Some people aren’t sure or at least are suspicious of what an insurance broker does, so here it is that we do in a nutshell:
An insurance broker acts on behalf of their clients to firstly provide advice on insurance and financial service products and then based on that advice, organises the most appropriate product for their client on the available market. For doing this work they will often receive a commission from and insurer and an admin charge from their client.
It is as simple or as complicated as that.
Why would I bother using a broker? Am I not just paying more for a product?
As a broker we have to receive some sort of income or we will not be able to stay in business. We receive this income in the form of commission from the insurance company (this can range from 5% for a private motor policy to 20% for a commercial insurance product). As 5% of a premium isn’t enough to offer the service we do (i.e having a qualified, experienced insurance professional give advice, check the market, incept a policy and ensure all the documentation is correct) we also charge a fee for the work, this is often referred to as an admin fee. This fee can vary depending on the underlying commission of the product and the work involved in the insurance solution.
So while you may end up paying an admin charge on top of the premium, we believe it is well worth it as a) you are receiving trustworthy advice in an often complex insurance world and b) we deal with a large range of insurers, so you are getting the best rate on the available market. There is no point paying an insurance company directly without a fee if their premium is higher than ours with our fee included, which is often the case.
So is it always better to use a broker?
Not always. Sometimes it is better to deal direct with an insurer (our broker representative body will love me saying that!) and sometimes it is better to use one broker over another.
So that is why I wanted to write this post. I realised some years back that we couldn’t be everything to everyone, so though we offer a lot of products and services, we have concentrated on a number of areas that we believe we have the expertise and specialist products available to offer the best service to our clients. So I have highlighted below, areas where I think we are strongest in and areas where I think direct insurers or other brokers are stronger in.
If you are not sure if you think you or the product is on the list, email me at Jim@powerinsurances.ie and I can tell you if I think we can help you.
Areas we are great at:
- Motor trade (Garages or anything to do with the motor trade): We have built up what is probably one of the best motor trade departments in the country. Our team have exceptional knowledge and we have access to the best insurers in what can be a complex area.
- Non standard car, commercial vehicle insurance: We have built up an extensive knowledge and have products from not standard companies for motor insurance that falls outside of the normal criteria. So if you have an outstanding claim, conviction, unusual car or occupation or if you are finding it difficult to get cover, we can find a solution. Areas like waste removal or oil/hazardous goods is also an area we can help with.
- Property insurance: We have excellent rates and expertise on property insurance. Everything from a private house to a commercial property owners to a non standard house policy. It can be a complicated area to get right and is also worth using us for our claims expertise, if you are unfortunate enough to have a claim, so this is definitely an area we can help you with.
- Business insurance with a premium of less than €15,000: Again, our business insurance team have excellent knowledge of the market and will offer you great advice and the correct cover and product. So liability, tradesman cover, any type of SME, retail, hairdressers that type of risk we are really good at. We don’t currently have the in house expertise around larger risks like large manufacturing sites, so that probably isn’t a good fit for us.
- Professional insurance: Areas like professional indemnity. D&O cover, Cyber cover, office cover. We have great knowledge of this area and have access to all the best products on the Irish & UK markets.
- Electric Vehicle insurance: This is something we have built up in recent times. We have a great knowledge of the market and we have a unique scheme with automatic EV specific cover. We are particularly good for EV’s that are registered to a company name. If your current premium is below €350 we probably won’t be cheaper as our scheme has a minimum premium. If you want an EV policy with the best EV cover on the market, this is it.
- Standard motor insurance, over €350 total premium: Again, we have lots of different markets available to us for motor insurance but as we offer advice before setting up the policy, the total premium is normally over €350. So if you are looking for a premium below that for a standard car policy we probably aren’t a good fit.
- Protection insurance: So life cover, income protection, serious illness cover: We have built up industry knowledge over a long period of time and have access to all of the insurers on the market so we can certainly help you with this.
Areas where others may be better:
- Fast paced one off cover: If you need something quick and uncomplicated like single trip travel insurance or gadget insurance, direct insurers are better for these as they offer a one stop quick solution.
- Motor insurance under €350, home insurance under €200: As we offer advice and check the market correctly, we add an admin charge to cover the cost of our advice, so our total premium charged tends to be over €350 for motor insurance or over €200 for property insurance. If you are looking for an automated policy without any advice or support then we are probably not a good fit for you.
- Health insurance: We don’t deal with this and is probably better to deal direct with an insurer directly (Once you’ve done your own research on the HIA website).
- Young first time drivers: We can organise quotations for young first time drivers (18 year old on a learners permit for example) but other insurers and some other brokers have dedicated schemes for these type of drivers, so we tend not to be competitive until the driver has some experience.
- Business insurance with premiums over €15,000: As previously noted, these tend to be large manufacturing sites and not something we have expertise in.
Hopefully the above doesn’t come across in anyway arrogant as that wasn’t the intention. We appreciate all of our clients and customers, but don’t want to waste anyone’s time. If you feel you are the right fit for us we would love to have your business. Drop me an email to Jim@powerinsurances.ie and we will do all we can to help.
Regards, Jim Power – Power Insurances