Agency Ownership

Jul 31, 2008

  1. Crazy Rick
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    Guys, I’m an indy A H&L producer out in Pa, studying for the P&C exam. I’ve recently spoken with an Allstate agency owner down in FLA, who’s fiercely independent like myself.

    My three year goal is to own a book of business OR that blue sign (I know, it’s expensive, but that’s not an issue). I got into this industry because I love it and I get it. And if my Dad’s Allstate agent/owner in an upscale town in Jersey only speaks Ebonics can do it, then so can I. Laugh all you want. After twenty years he’s yet to pronounce my last name correctly.

    I’ve been researching agency ownership for months now. Purchase and existing book/agency, or the Allstate sign or Travelers, etc. I’m sure carrier heads will tell me anything to get my name on that contract, but this is why I’m here.

    So, HOW independent can an owner be with the majors? How much flexibility is there? For example, will the carrier, whoever that may be, insist on getting me on daily, hour-long, conference calls insisting my agency push more of a particular product than another? And if so, what could possibly be the consequences if I didn’t? Are there impossible quotas? Why would there be quotas at all? What’s the difference? That doesn’t sound like independent ownership to me. I'll be investing a lot of money for that sign! Bad attitude? No, I’m realistic and prepared to run my agency the way I see fit and after investing a ton of money nobody but the DOI should be telling me how to run it. I want to retire in twenty years while I’m still able to enjoy the fruits of my hard labor.

    Thanks,
    -Crazy Rick :cool:
     
  2. patch36
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    You are Crazy, Rick ;)

    Fiercely Independent and Allstate are 2 different things. You have to go through a multi year training program on their terms. In the end you do not own your book of business. It takes years to generate a book that pays a decent living in the P&C area.

    Fiercely Independent is not being a captive agent. You will be a 1099 independent contractor with none of the independence. You will not be able to sell anything but Allstate endorsed products with the possible exception of products they don't offer, which are very few. You will have to get your securities and insurance licenses. You will be micro managed for the first several years.

    Other than that, your game plan sounds good, except for the fiercely independent part. :)
     
    patch36, Jul 31, 2008
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  3. Crazy Rick
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    I see. That's what the Allstate owner in FLA didn't tell me. Yeah, like NY Life. Two year program, then you can "own" an office wherever you like. Only Allstate endorsed, that's what I thought. Aaahhh! Micro managed! I just got out that situation! 8 years of warehouse work for owner/Mr. Never satisfied and Ms. Daily Period! Never again. Yeah, things are tight, but a got a great support system behind me and I'm happier! 1099 forever...I think about this some more. Thanks Chuck. The dead squirrel's a riot...
     
  4. patch36
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    Squirrel is dead drunk, not dead ;)

    My experiences are with Farmers, but I know Allstate agents and looked very hard at their programs.
     
    patch36, Jul 31, 2008
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  5. xrac
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    A though just hit me. If every prospective agent were to really read this forum before signing on the dotted line SF, Allstate, Farmers, and everyone else would have a hard time recruiting anyone!
     
    xrac, Jul 31, 2008
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  6. patch36
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    Most of those they do recruit wash out or quit. I hit all my production numbers for every category. Got some plaques, statues, awards, ect. I quit after a little over a year into it and went independent. Made 6 figures on my own without P&C or securities from Mar-Dec my first year independent. Never looked back. I stay in touch with a few of my 'classmates' and those still with Farmers are making a subsistence living still, but can see light at the end of the tunnel. It has been 5 years since I quit them.
     
    patch36, Jul 31, 2008
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  7. Crazy Rick
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    Quit after a year into it? Too much micro managing? Most quit after a while too? Doesn't anyone who's hired as a captive stay with it anymore? No more chasing leads, eating Mac N Cheese everyday, no more worry. At least being had some guarantees. I don't know. Figure own and hire, have them do the work. I'm thru working for someone else. 6 figures in a year without a P&C Wow!
    -Crazy Rick
     
  8. moonlightandmargaritas
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    Maybe another...

    Anyone lookin' to get into the P&C game here in Florida ought to have their freakin' head examined.

    No Homeowner's markets.

    Why do you think so many Allstate BOB are for sale?
     
  9. AgentZ
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    Well said and TRUE !

     
    AgentZ, Aug 1, 2008
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  10. xrac
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    I have a close friend who was with Farmers for about 6 years and did everything he was suppose to and hit his numbers. Things were o.k. until they upped rates in the State and he wasn't competitive and was starving. He finally went Indy and never looked back. He has done great and has 20 plus companies he writes.
     
    xrac, Aug 3, 2008
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