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Shopping Health Insurance Direct vs Working With A Local Broker: Pros and Cons

Every year, people throughout Central Florida update their health insurance to meet their needs. Many people do this during Open Enrollment. Others have the opportunity to look at new health insurance options because of changes at their workplace or elsewhere in life.

Whatever the case, this can be a confusing and time-consuming process.

From the outside, it is often very difficult to tell what kind of coverage you will get from any one type of insurance policy. Over the years, health insurance products have remained complicated. Some brands have gotten better at communicating what they do, while others have not.

In a situation like this, it is absolutely normal and natural to look for help making a decision.

When you want help deciding on health insurance, you usually have two options:

  • Call direct to an insurance agent and discuss the products offered by that company
  • Contact a local health insurance broker who can help you based on your unique needs

Many people in Central Florida do not realize they can access a local health insurance broker any time of the year. It does not need to be Open Enrollment time or any other specific date. If you have never heard of a health insurance broker, it is a good idea to get familiar with the idea before you decide.

What Is a Local Health Insurance Broker?

Your local health insurance broker is an ally who works for you and helps you explore your options based on your needs. Health insurance brokers are independent insurance professionals who deeply understand all of the different health insurance options available in a specific area.

The best health insurance brokers are completely independent. Although they can connect you with all kinds of different health insurance products, they do not have a sales quota to abide by. They are not required to sell policies from particular companies in order to stay in business.

Because of this, they have the freedom to advise you based solely on your needs.

A local health insurance broker also has access to health insurance products from a wide variety of sources in your area. No matter if you are in DeLand or elsewhere in Central Florida, there are plenty of possibilities for you to choose from. These go beyond the options of standard insurance firms.

Yes, a local health insurance broker can help you understand how the different insurance companies will compare, especially as it relates to your unique needs. But experienced health insurance brokers also have access to health insurance products from other types of organizations.

Credit unions, labor organizations, and many other enterprises all have the power to offer health insurance products if you qualify. Sometimes, you must meet certain criteria. However, it’s very possible that you will be able to expand your health insurance options with help from your local broker.

Working With a Health Insurance Broker: Pros and Cons

PRO: You May Be Able to Change Your Health Insurance Any Time of Year

It’s often the case that people in Central Florida wait for an entire year between making changes to their health insurance. This may be true for those who wish to shop for ACA-compliant plans and who do not qualify for a Special Enrollment Period – but it is not the only option available.

Even if you don’t have any grounds for an ACA Special Enrollment Period, your local health insurance broker may be able to help you get started with an all-new health insurance policy. This gives you a greater level of flexibility in case your health needs change in the middle of the year.

PRO: You Might Qualify for Less Expensive or More Comprehensive Insurance

With more options, you have more opportunities to find the ideal health insurance for you. You can be frank and truthful with your local health insurance broker since that person is always on your side. No matter your budget or your specific needs, you have a guide who can help you find the best option.

Some Central Florida residents are looking for health insurance they can trust on a budget. Others want to be covered even if a worst-case scenario hits. No matter what balance you want to strike, you will always find the process easier with assistance from a health insurance broker.

PRO: It Is Easier to Find Specialty Insurance Such as Dental and Vision Insurance

When looking for personal health insurance, most people start with preventive care and emergency services. But there are many other needs health insurance can help you meet. For example, millions of Floridians need prescription glasses and many of them will visit the eye doctor once a year.

Dental insurance, vision insurance, expanded prescription insurance, and much more are all accessible to you with the insights you get from your Central Florida health insurance broker. You may have the opportunity to access products that are not generally advertised to the public.

PRO: You Will Always Have a Health Insurance Expert Ready to Help You

When it comes to something as important as health insurance, not everyone wants to go it alone. If you try to do it all yourself, you may find yourself uncomfortable as you try to figure out subtle differences between companies and plans. It may feel impossible to know who to trust.

Who will actually be there when you need care, not just “a policy”? Your local health insurance broker knows the options inside and out so you can make an informed choice.

CON: You Cannot Continue Using Your Broker If You Move Out of the Service Area

Each health insurance broker operates within a defined service area. A “local” health insurance broker is just that. Very few health insurance brokers operate statewide. The nature of the business means it is always best to work with someone who focuses on a very specific geography.

No matter which health insurance products you decide to use, you may have a relationship with your local health insurance broker for many years. That ally is always in your corner. Unfortunately, if you should have to move away from Central Florida, you will need to find a new broker.

CON: The Decision-Making Process May Take Longer When Using a Broker

When comparing their different health insurance options, it is not unusual for people to become upset and simply choose whatever option seems to meet their basic needs at the lowest price. With a true health insurance expert on your side, the decision-making process looks very different.

Although it is much easier to work with a Central Florida health insurance broker than it is to go it alone, it can take longer. After all, you are looking at more information and truly comparing things to see what will work best for you. It’s wise to plan to devote a few hours to the process overall.

Contact us to find out more or get started. We look forward to helping you soon.