What Does it Mean to be an Independent Agent?

What is an independent insurance agent? Would you recommend going independent?
What exactly does it mean to become an independent insurance agent?

An independent insurance agent is one who is not an employee of the company. You might be a "captive" agent (working for one company) yet still be an independent agent because you pay your own taxes and benefits. This is different than being an independent broker or running an agency with which you may have contracts with several insurance companies. You may get a contract income or advances which will be forgiven if you hit your sales quotas.

It is difficult to begin as an independent broker, because you do not get the training available from companies when you are starting with them. However, as an independent agent, you also do not have contract sales quotas to meet that can sometimes add stress. Most independent agents become independent after establishing themselves comfortably in their insurance career.

So, do you need to have some sort of income guarantee, or will you just work off the commission income you generate? The best thing to do is to interview with several companies and get the best fit for yourself. Remember that when you become an insurance agent you are ultimately your own employer, and you are doing the interviewing and decision making.

Do I want to become an independent agent? What are the main differences between independent agents and my other options?


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