Long, Hot Summer: How Will the Coming Fire Season Impact Your Clients?
As your clients look toward the future, they might feel uneasy. After last year's fires in California, the fire season that awaits seems intimidating. According to Reuters, while the worldwide costs of damage were down last year due to variations in the hurricane season, "worldwide natural disasters caused $160 billion in economic damage in 2018." Costs for insurers are going up, as are worries for your insurance clients. As summer approaches, how can your agency work with your clients to relieve some of that feeling of worry and pressure?
Review and Renew
You're always working with clients who are thinking of renewing their insurance products. As you work with those renewing clients, ask them to review what their real insurance needs look like. For example, have they installed a new deck or added onto their home? Have they started up a new hobby that involves expensive supplies? Ask your clients to take the review of their insurance policy seriously so that if the worst does happen, they will be prepared not just with coverage, but with the right amount of coverage.
Understand What's Included
Your clients might want to protect their home against all possible problems, but they might not know what's included in their current plan. What are the insurance possibilities for your clients? According to Consumer Reports, "after wildfires gave way to floods last month, many residents in the North Bay region near San Francisco ran into a problem. They didn’t have flood insurance to cover damage to their homes."
Natural disasters can be extremely costly for insurers. That's why homeowners need to add extra insurance if they want to pursue coverage for disasters such as flooding. Even then, homeowners need to understand that some elements of damage such as mildew and exterior landscaping are likely not covered by their plans. As homeowners seek coverage for disasters, be sure to discuss what exactly that insurance involves.
Know Your Limits
The Pacific Standard brings to life one of the stories of wildfire season: a family who prepared to evacuate, then learned that their home was now uninsurable. According to the Pacific Standard, "insurance companies are increasingly choosing not to renew homeowners' policies in wildfire-prone regions—before disaster ever strikes." It's a reality of a fire and flood-prone world, and you may be in a position in the future in which you need to explain this to current or prospective clients. Be clear about what you can insure, and train your employees to explain this clearly and politely to your clients.
Be an Educator
It's not mandatory, but one of your most useful insurance jobs in the community could be your role as a community resource. You can help your community get ready for fires or floods, as long as you're mindful of your own liability as you do so. For instance, your insurance agency could host a workshop for community members so that they can get ready for a potential evacuation, or you could have a local emergency management coordinator educate people about how to landscape in a fire-friendly way. Becoming a community resource makes your company top of mind when it comes to insurance coverage.
Are you looking for ways to promote your insurance agency's development? At American Agents Alliance, we offer you the ability to promote your insurance jobs, access resources that help you manage your business, and create stronger networks of insurance professionals. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your insurance agency grow.