At some stage early on in life, everyone is faced with needing insurance of some kind. You buy your first car, you need car insurance.

You rent your first apartment, you need rental insurance. You buy your first house, you need house insurance. You start a family, you realize the value of life insurance… But these aren’t the only times when new insurance policies, or even a new insurance agency is needed. When you move to a new state, go through significant life changes such as a marriage or divorce, or even just become unhappy with the insurance company you already have, the search for a new agency must yet again begin. The following are some tips to get you started on finding the best Ohio insurance agency.

1. Ask around for insurance agency referrals

best referrals for ohio insurance

Often a great place to start is to ask for referrals. This can be from close friends and family, business acquaintances, or even neighbors. Ask questions if they do suggest a particular Ohio insurance agency. What kind of coverage do they get through this agency? What do they like about them? Is it an Ohio insurance agency or a national one? Have they switched insurance agencies recently? Look for patterns in what people tell you. Often the agencies that have been around the longest and have a great reputation in a particular industry or community will stand out.

2. How long has the insurance agency been in business?

Once you have a few names, start learning more about the insurance agencies on your list. One of the good questions to look into is how long the agency has been in business. A long track record in the industry is important. The landscape of insurance can be complex and ever-changing, but at the same time, the fundamentals such as a reputation for excellent customer service and care, good standing in the community and giving back to the community, accessibility to agents when you most need them, and longterm satisfaction, all take time to build up. A company like CoverLink Insurance that has been around since 1920 and provides this kind of time tested service could be a good option.

3. Educate yourself about what you need

insurance for my family

Yes, agencies are there to help you understand the insurance business and what you need to get coverage for. However, coming into an agency with a little bit of knowledge about the different options out there will help you make informed decisions. Even if you’ve had insurance policies in the past and feel you know enough, it’s often smart to read up on new changes and offerings in the industry. However, this does not mean you have to know it all. In fact, while you’re educating yourself, when you come upon something that’s difficult to understand or seems cloudy and changeable, jot it down for later.

4. Do they provide personalized advice?

Each situation is different, whether you’re an individual looking for insurance or a business that needs to comply with contract requirements. As you research the best Ohio insurance company, feel out each one you’re considering to see if they’re concerned about and seek to understand your individual situation and needs. They should aim to personalize the insurance they offer you based on your history and current needs. Do they hand you a standardized package offer? Or do they talk through each element with you and offer tailored advice?

5. Interview specific agents at the Ohio insurance agencies you’re considering

In order to get detailed answers to your questions, the best thing to do is to interview your potential insurance agent. You can learn a lot about an insurance agency in Ohio by browsing their website, reading their blogs, and looking into the members of their team – but nothing can quite compare to a face-to-face meeting. This is also where those questions come in handy that you jotted down while educating yourself on the latest insurance offerings. Ask the agent to explain a tricky aspect of insurance to you, for example coinsurance. An agent who is able to help you understand complex insurance rules and policies and how they apply to your situation, has chosen to put the client first. Your understanding of what you’re getting yourself into should be one of their top priorities. This is the kind of insurance agency you’ll want to remain with and that you’ll come back to for advice and guidance in the future.

6. Look for details and diversity in testimonials

Most decent Ohio insurance agencies will share testimonials from their customers. You can often find these on their website, brochures or even other websites such as Google+. These stories come from the people the agency has impressed the most. What’s important to keep in mind here, is that the most helpful testimonials are the ones that are specific and detailed. Knowing why someone liked the company and what kind of services they received from the agency can help illuminate their testimonial. In addition, the best insurance agencies have a diverse mix of testimonials. This may include people who have been loyal customers for a many years, someone who just had their initial appointment and shares about their first impression, a young couple who knows little about insurance, a seasoned businesswoman who has dealt with a number of agencies in the past, or an expat family who just moved to Ohio and is navigating the American insurance world for the first time. What was the experience of this Ohio insurance agency like for a variety of people?

7. How do they handle your transition?

Nearly all consumers will have some type of insurance when they’re looking into their options for other insurance agencies. That being the case, if you do decide to switch, someone will need to handle your existing policies that will be canceled, and most consumers would prefer not to deal with that hassle.  CoverLink Insurance will do this for you!