Becoming an insurance agent is a great way to start a career in the business world. It can be a very rewarding career, and there are many paths you can take to becoming an insurance agent. In this blog post, we will explore some of the different options you have for becoming an insurance agent, and we will also discuss the benefits of choosing this career path.
Table of Contents
1. What is An Insurance Agent?
Insurance agents are the people who sell insurance to individuals and businesses. Insurance agents are licensed professionals. They will help you find the right type of insurance, so let’s start by looking at what types of insurance they offer.
Property and casualty insurance: This is how they refer to insurances that protect individuals and businesses from financial loss due to damage or injury.
Life, health, and disability insurance: These types of policies protect you and your loved ones if bad things happen. Life insurance pays a death benefit, should something happen to you; health insurance provides coverage for medical expenses, and disability insurance replaces a portion of your salary if you are unable to work due to illness or injury.
More specific policies: There are also more particular types of insurance agents, such as crop insurance agents who sell coverage for farmers. Insurance agents can help you find the right type of policy from multiple insurers so that you get the best deal and coverage for your particular needs.
2. What Do Insurance Agents Do?
They sell a variety of insurance policies to individuals and businesses, ensuring that you have the right coverage for your specific needs. As an insurance agent, you will be responsible for finding the best deals from different insurers in order to help your clients save money on their premiums. You will also provide excellent customer service to your clients, so they are happy with their purchases.
As an insurance agent, you will have the opportunity to help people protect what matters most in their lives. You will also have the chance to build a financially secure career for yourself by helping your clients plan for the future.
3. Types of Insurance Agents
There are many different types of insurance agents, including life, health, property, casualty/liability, and long-term care specialists. The agent can be general in nature or specialize in one area such as workers compensation or auto liability coverage, for example. There is a range from personal lines to commercial risks that an agent may sell. Let’s take a look at some more information about each type below:
Insurance Life Agent: An individual who sells life insurance policies on behalf of insurance carriers. Life agents also handle any associated applications and paperwork.
Insurance Health Agent: An individual who sells health insurance policies on behalf of insurance carriers. Health agents also offer advice to policyholders about their options and claims service matters.
Property and Casualty Insurance Agent: P&C agents sell policies that cover the insured for damages to their property as well as any liability they may have for injuring someone else or other types of claims. P&C agents also help manage those policies as well as file and process claims. They must be licensed to sell insurance in the state where they work.
Long-Term Care Specialist: A specialist who sells long-term care insurance policies on behalf of insurance carriers. They also provide advice and assistance to their policyholders regarding the day-to-day aspects of their policies, such as premium payments, covered services, and options for delivery systems.
4. Benefits of An Insurance Agent Career
There are many benefits to choosing a career as an insurance agent. Some include:
Great Pay: An insurance agent can make a very good living. With commission-based pay, an agent can earn anywhere between 30-100% of their income through the sale of different policies.
Work/Life Balance: Insurance agents usually work normal business hours Monday to Friday. There are some opportunities to travel in order to meet with clients, but it is not necessary. Expected weekend work dates are rare, and there are usually no evening hours involved.
Level of Responsibility: Insurance agents are independent business owners who must be responsible for their own success or failure. An insurance agent has to perform well in order for them to keep selling policies. An agent can start this career with very little initial financial investment.
5. How to Become An Insurance Agent?
The process to become an insurance agent will vary depending on the type of license that you need and in which state you would like to work. Some states offer licenses and specializations in multiple career areas, while others only allow a general insurance license in order to sell any type of insurance policy.
There are five basic steps needed to become an insurance agent:
1. Take the required classes: Most states require a basic licensing course and class on insurance laws as well as ethics. Those that plan to specialize will need additional courses such as those for life, health, or property/casualty insurance. You may also have to pass an exam in order to become licensed.
2. Apply for your license: After you receive the required education and pass the exam(s), you should contact your state insurance department to apply for your license. Some states will require that you pass a background check, while others may conduct one during the application process.
3. Find an Insurance Company: Once you are licensed, you can start searching for an insurance carrier. You’ll need to contact several carriers in order to secure a position for yourself with them.
4. Sell policies: Once you are hired, your manager will show you the ropes of selling policies. You will have to meet with clients and analyze their needs in order to help determine what policy is best for them, as well as suggest additional products that may be needed.
5. Grow your business: In order to grow in this career, you need to increase your sales and find ways to build and maintain a solid reputation with clients and management. This will keep you working and generate more income for yourself.
6. How Much Does An Insurance Agent Make?
The salary of an insurance agent varies depending on the type of policies that they sell and the amount of business that they bring in. An average annual income is between $40,000 and $90,000. Those who work as independent contractors can earn up to 200% more than those working for a single company.
7. Insurance Agent vs. Insurance Broker
Insurance agents are also sometimes confused with insurance brokers. The main difference between the two is that an insurance broker represents multiple insurance carriers, while an insurance agent typically works for just one company. An agent can cross-sell policies from different companies and may work in a variety of specialty areas such as life, health, and property/casualty. An insurance broker is more of a middleman and will most likely not have a personal relationship with the client like an agent does.
Insurance agents are in charge of finding the best policy for the individual or company that they are working with, but insurance brokers typically have less power over which policies will be used by a client. Insurance brokers typically connect potential clients with different carriers in their portfolios and help them to find solutions based on their needs.
8. The Job Outlook for An Insurance Agent
The job outlook for an insurance agent is better than the average career in the US. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that there will be a 22% increase in jobs available (from 2012 to 2022) for this career area. This increased need comes from the growing economy and increasing population, as well as more individuals who can afford insurance policies.
9. Skills one Needs to Become An Insurance Agent
Some of the skills one need to become an insurance agent include:
- – Sales Experience is required
- – Organizational Skills are Required
- – Good communication skills is Required
- – Presentation Skills is required
- – Patience & Persistence towards Customers
10. How LongDoes It Take to Become an Insurance Agent?
It typically takes between six months to one year to become an insurance agent. This career is fast-paced and exciting, but it can be difficult to get started without the right education or experience. Those who are interested in becoming insurance agents should start by getting their required licenses and then finding a job with the most potential for success.
- Get your required insurance license
- Do some practice sessions with family or friends to boost confidence levels
- Research companies to find the best one for you
- Secure a job position that provides the highest potential for growth
11. Top Recruiting Companies for An Insurance Agent
Allstate – All-State is the largest publicly held personal lines insurer in America. They offer property & casualty insurance, life insurance, and annuities for both individuals and businesses. Their headquarters are located in Northbrook, Illinois.
State Farm Insurance – State Farm is the second-largest mutual automobile insurer in the United States. It also provides home insurance and life insurance services. The company is headquartered in Bloomington, Illinois.
Travelers Insurance – Travelers is an American insurance company that offers property/casualty, life, and health insurance to individuals and businesses. They are one of the largest property & casualty companies in America, with over 50,000 employees.
National General – National General, is a national auto and home insurance carrier. They were founded in 1967 and are currently headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Geico Insurance – Geico is the second-largest private passenger auto insurer in America. It was founded by Leo Goodwin Sr. over 70 years ago in Washington DC. Today they are headquartered in Chevy Chase, Maryland, with about 30,000 employees.
Liberty Mutual Insurance – Liberty Mutual Group is the fourth-largest insurance company in America with over 50,000 employees. It provides auto, business, life, and property/casualty insurance lines of coverage to customers both domestically and internationally.
12. Best Colleges to Study Insurance
Students can pursue a bachelor’s degree in Insurance to have a great start for their career as insurance agents. Some top colleges that offer this program include:
Financial Services Institute of America – This institution offers a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Financial Services and concentrations in Insurance or Investments. The school has campus locations throughout the country, including Minnesota, Texas, and Massachusetts. The school was established in 1969 and is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges.
Liberty University – This institution offers a Bachelor of Science in Risk Management and Insurance. Students who complete the degree typically find jobs in fields like automobile, health, or life insurance. The school is located in Virginia, with over 100 full-time faculty members.
13. Universities Offering Online Programs in Insurance
There are some universities that offer online degrees for insurance agents. These schools provide students with the flexibility to complete their coursework in a way that works for them. Some top schools include:
Alliance University – This school offers an online Bachelor in Business Administration with specializations in Risk Management and Insurance, Accounting, Entrepreneurship, or International Business. The degree can be completed in 4 years and is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges.
Online MBA programs with a specialization in Insurance
– Thunderbird School of Global Management at Arizona State University offers an online MBA program with a specialization in Insurance and Risk Management
– Florida International University has a Flexible MBA program that offers a specialization in insurance management
– The College of Insurance has a Master of Science in Insurance degree that can be completed online
– the University of South Carolina offers an MBA program with a concentration in insurance management. The degree can be completed completely online.
– BC School of Business & Economics – This school offers a professional MBA program with a concentration in insurance and risk management. All classes are delivered through accelerated 10-week sessions.
– UMass Amherst has an online MBA program with concentrations in finance and insurance management. The program is designed for working professionals seeking to advance their careers.
The insurance agent career path is rewarding and challenging. It’s a great opportunity for those who want to work with people in their professional lives but also need the stability of an office environment. If you think this might be your calling, talk to our recruiters about how we can help match you up with one of our many employers looking for agents right now!