Starting Captive or Independent

Mar 2, 2016

  1. SecondCareer
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    SecondCareer New Member

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    I am looking to becoming an insurance agent. I am currently employed an a different industry, and I am not sure on the best transition to the industry. I worked part time, after my job, in a captive agents office for over a year. I had an opportunity to start an agency with that company, one of the big captives, a year ago, but the timing wasn't right. I am thinking of three options. 1. Pursuing the captive agent role with previous company. 2. Starting an independent agency, using a cluster, while I still keep my current job. 3. Working as a producer for an independent agent, after my other job, with my own personal book, and when my production is high enough, going out on my own IA. Any ideas on what may be the best option? My dillema is giving up a decent salary to go captive or to keep my job and start building my book on the side.
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  2. insurance1822
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    insurance1822 Guru

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    Do not go captive with Allstate whatever you do.

    You won't be able to start an IA if you're appointed with a captive. Maybe put it in your wife's name?

    There's plenty of info on the forums about your options but avoid Allstate like the plague
     
  3. GXR2
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    GXR2 Super Genius

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    Get hired as a producer at a big independant agency with smart leaders and good training. Ask questions and soak up as much knowledge and information as you can. This will give you a rock solid foundation of knowledge. You will learn from smart people and become smart yourself. You will make mistakes and learn from them. You will gain confidence and experience to go out on your own. Also you'll find out if insurance is what you really want to do. Work hard for 3 years then go out in your own. Oh and get a business cell phone and give all your prospects that number not your agency desk number. When you build your network and leave they will call you, not the new guy sitting at your old desk.
     
    GXR2, Mar 3, 2016
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  4. AdvisorsIns
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    AdvisorsIns Guru

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    As an agency owner, entrepreneur, employer, an investor, as someone who has quit a job and opened a business with a family and no income. It is either all in or all out. If you don't have the savings and business plan to quit your job and go after this 100% don't do it. This industry is tough. There are a hundred others guys going after the same clients that are fully committed.
     
  5. InsCommentary
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    InsCommentary Guru

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    I agree 100%. P&C insurance sales is not like selling term life insurance at the proverbial kitchen table. The learning curve is very steep and involves many hours on a weekly basis learning the products you're selling and the exposures of the prospects you're targeting.

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    But be very careful of the non-piracy agreement you will likely be required to sign. And try to negotiate a written agreement to buy your book of business if you should want to leave in a few years.
     
  6. SecondCareer
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    SecondCareer New Member

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    I have worked in a very productive captive office, part time after my job. I have learned a decent amount about the insurance business and feel I like it and would be successful. I was thinking of approaching a bigger independent agency about working part time. I would be willing to work on 100% commission but would insist I can take my book with me. Is this doable? I would be willing to take a smaller renewal percentage to make this happen, because I don't foresee being there more than two years. I would be willing to take a non compete on apps I write on their leads, but I would definitely have to keep my book.
     
  7. AdvisorsIns
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    AdvisorsIns Guru

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    I wouldn't hire anyone part time. Takes too much resources, time, and costs to keep up an agent. I would not invest in them for anything less than full time.
     
  8. insurance1822
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    insurance1822 Guru

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    Good luck w/ that. Your best chance there is to negotiate a buy out
     
  9. FL Agent 55
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    FL Agent 55 New Member

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    If you have the passion and determination to make it, definitely go Independent.

    I started my agency in 2011. Purchased E&O for FAIA for about $2,500 and got appointed with progressive. Then I called and haggled Reps for other carriers until they appointed me.

    Best decision I made in my life!

    Be sure to create a nice business plan since some carriers will ask for this without a book of business.

    Good Luck!!

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    If you have the passion and determination to make it, definitely go Independent.

    I started my agency in 2011. Purchased E&O from FAIA for about $2,500 and got appointed with progressive. Then I called and haggled Reps for other carriers until they appointed me.

    Best decision I made in my life!

    Be sure to create a nice business plan since some carriers will ask for this without a book of business.

    Good Luck!!
     
  10. Weedlebug
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    Weedlebug Expert

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