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A home is one of the most significant investments you’ll likely make in your life, and naturally, you’ll want to protect it. That’s where homeowners insurance comes into play. Most homeowners insurance companies offer the same basic coverage. Still, some companies are one step ahead in customer service and provide more extensive coverage at a better value than others.
If you’re shopping for homeowners insurance, you’ll want an insurer with affordable rates, good customer service, and quality coverage. If you don’t know what to look for in a home insurance provider, you might end up paying more for inadequate coverage.
To help you find a homeowners policy that works for you, NextAdvisor looked at over a dozen insurance companies and took into consideration their financial ratings, customer service and claims satisfaction ratings, discounts, and additional coverage options.
Based on our research, here are the homeowners insurance companies that we think stand out in 2021.
Our Picks for the Best Home Insurance Companies
Established nearly 100 years ago, Nationwide has become one of the largest insurance companies on the market, offering coverage in all 50 states. The company is well known for its auto insurance policies, but it also offers a variety of home and life insurance products. Nationwide’s broad range of policies in home, auto, and life allow you to consolidate your coverage with the same brand while getting policy discounts — and when it comes to discounts, Nationwide is your best bet. It offers eight different discounts for homeowners insurance, making it relatively easy to reduce your insurance premiums.
Average annual premium for a $250K dwelling: $1,042
Nationwide Coverage Types
- Personal liability insurance
- Medical payments insurance
- Dwelling insurance
- Personal property insurance
- Other structures insurance
- Loss of use insurance
- Ordinance insurance
- Credit card coverage
- Identity theft insurance
- Replacement cost plus insurance
- Valuables plus coverage
- Water backup coverage
- Earthquake insurance
- Flood insurance
- Brand new belongings coverage
- Better roof replacement coverage
Nationwide Home Insurance Discounts
- Multi-policy discount: You can get a lower rate by bundling your home, auto, and life insurance policy.
- Protective device discount: If your home is equipped with smoke detectors, fire alarms, or a security system, you can qualify for a discount.
- Claims-free discount: If you have no insurance claims on your record within the last several years, you may be able to get a discount on your premium.
- Home renovation discount: If you have recently renovated your home’s plumbing, heating, cooling, or electrical systems, you can get a lower rate.
- Roof rating discount: Nationwide policyholders can save money on their insurance policy based on their home’s roof age and surface type.
- New home discount: If you insure a home purchased in the last year, you might be able to qualify for a discount.
- Prior insurance discount: If you switch to Nationwide from a different insurance provider, you can qualify for a discount based on how long you were insured by the other carrier.
- Gated community discount: Homeowners who live in a gated community protected by security guards, residence cards, or key-lock devices can get a lower rate on their home insurance.
Travelers isn’t the biggest player in the auto insurance space, but it is mighty when it comes to homeowners insurance.
Not only does the company offer all the basic protections for a home, but it also offers home insurance policies for eco-conscious homeowners and plenty of optional add-ons. It offers a 5% green home discount and green home coverage, which provides extra protection for the use of green materials when rebuilding after a covered incident. In addition to its green home discount, it also offers several other policy discounts. For example, you can save up to 12% on average on home insurance when you have an auto policy and three other policies with Travelers, according to its website.
Travelers’ home insurance policies tend to be competitively priced. Travelers’ average annual premium costs $1,269, slightly below the national average of $1,312, according to Bankrate data.
Average annual premium for a $250K dwelling: $1,269
Travelers Coverage Types
- Dwelling insurance
- Personal property
- Personal liability
- Loss of use
- Other structures coverage
- Green home coverage
- Special personal property coverage
- Jewelry and valuable items
- Identity fraud coverage
Travelers Home Insurance Discounts
- Multi-policy: Just as with auto, bundling policies saves money.
- New homeowner: New homebuyers get a special discount.
- Loss-free: Expect to see a better rate if you haven’t made claims against your home insurance policy.
- Green home discount: If your home is a certified green home with LEED, the Leadership Energy and Environmental Design organization, you’ll save 5%.
- Protective device: Install protective devices such as smoke detectors, smart home technology, or interior sprinkler system to reduce premiums.
Founded in 1937, Progressive is the third-largest insurance provider, holding 12.2% of the U.S. overall insurance market, behind Geico and State Farm. The Ohio-based company offers 34 insurance products, as well as a personal loan program.
Progressive gets high marks for some of the most innovative insurance technology and online resources of any provider. It’s one of the few companies that mostly uses online tools to offer its pool of services.
Progressive home insurance is fairly basic in terms of coverage, but the company offers more than five homeowners insurance discounts and extra ways to save on your policy’s cost. For example, you can save an average of 5% when you bundle homes and auto insurance with Progressive. Progressive also has a HomeQuote Explorer tool that lets you compare Progressive’s rates with some of its biggest competitors. The average cost of home insurance with Progressive is the lowest among our top picks, at $1,026.
Average annual premium for a $250K dwelling: $1,026
Progressive Coverage Types
- Dwelling insurance
- Other structures coverage
- Personal liability
- Personal property
- Loss of use coverage
- Medical payments coverage
- Water back up coverage
- Personal injury coverage
Progressive Home Insurance Discounts
- Multi-policy discount: You can save an average of 5% when you bundle a home and auto insurance policy with Progressive.
- Safety and alarms discount: If your home is equipped with a security system, fire alarms, or automatic sprinklers, you qualify for a discount.
- Quote in advance discount: Getting a home insurance quote from Progressive at least 10 days before your policy starts can lower your rate.
- Pay in full discount: Policyholders who pay their annual premium upfront and in full can save some money on their insurance.
- New home discount: If you recently purchased a new home or switched from a Progressive renters insurance policy, you’ll get a lower rate.
- Newly built home discount: Newly built homes qualify for a discounted insurance rate.
- Digital documents discount: Policyholders who sign up for emailed statements can get a discount.
Honorable Mentions for the Best Home Insurance Companies
USAA has been providing auto, life, homeowners, health, and property insurance exclusively to active duty military, veterans, and their families since 1922. While it’s not available to civilians who have never served, USAA still serves more than 13 million members nationwide and has a strong reputation for financial stability, customer service, and claims satisfaction.
USAA homeowners insurance offers all the standard protections, including coverage for fire, theft, vandalism, or weather-related events, and even helps cover liability costs and identity theft losses. According to the latest Bankrate data, the average annual premium from USAA for a $250,000 dwelling is $992, which is cheap compared to the national average of $1,312.
Average annual premium for $250K dwelling: $992
USAA Coverage Types
- Dwelling coverage
- Personal belongings
- Loss of Use
- Personal liability
- Other structures
- Home-sharing coverage
- Earthquake coverage
USAA Home Insurance Discounts
- Multi-policy discounts: If you bundle your home insurance with auto insurance from USAA, you can save 10% on your premiums
- Claims-free discount: Policyholders who don’t file any claims for five years will receive a 10% discount
- Protective device discount: USAA partners with ADT and offers discounts to homeowners who install their home security systems
Best Home Insurance Companies of 2021 Summary
|Insurance Company||Average Annual Premium for $250K Dwelling||J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Score, 2020||A.M. Best Rating, 2020||States Available|
|USAA (Honorable Mention)||$992||889||A++||50|
Bundling your homeowners policy with other insurance policies with the same company is an easy way to save money and offers the convenience of one bill and minimal paperwork. It can lead to a sizable policy discount, up to 25% off with certain insurers like Allstate and GEICO, plus other perks like single deductible claims if your home and car sustain a covered loss.
But there are instances where using two separate providers could still be cheaper, so it’s always a good idea to shop around for unbundled quotes and bundled quotes to compare. For example, customers only save an average of 4% when they bundle home and auto insurance with Progressive.
According to J.D. Power, homeowners insurance customers have a significantly higher bundling rate, and they’re likely to stick with the same company for twice as long compared to customers who only carry auto insurance.
If you’re set on the idea of bundling, look for companies that underwrite multiple policies themselves. Most popular insurance companies offer the option to bundle but some insurers will package policies from multiple different companies as a “bundle” with discounted rates. While the savings may be worth it, it may prove to be a headache when it’s time to make updates to your policy or file a claim because you’ll have to speak to two different insurers.
“That’s important to pay attention to because you could have two claims with two different companies and they’re not speaking to each other,” says Ken Gregg, CEO and president of Orion180, a home insurance provider based in Florida.
How to Choose the Best Home Insurance Provider
Picking an insurer can prove challenging if you don’t know what to look for or where to start. When shopping for a home insurance provider, here’s a checklist of things you should do.
- Get multiple quotes: Requesting multiple quotes is important when shopping for any type of insurance, but it’s especially important for homeowner’s insurance since coverage needs can vary so much. Getting three to five quotes will give you a good sense of what people are offering, and will provide leverage in negotiations.
- Do company health checks: Do a little digging into home insurance companies you’re considering by looking at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners website and websites of top credit agencies, including A.M. Best, Moody’s, J.D. Power, and Standard & Poor’s. These sites track data related to consumer complaints, the processing of claims, and the financial health of companies. “Does it have the financial wherewithal to sustain the market place long term and have the means to pay out claims?,” says Gregg. You also want to find an insurer with a track record of fair and timely settlements.
- Figure out the company’s claims process: Before purchasing a policy, find out how each company handles claims. Can you file claims online, through the phone, or through an agent? Do you have to speak to a third-party company or partner to process the claim? The answers to those questions may affect your decision.
- Research customer satisfaction: Ask your agent or a company representative the insurer’s retention rate — that is, what percentage of policyholders renew each year. You can also find customers satisfaction data and ratings in annual reports, online reviews, and first-hand experiences from people you know. “Look at Google reviews to see what others are saying about the company they’re dealing with,” says Gregg.
- Look beyond price: The price you pay for homeowners insurance is important, but it shouldn’t be the only factor driving your decision. You need to also compare coverages and limits. “Make sure they have appropriate coverages and limits that fit your needs,” says Gregg.
To determine our picks for the best home insurance companies, we started with a list of 25 of the largest home insurance companies by premiums collected, based on data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. From there, we applied a series of filters to narrow the field across key categories like cost, availability, and customer satisfaction.
For starters, all our top picks must be universally available to all consumers in at least 40 states. Our top picks all offer at least three discount programs, which are key to lowering premiums. To gauge affordability, we looked at Bankrate’s average annual premium across these carriers and eliminated any with an average yearly cost of more than $1,300 for a home with a dwelling coverage amount of $250,000, which represents a mid-range home. (Bankrate, like NextAdvisor, is owned by Red Ventures.) Next, we looked at J.D. Power’s 2020 U.S. Home Insurance Customer Satisfaction Study, and ruled out any companies that scored below 800 on a 1,000-point scale (the industry average was 823).
Finally, we looked at each insurance company’s A.M. Best rating, which evaluates a company’s financial standing. Financial solidity matters for insurance companies because their customers depend on them to pay their claims if they’re in an accident or experience an insured loss. In other words, an insurance company that has the wherewithal to stay in business is more dependable in the long term. We ruled out any company that doesn’t have A.M. Best’s rating of A+ or higher. We also eliminated any companies that are involved in any active fraud investigations.