When it comes to the personal insurance business, one of the good things is that both my brother and I are retired military fighter pilots. We are very good at assessing an individual situation. We are very prompt at getting back to the person. We try to get back to them on the same day with an answer.
Now, sometimes they might not like the answer we give. But in our minds, it’s the most ethical and the proper way to do things. It may mean they might have to spend more money on premiums than they would with another agent who does what I would call “creative underwriting,” not lying, but creative underwriting is what some of them do.
It’s all well and good if there’s no claim because 80% of the time, people don’t have claims. But if you do have a claim, you might face problems.
There was a case a while back where somebody died, and the insurance agent wrote the policy wrong. The company denied coverage, and the agent ended up in federal court because a death was involved. So, we are very upfront with all our dealings.
Most people hate insurance –it is too expensive. I don’t blame them – until something goes wrong. Then they never have enough coverage. We write personal automobile policies, jewelry, and antiques – they are called “scheduled articles floater.” We do probate bonds as well.
And – obviously – we do write homeowner policies—anything with personal lines.
We go on a vision appraisal to get all the information about the home.
We work with forty plus different insurance companies. The other three agents at Waitte’s Insurance plug this information into a computer program. For example, they take into consideration where the house is located.
Each company comes up with a rate. They have a system that determines the insurance replacement cost – not what it can be sold for; that is a big thing now, especially in this part of the state. Somebody says their insurance for the house is four hundred thousand, but you can only sell it for one hundred and twenty thousand, and there’s a big argument – but the insurance companies have come up with those programs.
And so, we try to find the best premium for our clients, email it to them, and then we talk. We do the same thing with automobiles.