Choosing an auto insurance company is a huge financial decision we all have to make at some time or another. If you’re fortunate enough to sign on with a reputable, helping company, then you’re in luck. Selecting a good auto insurance company gives you peace of mind, so if you are in accident, you know you are in good hands. You want to be able to know that if you make a claim, you won’t have to worry that it won’t be accepted. You don’t want to find out too late that your car insurance company isn’t reliable.
Unfortunately, not everyone is so lucky. Far too often people will get car insurance without doing research on the company they choose to work with. They just go with the cheapest, the most convenient, or even go through a friend… only to find out that they should have done their research.
Consumer Reports Auto Insurance Company Survey
So, what makes for the best auto insurance company? There is no single answer to this – and in reality, an insurer that is great for one driver may not be so great for another. A recent survey by Consumer Reports was distributed to a total of 28,241 auto insurance customers and ranked twenty-two insurers according to two major criteria:
- How quickly claims were paid, and
- Any problems with the claims process
These auto insurance company ratings were scored on a scale of 1 to 100. There were some interesting facts that came to light; first, every one of the twenty-two companies surveyed scored in the top 20 percent. Secondly, the best auto insurance companies according to consumers who returned the survey are ones that you may not have heard of.
Another interesting – and disturbing – fact was that even among these top-rated insurers, between 10 and 26% of all respondents reported having problems receiving payment on claims. In some cases, these insurance customers wound up waiting for two weeks before receiving a claims check.
Who Came In First
The Consumer Reports survey was distributed to auto insurance customers who had filed claims during an eighteen-month period between January 2006 and July 2009. Eight-six percent of respondents were “highly satisfied” with the way their claims were handled. The highest auto insurance company ratings – those that scored in the top eight percent – were New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance, Arbella and Auto-Owners Insurance Group.
Keep in mind that these companies may not offer policies in all states, or may have strict eligibility rules that prevent some people from signing up.
As 19th-century philosopher John Ruskin reportedly said, “There is scarcely anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse, and sell a little more cheaply. The person who buys on price alone is this man’s lawful prey.” This is the caveat from Consumer Reports, which issued the following warning in its report, published in the current (October 2010) issue:
“Saving is not only a matter of finding the lowest premium. An insurer can charge less in premiums but cost you more overall by lowballing loss estimates, hassling the repair shop to cut corners, and forcing you to pay extra for the manufacturer’s replacement parts if you choose them over cheaper knockoffs. It can also unfairly jack up your premiums after an accident.”
What To Look For In An Insurance Company
Working with some auto insurance companies can turn out to be a real life nightmare. After an accident, when you need your auto insurance the most, they aren’t there for you. They make it a hassle to do something as simple as file a claim, and their customer service is absolutely terrible.
You’re paying a lot of money for your auto insurance, and you deserve nothing short of the best. Finding a great auto insurance company isn’t always easy, but it is possible. When searching for your next insurance provider, make sure to find a company with strong customer satisfaction ratings, good customer service, extensive coverage options and types, strong financial ratings, and most importantly, affordable coverage.
Get Insurance Quotes From A Reputable Source
The Internet has made it easy to get dozens of auto insurance quotes in just a few minutes, but not all companies let you choose from the best of the best in auto insurance.
4AutoInsuranceQuote.com is different. We don’t just recommend any auto insurance company to you, we recommend the best auto insurance companies in the industry. By using our quote comparison tool, you will be given insurance rates from the best insurance companies, including the ones listed in our top 10 list below.
Our Top 10 Best Car Insurance Companies List
The following ten auto insurance companies have been chosen for a number of different reasons, but they do have a few things in common. The customer services is top-notch, the rates are low, and they have insanely high customer satisfaction rates. While it may be slightly different than the consumer reports list mentioned above, the factors and values we considered when ranking these companies are very much the same.
- GeicoThis company is much more than geckos with funny accents and disgruntled cavemen. Their customer service is second to none, and their large customer base makes it possible for them to charge low premiums. (Read more about Geico here)
- AllstateAs there slogan says, with Allstate “you’re in good hands”, and that is the honest truth. Their customers love them, so there’s a pretty good chance you will too. Allstate was one of the first to offer accident forgiveness, and they continue to add new features that change the way we’re used to paying for auto insurance. (Read more about Allstate here)
- State FarmState Farm is another auto insurance provider that is sure to please. They have grown to become the largest insurance provider in North America. Claims agents are always super-friendly, and they provide you with a lot of coverage for not much money. (Read more about State Farm here)
- EsuranceLike the others, you are probably familiar with Esurance’s clever TV ads. Esurance offers more than hot cartoon girls though. With 24/7 support and friendly agents, Esurance’s customer service is hard to beat. Their prices are top notch too! (Read more about Esurance here)
- ArbellaArbella doesn’t spend on Superbowl ads or flashy commericals, they let their work speak for itself. Arbella thrives on referrals and word-of-mouth. The customers love Arbella, with good reason too. No hassles on claims seems to be their most popular feature.
- American Family Auto InsuranceAlthough smaller than the other companies on our list, American Family aims to please. They pay claims promptly and get high reviews from all major publications. Unfortunately, they are only available in 19 states. If you are lucky enough to be in a state that has American Family insurance, you might want to give them a try. (Read more about American Family here)
- Liberty MutualAn old, conservative insurance company, Liberty Mutual prides itself on reputation. They are personal, competitively priced, and have short wait times when it comes to claims. (Read more about Liberty Mutual here)
- ProgressiveProgressive is another company you might recognize from TV. Getting started with them is simple and easy (and cheap too). Dealing with Progressive is incredibly stress free. You will never have a problem with a claim. (Read more about Progressive here)
- AAATriple A is more than just roadside assistance and travel accommodations. Their auto insurance is also top notch. If you get into an accident, they will be by your side every step of the way. (Read more about AAA here)
Things To Remember…
The lowest car insurance is not always the best. Compare auto insurance companies carefully when shopping around; information on insurance companies’ handling of claims and how they set rates are public record and generally not difficult to find.
Many people who have particular auto insurance needs may be better served by going to an independent car insurance agency rather than a single company, since these agencies represent several different insurers and can usually get you the best coverage for your unique situation.
Although the list above may be of our favorites, there are too many providers that are deserving of the recognition to list in a single article. You can get a quote from many different auto insurance companies by entering your zip code above. After customizing your policy we’ll connect you with an agent who will give you price quotes from all of the top insurance providers.