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Step 2 | Information Gathering

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Step 2 | Information Gathering

Just about every class of business has some coverage need or eligibility pitfall of which you need to be aware in order to be a professional agent. That’s one of the reasons it is a good idea to specialize and focus on marketing to target classes. 

For auto repair it could be that the client sells used cars, or worse – used tires.  An HVAC contractor may work with LPG.  Heck even something as simple as retail can become ineligible if they sell used products. 

When you are gathering information the first thing you want to do is field underwrite the account to make sure you actually have an eligible prospect.  Our surveys and some resources we have from Roughnotes can help you with that.  The more quickly you identify these issues the more time you can save yourself by not quoting an ineligible account.  

It is important to document that you asked these qualifying questions.  That way if there is ever a claim on something that wasn’t disclosed to a carrier – like an accident with a car that had dealer plates, or bodily injury from a used chair that your client sold – the client can’t say you knew about the exposure and blame you for an uncovered claim.  

The more you can document that you asked good questions, the more comfortable you will be in the event of an awkward claim. The surveys don’t cover everything but they do a good job along with applications proving what the client told you about their operation. 

So – you need to complete the surveys and get them signed.  

You’ll also want to get things like expiring declaration pages, photos, loss history information, and other things you need to know to move onto Step 3 – Getting the Quote.  We’ll cover this more in training. 

In this step you will also want to start setting ground rules for how you can earn the client’s business – and also get an idea of what coverage the client actually wants. Often what the client really wants is not totally reflected in the policy and coverage they currently have. 

You will be tempted to move to Step 3 Getting the Quote before Step 2 is totally done.

Don’t do it! If you move on to quoting it will make each of the next steps more difficult.

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