Points to Keep in Mind when Consulting an Insurance Broker

There is no escaping it. At some point all will experience a need for insurance and financial planning. When that moment arrives, it is too late to begin the search for the right coverage. Sound financial planning requires advance preparation and selection of the right insurance product and services long before they are needed.

Despite the eventual necessity for insurance, procrastination is common, even among the most prepared and equipped people. Those who hesitate may feel that financial planning is too complicated. Insurance products are complex and beyond their understanding.

The question of insurance raises a number of other issues. Pensions, business security, retirement, mortgage payoff…and the list go on.

Insurance and financial planning need not be intimidating. Professionals know that it is best to turn to an expert when dealing with complex matters. When it comes to insurance, the insurance broker is the expert.

Selecting and consulting with an insurance broker will alleviate worries, allowing for sound decisions about the future. With that in mind, here are a few points to keep in mind when consulting an insurance broker.

First, select a broker by asking the right questions.

  • Is the broker experienced in handling the insurance needs of similar individuals or businesses?
  • What lines of insurance does the broker provide? Is it a full-service brokerage?
  • Is the broker expert in other areas of financial planning such as savings, investments, retirement planning, mortgages? If so, financial planning will be simplified.
  • Will the broker assist in preparing the financial plan by asking the right questions and providing information that is understandable to help all parties come up with a plan that will meet personal, family and business needs?
  • A prospective client should not hesitate to ask for references from other clients of the broker.

Second, the client must prepare in advance before consulting with the selected broker. The broker is going to require some basic but important information in order to assist in the financial plan.

  • What risks are to be insured? Life, health, home, personal property, business, etc. The specifics for each risk to be considered should be available to the broker during the consultation.
  • When consulting an insurance broker, it is important to understand and articulate clearly, what is expected of the broker. As the expert, the broker should have input into this discussion, but always begin with what the client desires from the relationship. The broker will then understand how to meet the client expectations.
  • If possible, the client should provide a detailed financial statement showing at minimum, assets and liabilities.
  • A statement of expected returns and desired financial position at a certain point in the future, say at retirement, is also helpful to the broker.

Third, the client should remember that this is a consultation. That means that the broker will work with the client to achieve their goals and meet expectations.

  • There must be communication and understanding between both parties. By working together, the broker understands what is expected and the satisfaction of the client is increased.
  • Broker and client should agree on lines of communication and frequency.
  • The client should keep the broker updated on life changes and events
  • The broker should periodically review needs and risks with the client.

Clearly, in this process of financial planning and preparation for the inevitable, selecting the right broker is the critical element. A full service organization such as Hennelly Finance will bring expertise, a sound plan for financial security and peace of mind to the trying and intimidating task of preparing for the future.

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