Independent vs. Captive Agent: What’s the Difference?

by | May 11, 2021 | Insurance Agent

Buying insurance can be difficult, but necessary. One of the hardest steps in that process is finding the right insurance agent. An agent that truly cares about what you need and your best interests is not simply trying to sell you products, they are there to truly help you and mitigate risk. With so many options, you might be torn between who to hire. What most people don’t know is that there are two types of insurance agents out there, captive agents and independent agents. A captive agent is one that works for an insurance carrier and can only sell their products. An independent agent works with multiple carriers to find the client the best product to fit their needs. Both options have their pros and cons, so let’s explore their differences so that you know you are making the right decision.

Independent Insurance Agents
Most Independent insurance agents work with multiple insurance carriers and have a number of options to choose from when quoting coverage. This gives you, the customer, a wider variety of coverage options to consider. In most cases, independent agents also provide a higher level of customer service as they service a smaller number of clients than a large carrier. Independent insurance agents have more time to research insurance policy options for clients and build those relationships. Perhaps one of the best features of an independent insurance agent is the fact that they can provide you a true unbiased consultation.

Captive Insurance Agents
Generally speaking, captive insurance agents work for one company and only sell their policies. While they may be experts in a particular policy, they really can’t provide a neutral or unbiased approach since they can only sell you what that company offers. Many captive agents are required to reach certain sales quotas. You run the risk of a pushy agent who is just trying to make a sale.

Our Advice
As an independent insurance agent ourselves, we obviously see more value in the service we provide, however, feel free to interview agents before you seek actual insurance advice. Ask a lot of questions because you need to know what experience they bring to the table and if they can provide you with the type of policy that you are looking for. You also need to get a sense of the agent’s integrity and moral compass.

As always, if you have any questions or could use unbiased insurance advice, give us all a call. The agents at The Premier Agency are always here to help!

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