By Steve Spray

An independent agent brings expertise and emotional IQ to each client.

Lives change and businesses grow and transform over time. That’s why we feel people are best served by independent insurance agents who have the expertise to evaluate an evolving risk profile and offer educated advice and products. Building a relationship with an independent agent in your community can provide you with a personal experience and ensure that you are offered the right coverage.


You may wonder why we support independent agents when our industry has online platforms that ask questions and provide quotes. In short, insurance is a relationship business:

  • Independent agents represent multiple carriers with a variety of coverages and terms to choose from. An agent will listen and get to know you. Then, they’ll offer you choices based on your circumstances. This individual service brings additional value.
  • First-time insurance buyers are especially in need of guidance and independent agents are in a unique position to help assess risk and offer a personal touch.
  • We live in a complex world, and online quoting platforms lack the consideration, expertise and emotional IQ that independent agents bring to each client.

Consider homeowner insurance. Far more goes into determining the true cost to rebuild a home than the facts captured through a quick online questionnaire. It’s the deeper questions an agent asks that often reveal the client’s home’s unique and special features, such as highly customized buildouts, carefully selected fixtures and other structural details.


Regular contact with an independent agent can reveal changes to your risk profile. Check in annually with your agent and have a conversation as part of your policy renewal. You may discover changes relevant to coverage:

  • Renovations, additions or new appliances that require additional coverage
  • Changes to driver status or garaging of cars by children at locations other than the home address
  • Purchases made that the homeowner policy doesn’t cover
  • Participation in ride share services or renting a portion of the home

Business clients evolve, too – whether growing or scaling back – and annual discussions around coverage are critical. Risk profiles will change with new endeavors, partnerships, investments and growth. Your independent agent’s ability to identify these risks and explain them surpasses the capabilities of a direct quote experience.

Discuss changes in your business that could alter your risk profile by reviewing:

  • Business income
  • Cyber risk
  • Buildings and property enhancements
  • Workforce
  • Transportation
  • Product Liability

Coverages described here are in the most general terms and are subject to actual policy conditions and exclusions. For actual coverage wording, conditions and exclusions, refer to the policy or contact Landmark Risk Management & Insurance.