NO MORE AGENCY OR BROKER FEES!!!
After 29 years of working as a licensed property and casualty insurance agent at many of the big brokerage houses, many of which specialize in insuring Non-Profit organizations. I was wondering how many non-profits are actually purchasing insurance from a broker or independent agent who charges them a broker, agency or service fee. I was amazed to find out the sad truth, MOST DO!!
At one of the large agencys where I was a Sales Producer, the incentive that they provided for non-profit organizations was that the agency would refund $ 1,000 on policies of over $100,000 in premium. That's crazy!!!...as this particular agency routinely charged $ 5,000 to $ 10,000 in agency fees AND also received the 8% - 20% commission for each policy!! Retail insurance agencies usually earn 8% - 16% commission for each policy sold as paid to them by the insurance company. So the large agency refunding $ 1,000 actually made $ 8,000 - $ 20,000 in commission from policy(s) plus $5,000- $10,000 in agency fees totaling up to $ 30,000. But they want you to think that they are kindly refunding $ 1,000. That's Crazy!!
When we created Araujo Business Insurance Agency (ABIA) a cornerstone of our business model was to charge NO FEES to our customers who maintained responsible payment histories in order to assist them in pursuing their goals and providing greater good to the community.
Years ago we moved one of our long standing clients away from their prior agent who claims to be the "Non Profit Specialists" with a "heart for Non Profits". We exposed that the prior retail agency, the premium audit company and the insurance carrier where all working together to overcharge an additional $ 30,000 per year in improperly (and false) audited premiums. We were able to retrieve $ 110,000 of fraudulent overcharges back to our client. The client then used those returned premiums to create a community adolescent drug and alcohol education and treatment program. We have been blessed to continue to maintain that relationship to this day while providing maximum service to their daily needs and still charging NO FEES. This is the example of just 1 client. Can you imagine how many hundreds or thousands of other clients are still getting swindled by that insurance agency "with a heart for non profits" ?
The owner of another "charitable" retail insurance agency told me that she charges no less than $ 250 Broker fee to even her smallest clients claiming that she cannot reasonably maintain a fluid operational process without charging her customers fees. That agency, like every other insurance agency, also receivess their commissions from carriers so, to me, this sounds like poor business management or just plain greed.
All charges and fees must be disclosed to you in writing. Ask your agent or broker to state in writing whether they are charging you Agency, Broker, Service or other fees aside from the pure premiums, state taxes and fees of the insurance policy from the insurance company. If they are, demand that they return to you your fees thatyou have paid.
Unfortunately, other insurance agencies taught me as a sales producer to explain to my clients, "If I don't charge a fee, then I will be working for free" But that's not true!! As I've mentioned, every insurance agency or broker receives an 8% - 16 % commission from each insurance company for every policy written. Som eagencies charge fees to make any changes to a policy or just to issue each simple certificate of insurance. ABIA does not. I personally believe that there is no need to charge a fee to a good customer, as long as they are not creating unnecessary extensive paperwork such as constant cancellation notices for delinquent payments.
Imagine if you paid $250 in agency/broker fees for each commercial policy that you have purchased. General Liability, Property, Workers Compensation, Commercial Vehicle, Professional Liability etc. Let's say 5 policies x $ 250 = $ 1,250. multiply how long you have been with that agency or broker. Let's say 10 years. That's a total of $ 12,500 in fees you have paid them. For what?? What amazing act have they performed that has warranted a $ 12,500 charge? Have they saved you money each year by shopping your policies to over 500 insurance companies? Have they represented, fought and won for you against your insurance company during a claim? Have they implemented safety procedures that have saved your employees from injury claims? Have they taught you and your staff how to itemize and estimate your insurance premiums according to your payroll or sales? Have they sat beside you during insurance audits and fighting by your side? NO? Well that is what ABIA does every day, BUT we charge NO Broker or Agency fees.
ABIA probably represents the same insurance company that you are currently insured through. Many of our clients transferred their policies away from greedy agencies or brokers to our firm at no cost to the client. They stayed with the same high quality insurance company but switched to our agency to remove those unnecessary agency, broker or service fees from their bottom line costs. And then they stayed with ABIA because of the friendly and professional service.
We have also been able to assist many of our clients in retrieving back some of their prior agents overcharged greedy fees while at the same time securing their insurance needs with high quality insurance carriers and saving our family of clients valuable premium dollars!
Have your current insurance agent/ broker prove that they are supporting your efforts and your cause by not charging you agency, broker or service fees. If they cannot promise to not charge you fees and they do not promptly return any and all fees that you have already paid… then do yourself a huge favor and promptly give us a call.
Arturo "Art" Araujo
Here's my Cellphone: (818) 209-7870