Florida insurance agents have an average salary of $46,583 to $57,537. Salary levels vary depending on the agent’s education, years in the profession, certifications, and additional skills.
There is a wide range of profitable insurance areas suitable for Florida residents. Medicare, life, final expense, and annuity are popular with the over-65 crowds. There is a new population of clients in the state every year.
Florida is a top choice for retirees who relocate. In 2021 11% of retirees moving out of their home state took up residency in Florida. The two most popular metropolitan areas are Lakeland-Winter Haven and Fort Myers-Cape Coral, with about 3.5% of retirees moving to those areas.
If you want to learn more about making a lucrative salary as a Florida insurance agent, keep reading. We will share information about factors impacting income, insurance agent duties, types of insurance, how to build your income, and more.
Potential Income Factors
Every state publishes an average income for insurance agents, but many earn above or below that average. Income levels vary depending on the type of insurance they sell, their work hours, and more. It also depends on whether you are a captive or an independent agent.
Captive agents work for a company. That company determines the type of insurance you offer, what options you provide, what promotions you push, and more. The agency supplies a portfolio of clients, and they usually pay a base salary plus commissions.
You can sell insurance from several insurance companies as an independent insurance agent. This allows you to offer clients the insurance that best fits their needs.
You can diversify and build your business, increasing your salary potential more than if you were working for a company. The type of insurance you offer clients also impacts your overall income.
Types of Insurance
You can market the four types of insurance shown below to anyone, but they are especially appealing to senior citizens. As people age, they become concerned with leaving sufficient funds to cover their end-of-life medical expenses, funeral, burial, and more.
If you have a base of younger clientele, these are excellent add-on policies as your clients age out of working and into retirement.
If there is one benefit of COVID-19, it has brought to the forefront that there are no guarantees in life. Everyone needs to prioritize ensuring their family has financial security in the event of a tragedy or death. Life insurance fills that gap.
Life insurance provides peace of mind that the insured loved ones will be provided for financially following death. It helps those left behind pay the rent, pay utilities, put food on the table, and put children through college. It can mean the difference between whether a widow(er) can continue living in the family home or must move.
Explaining the value of life insurance to a potential client helps close the sale.
People approaching Medicare age pull out their hair trying to determine the best coverage choice. Those on Medicare want to review and see if there are areas they are missing or need to change for better coverage.
There are two types of Medicare, the original (Part A and Part B) and the Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C). There are also options for additional drug coverage or supplemental medical insurance called Medigap.
As a Medicare insurance agent, you help senior citizens determine if they have sufficient coverage or if their coverage is lacking.
Becoming a Medicare insurance agent is a job that has a new group of clients to work with every year. The vast population of baby boomers continues to hit age 65, and it will be 2030 before all reach that milestone.
Another consideration is that the baby-boomer group includes insurance agents who are currently working. Many will leave the workforce when they reach retirement age, leaving insurance agent vacancies. This is the perfect time to establish your career in Medicare insurance sales.
Final Expense Insurance
Final expense insurance often goes under the name of end-of-life, burial insurance, or funeral expense coverage. This insurance is usually a small policy amount to fund funeral expenses, end-of-life medical costs, and legal expenses necessary in probating an estate.
This type of insurance benefits those at an age when death becomes an eminent fact of life. It is desirable to seniors because there are no medical exams, lower premiums, flexible payment options, and quick approvals.
The average cost of a funeral in Florida, including service and burial, is $7,461. If the deceased has cremation rather than burial, the average price with services is $5,021, not including an urn for ashes. Urns are usually just under $300.
When you point these costs out to a client and that they do not include a headstone, burial plot, or flowers, the prices hit home. Those items can add anywhere from $1,500 to $15,000 or more to the total cost.
Annuity insurance allows the purchaser to receive a single lump payment or a series of payments at regular intervals. The annuitant makes either a single premium payment or pays the premium at specific intervals. The policy earns tax-deferred interest, providing income for life once the account reaches the income payment phase.
This policy type especially appeals to people who may worry about having sufficient income during retirement. Pensions are almost non-existent, and Social Security only covers about 40% of the income you make when working. Now that people live longer, the concern over running out of money is genuine.
A lifetime income and the ability to select from fixed, variable, or indexed policies appeal to clients. The most significant benefit of annuities is their financial protection during retirement.
An annuity insurance agent can offer clients various annuity products and options. This includes how the annuity accumulates funds, gets annuitized, and provides guarantees. Clients can make significant single contributions, such as funds from an inheritance, or use a flexible contribution system to accumulate retirement funds over time.
Potential Commission Income
As an insurance agent, you make your money through commissions you receive for the sale of each insurance policy. The commission amount varies depending on the type of policy and the insurance company.
Commissions range from 5% to 100%. Your average yearly salary will depend on the commissions you earn.
In addition to your commission, you may earn bonuses. This can vary from a few hundred to several thousand dollars monthly: the more policies you sell, the higher your potential reward.
Life insurance agents have the highest national average, at $62,000 annually. In addition to traditional life insurance, final expense and annuity insurance appeal to people as they age.
The second highest paying insurance nationwide is health insurance at $55,653. While many people think of health insurance in the traditional sense, Medicare is a type of health insurance vital to the elderly as they age and have lower incomes but a greater need for medical care.
Insurance Agent Duties
The main focus of insurance agents is to sell policies to clients. If you work for an insurance company, you will sell what they instruct you to promote. As an independent agent, you determine what companies and policies you offer your clients.
Using knowledge about policies, you guide clients in selecting the correct type of insurance and the coverage necessary to meet their needs and budget.
To complete this task, you must be able to explain the terms of insurance coverage and how it works. Other duties include:
- Negotiate prices with insurance companies on behalf of clients
- Selling policies to individuals, families, and businesses
- Assisting clients planning for retirement by creating a financial strategy to include final expense insurance and annuities
- Helping senior citizens determine the best Medicare coverage to meet their needs
You will want to create a system of following up with clients periodically to see if they need to make changes or additions to their insurance coverage.
To be successful, you need to have strong communication skills. You’ll maintain contact with insurance companies, agents, and clients.
You must understand the policies and benefits and answer your clients’ questions. This requires you to know the products you sell and stay current on new products and benefits.
You need to manage your time to handle multiple tasks in selling insurance. This includes seeking new clients, scheduling and attending appointments, and writing and submitting insurance policy applications.
To close your sales, you need persuasive selling skills. You must convince each client that they need your product to make life easier for those they leave behind. Explain not only the benefits of the policy but the risks if they don’t purchase.
Captive Agent vs. Self-Employed
The most significant difference between being a captive agent and an independent insurance agent is the compensation. Independent insurance agents generally have a higher take-home income on sales they make. Commissions can be as much as 50% higher than those working exclusively for one insurance company.
As an independent agent, you will be responsible for paying your overhead. You are responsible for all expenses in running your own company.
As a captive agent, the company you work for pays the overhead expenses; in exchange, you make less money. The bonus is that a captive agent may also have a base salary and commissions.
Whether you choose to be a captive agent or self-employed will depend on the security you need.
Captive agents have a more stable and consistent income but, in the long term, usually earn less money.
Independent agents are solely dependent on the commissions they make selling insurance but can provide their clients with a plethora of options rather than a select few.
Training and Licensing Requirements
To obtain a license to sell insurance in Florida, you must meet the following requirements:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Be a resident of Florida
- Be a United States citizen or legal alien
- Not be an employee in a state service office pursuant to Fla. Statutes §626.833
- Not be an employee of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
- Not be a direct disposer or funeral director
- Not be a representative or employee of a funeral director or direct disposer
- Not have connections to a funeral establishment
In addition to the above qualifications, you must complete either 40 hours of training for life insurance, including annuities and variable contracts, or 60 hours of training for life, health, and variable annuity insurance. You must complete training within four years of your license application date.
To obtain a license, you must pass a licensing exam pursuant to Fla. Statutes §626.241. The test establishes your ability and competency in the type of insurance you plan to sell. It proves you know what is necessary to handle insurance transactions and understand the responsibilities and laws for selling insurance.
You must be fingerprinted, complete an application, and pay licensing fees to obtain your license.
How to Make More Money
You’ve completed your training, taken your exam, and can now proudly display your insurance license. Now you’re wondering how to move beyond the basics and boost your income potential.
The key is to review all tips, techniques, and trends to figure out what you aren’t doing and make changes. Set realistic goals for the upcoming year and move forward.
- Always summarize quotes for policyholders: they don’t understand insurance, make it simple for them to understand
- Build strategic partnerships: network with other agents who can be a source of information, tips, and more
- Fill a gap: If there aren’t many agents selling a particular insurance, fill that gap
- Team up with non-insurance professionals: an elder care attorney to provide a joint seminar for seniors, a nursing home to assist people with Medicare needs, etc.
- Partner with a physician to help patients find Medicare plans that meet their needs
- Cross-sell products to round out what you have to offer
- Use a virtual assistant to complete routine tasks
- Use social media to promote our business
Remember the importance of marketing. Have eye-catching literature and brochures explaining who you are and what you offer. Ask to leave flyers in places that potential clientele frequent. This may be senior citizen centers, doctors’ offices, 55+ communities, and RV parks.
Work smarter, not harder, to sell more insurance and make more money. Utilize all the opportunities you have to stay up-to-date on insurance, training, and tips.
Training for Florida Insurance Agents
If you’re ready to join other Florida insurance agents who set their own hours and income level through insurance sales, we invite you to check out Insurance Sales 101 training programs. We provide training, coaching, techniques, tactics, support, guidance, tips, and sales systems necessary to develop a profitable business.
Once you have your license, you need to stay current on the latest and greatest in insurance. That is when our all-access pass gives you unlimited access to current and future training programs, digital tools, and resources. Don’t hesitate; transform your professional life today.