Compare Reviews for Homeowners Insurance Companies
Owning a home is a rewarding endeavor, but it’s also a huge investment. Many insurance companies offer home insurance policies to help homeowners protect the large purchases they’ve made.
Homeowners insurance policies often contain two coverages – property protection and liability coverage. Homeowners insurance policies have been around since the middle of the 20th century, and they continue to be an integral part of the home-owning experience.
Top 10 Best Rated Homeowners Insurance Companies
|Read 13 Reviews|
With almost 100 years of experience in the insurance industry, Auto-Owners homeowners insurance has the financial resources necessary to handle disasters. This Fortune 500 company has a written premium of over $5 billion.
|Read 27 Reviews|
Founded in 1923, Safeco provides a variety of packages, including personalized homeowner insurance options tailored to the individual's needs. They offer 24/7 assistance with claims and affordable monthly installment plans.
|Read 30 Reviews|
Erie Insurance is a Fortune 500 company that takes pride in providing excellent 24/7 customer service. They employ local agents in order to develop meaningful relationships with all of their customers.
|Read 34 Reviews|
Farm Bureau Financial Services offers a variety of insurance coverage for homeowners. It offers quick and easy online account access in addition to other contact methods for viewing claims and accounts.
|Read 14 Reviews|
Progressive Homeowners is a branch of The Progressive Group of Insurance Companies that provides coverage to homeowners. They offer a wide variety of coverage options that are tailored to each individual's needs.
|Read 23 Reviews|
MetLife Homeowners offers a variety of home insurance policies for personal home owners, renters and landlords. This includes collision coverage for mobile and manufactured homes that are being moved from one home site to another.
|Read 19 Reviews|
Foremost Insurance offers comprehensive and customized home insurance policies for high-risk homes and people who have been declined by other agencies. It also serves those dealing with cancellation of homeowner's insurance.
|Read 18 Reviews|
AIG is a large insurance company that offers insurance policies to individuals and businesses. In addition to offering homeowners insurance, the company also sells policies for life, retirement, investment, and more.
|Read 107 Reviews|
Founded in 1810, The Hartford is one of the oldest and most trusted insurance companies in the United States. Based in Hartford, CT, the company offers homeowners insurance policies in addition to vehicle insurance.
|Read 185 Reviews|
Nationwide Insurance is a company that was founded way back in 1926. Headquartered in Columbus, OH, this trusted company offers customers comprehensive homeowners insurance policies backed by years of experience in the industry.
Insurance Contributing Editor
Matthew Brodsky is an established expert on insurance, having written hundreds of articles and other pieces of content on the subject, interviewed countless practitioners, and attended dozens of conferences and events. He served as an editor at industry magazine Risk & Insurance for six years.
What features matter most?
Policies & coverage
Homeowners insurance policies can be lengthy and complicated, but it’s important to understand what’s covered.
- Structure: If you ever experience the total loss of your home due to a disaster listed in your policy, you’ll want to be sure your insurance provider would pay enough to rebuild the exact same house in the exact same location.
- Personal belongings: Furniture, clothes, electronics, collectibles and other personal items are covered if they are stolen or destroyed by an insured disaster. Most companies will provide personal belongings coverage for 50%-70% of the amount of insurance you have on the structure of your home. Each policy varies in dollar limits or off-premise coverage – so review yours closely.
- Liability: Liability covers homeowners (and even their pets) against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage caused to other people or other people’s property outside your home. Liability limits generally start at about $100,000, but many homeowners opt for additional coverage or increase their liability policy to cover a much broader range of incidents.
- Temporary living expenses: Most homeowners insurance policies will pay for expenses that come up with your home is uninhabitable due to damage from a natural disaster or other event. There’s a limit, though, to how much you can spend.
- Spoiled food: You can claim the loss of your food in addition to other damages incurred by a covered disaster, such as a major storm or tornado. If your only loss was food, though, your total loss is probably less than your deductible, meaning it won’t make sense to file a claim.
- Stampeding wild animals: Yes, you read that right. And the next time a herd of wild buffalo comes stampeding through your fence and into your living room, you’ll be glad that your insurance has coverage. Note that insurance companies make a distinction between wild and domestic animals, so you’re out of luck if your neighbor unleashes her litter of adorable but aggressive kittens in your living room. You might also be out of luck if you live near livestock, which tend to be considered domestic, not wild. If you have concerns, double check with your insurance company ahead of time.
- Cemetery vandalism: Grave markers generally fall under the category of “valuables” in your homeowners insurance policy, so you’re covered in the event that your loved one’s graveyard marking is vandalized.
Policies & coverage: what is not covered
There are many things that aren’t covered by minimum homeowners insurance policies, but they can often be added for an additional cost.
- Emergency living expenses: Some homeowners may require additional coverage for living expenses if they are unable to live in their home due to a covered disaster.
- Flood insurance: Homeowners policies don’t cover flood damage, but depending on where your home is located, you may want to consider flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program through a private insurer. If your home is in a flood plain, your mortgage lender will likely require this additional coverage.
- Trampolines: Homeowners policies stay away from trampolines since they are such a high risk. Your premium will likely raise if you have a trampoline, and certain policies won’t cover injuries that result from them at all. Make sure you speak with your insurance agent before you let your kids (or yourself) loose on your backyard trampoline.
- Pool deaths: Pools are another hazard for homeowners, and most home insurance liability policies aren’t enough to cover deaths or accidents caused by or in a pool. If you are getting a pool, you should consider raising your liability to $300,000 to $500,000 to make sure you are covered in the event of a tragedy.
- Cash: Stashing cash under your mattress or in your coffee can isn’t just a bad idea from an investment standpoint. It can also leave you high and dry in the event of a burglary or other disaster. Generally, $200 is all that home insurance policies will cover, so you’re out of luck if you have $5,000 in cash sitting around the house that gets stolen or lost in a fire. Get your cash into a bank account now so you don’t wind up paying for it later.
Homeowners insurance companies are rated by major insurance industry services including A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s. Highly rated insurance companies will have a minimum rating of A- and tend to have customers who are happy with their service and coverage. The lower an insurance company’s rating, the less financially secure it is, the greater risk there is that it could be unable to pay on customers’ claims, and the less likely it will be well-liked by customers.
- Customer service & satisfaction ratings: Insurance companies are rated by such firms as J.D. Powers & Associates in the area of customer satisfaction, which is a reflection of how well customers’ needs are met.
- Price & policy value ratings: A valuable homeowner’s policy will provide the coverage you need at an affordable premium.
- Financial strength ratings: These ratings measure a company’s ability to pay claims to policyholders – which indicates whether or not the company will be around when disaster strikes.
- Claims service ratings: Insurance providers are also rated on how effectively they handle claims filing, processing, adjustments and payments.
Homeowners insurance costs can vary widely depending on the company you purchase insurance from and what types of and how much coverage you buy. Homeowners can benefit from comparing premiums and coverage costs from multiple companies before choosing a provider.
- Deductibles: A deductible is the portion of a covered loss you must pay before your insurance company will pay. When an insurance policy has a high deductible, the insurer will generally charge less for annual premiums.
- Premiums: Yearly homeowners insurance premiums vary widely and depend on multiple factors including, of course, how much coverage you need depending on the value of your home and the personal possessions inside of it.
- Discounts: Many insurance companies offer specific discounts on deductibles and premiums for things such as bundling insurance, being a loyal customer, installing safety and security devices in your home, or not filing a claim for a certain period of time.
Homeowners insurance policies are usually only needed in urgent situations, so speed is always a factor when dealing with the insurance company. Homeowners insurance companies vary greatly in terms of how quickly they can get insurance claims processed and paid.
- Claims processing: A bureaucratic company can take a while to process insurance claims, which can be inconvenient when a homeowner needs money for a repair or help in an emergency situation. Other companies may be known for fighting policyholders over claims amounts.
- Claims adjuster: During the claims process, the insurer’s adjuster will assess the damage caused by incident and provide a preliminary estimate of the total cost for clean up, repairs and restoration. Most homeowners insurance adjusters work directly for private insurance companies, while you can also hire an adjuster who works independently to conduct “non-sanctioned” appraisals. These public adjusters are often used by homeowners who are dissatisfied with the insurance company’s claims adjuster.
Customer service is essential for policyholders who have questions about their coverage or require assistance during a time of emergency. Some homeowners insurance companies communicate directly with customers and do not deal with independent agents. Other companies use middlemen, who can be independent insurance agents or “captive” insurance agents (who only work for one insurance company).
- Central customer service: Some insurance companies offer one central contact location for customer service, where all problems are heard and handled.
- Localized customer service: Some homeowners insurance providers use individual local agents to communicate with and handle the needs of policyowners.
- Digital customer service: Some companies use various online methods to communicate with customers, making the access to service convenient no matter where the customer is located.
What are different types of homeowners insurance coverage?
Actual cash value
This type of homeowners insurance covers the loss or damage of property (including personal items) after deducting depreciation – meaning how much the items are currently worth, not how much was originally paid.
With replacement cost coverage, items lost or damaged are replaced without considering depreciation so that repairs and replacements can be made to return property whole.
Guaranteed replacement cost
Also known as extended replacement cost, this type of coverage will pay all costs needed to repair or replace lost property – even if it exceeds the policy limit, due to inflation in the value of a home or belongings. Some companies offer this type of coverage but typically cap it at 20-25% higher than the policy’s limit.
Who's it for?
A traditional homeowner is someone who owns a house and wants to protect their assets or is required by a mortgage lender to obtain homeowners insurance before being approved for a loan.
Condo owners live in units they own within in a larger building and usually purchase insurance that is meant for their unit and property only – with a small amount of coverage for the structure around their condo.
A person who owns a farm or a house on a farm needs a specific type of insurance to cover the property and dwellings, as well as detached garages, other structures and/or outdoor equipment used to maintain the grounds.
Mobile homeowners own a home that is manufactured or prefabricated and can be moved from place to place. This type of insurance may also cover detached structures such as a shed or garage and may include coverage for personal belongings and injuries that occur on your property.
Allstate is one of America’s largest and most popular insurance companies. The company provides many types of insurance, including auto insurance, life insurance, homeowners insurance and more.
State Farm is one of America’s largest and most popular homeowners insurance companies. Headquartered in Bloomington, IN, the company has been providing Americans different types of insurance since 1922.
Homesite is a company that is solely focused on providing people insurance for their residences. Homesite is one of the newer homeowners insurance companies around, founded in 1997, and the company operates out of its headquarters in Boston, MA.
Farmers is a large, national insurance provider. The company was founded in 1928 and has grown to provide insurance policies for automobile owners, homeowners and motorcycle owners.
Nationwide was first founded in 1925 in Columbus, Ohio. Originally, it had 1,000 policyholders. Today, it’s one of the country’s largest insurance companies, and it offers several types of insurance, including homeowners insurance and auto insurance.
Liberty Mutual was founded in Massachusetts in 1912. The company, now headquartered in Boston, offers many types of insurance, including auto, life and homeowners.
The Hartford is a Fortune 500 insurance and investments company originally founded in 1810. The company provides several types of insurance, including auto insurance and homeowners insurance.
AAA is a large, nationwide insurance company that offers various types of insurance. While AAA is best known for its auto insurance policies, it also offers homeowners insurance policies to interested parties.
USAA was founded in 1922 and serves members of the military and their families. The company offers insurance policies, banking, investment options and other financial services.
American Family Insurance has operated for over 80 years, and it offers a wide range of insurance policies. The company offers homeowners insurance in more than 19 states across America.
Progressive Homeowners Insurance is a division of the Progressive Corporation, a large company known for offering a wide range of insurance products including rental, condo, mobile home and traditional home coverage.
Auto-Owners homeowners insurance helps protect property owners from unexpected repair and replacement expenses. With customized policy options that cover everything from major utility systems to contents, this insurance company offers total coverage options.
Erie Insurance has been in business for close to a century. Serving Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland and the District of Columbia, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin. The company provides homeowners and renters with coverage for several types of dwellings including houses, apartments, condominiums and manufactured homes.
Founded in 1939, Farm Bureau Financial Services has been providing homeowners insurance for nearly eight decades, and it offers plans for single-family dwellings, townhomes, duplexes, fourplexes, mobile homes and condominiums. Farm Bureau Financial Services serves residents in the Western and Midwestern United States, including Arizona, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, South Dakota and Utah.
Specializing in home insurance for people whose properties may not prove eligible for coverage with other companies, Foremost Insurance is licensed in all fifty states. Foremost partners with local agents so that homeowners can always receive face-to-face answers for all their policy questions.
MetLife Homeowners offers insurance protection for a variety of home types, regardless of whether they're owned or rented. This includes houses, condos, apartments, mobile homes and manufactured homes. The insurance covers home contents, as well as property damage from causes such as theft, fire and smoke, and liability protection for lawsuits resulting from injuries sustained by visitors.
Progressive Homeowners is a company that provides insurance coverage for homeowners in the event of damage or theft. They tailor their coverage to the needs of the individual homeowner, and offer a variety of additional coverage options. They cover homes, condos and mobile homes, as well as offering coverage to renters.
Safeco is an insurance company that offers an array of insurance packages, including homeowners insurance. They help make obtaining homeowners insurance more affordable by offering discounts and monthly installment plans. Safeco is backed by Liberty Mutual Insurance, which is one of the top 100 largest U.S organizations.
Information in this guide is general in nature and is intended for informational purposes only; it is not legal, health, investment or tax advice. ConsumerAffairs.com makes no representation as to the accuracy of the information provided and assumes no liability for any damages or loss arising from its use.