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A Helpful Guide to Becoming an Insurance Agent

Whether you have been planning to step into insurance sales for a long time or only just considering a career switch, becoming an insurance agent is a great choice. Moving into sales can provide you with a rewarding job and a good salary. When considering getting into insurance as a career, there are a few key steps to follow, and this article will lay them all out for you. We have spoken to agents and industry professionals to put together this helpful guide regarding the career of an insurance agent and what you need to do to get there.

What Does An Insurance Agent Do?

First off, let’s briefly discuss what you can expect from a day in the life of an insurance agent. The basic overview of the job is selling insurance to clients. This can range from selling personal life, car, finance, or home insurance all the way up to selling large insurance contracts to businesses. You will act as the middleman between clients and insurance brokers, helping both sides find the best deals for their needs. You must be a good communicator and be able to understand what your clients’ requirements are, whilst being able to find them the best value for money for those needs. As the experts over at explained to us, you may start out at an insurance firm and be given clients by your boss, but can also branch out to work independently and sell insurance through their own business. 

This is potentially a way to make more money further down the line in your career. One of the key aspects of the job is building a good rapport with both clients and brokers. This way, you are able to negotiate good deals for all parties involved and have a good time whilst doing so, plus, both sides of the agreement then trust that they are dealing with a friendly professional. 

So, How Do You Become One?

With the right attitude and commitment, you can train to become an insurance broker in quite a short amount of time. There are required licenses and, of course, good math and writing skills required. Other than that, the requirements are quite simple. Let’s take a more detailed look.

Degree or Diploma

Fortunately, you do not need any specific degree or diploma to become an insurance agent. Though these acquired skills may help you in other ways, they are not essential requirements for insurance sales careers. As we previously stated, as long as you have good people skills and are willing to learn, you can jump straight into studying for your insurance sales licensing.


The only official requirement for insurance sales is to have the correct licenses in place. If you want to be able to sell all different types of insurance, you will need to get each license. These tend to be one license for life and health insurance and one for property insurance. Different states have different licensing requirements, but almost all of them require you to take an official course in insurance licensing before sitting your exam. Each insurance type will have its own exam, which you will have to sit in an exam center. Exams are timed, proctored, and usually multiple-choice ranging from 80-150 questions depending on the state. 

Study Time and Cost

Most pre-license exams last from around 4-8 weeks, so they do not take very long at all. And, if you are really paying attention and working hard, you could definitely be ready to sit your exam after this short course. Courses are available from many providers and can range from anywhere around $150 to $400. Exams also vary in price from $50-150, so it is essential to be prepared and pass the first time!

Insurance Agent Salary and Career Path

Once you have studied and sat your exams, most agents will start with junior roles within a large sales firm or agency. In this role, you will set sales targets and take clients within the overall team. As you progress, you can become a more senior agent, agency boss, or independent sales agent running your own office. Many agents make around $40,000 per year, but the sky’s the limit if you move into your own business or take on huge clients with complex insurance needs.

So, being an insurance sales agent sounds like a great career path to us and relatively easy to step into. If you are considering this career move, find out what license requirements your state has and put some money aside for your studies and test. Good luck with your new career!

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