Contrary to popular belief, the best insurance, whether it’s for your home or your small business, is not the one that’s the most expensive but rather the one that provides cover when you need it the most.
Another important factor is service – those lofty promises mean nothing if the company is not there to advise you and serve you when you need it the most.
It’s no secret that high premiums do not equate to a guarantee of coverage. Nor does it come with the unbreakable promise of excellent service. Honestly, you can have the most expensive plan from the best-marketed brand but still, end up losing your shirt because it simply wasn’t right for you.
Some of the smallest companies come out ahead in terms of customer experiences. This goes to show that it’s not about a fancy policy with high premiums, it’s more about finding a balance between affordability and services provided. As it happens, this is not typically what big brand insurance does well at!
A CNN study said that in 2018, only two national companies made it to the top 10 lists of best insurance about home, auto, and renter’s insurance. These lists were based on rankings from over 50,000 customer reviews. The scores were given after taking into consideration both, customer ratings, as well as overall company service, and the likelihood of recommendations from existing customers.
Your specific needs
What happens with big brand insurance companies is that their policies are pre-designed to fit the widest possible customer set. These plans will have many of the major items covered but may ignore others that they don’t think would find enough takers. Now, of course, your needs are unique in themselves. You may find that the plans from the big brand players will not suit you in some specific ways. They will leave you exposed in case of those eventualities occurring. And what’s the point of taking insurance if you’re not comprehensively covered?
Then, many of us tend to get carried away with the lower price that the big brands can offer because of their scale. The prevalent notion is that the cheapest policies are good enough. But of course, that’s not true. The right policy is the one that provides adequate cover and excellent customer support. So, price should not be the overarching priority, whether you’re on a tight budget or not. If you cut corners here, then remember that cheaper premiums may not give you the proper coverage you require, and you could end up paying a big price later.
Ask yourself, would you prefer to pay for coverage designed for you and excellent service? Or a well-known brand name? Because there’s a choice to be made as the two could be independent of each other.
Small insurers are more flexible
Just because you’re choosing a policy from a big national carrier does not mean that your service will be impeccable, in fact, it could well be the opposite. Big brand companies have a lot on their plate as they serve millions of customers and several hundreds of thousands of agents. This means that when you need help, you could end up on the wrong end of a painfully slow service experience and lost hours spent waiting on customer service helplines.
A small company has the advantage of being more personal. You can usually access the advisor who helped you in the policy purchase process. The advisor will you able to guide you through the interactions with the claims department and could potentially get a more transparent decision faster. It is this that defines better customer service and, in turn, complete customer satisfaction.
Watch out for red flags
There is a multitude of online, insurance quote generators that offer the service of comparing insurance policies to find you the “best one” for you. These sites will often have big brands on the top of the list of suggestions, but that is only because these sites receive financial incentive to push you towards a certain company. So, if you’re lazy with your research, then be prepared to pay the price. The best way to get a good policy is by talking to advisors or your trusted friends or colleagues who have bought policies. Take the time to understand and compare policies yourself and ensure that you get the coverage you need at the best terms.
In conclusion, when it comes to insurance, price, service, and appropriateness are all equally important factors that determine the choice you make. Understand your own needs and assets, what is it that you are most vulnerable to? What are your biggest risk factors? What is the likelihood of different natural disasters damaging your property?
Once you have answers to these questions, research will help you find the insurance company that’s best for you. It could be a big brand company or a flexible, small insurance company like ours. It all depends on the coverage you need and the service that you seek.