Health insurance agents are in a unique position equipped with the ability to offer life-saving coverage to most individuals.
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With health insurance becoming more accessible than ever, a well-rounded and prepared insurance agent can offer insurance solutions to an entire family or household all at once by keeping the right contracts in their portfolio!
Where to Start?
Perhaps you’ve already found your niche as an agent, and maybe you exclusively sell Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, or Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace plans, as examples. While having a specialty can find you a lot of success in your business, we recommend specializing in as many types of insurance as possible, so you don’t limit your sales potential!
With the number of multi-generational households increasing by 271 percent between 2011 and 2021, well-prepared insurance agents can quite literally cover an entire family in one swoop. This means Grandma and Grandpa can be sold Medicare plans and/or prescription drug plans (PDPs), while Marketplace plans can be sold to Mom, Dad, and their children. Even better, you can present dental, vision, and hearing (DVH) plans to all the above, as well as a slew of other ancillary products, life products like final expense, and others to benefit each unique situation and person.
This is possible even if these family members don’t live in the same household if you prove you’re a reliable agent, encouraging your clients to recommend you to their family members for their insurance needs!
Primary Health Insurance Coverage
A solid foundation to begin your cross-generationally-friendly insurance portfolio would be to set yourself up with a few Medicare plans for senior clients, and ACA Marketplace plans for your clients who are under 65 or just aren’t yet Medicare eligible. This is the foundation for health care-related coverage because primary insurance will be the first payer when most medical expenses arise. By keeping a few of each kind of contract in your portfolio from both regional and national carriers, you can be prepared to start covering clients with this most crucial form of insurance.
This is the foundation for health care-related coverage because primary insurance will be the first payer when most medical expenses arise.
Keeping both Medicare and under-65 plans in your portfolio could also be helpful if there’s an age gap between a couple where one is eligible for Medicare and another isn’t — ensuring you can insure both!
However, Medicare or ACA plans may not always cover other expenses such as prescription drug costs, dental, vision, or hearing costs, various copays, and more. Therefore, it’s a good idea to keep some ancillary products packed into your portfolio as well, to complement your primary plans perfectly.
Fill in the Gaps
Dental, Vision, and Hearing Insurance
Many primary insurance payers such as Medicare, especially Original Medicare and Med Supps, won’t cover DVH insurance, or even prescription drug costs. This causes clients to search for that coverage through a separate policy, and you can be the one to offer it! Even better — most DVH plans can be sold to anyone who needs coverage regardless of age. These sales can be a great foundation for strong client relationships! Also, some people may already have primary insurance through an employer but might not have proper DVH coverage, or any at all. So, this is an excellent opportunity for you to step up and make sure their needs are being properly met.
Most DVH plans can be sold to anyone who needs coverage regardless of age. These sales can be a great foundation for strong client relationships!
Another excellent insurance solution for filling in the gaps left by primary coverage are hospital indemnity plans. These specialized ancillary plans can be sold to clients of any age and are a vital option for agents to keep in their portfolio. This relatively inexpensive insurance helps pay for copays associated with hospital stays, ambulance rides, observation stays, skilled nursing facilities, and more! Additionally, this form of insurance doesn’t operate under network restrictions and can even be paid out in a lump sum right to your clients!
Hospital expenses add up quickly, even from copays alone, so hospital indemnity insurance can be critical coverage for serious medical emergencies.
Critical Illness and Cancer, Heart Attack, and Stroke Insurance
Similar to hospital indemnity insurance, you could also offer clients critical illness coverage, and/or plans that cover medical expenses associated with conditions like cancer, heart attack, and stroke or others. While these two types of plans are often considered one and the same, there are some differences agents should be aware of to properly position them in their portfolio.
Both plan types are like hospital indemnity in that they help pay for overhead costs that primary insurance won’t cover such as copays, transportation costs, drug and experimental drug costs, loss of income, and so on.
Both plan types are like hospital indemnity in that they help pay for overhead costs that primary insurance won’t cover such as copays, transportation costs, drug costs and more. Also, like hospital indemnity insurance, critical illness and cancer, and heart attack and stroke plans can sometimes be paid out in a lump sum regardless of whatever will already be paid by primary insurance (or lack thereof), ensuring maximum flexibility for your clients to use their policy proceeds as they see most appropriate.
However, critical illness plans tend to be more exclusionary and may not always allow those 65 or older to qualify. They also tend to have higher premiums than similar products. Selling standalone or combination cancer, heart attack, and stroke coverage is typically less restrictive with age limits and more affordable, just not quite as overarching in its ability to cover as many illnesses as critical illness coverage. This is just one of the many examples of why keeping a diverse variety of plans helps you find the right one to complement your client’s needs and price range.
Last but certainly not least, you could benefit by keeping final expense plans in your portfolio to offer to your clients both over and under age 65. Let’s face it, death is uncomfortable to talk about — and unfortunately, the death of a loved one is often trailed by a large financial burden that, given the circumstances, most families likely aren’t prepared for. By offering inexpensive and simple final expense plans to all your clients, you’ll ensure the financial burden won’t hit any member of the family harder than the emotional burden already will. While older and chronically ill or at-risk clients may find themselves facing slightly inflated premiums and requirements compared to their healthier or more youthful counterparts, this insurance can often be sold to any individual with relatively simple underwriting!
Final expense plans will help cover the costs of the funeral and anything associated with the post-mortem process, as these prices can easily top over $10,000. By having a final expense policy in place for as many family members as possible, this will lessen the financial burden on everyone should something unexpected occur. These plans may also even come with living benefits that could be used in cases of critical illness.
Final expense plans will help cover the costs of the funeral and anything associated with the post-mortem process, as these prices can easily top over $10,000.
Finally, it has long been a tradition for elderly family members to buy life insurance policies, like final expense or others, with living benefits or large payouts for younger family members as gifts due to their more affordable premiums and simplified underwriting for younger individuals. Keeping this angle in mind when making a sales pitch to your clients could be another clever and practical way to be the agent of record for an entire extended family.
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The possibilities really are endless in how you can be a well-rounded insurance agent and provide insurance products to clients of multiple generations. Working with a field marketing organization (FMO), like Ritter, can provide you with unparalleled access to all of the different types of products we’ve mentioned and more. Getting started couldn’t be simpler. Register with Ritter today or contact one of our sales specialists to learn more!