When you make the important decision of choosing one insurance agent or company over another, you have to ask yourself one question. Why?You are placing the security of your most valuable assets in the hands of someone you may not necessarily know. But even if it is someone you know, do not make the mistake of letting emotions drive your decision. Remind yourself how important this decision is for both you and your family.You may have your home, your auto, your health insurance, your life insurance, or all of the above with one insurance company. If you are a business owner, you may even have your business insured with this insurance agent and insurance company.You do not want to find out too late that you have made the wrong decision. Make sure you feel comfortable with the person you choose to work with and that you can talk to them about anything concerning your policies or about the claims you may have in the future.Do a little research to learn more about the company and the agent. Ask your friends and business associates who they recommend. That is one of the best ways to “insure” you make the right decision when it comes to protecting your family or your business.So, why choose one agent (or company) over the other when they seem to offer basically the same services or products? Here are seven things to consider when choosing an agent or the company they represent:1. Does your agent have at least five years experience with a solid track record for handling claims and servicing their customer base?2. Are they involved in the community they serve? Do people know, like, and trust them?3. Are they constantly seeking new learning opportunities and continuing education?4. Do they have a reputation for delivering above average customer service?5. Does the company they represent have a solid financial foundation? This is more important now than it ever has been due to the economic crisis many companies are facing.6. Do they handle claims in the same location?7. Do they have a caring support staff that can answer questions and offer assistance when your agent is not available?In a time of crisis, you want to make sure you are dealing with someone who can offer the support you need and make sure you and your family are taken care of. You want a trusted advisor you can count on now and for many years to come.