Agents Should Make Sure Clients Have Enough Home Insurance

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  • These days, millions of Americans have home insurance policies that they think will protect their properties when they’re hit with just about any problem, but the fact of the matter is that many homeowners believe their plans cover more than they actually do. As such, the majority of people might not have as much coverage as they need, or even understand where their shortcomings lie. For this reason, it might be incumbent upon insurance agents in particular to walk their clients – especially those who live in areas where there’s a greater risk for hurricanes, floods, or other common issues – through their policies and highlight things that they might need in addition to what they already have.

    Recent data from Marshall and Swift/Boeckh shows that as many as 3 in 5 homeowners don’t have enough insurance for their properties to help them pay for more than 78 percent of costs in the event of a problem, according to a report from Property Casualty 360. There are many means by which coverage can fall short in this way, and perhaps the most common is if they make significant improvements to a home without calling their insurer to update its value.

    What else happens?
    Further, many consumers get home insurance policies that only cover the value of their mortgages, meaning that if they’ve paid off a large percentage of it before disaster strikes, they could be out in the cold going forward, the report said. Others may forget to include flood insurance coverage in their policies, which is an all-too-common problem in areas where flooding itself is rare, but other factors can still linger and pose the same risk. Finally, owners of older homes might not make sure their houses are fully up to modern building codes, or that the cost of materials has increased, making repairs more costly than they might anticipate.

    Agents who can highlight not only the ways in which people can improve their protections from all kinds of weather events and other incidents, but also find discounts for consumers, might be able to significantly increase their customer satisfaction going forward. While consumers obviously value the ability to slash hundreds of dollars or more from their annual premiums, data suggests they actually prefer high-quality customer service. As such, striking the perfect balance between the two – while not necessarily easy – can go a long way toward making sure people are fully satisfied and therefore unlikely to change providers.