending even more time contacting an auto insurance broker, updating them with all your information, and waiting a few days for them to get back to you, you could use Insurify.

It’s frustrating to have to rely on insurance agents and brokers to have your best interests in mind when advising you on what policy to buy. You never know if they’re really giving you the cheapest quotes since they have a vested interest in making you buy pricier premiums.

 Insurance BrokerInsurify
Helps you understand policy termsYesYes
Shows you deals and discounts for your profileYesYes
Gives you all the best dealsNoYes
Completely free of costNoYes

Insurify has a lot more insurance rates than any one insurance agent or broker could find you and displays them for free.

You can compare your insurance rates yourself and look out for your own best interests, instead of relying on anybody else. Save both your time and your money, and still get the best deal—all for free!

Updated November 24, 2020

Tanveen Vohra is currently a content writer for Insurify. Tanveen has a background in college media, having produced videos, news articles, and feature pieces for various student magazines and newspapers at SUNY Buffalo. She recently moved to the Boston area, and now works full-time for Insurify, helping produce blog content. In her spare time she frequents climbing gyms and explores film photography.