Finding the Right Insurance Agent in Arizona

There’s more to choosing insurance than just searching for quotes on the internet or finding the lowest price. Your choice of  insurance agents can affect the quality of service you receive and your level of satisfaction. Choosing the right agent is essential to getting the most for your premium dollars.

When you start looking for an insurance agent, be aware that there are two types of agents. Independent insurance agents work with several different companies whereas Captive agents have a dedicated book of business with just one insurance company.

The obvious advantage to an independent agent is that you may receive quotes from more than one insurance company and you may end up with a lower premium overall. Getting a lower price, however, may not always translate to a better deal. An agent is more than just the middleman in a business transaction; a good agent should also be an advocate for the customer.

There can be advantages to a Captive agent as well. These agents have well-established reputations and working relationships with the insurance companies they do business with. It is likely that they know the personnel in the claims department and management well and are known by them. If they are a valued agent, they can be an effective advocate in the case of a disputed claim.

Before you decide on an insurance agent, get references and check their ratings from existing customers. Consider what types of services you want from your agent. You want someone who is on your side and looking out for your best interest.

Are you looking to place all of your insurance business with the same agency? If so, make sure they do business with insurance companies who handle multiple lines of insurance such as home insurance, auto insurance, commercial insurance, etc.

Ask about their customer service department. Will there be a dedicated agent assigned to you? Take time to find out their protocol when reporting a claim and who will be your liaison with the insurance company. Do you feel comfortable that your agent will go to bat for you in the event of a dispute between you and the insurance company?

How well do they understand your individual needs, and have they explained why they recommend certain coverages and limits? How often do they review your policy and will they alert you to any changes or updates to your policy that you ought to be aware of? Will they give you comparative quotes or recommend changes if there are rate increases?

Every agent should be well-versed in policy language, how it affects you and whether or not the policy you want to buy is the policy you need.

Finding the right agent that can serve you both today and for the long term allows you to build more than just a business relationship, but a relationship of trust. Having an agent who knows your circumstances, your insurance needs and treats you as a valued customer instead of just a policy number will pay dividends in superior customer service for many years to come.

Insurance Agents Always Have Your Back

We all like to think of life as void of mishaps. No one ever breaks a leg rock climbing to impress a girl, careens their Yukon off the desert highway because a bee flies into the vehicle, or drives their golf cart into the pool because… well, you use your imagination. At least this is our dream that gets us through the darkest hours of the night.

Arizona Insurance agents protect for car accidents.When dawn and reason return, we can all admit that some sort of “accident” is likely to befall us at some point in our lifetimes. When these hiccups appear on your radar, make sure you have one of the finest in your back pocket. No, I am not referencing an officer of the law here, although you might meet one depending on your type of misfortune. I am referring to one of the many dependable insurance agents awaiting your call.

Arizona is one of the most gorgeous places to call home, but it also offers a series of contrasts that can make life tricky. Where else can you have a 104 degree day followed by a 60 degree night, or some of the nation’s plushest golf courses abutting the most unforgiving desert? As a citizen of Arizona, you need to be aware of these distinctions and plan ahead for them. I am talking prevention here, the enemy of pitfall.

So, what exactly do you need to do to safeguard life, limb, and property in our unforgiving climate? You can divide these needs into two categories- people you love and stuff you love. First, think about the most important things in your life- the people. No one wants to talk about life insurance because death is icky. I get creeped out too, but buying life insurance just in case is not going to kill you. Plus, this is about your family, not you. You’ll be dead, so what will you care? Your loved ones are still going to have all the desires and necessities they do now, so take care of it. Life Happens is a nonprofit organization that provides a very non-threatening introduction to life insurance, such as why you need it and how much you need. Peruse this site and then contact your agent.

When you have conquered your own mortality and lived to tell of it, then you need to turn your attention to protecting the stuff. The major players here are of course your house and automobiles. Again, Arizona is unique in that we boast a large number of residents who may not reside here all year. If you are one of these individuals, be sure to appropriately prepare the home for your absence. Everything from taking your most valuable items to a bank’s safety deposit box, to turning off the water main, to hiring a landscaping crew to care for your yard, must be done before you leave. Even if you are not leaving during the summer or flying north, you must give the article “How to ‘Summarize’ your Arizona Home Before Flying North” a look. It has some very helpful hints, whether you are novice or veteran at the migration.

The rest of you need to make sure that your house and its contents are adequately covered. Spend time taking stock of what you have and communicate that earnestly to your agent. Agents are experts, so allow them to help you set the guidelines. Don’t forget to mention things like the number of bedrooms, building materials used, or whether you have a pool. Be thorough so your agent can provide you with the full coverage you need. The same goes for your cars. Auto policies can seem complicated on the surface, but the insurance agent can translate for you. In case you zoned out, the key to finding the appropriate home and auto insurance here is open communication with your agent.

So you won’t break a leg, drive your car off the road, or sink a golf cart. But if you do, you’d better have a dang good insurance agent.

Keep Your Pool Safe and Prevent Insurance Claims

As the summer heats up, many Arizona residents want to cool off in their own pool. While splashing around in the water can be a great source of family entertainment, backyard pools can also be potential liabilities. According to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I):

There are over 3,400 fatal accidental drownings in the U.S. annually, with children ages one to four having the highest drowning rates. Fatal drowning remains the second-leading cause of unintentional injury related deaths for children ages one to 14 years old, according to the CDC. In addition, for every child who dies from drowning another four children will be treated for “nonfatal submersion injuries” which can cause brain damage that may result in long-term disabilities including memory problems, learning disabilities and permanent loss of basic functioning (e.g. permanent vegetative state).

Pool owners need sufficient liability coverage to cover their pool. Most homeowners insurance policies have at least $100,000 of liability protection. However, since pools are considered an “attractive nuisance,” homeowners may need additional liability coverage. The I.I.I. recommends at least $300,000 to $500,000 of liability coverage for pool owners. Homeowners also need enough insurance coverage to replace the pool if it is destroyed by a natural disaster.

Homeowners need to be aware that they can be liable for damages even if the person injured was using the pool without permission. In addition to purchasing sufficient liability coverage, homeowners should also consider the following safety precautions:

  • Completely surround the pool with a four sided fence that is at least 5 feet high, as required by law. If a residence makes up one side of the pool enclosure, there must be a barrier between the home and the pool that is at least four feet high.
  • Install an appropriate pool cover. Arizona requires a motorized, key-locking, ASTM approved pool cover.
  • Layer child safety measures such as pool alarms that sound when a child enters the water, self-closing latches that prevent a child from opening the pool gate, and alarms on exterior doors or windows that will alert when doors leading to the pool are opened.
  • Install a VBG compliant pool filter. Keep children away from pool filters or other suction devices and make sure that supervising adults know how to shut down the filter in case of an emergency.
  • Make sure that pool guests know how to swim. Proficient swimmers should accompany beginners, and adults should supervise children at all times.
  • Have emergency supplies such as ring buoys, reaching poles, and a first aid kit easily accessible. Post emergency numbers on the phone. Keep a phone close to the pool.
  • Regularly check the pool area for hazards such as glass bottles or toys that could cause an accident. Keep radios or other electronic devices away from the pool.
  • Restrict alcohol use near the pool. Alcohol is involved in almost half of water related deaths for both adults and teens.
  • Learn basic life-saving techniques such as rescue breathing and CPR.

Taking these basic safety precautions can help you and your friends safely enjoy your pool this summer. Pool safety doesn’t just prevent claims on your homeowners insurance policy, it also saves lives.

For more information on pool safety, you can view the state guidelines at the Arizona Department of Health Services website.

Meet More of Our Staff

Last week, we introduced you to some of our great employees at our Arizona insurance agency. Today, we’ve got another handful to introduce. And next week, you’ll meet even more.

Why? Well, not to brag, but our insurance agents have a reputation for being friendly, helpful, and sympathetic. So we think you deserve to meet the people behind the company.

So, meet:


Christian originally planned to be a firefighter. However, after September 11, 2001, the competition to become a firefighter skyrocketed. Anxious about his future, Christian talked to a few of his own friends who were pursuing careers as insurance agents. He’s been an agent for 9 years now.

Here’s what Christian said about working as an insurance agent:

Many people think insurance agents are a dime a dozen and there isn’t any difference from an agent with State Farm, Farmers, Allstate, or any other independent local mom and pop shop on the corner. This is why I love working as an insurance agent. This agency is 180 degrees different from those other insurance agencies.

Christian is passionate about protecting his client’s assets. He knows you can call an 800 # and get coverage from a Lizard, Cave Man, or talking cartoon, but he takes the time to educate his clients and help them understand why they should carry the coverage he suggests. He wants to be the agent looking out for their best interest.

Christian enjoys outdoor activities, traveling, and studying the stock market.


Karen is an Account Manager who has been with our insurance agency for just under a year, but she has been in the insurance industry for 12 years. She started out in the billing department at an independent insurance agency in Indiana.

Karen’s favorite thing about her job is: talking to a variety of people every day and using her customer service skills and insurance knowledge to help her clients. About working in the insurance agency, Karen said she loves the integrity and honesty of the company and everyone in it. It’s nice knowing I am working for some of the ‘good guys,’ she said.

When she’s not working, Karen can be found riding on the back of her husband’s motorcycle, working on their house, hanging out with friends, and patiently waiting for football season to start. Go Bears!

Karen first met her husband while jumping on a trampoline when they were 18 and 12. It wasn’t until 11 years later that they met again and started dating. Chocolate and sugary treats are her weakness, and she describes herself as loyal, friendly, energetic, patient, and bold.

Ready to work with a new insurance agent? Then check out Independant Insurance Agency and work with people you’ll want to work with!

Meet Some of Our Fearless Insurance Staff

For most people, insurance is completely impersonal, especially AZ insurance. You stick with the company you’ve been with for the last ten years, or, you ask for quotes online and find the cheapest coverage you can. After all, it’s just insurance, right?

At your local insurance agency, our relationship goes deeper than just insuring you. Our goal is to make you feel like part of a well-cared for and supported family. So, we thought we’d take the next few blog posts to introduce a few of the “family members” to you.

Meet Leslie

Leslie has been an insurance staff member for three years. She has been in the insurance industry for the last 7 years. As part of the Arizona insurance team, Leslie enjoys talking to clients and really getting to know them.

Here’s what Leslie says makes her great at her job: “Each client is different and has different needs and wants. This helps me make proper recommendations that can help them now and in the future.”

Want to know a few personal details about Leslie? When not working, she can be found spending time with her family. She enjoys camping and skating. She bought her first house when she was only 20 and now she is buying another one.

To sum Leslie up in a few words, she is: positive, a hard worker, loves to laugh, sociable, and happy.

Meet Jeff

Jeff got his start in insurance 3 years ago when he first arrived as an insurance agent, and he’s doing great! Jeff was honored with the Agent of the Year award last year.

One of the things Jeff loves about his job is: I am creating something that started from nothing and I am getting the opportunity to build relationships with people every day. Jeff also mentioned that he’s a great agent because he has great clients.

In his spare time, Jeff plays volleyball and takes care of his newborn son. Congratulations, Jeff!

Little known facts about Jeff include: being on the Dean’s list at University of Arizona, he loves to play video games, and that he worked for Walt Disney World for four months as a lifeguard.

Insurance doesn’t have to be impersonal. You have every right to know and trust your agent. For that matter, take the time to become friends. This person may be someone you’ll be glad to know for years to come.

Feel free to contact any of our awesome insurance agents. Who knows, maybe you’ll be working with Leslie or Jeff.