“For individuals outside of the industry, insurance can be confusing”, admits Heath Ritenour, industry veteran and CEO of Insurance Office of America. This is especially true with niche insurance products, such as personal liability insurance and different business coverages. However, everyone needs insurance to protect their business and personal assets.
While the digital age has made it possible for individuals to purchase a variety of insurance coverages online directly from the insurance carrier, working with an experienced insurance agent offers a number of benefits. Since agents are compensated by the insurance company, you don’t pay anything extra for taking advantage of an agent’s years of experience in the industry. In fact, this expertise is likely to save you money. IOA CEO Heath Ritenour points to just a few of the many benefits of working with an insurance professional include:
1. Getting the insurance you need without paying for coverage you won’t use.
A good agent will take the time to get to know you, your family, and your business. Only then, he or she recommends specific insurance products. They will make sure that your assets are protected without selling you coverage that you are likely to never need.
2. Educating you on your insurance coverages.
“An educated consumer is a good customer”, says Ritenour. “At IOA, we want you to understand the insurance products you are purchasing. I think that’s the number one advantage of working with a producer.”
3. Matching you with the best insurance products.
When you deal directly with a single insurance company, you are limited to the products that the company offers. When you work with an insurance broker, you have a wide range of companies at your disposal, and your agent will use his or her experience to choose the one that’s best for you. You might even get a call from your agent when a better deal appears, something you’d likely never know about if you dealt directly with the carrier.
The Myriad of Insurance Offered by IOA
Insurance Office of America was founded in 1988 on the then-unique idea of providing a one-stop insurance store, where consumers could get all the personal and business coverage they needed, all by working with one agent. As an experienced producer, Heath Ritenour ensures that IOA remains true to its roots today and offers several dozen different types of insurance. Just a few of the insurance policies you can purchase from IOA include:
1. Insurance for cars, trucks, motorcycles, and other vehicles
Everyone needs insurance coverage for their road vehicles. For one thing, minimum liability insurance is mandatory in most states. For another, vehicle prices are climbing, and it’s just good business to protect your vehicle assets from events you can’t control, like a tree falling on your car or an uninsured motorist hitting your truck. Vehicle insurance at IOA ranges from basic liability coverage to full comprehensive and collision coverage.
2. Insurance for your real and personal property
Your home is likely to be your single most valuable asset. Whether you live in a single-family dwelling, a condo, or a manufactured home, you need insurance to protect where you live from loss due to theft, fire, a natural disaster, or vandalism. Renters need insurance too. Your landlord’s coverage only applies to the building and common areas, not your personal property. IOA also offers flood insurance, something that usually isn’t included in standard homeowners policies.
3. Personal liability insurance
Your homeowner’s policy doesn’t cover you for lawsuits that come from your activities outside of work and home, such as volunteering at your church, coaching a neighborhood little league team, or selling craft items at a flea market. Personal liability insurance, also called umbrella coverage, is one of the fastest-growing areas of insurance in the United States. Ask your agent if you need this coverage. (Hint: you probably do.)
4. Insurance coverage for your business
Insurance Office of America offers a comprehensive array of business insurance coverages. “We understand that every business is unique and has its own individual needs”, reports Heath Ritenour. “That’s why we take the time to get to know you and your business goals before we ever recommend an insurance product”. Just a few of the more than three dozen insurance coverages that IOA offers for businesses include professional liability insurance, business interruption insurance, commercial property insurance, cyber liability insurance and
5. Insurance for specific types of businesses
Some types of businesses have very specialized insurance needs. Insurance of America offers insurance that helps owners of agriculture, aviation, construction, and other specialized businesses get the coverage they need.
6. Worker’s compensation
The government requires most businesses to carry worker’s compensation coverage to protect business owners and their employees in the event that someone is injured while performing their job. Worker’s compensation coverage provides funds to pay for an injured employee’s medical expenses and lost wages in exchange for waiving the right to sue the company for damages relating to their injury.
7. Business liability insurance
Businesses can also be sued. Professional liability insurance is a broad term that includes coverage like employer’s liability coverage (sometimes referred to as “stop-gap” insurance), employment practices liability coverage (to help protect your company if it faces a hiring discrimination lawsuit), fiduciary liability coverage (to help protect against lawsuits involving the handling of employee benefit funds) and product liability coverage (to help manufacturing companies protect against losses due to a lawsuit claiming injury due to a product flaw).
About Insurance Office of America
Insurance Office of America is truly a one-stop insurance store. The company’s team of friendly and experienced agents, led by CEO Heath Ritenour, helps individuals and businesses get the insurance coverage they need without having to pay for things they don’t need. They are skilled at putting together a comprehensive portfolio that addresses all of your needs, for today and tomorrow.
The team at IOA cheerfully works with small, medium, and larger businesses. For families, the team is as happy to work with individuals to find the best homeowner’s insurance coverage as they are to create a comprehensive family insurance portfolio. IOA values relationships, both with its clients and with the insurance companies it represents. Says IOA CEO and Chairman Heath Ritenour, “We have relationships, and those are powerful. A computer can’t build a relationship with a CEO, CFO, or HR director. We can build these relationships.”
Headquartered in Longwood, Florida, Insurance Office of America has more than 60 offices in the United States and the UK. Founded as a two-person office nearly 40 years ago, the company has grown to employ more than 1,300 insurance producers and team members. The company reported gross revenue of $225 million in 2020 and was recently named among Insurance Journal magazine’s list of “Top 100 Independent Property/Casualty Agencies in the United States.”