By Nancy Brumback, Contributing Writer
Business name: Fitts Insurance Agency
Address: 2 Willow St., Southborough
President: Christopher Fitts
Contact Information: 888-697-6542
How long has Fitts Insurance been in business?
“The agency was started in 1932 by my grandfather in a building my great-grandfather built in downtown Framingham. In June 2015, we moved from Framingham to Southborough,” said Christopher Fitts, president of the family firm.
“My father was president, before moving to chairman. The agency is now run by myself, my brother Tim, and my two cousins, George and Bruce Hulme. Tim and George do most our commercial lines, and Bruce does all our life, health and financial services work.”
How many companies do you represent?
“For personal lines, we represent five Massachusetts companies plus a national carrier. For commercial, we have 11 direct appointments and access to specialty programs from other insurance companies.
“We are very selective to make sure we represent reputable, A-rated, financially stable and responsible companies. That gives us the ability to shop around for our customers. By partnering with top companies, we feel confident we can compete on price, although our priority is protection.”
What types of insurance do you offer?
“All types. Life, business, home, auto, watercraft. Our business is primarily in eastern and central Massachusetts, though we do insure second homes outside of Massachusetts.”
Why deal with an independent agency?
“Independent agents have the customer more in mind when it comes to protection,” Fitts said. “We believe you don’t have to sacrifice coverage to get insurance at a fair price. We compete with the discount direct writers on price and beat them day in and day out. We often find the quotes from other carriers provide insufficient insurance and serious coverage gaps.
“We are aware of current trends and current offerings. Companies often enhance products to compete with one another.
“We also advise our customers on filing claims. Insurance companies are selective about who they insure. Homeowners who use their insurance as a ‘maintenance policy’ will find themselves uninsurable. So we recommend higher deductibles, at least $1,000; it saves money and discourages small claims. Filing small claims will definitely cost you more in the long run. We advise customers how to maintain their insurability and keep their costs down.”
What type of insurance people should consider adding?
“Umbrella insurance—catastrophe liability coverage—is vital. It sits on top of your other policies. If someone is severely injured in a car accident or falls down your stairs and sustains a serious injury, an umbrella policy provides at least $1 million of additional liability protection.
“These policies are very inexpensive because it is a low-frequency, high-severity type of claim. You don’t see many umbrella claims, but when you do, they pay out a lot of money. For the average homeowner, it would probably be less than $200 a year for an additional million dollars of protection.”
What sets your agency apart?
“The quality of our service personnel. We have lot of experience. Our personal lines manager has been here nearly 45 years. Our commercial lines manager has been here over 35 years. We have people who have been here 10, 20, 25 years. They take the time to listen, answer your questions and provide proper guidance. We’re not here to shortcut the price to earn your business. Our goal is a long-term relationship with our customers,” Fitts said.