Decreasing Your Claims Loss Ratios
Friday, June 1, 2012
Following up on last month’s newsletter regarding customer service and customer retention, this month we will discuss decreasing your claims loss ratios. All insurance carriers are now looking heavily into claims loss ratios on an agent level, and sometimes those ratios play a big role in how commissions are paid to the agent and future appointments with other carriers. Unfortunately, we live in South Florida where we are constantly bombarded with fraudulent claims. Fraudulent claims put the carrier and also the agency in a bad position. Now, more than ever, it is imperative to get involved in the claims process to ensure that a credible, trusted vendor is servicing your client. This in turn provides the level of customer service desired, as well as guarantees the claim will be as low as possible. Insurance carriers have started posting vendors on their websites for the use of homeowners and agents, so that everyone knows who to call.
When it comes to claims, estimates show that 50% of all claims are water related, with some studies showing upwards of 60%. Knowing this, ask yourself who you would call during a water related loss. For most insureds, a water loss is a foreign concept. They may never have experienced a flooded home and have no idea who to call when such an event occurs. In these cases, they take to the internet or open the phone book- the worst case scenario. In order for your ratios to be at a minimum, you need to take control and make sure that your clients know to call your office to report any damages to their home. This will allow you to refer out reputable vendors. It also sets you apart on a customer service level, thus putting your agency in a better position to rewrite their policy when it comes time to renew.
With 10 years of experience working with insurance carriers, we know how insurance works. Most deductibles are $2,500 and our average water job is $1,650; which means that there is no benefit for the insured to call in a claim. If there is no claim filed, it is extremely beneficial to you, the insurance agent, because it never impacts your claims loss ratios. In the event that a claim needs to be filed, we are incentivized to keep it as low as possible. Also, we have negotiated pricing with all insurance carriers that is not only offered to the carrier, but also to your insured, which means that everyone involved is receiving the best possible price. Thus, it is beneficial for everyone if you refer a preferred vendor in a loss situation.
One of the things we offer to our agencies is a brief training for all CSRs, and anyone else in the office who is involved in the claims process. This training explains why you want us on the job as we walk the call recipient through a water loss report, the best way to refer us, and how we respond. We typically do these trainings during breakfast or lunchtime, providing either breakfast or lunch for the staff. If this is something you are interested in for your office please email Aaron Getty at firstname.lastname@example.org