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When to Shop for Dealership Insurance

When to Shop for Dealership Insurance

Last-Minute Insurance Shopping

We all know the consequences of ‘’last-minute shopping’’…we always end up paying too much! Shopping on the Eve of Christmas, Valentine’s Day, or any other Special Occasion rarely produces the best gift and never the lowest cost.

Insurance is no different. In fact, with insurance, waiting until the “last-minute” often costs much, much more.

There are many reasons Dealers postpone insurance discussions, but one of the main issues is rooted in the adversarial relationship between the insurance industry and Dealerships. 

Ask a Dealer and they will tell you, “The insurance industry asks for tons of information and then waits until the 11th hour to deliver the proposals.”

Ask the Agent and they will say, “Dealership never provides what we need and will shop our price if we deliver too early.”

The struggle continues…

These are the types of arguments that have created serious animosity over the years and developed a pattern that is not beneficial to the Dealership. 

Bottom line… Insurance is the third largest item on the Dealership Financial Statement and the sole vehicle to protect assets in the event of a catastrophic claim. It needs proper attention.

Here is my suggestion. 

Work with your Team to develop an Insurance RFP and begin discussions with the marketplace 120 days prior to renewal. The RFP Specifications will provide the coverages you deem appropriate and put the carriers working on a level platform of limits, deductibles, and coverages… the so-called “apples for apples.” The advance discussions with the market will help you identify the players, gain references from other Dealers in your area they write and secure a listing of exactly what information they need to provide an offering.

Do it early…very early.

I understand we are talking about “changing mindsets” here… very few Dealers want to talk about a January insurance renewal in September. But, trust me, this will work, and it’s important to understand the insurance you have before you need it.

Set timelines for the discussions about coverage and deductible options and be specific about proposal deadlines.  Interview your insurance partners (Agents, Underwriters, Claims Managers) with the same intensity as you would an applicant for a General Manager or CFO position. It’s Important!

Getting “ahead” of the renewal will allow you to develop a program specific to your Dealership needs…not the “out of the box” renewal you are accustomed to.

Remember, Last Minute Insurance Shopping limits your options and never provides the most effective price. It doesn’t work at Christmas… and it doesn’t work with Dealership Insurance!

Want to explore options for your Dealership? Get in touch with an Agent at Dealer Risk Services Today.


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