Exclusive Vs. Independent Agent: What's The Difference?

Exclusive Vs. Independent Agent: What's The Difference?

| April 01, 2021
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In the insurance world there are two types of insurance agents:   Exclusive and Independent

Exclusive Agent

Exclusive or Captive agents, are contracted to sell policies for a single insurance company. However, some exclusive agents do have the ability to broker out to other companies but typically limited to who their captive company has agreements with.

Independent Agent

An independent agent represents several different insurance companies, rather than just one insurance company. 


In the recent years, a lot of the insurance companies have been getting away from the exclusive agent model and opening their product line to independent agents. This can be seen in the industry from Nationwide and Allstate most recently. The two most popular exclusive insurance companies are State Farm and Farmers. At Consultative Insurance Group,  we were considered exclusive agents for Nationwide for the last 42 years until July 2020 when we made the switch to become an independent agency.

What Is The Difference?

The difference is simple, going with an independent agent gives you more choices.

By representing multiple insurance companies, the agent can offer a wide variety of coverage options and price points.

Typically, you may find a better value for your insurance dollar with an independent agent. With multiple carriers you can find the product/company that best fits your risk.

Having only one company to write your insurance with may be challenging. 

Insurance risks which may be difficult for one insurance company, may not for others:

  • Too low of credit,
  • too many accidents,
  • major violations,
  • swimming pools,
  • trampolines,
  • and dogs breeds.

We have an insurance company who will insure specific dog breeds that other insurance companies will exclude.

Another example is if you have a trampoline: 

  • one insurance company may not write the risk or cancel it once discovered,
  • while another insurance company may write the risk but exclude the liability coverage for the trampoline,
  • or a third company may write the risk and not exclude liability if it has netting around it.

Bottom Line 

Would you buy a pair of shoes from Walmart when you could get a pair of Nikes for the same price? Another words, why buy insurance with low insurance protection when you can most likely get better insurance protection with a different insurance company for the same price.  

What is covered and what is not, may be different from insurance company to insurance company.  It is important you know what is and is not covered with your specific insurance company, and if it no longer meets your protection needs, making the decision to go to another which gives you the most value for your money.

Interested in learning more how an independent agency can help protect you?  Reach out to one of our insurance sales associates or request a consultation with a licensed insurance representative for your personal or business insurance needs today! "Consultative...It's how we do business!"  

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