How to handle discussing rate when the increase came from insurance score decrease

Insurance scores are often a challenge to tactfully explain to an insured when their rates increase.

When you see a rate increase you immediately dive into what happened and why.

If you can't find a clear reason you may contact the underwriter to discover it was an insurance score change.

Now we have to call the customer and explain this complicated matter delicately. 

🙄How Would You Want to Be Treated

Generally when an insurance score changes it also means that someone may be facing financial hardships. In these situations it can seem very dark, lonely and irritating. Start by thinking about how you would want to be approached if you were in their shoes. 

  • Always be kind
  • Be transparent and answer questions
  • Explain the process and how it works 

❌Separate Yourself From the Carrier

One key strategy is to let the client know your role.  It's to protect them and their lifestyle in their budget. Your agency did not score the client, the carrier did. Be certain to identify your role: 

  • "Your carrier shows a change in insurance score..."
  • "In reviewing the rate increase it looks like X Carrier re-scored your policy."

🏫 Walk Them Through The Process

You want to be transparent, open and honest with the client. You are their insurance guide and this is your job to translate a difficult insurance matter into a plan for them. 

  • "Your insurance carrier reviews your insurance score every X years.  It's similar to your credit score but used by insurance carriers. They show that your insurance score has dropped.  Do you know if your credit score changed?
  • "In looking at your account your rate went up about $8 per month due to this increase." SILENCE!  Let them respond with questions.

😲Don't Talk Too Much

Oftentimes when we are nervous on how a client may respond we start talking, and talk too much. Instead, allow the client to ask questions and create a space for them to be open and honest. If you start chatting, you won't stop! 

Some people need time to process and they may have some good questions that you can put them at ease with the answers. 

📆Leave With a Plan

If the client has racked up late fees and penalties, share with them how this has impacted their insurance score. Educate them on how paying on time will help their rates in the long run. Take the time to share with them why they should never let their insurance lapse and how that will really hurt them in the long run. 

Remember, your role is their insurance agent and it's to protect them and their lifestyle. You aren't their financial planner.  Their financial challenges are on other people to solve.