What is an Insurance Broker?
Insurance broking is the resale of an insurance company’s products to customers. For very large clients, many NZbrokers provide insurance solutions such as risk management advice and research analysis. This can include advice on cyber risks and pandemics.
Insurance brokers act as the ‘middle-men’ in the transaction between insurer and customer. Experienced brokers will explain insurance products in plain English. They will recommend suitable insurance products and services. They are concerned with safety and wellbeing of clients and their business. They will usually charge a fee for this service advice.
For small business insurance owners and sole traders, an insurance broker or insurance agent will often resell one small business insurance product only. They will do so on behalf of an insurer. They may sell one product for a consortium of insurers. In this case, they are acting as an agent of the insurer and not as an agent for the customer.
As such, an insurance broker in Auckland is unlikely to provide tailored or specific risk management advice to small business customers. They will provide an insurance quote from only one general insurance company. That is, the insurer for which they are an agent. So, for New Zealand’s small businesses, the question boils down to “insurance agent or insurer”?
A Direct Insurance Company
A general insurance company can be considered as the manufacturer of insurance. Insurers design the product, enter into the contract and provide the financial backing. They do this by underwriting a business insurance policy for a customer. This includes level or amount of cover to provide and how much to charge. The insurer handles any claims related to those policies.
Buying Direct Insurance
By going directly to insurers your quote and queries will be handled by their call centres. Each time you contact them you will get a different person handling your call. They will not provide advice.
Products sold directly by insurers are often a simpler version than that sold through brokers and agents, with narrower coverage and fewer options. If you have no knowledge of insurance broking, or lack the time to do a price and product comparison, it may become quite technical to manage.
Most call centres are not open on weekdays. It means you will not be able to get products and services when it suits you. For most small business owners and sole traders, evenings and weekends are the best times to do this. However, you will find Many New Zealand insurers closed at those times too.
When you lodge an insurance claim directly with an insurer, it will be you fighting on your own to get your claim paid fairly and quickly. It may become difficult due to your lack of technical and expert support up against the insurer’s wish to keep claim costs down.
Using an Insurance Broker
If you purchase through an insurance broker or agent they will manage your insurance portfolio. While that sounds good, it removes control from the small business owner and puts it in the hands of an Auckland insurance broker or broker in the nearest town. An insurance broker NZ wide will usually help with lodging claims and following-up on progress.
You will often find that insurance brokers in Auckland will take a week to provide a quote. We know, because we have tested the market. Traditional Auckland insurance brokers can be slow.
They will collect commission and charge a policy fee for arranging your insurance. For small business insurances, commission can reach 30% of the premiums paid. Add a policy fee of $100 or more to the bill. They may charge for making changes to policies and for providing certificates of insurance to small business owners.
The Best of Both Worlds
Insure Online are online NZ insurance brokers who are open on weekends and after hours. We are licenced by New Zealand's financial services legislation. We provide insurance products online from financially secure insurance companies. We offer unbeatable value in time, cost and support. Our products are easy to buy.
Our online platform allows small business owners to purchase, change and renew their insurance at any time. We offer broker direct insurance to small business owners. So, if you’re looking for an insurance broker in Wellington, Auckland, Christchurch and anywhere else after hours and online, then Insure Online may be able to help. Get covered now.
We are open when Crombie Lockwood and NZbrokers are closed. We are the best Wellington insurance broker Wellington has to offer.