Homeowners tend to view the agents who look after their property's insurance, as those who generally give them the right advice and would not hurt their real-estate investment, according to a recent survey by ValueInsured.
However, the survey, which asked homeowners to share their opinion of their homeowners' insurance agent found that four out of ten respondents expressed unflattering or indifferent attitudes towards those who advised them on how to protect their home.
While 27 percent of those surveyed said that their agents had the homeowner's best interest in mind, 22 percent described their agent as a one-time transactional "middleman," the survey revealed.
The survey also indicated that while 25 percent respondents considered their home insurance agent as a trusted adviser, 20 percent described them as a paper pusher who they never heard from except during policy renewal time. Five percent of the respondents admitted that they had no opinion or familiarity with their homeowners' insurance agent.
"The findings highlight the perception of passiveness of some agents, which may have contributed to the image of paper pushers and transactional middlemen associated with some agents," ValueInsured said.
ValueInsured also asked the respondents if their insurance agent demonstrated any other positive traits. Only 21 percent reported them to be innovative and 14 percent said they were resourceful, the survey found.
The survey said that homeowners wished their agent could be more proactive, consultative, and could do more to protect them and their properties. "Currently, the relationship is not an engaging or high-touch one, which could lead to high turnover rate," it revealed.
With the recent natural disasters, homeowners insurance has taken center stage, giving agents a window to proactively reach out to homeowners. According to a recent report from Urban Institute, with the number of flood insurance policies in force through the National Flood Insurance Program decreasing in the past 10 years, many homeowners are left without flood insurance, sitting at just over 5 million in 2018. Even with private policies playing an increased role in the future, the current system leaves too many homeowners vulnerable when disaster strikes, the research found.
Read more about the reach of flood insurance: