how to become an insurance agent

How To Become An Insurance Agent? A Step-by-Step Guide

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For both new and experienced individuals, starting a career in the insurance industry can be an intriguing option.

It’s a flexible professional path with a broad roster of fascinating clients depending on the area of specialization.

The qualifications for becoming an insurance agent vary by state, but they can frequently be completed more quickly than other license-required professions.

A career as an insurance agent offers a variety of advantages, including a relatively easy entry into the profession, the flexibility to choose your own work environment, and high earning potential.

Learning about the key tasks and educational requirements for insurance agents is a wonderful place to start if you’re considering a career in the industry.

In this article, we’ll review everything you need to know about becoming an insurance agent.

What is an Insurance Agent?

According to Insureon, an insurance agent sells an insurance company’s products to consumers for a commission.

To sell insurance, an agent helps consumers select the right insurance to buy but represents the company in the transaction.

What are the Roles and Responsibilities of an Insurance Agent?

Insurance brokers sell and negotiate life, health, property, and other types of insurance to meet the needs of their clients.

Successful insurance agents use marketing methods to promote new and existing insurance plans. Marketing initiatives are also critical for attracting new clients to your firm.

They also use networking and recommendations to build ties with potential clients. Those connections are the bedrock of their business.
As an insurance agent, you can build a long-term customer base through a variety of methods, such as referrals, cold calling, email, social media, and direct mail.

You can also give a presentation to a group at a business function or speak publicly at an insurance-related event.

Insurance agents must assess their clients’ needs and provide solutions that satisfy those needs and the clients’ financial situation.

Additional Responsibilities Of An Insurance Agent.

Here are other responsibilities of an Insurance Agent. As an agent, you are to:

  • Attend meetings, seminars, and programs to learn about new products and services
  • Calculate premiums and establish payment methods
  • Report the progress of initiatives to stakeholders
  • Maintain bookkeeping systems, databases, and records
  • Also, monitor insurance claims
  • Meet customers’ expectation to ensure satisfaction of insurance coverage
  • Continuously educate yourself on the industry and learn about new products and services
  • Fulfill all policy requirements
  • Help clients settle any claims on their insurance
  • Customize insurance programs to suit individual customer needs
  • Ensure that policy requirements are fulfilled, including completion of the appropriate forms
  • Inspect property to examine its overall condition and decide its insurance risk
  • Make sure all paperwork is filled out and filed to put insurance policies in place
  • Assist customers in properly completing insurance applications to act as an intermediary between the customer and the insurance company.

Read this: Who is an Independent Insurance Agent? Salary, Job Description, Skills.

Types of Insurance Agent

There are different types of insurance agents according to the distribution channels of the insurance companies as directed by the IRDAI.

#1. Internal insurance sales agent

A full-time on-board employee of an insurance firm is referred to as an internal insurance sales agent. They work for a specific firm and only sell their insurance coverage.

#2. Captive insurance agent

A captive insurance agent works solely to market the insurance products of one insurance firm.

#3. Independent broker/Point of Sale

A POSP, or point of sale person, is an IRDAI-approved insurance professional who can present a customer with various plans from several insurance firms.

POSP has an IRDAI license code that allows it to work with many insurance providers simultaneously and offers clients multiple insurance products.

What is the Eligible Criteria For becoming an Insurance Agent?

According to IRDAI guidelines, any individual who wants to become an insurance agent must fulfill the below-mentioned criteria:

  • An Insurance Agent should have a bachelor’s degree (graduate). However, someone who has dropped out of school but has significant talent and experience in sales may also become an agent. Hence, being 10th pass is the minimum requirement for becoming an insurance agent.
  • The documents required include proof of identity (Aadhar card, Voter ID card, Driving License etc.), requisite exam certificates, proof of address, PAN card copy, and photos in the prescribed format.
  • You must be Age – 18 years and above
  • IRDAI Certification – Certified with Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI)
  • An individual must complete a particular amount of training in order to receive a license to sell insurance. The number of hours of training necessary varies depending on the type of insurance the individual plans to sell; for example, life insurance training may take longer than other types of insurance.

*The length of training varies depending on whether the person is renewing an existing license or applying for a new one. Some businesses also provide on-the-job training to their employees.

What is The Salary For Insurance Agents?

According to Indeed, the average salary for insurance agents is $79,938 per year, ranging from $18,000 to $186,000 per year.

The salary for insurance agents varies depending on the industry in which the agent is working and their geographic location.

Agents who work for direct health and medical insurance carriers make more than other agents.

How Long Does It Take To Become An Insurance Agent?

Since there are multiple steps to becoming an insurance agent, let’s break this down into sections:

  • Getting your insurance licenses–Three to six weeks
  • Finding an insurance agent job–Two or more weeks
  • Getting your FINRA licenses (optional)–Four to eight weeks

These numbers are estimates, and not guaranteed by any means. Finding the right job might take much more time than two weeks.

Insurance Agent Licensing

A license from India’s Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority is required to become a certified insurance agent (IRDAI).

This can be obtained by passing the IRDAI IC 38 pre-recruitment qualifying exam, which is a mandatory exam.

Before you start the licensing process, you’ll need to decide whether you’ll be selling personal insurance (cars, homes, and life insurance) or commercial insurance (ranging from general liability insurance to commercial property insurance and errors and omissions coverage) so you can get the right license for your insurance agent business.

In addition, the name of your license will differ depending on the state you live in.

What are the Types of License?

Here are the most common types of licensing:

#1. Property and casualty license: for agents who plan to serve clients who need auto, home, and business insurance.

#2. Life, health, and accident license: for agents who plan to serve individuals who need insurance related to life events, such as life insurance, accidents, or health insurance.

Note: Your career plan may require you to obtain multiple licenses. You must get the specifics from your state licensing department or the company you plan to represent.

Also, you can check this: What Is Coverage In insurance? Overview, Types, And How It Works.

FINRA Securities Licenses

You will need additional licensing in addition to your state’s insurance license if you want to work as a life insurance agent or financial counselor.

Selling life insurance or other retirement products linked to the stock market will necessitate FINRA licensing at the federal level.

In most circumstances, you’ll require Series 6 and Series 63 licenses to sell these products. Before seeking to obtain your Series 6 or Series 63, you will need to pass the SIE exam.

Some agents choose for a Series 7 license rather than a Series 6 license because it permits them to promote and sell a considerably wider range of securities products.

The Series 7 exam, on the other hand, is one of FINRA’s most rigorous, so make sure you know which license best suits your needs.

A Step-by-Step Guide On How To Become A Licensed Insurance Agent

Here are the basic steps you can take to become an insurance agent.

#1. Earn a bachelor’s degree

Although a high school graduation is theoretically the sole prerequisite for an insurance sales agent, most organizations prefer that they have a college diploma.

Aspiring insurance agents might consider completing courses in business, economics, or finance to be more effective in selling insurance as a product.

They might also choose to study marketing or psychology to improve their ability to promote and sell insurance goods.

#2. Complete requirements for licensure

Although you typically need a license for each category in which you wish to sell policies, each state has its own licensing requirements.

You may be needed to complete classroom training or self-study to meet a minimum number of hours requirement. You may be asked to submit fingerprints and information for a background check.

#3. Obtaining licensure

Every state will require you to pass a license exam to demonstrate your understanding of state insurance regulations and insurance concepts pertaining to the type of insurance you’ll be selling.

You may be required to get a Series 6 or Series 7 securities registration, depending on the type of insurance you offer.

#4. Pursue a job

If you want to work as an independent insurance agent in an office with other agents, you’ll probably get on-the-job training while working with more experienced agents before looking for your own clients.

You might also consider working as a captive agent for a single insurance company.

Benefits of Becoming An Insurance Agent

Here are some of the major benefits of becoming an insurance agent:

1. Potentially endless salary

Your income may include commissions on your sales, depending on your level within an agency or position inside an insurance business. That is, the more you sell, the more money you make. There is no ceiling!

2. Low entrance barrier

All you need to start as an insurance agent is a license and a desire to learn and work hard.

3. Flexibility

Insurance agents frequently work whenever it is most convenient for them. This shows that you are able to work hours other than the conventional 9 to 5.

4. Leverage

If you want to run your own insurance firm, you can use other people’s work in addition to your own. If you can find a sales approach that works well for your team, you can grow it up to any size you choose!

5. Networking

One of the most important aspects of an insurance agent’s success is their ability to build and expand their network. It’s a given that you’ll meet influential people in your community. In fact, you’ll likely become a prominent member of your community.

6. Helping others

The longer you work in insurance sales, the more individuals you will touch. When you hand someone a claim check, you’re giving them peace of mind.

It’s more than simply money; it’s a guarantee that they’ll be able to get by following a setback.

Note: The longer you work in this field, the more benefits you will receive.


Being an insurance agent is a fantastic career option for a variety of folks.

According to younger individuals, insurance sales are a terrific method to increase flexibility and expand their network.

As a result, you can take advantage of this opportunity and see how things go.

Best of luck!!!




Ajah Excel is a team growth and performance expert with over nine years of experience in blogging and personal development.
He leads a team of 36 crazy, restless innovators with an enviable work culture at Silicon Africa Technologies Limited – a fast-rising tech firm from the SouthEast.
Excel is the founder of and WriterGig.
He is also the co-organizer of TEDx Ikenegbu and convener of Social Media Fest.
He is a vibrant learner who yearns to share his knowledge to educate and inspire young Africans.
He has a B.Tech in Information Management Technology with certifications in growth hacking, effective communication, leadership, team, and personal development, to mention a few.
Ajah Anayochukwu Excel is a passionate public speaker, creative writer, and brand storyteller.

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