Most insurance companies you think of are captive agencies.
A captive agent is an insurance agent who only works for one carrier. While those agents may have in-depth knowledge of their company’s products, they can't help if their agencies offerings are not ideal for a client. The parent company may push its captive agents to sell particular policies or meet sales quotas that may cause agents to sell the product are not as good for their clients needs. If an existing clients rates go up, a captive agency generally has to reduce coverages to keep the customer paying the same amount.
FCI Agency is an insurance broker that represents several different insurance carriers.
The agent is independent of the companies they sell, and can objectively evaluate insurance policies. Independent agents pay all their own expenses and keep their own records and earn their income from commissions on the policies they sell. Having multiple companies to choose from allows the agent to look out for the best interest of the customer. If an existing client's rates go up, an independent agent can "re-shop" the client and present them with several new options. An independent agent allows the consumer an opportunity to maintain the relationship with an agent they know and trust even if their particular insurance company takes actions that adversely affect the customer.