Looking to Switch Car Insurance Company

Updated on October 01, 2008
Z.G. asks from Littleton, CO
57 answers

Hello, we are looking to change our auto and home insurance. We currently have Nationwide and are finding our insurance to be quite costly, and our agent never checks-in with us and when we speak with him we are often referred to a customer service rep to handle our issue. Some of the companies that we are considering include Progressive, State Farm, Allstate and possibly Geico. I have heard that both Progressive and Geico offer good "starting rates" but then gradually increase rates every 6 months or so, so you end up paying about what you started with. Has anyone had this happen? What insurance do you have? Do you receive personal contact from your agent (letter, call, email, etc?) Any additional information would be appreciated. Thanks.

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E.S.

answers from Billings on

Try Hartford...they are affordable. However, not very forgiving if you have an accident (It's takes about a year in a half before the rates decrease again assuming a good driving record is maintained there after.)

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A.F.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I'm with Allstate, and have a great agent. He calls occasionally with suggestions or new things, and is always prompt in responding to messages. This is after having an Allstate agent in AZ before moving here who was even better. My rates have progressively gone DOWN since being with Allstate, and we are now paying pennies compared to a lot of people with similar situations and have discounts for just about everything (safe driver, clean record, multiple cars, multiple policy, etc...). I've been extremely happy with them, and have shopped around multiple times in the eight years I've been with Allstate. I've never found a better rate for myself. But not everyone's situations or driving records are the same... Just letting you know my own experience. Hope it helps.

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L.B.

answers from Provo on

I have had a good experience with Allied. The rates are competitive to low and the service has been excellent. I just had my first claim on my car last month and it was handled very, very well.

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J.F.

answers from Denver on

Hi Z.,

I am an insurance agent.(just to let you know up front, but I am sending this as a friend not a solicitor.)

I am sorry to hear your agent hands you off to a csr. In most agencies you will find that is normal. Most of the time the staff person knows how to handle the system better than the agent. I was a csr for 10 years before I opened my own agency (with one of the largest companies). I still try my hardest to be here for all of my clients. They know they can talk to me any time. They even have my cell phone in case of a claim. I also try to have an annual review with each of my clients, but so many people think it is a sales appointment when I truly want to do a review to make sure they are not exposed to any possible liabilities.

Each of the companies that you have mentioned are good companies. As for the increase in your rates after a renewal or two, you can ask the company how the discounts work and if they are anticipating any rate increases with in the next few months. One thing I always stress to ANYBODY that I speak with. It is fine to talk with people about your insurance but go to your agent for the facts. We are all licensed and know this industry inside out. We do this all day long everyday. With all of the different factors that go into rates now a days you can not compare your situation to that of a friends any more it is impossible.

I would strongly recommend you shop more for an agent than for a company. The agent is the one who is there to take care of you. If you go with an 800 number company you will not always have the same person to help you. Do not be afraid to ask for referrals. I have given out referrals several times. Find out how long your agent has been in the industry, how and who handles what in the office, and how easily can you reach the agent.

If you have other questions please feel free to ask. My philosophy is that you as the client are the one who makes or breaks me. So I want to make sure you are happy. If I am not able to help people with my policies I always have trust worthy referrals for them.

Best regards,

J.

1 mom found this helpful
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M.S.

answers from Boise on

We have American Family and have loved it. We started with Allstate and they started raising our prices on us. We were with them since 1996 and they treated us like we weren't important, so we switched to AmFam. They have been wonderful, ended up cheaper than Allstate and we get great service. The owner calls us periodically, we get letters from him and his office staff, etc. I would recommend American Family to anyone!

1 mom found this helpful
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K.K.

answers from Denver on

Hi Z., I use Bridget Henry Agency ###-###-####. She is with American Family. She came to the house to have my husband sign the paper work and talked with him with ease . Which made him comfortable that I had choose wisely. I was pulled over for not coming to a complete stop. I was so upset and could not find my insurance card any where. I called her office and they were going to drive it over to me. ha-ha Of course the police man called on it and let me off with a warning. Phewww! I know that she goes her way when any of her customers have a loss and even sends my grandson's birthday cards. I think she is wonderful! As far as my insurance premium. It has gone down not up and I have never had that happen with an Insurance Company. Good Luck, K.

1 mom found this helpful
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T.P.

answers from Denver on

I originally had State Farm, but the rates were high with the service not being exceptional. I switched to Amica, and I love them. You don't have an agent to meet in person; however, the rep on the phone will stay on the call for hours if necessary. They went through everything regarding the car and auto insurance line by line and answered all of my questions. It was better than meeting with the State Farm agent. When I had an auto claim, I simply called the 800 number. I answered a few questions and within a week my check had arrived. The questions weren't designed to place blame like State Farm has done in the past. Someone calls us each year to review my policies prior to the renewal period, updating me on any changes to law or premiums. I even had one tell me to wait until a certain period to make changes so that I could get the discounted rate. So far I have no complaints against Amica.

1 mom found this helpful
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A.V.

answers from Denver on

We switched to Farmers this year, and our Agent - Dwight Petersen saved us A LOT of money - even from Progressive. He was so great to deal with - I highly recommend him and farmers.
Dwight Petersen
Farmers Insurance & Financial Services
###-###-####
www.farmersagent.com/dpetersen1

1 mom found this helpful
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C.S.

answers from Denver on

For my two cents, we love Allstate. One of our biggest issues or considerations is the med-pay portion. Since the no-fault laws in Colorado have your own insurance covering any medical costs first if you're in an accident that wasn't your fault, it matters to us. Geico caps it at $10,000. We were in an accident that resulted in two surgeries and physical therapy to put my hip back together when a man ran a red light. The total expenses in the end came to about $60,000. After the first $10K it was up to us to figure out how to pay the remaining expenses until everything was settled.

Allstate ended up being cheaper (especially in the home insurance area) and we absolutely love our agent (Douglas Gammel). He remembers little things about our family and checks in regularly. He also checks our policy regularly to see if there's anything that could bring the cost down further. We've also been in yet another accident that wasn't our fault, and they've been very responsive and helpful overall. Their med-pay cap is also much higher.

One thing to ask as far as the home insurance goes is whether they provide the insurance or whether it's sub-contracted out. Two years ago when we had Geico, it was sub-contracted out, so it was almost three times what we're paying now. Just a thought.

Good luck on whatever you decide!

1 mom found this helpful
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T.B.

answers from Denver on

We've had Geico for about 2 years now and have never had our prices go up.

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M.L.

answers from Denver on

We go through AllState and our agent is very good (see contact info below). I got in a big accident a few years ago and he was right on top of things. We got our money in no time, our rental car reimbursed- everything. You never really know if you have a good agent until something bad happens! Good luck!
M.

Mike Brainard
Allstate Insurance
###-###-####
[email protected]____.com

1 mom found this helpful
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T.M.

answers from Denver on

We recently switched over to AAA/ Travelers insurance for our auto and home insurance. Our home insurance stayed the same, but we saved about $1800 a year on our auto insurance.

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R.P.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Love, love, love Progressive. Called so many companies after we had to get rid of our last insurance. Even without discounts for combining my home and car insurances, Progressive was so much less expensive. I've had Farmers, Primericasecure, Metlife, Allstate and Progressive. Everyone of them except Progressive got more and more expensive every time it was time to renew. With Progressive, my rate has gone down every year. If you can pay for 6 months at a time, the discount is more than equal to one whole payment.

The worst were Primericasecure and Metlife. Somone totalled my husbands car. Even though it is the law in Utah to have insureance, she didn't have any. MetLife told us that uninsured motorist coverage did not cover our car. "That is not what uninsured motorist coverage is for." I couldn't believe it. My lawyer and I had the same question, "What's it for then?" After they recieved the letter from my lawyer, all of a sudden that was what uninsured motorist insurance was for. After we got the check, we switched insurance. What a nightmare MetLife was. Primericasecure was even worse!

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J.S.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I've had AllState for several years now & our rates keep going down - not up. They've been great.

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T.T.

answers from Denver on

We have been very happy with USAA. They used to be open only to military/family of military, but I believe they are open to all now. They have fantastic banking too, no local branches.

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R.S.

answers from Denver on

we had been with another company for about 12 years and my agent NEVER followed up with me to see if we had any changes. My agent, Tina Kiel with Farmers Agent is awesome. She not only got us more coverage for less money but we've been a customer for a year now and have already sat down to see if there was anything that had changed in our lives for additional (or less) coverage. call her at ###-###-#### (i think it's xt 10) or email her [email protected]____.com

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J.D.

answers from Denver on

Best rate american national insurance. Her name is grace conway. If you are claim free you get a check with part of your prem. back each year. We had to claim last year. We had a house fire. They were great and we were treated very well and in a timely manor.###-###-####

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S.H.

answers from Salt Lake City on

hey Z., by the way I just have to tell you I love your name! Anyway American Family Insurance is great and personable.

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M.C.

answers from Denver on

Hi There, please check out www.primericasecure.com
They will give you a quote either on line or via phone with many different companies.
If you chose to check them out online, please use the following Rep name: Carlsen Rep ID: MPBY5

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S.B.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Everyone's experiences are different. We started out with Liberty Mutual, and then they raised our rates by $180 per month when we hadn't had any claims/accidents/anything in 2 1/2 years. So we switched to Progressive. We had a great rate to start, and our rates have actually gone down since we started with them. We've never really had to deal with them except for adding our truck this year, but they have been very nice to work with so far. I couldn't tell you about claims, since we haven't had any in 4 years. Happy insurance hunting!

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A.M.

answers from Boise on

I had GEICO car insurance and the rates didn't go up. They contract with other companies for homeowner's though, so I ended up with Traveler's for homeowner's insurance. I had a small claim and Traveler's was dishonest in the way they dealt with the claim. I ended up being stuck with their high rate for 5 years--the other companies would charge higher now that I had a claim. Luckily that home was changed to landlord insurance.
I now have liberty mutual for the cars and homes. I've been pleased, but I'm not someone who appreciates the agent checking in on me.

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K.P.

answers from Boise on

After being insured with big companies over the years, and having a husband who can budget like crazy, I say the best way to find good insurance at a reasonable rate is to look in the yellow pages for an independent local company. They will do the shopping for you and find the best company for what you need. We just recently dropped AIG (1 day before the big bail out) and found a great guy here in Boise who got us into Met Life. He saved us over $300/yr with Auto and Home Owners. Here's the funny part I just have to share. When we called to drop AIG, the agent REALLY wanted to try and win us back so she did another Auto quote for us and it came back $1 more than we previously paid! My husband just said, "Now, you can see why we are dropping you, right?" I called at least 10 companies before we found our guy, and we couldn't be happier. If I need anything, I call his number, not Met Life, and he handles it personally. He has caller ID on his office phone, so when my number pops up, he always answers "Hi K.", and already has my file pulled up. Now, I'm sure he doesn't really remember every client, but it does make you feel better to be called by your name and not have to speak to anyone other than your agent. It's just more personal. The good thing about insurance is, it isn't permanent and if your rates start to go up, you can always find a better one to switch to when your policy expires. Good Luck!

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J.E.

answers from Fort Collins on

In Loveland... Allstate, Damon Freeman Agency... he is great!

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N.S.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Hi Z. -

I understand the frustration with car insurance and finding an actual person to talk to that is interested in YOUR well being. My husband and I use Allstate and are very happy with them. We do have a personal agent that we talk to, and only to her. In fact, she called us last week to tell us we qualify for a discount on our policy if we were to switch to automatic monthly checking withdrawls. We got right on that, and it will save us another $115 a year.
We are very satisfied with Allstate and our personal agent.

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C.C.

answers from Denver on

Doug Montgomery, American Family Insurance. His office is in Longmont. GREAT guy, family guy. ###-###-####

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S.L.

answers from Salt Lake City on

We have State Farm. Even after accidents our rates have been decent. My husband totaled his car and they gave us a great price for it, more than fair market value. They are really great to work with and they do send us a newsletter and if problems or questions they will call.

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A.S.

answers from Denver on

I don't know if you can get into it, but USAA is an amazing company.

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C.C.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I agree with the mom who stated look for an agent over the company...a lot of the companies are going to be comperable...and you want to make sure that you have an agent who cares about you. When I was a kid my parents were with State Farm, they had an AWESOME agent who even sent us all cards for our birthday every year...he sold us on him as an agent and then the company. When I got my own insurance it was with him at State Farm. When I got married and he had retired my husband and I shopped around a bit but I really wanted to stick with state farm if we could find an agent we liked...well we did. He's great. He really takes care of us, I had bumped into my cousins car in our driveway and called to talk to him about it and he crunched numbers and said I would be better off just paying out of pocket and no claim was filed, no paperwork done showing it had happened. He took care of what was best for me, not for the company. They could have paid it, taken me for a rate increase and I would have been paying for it for several years until the rate dropped again. Also good because I got in a bigger accident several months later (hit a pole in the winter but lots of damage to my vehicle) that had to go on the insurance. Our rate has gone up, but only by a few dollars a month, so the company, still good...the agent, even better. The only thing that would tempt me to move on would be if my agent stopped caring then the only thing would be the money talking.
be wary of companies who haven't been around long. I had a friend back east go with a new insurance company that had only been around a couple of years, it went insolvent and they weren't insured and no other companies were picking them up for a while because they had been without insurance for a while--make sure it is a solid company and then shop for the agent from there. You are trusting them with a lot...make sure you trust them.

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H.K.

answers from Great Falls on

I have Progressive insurance, and LOVE it. It is much cheaper than others we priced out (Farmer's, State Farm). I was reaffirmed when we recently purchased a new truck, and I saved over $400 per year vs. our homeowners insurance provider, even with a multi-policy discount from them. I have been a customer for 5 years, and have not once had a rate increase (though I do have a clean driving record), and if you have full coverage, roadside assistance is only about $5/6 months - a huge saving over AAA if you like the peace of mind of being able to get a tow, etc. Good luck with your search - as you can tell, I am a big Progressive fan!

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S.T.

answers from Denver on

Hi Z.,
Call Michelle Rust with Colorado Risk Advisors ###-###-#### to run you some quotes. She is an independent insurance agent who can comparison shop for you. I work with her in the Colorado Benefit Advisors side (health, life, disability, Pre-Paid Legal, ID Theft and accident insurance). The great thing with an independent agent is they don't try to make you fit into their product - we have tons to products to choose from.

Just tell her I sent you and I know she will take good care of you. She only represents reputable companies. Be sure to ask her about the ones that are most rate stable.

Take care,
S.

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M.P.

answers from Pocatello on

I'm not sure if this would work for you, but my husband and I use an independant agent for our insurance. He did the shopping around for us and found the company that would be cheapest for us with the best coverage. He doesn't call us very often, but when we call or go into his office he knows us by name and doesn't have to search his files for our info.
Hope this helps and GL!

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C.C.

answers from Boise on

We have had our fair share of shopping around and switching insurance also. We have had State Farm, Farmers and Progressive and are now with American Family Ins. AFI has given us the best coverage and customer service by far! The other auto insurances were pretty comparable but out home owners ins. was cut in 1/3! Just another option for you to look into, good luck!

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D.A.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Agent: Steven R Fisher (STATE FARM) is great. Their office is small and that probably helps, but they work with you one on one. Any time we have needed to go to the office they have been great, but we also receive periodic calls from them to see if they can assist us with any additional insurance needs. We do receive mail from them as well, but not to the point of annoyance like some companies.

Good luck in your search.

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E.G.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Try Bear River Mutual Insurance. My actual agent will call and chat with me. My car insurance seems pretty cheap to me.

Hope it helps

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J.M.

answers from Denver on

It looks like you have a lot of information already but I thought I would add my two cents. My husband and I shopped around last year, my husband had been with Farmers Insurance for 20+ years. We had all insurances under them, vehicles, home, rental unit, and our business. Somebody had told us to shop around so we did, we found "The Ahbe Group" 7828 Vance Dr. #205 Arvada, CO 80003 ###-###-####. We are saving a significant amount. And my husband thought we were getting a good rate before. Granted we pay 6 mths at a time but it is so worth it. We save about $300 a year just on the vehicles. And we have EVERYTHING. Hope this helps and saves you some money.

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P.L.

answers from Salt Lake City on

We have been with Allstate forever and have had GREAT customer service and are even on first name basis with our agent and his office staff. I go through Kevin Thomason downtown SLC and our rates are comparable to others and NEVER change unless I change my policy. You get a discount for having multiple policies and there are other deals too. Give him a call at ###-###-####. Any time we need a tow truck (which happened to my husband twice this past year,) we just submit a fax and we have a reimbursement check at 100% within a week. They have been a dream to work with!

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S.H.

answers from Denver on

I had Progressive and they jacked my rate up after the 1st 6 monghts (but they did let me know it was an intro rate when I signed up). I have switched to Geico (who does not offer "intro rates") and their rate is $60/month lower than Progressive and my deductibles are $750 less (I had $1000 deductibles now they are only $250). I have had to call them twice and both times they were very nice and helpful.

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A.P.

answers from Boise on

If you live in Idaho check out Farm Bureau Insurance.

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K.C.

answers from Provo on

We have used Liberty Mutual for our home & car. We haven't had to process any claims with them, but they have fantastic customer service (when helping get appropriate paperwork to lenders, questions about coverage, etc.). Our agent (Ryan Farnsworth - Orem, UT office) is outstanding. He follows up on every issue and will visit with us both over the phone and in person. He will take the time to meet with you in your home, etc. I am assuming this is how most agents for Liberty Mutual work with their clients, though we have only worked minimally with two other agents who were equally as helpful.

As far as rates go, Liberty Mutual was the 2nd lowest (Bear River was 1st) but we combined low rates with exceptional service.

Another plus for Liberty Mutual are their commercials! They are the best! = )

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J.K.

answers from Denver on

We have used Liberty Mutual for years. There is a discount for combining car insurance with house insurance. The rates are reasonable, and the response to claims very positive. I cannot promise you will have the same results, of course - but I can heartily recommend this company! I wouldn't consider any other company after 10 plus years with these folks.

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M.C.

answers from Salt Lake City on

ANPAC.com, American National not only provides superb service, but also has some of the best rates out there. On top of that, if you stay claim free for 3 years you get 25% of your home and auto insurance premiums back. Its nice to get a check in the mail. It has been wonderful to work with our agent, Nate Hales in Ogden, UT; he even came to our house to help us do the paperwork to switch instead of making us go to his office. It was so accomodating!

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T.C.

answers from Denver on

You could try a service like Netquote.com - you fill out a form and agents contact you with quotes. Use the opportunity to see who you feel comfortable with and who gives you the best price. Don't buy a policy right away, either - this is your chance to shop around.

Be sure to find out what discounts they'll give you for writing both your home and auto policies. Ask the agents for their rate quotes in writing. If you like one agent, but another gives you a better price, ask the agent you like to match the price (and provide a copy of the written quote to the agent you like, if they need it).

If you use Netquote, you should get rates from all the big names - State Farm, Allstate, GEICO, Progressive, Farmers, Liberty Mutual, etc. The service is free, but be aware that you will be contacted by multiple agents from a variety of companies if you decide to go this route. Make sure that you have a little bit of time after you fill out the form - they'll contact you pretty quickly after you finish it.

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T.H.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I know that Allstate is really expensive to have. You might want to try an independent type agent that can check with a lot of companies. My agent is great. He called and got our insurance cut in half when my husbands tickets went off his records. Let me know if you want more info about him. Email me and I will send you his info. [email protected]____.com

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D.R.

answers from Seattle on

My neighbor is an agent for Farmers. She is great. I don't usually like mixing friends with business but this has been great. She takes the time to sit with you and decide what you really need and can afford. Every time my policy renews she checks if there are any new discounts I qualify for. Small office just her and one assistant so you always get good service. Only bummer is she left on vacation for a week this morning. She will return next Wed. Her assistant can get your info but I really think you sit with her before you do anything else. She has some info you should know about some of those other smaller companies. Her info is below.

Suzanne Turner
office ###-###-####

assistant is Katrina if you call this week

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K.D.

answers from Denver on

We've been with Electric Insurance (a subsidiary of General Electric) the majority of our 10 years of marriage. We never had an agent, but the service was much better. I had an accident at 3:30 in the afternoon by a girl who was 15 and had run away from home. By 5:00 we had a rental car and the work all approved on the car. We could not have been happier. I haven't kept up on rates since we're so happy, but I think they're pretty comparable to the bigger companies. We've never had any issues with them and have only had better than friends have reported. I'd trade all that for an agent who doesn't do anything! :)

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P.W.

answers from Provo on

We saved with Geico like in the commercials. We switched from AAA because we moved out of CA.

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A.H.

answers from Billings on

I had Progressive and hated them for lack of customer support and because the rates kept going up. I only pay 10 more a month for my Allstate insurance, but it covers SO much more. Becareful a lot of those save you money insurances save you because they only insure at the state minimums and that can really hurt ypu in the case of a claim.

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K.J.

answers from Salt Lake City on

we've had geico for about a year or more. i looked at our history, and it did a little but seems to be coming down a little too. I like state farm insurance. we went with geico because it was the cheapest and we felt good about it.

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A.B.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Try Met- Life. Craig Lowe. We have had them/Him for 4 yrs. and have never gone up. Actually, we have gone down. we have rental,car and life insurance through them. Not a single complaint.
A.

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J.H.

answers from Colorado Springs on

We have American Family and love them! My husband was with USAA before we got married and American Family was even cheaper then they were. We live in the Springs, but our agent is amazing. My husband and baby were just hit and he called to make sure we were ok, always remembers our names, etc. I've never been passed off to a customer service rep except when dealing with that accident (just to file the report). Every other time we speak with someone in the office. Good Luck!

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G.W.

answers from Colorado Springs on

We have Amica and have been very happy. The rate is very resonable, hasn't gone up and we can also combine our homeowner's insruance for a discount. We had Allstate before, but it kept getting to expensive. I had a lot of good customer service when I signed up. I don't hear from my Agent all the time, but I prefer that.

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A.S.

answers from Denver on

Hi Z.
I use and have used an independent insurance agent for the last 10+ years. He is great. He shops around for me each year to check for better rates and is VERY easy to work with. If you would like his name and number let me know and I will give it to you. He is local and has a great staff. He finds auto, home and other insurance for his customers.
Take care,
A.

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D.G.

answers from Albuquerque on

we are with state farm and they are great. our rates have actually dropped over the six years we've been married, because our agents always stay on top of changes that will lower our premiums like good grades, age changes, etc. i would definitely recommend state farm.

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J.W.

answers from Pueblo on

We have Farmers. We have a great agent, who takes care of us and we are pleased. I think we could go cheaper elsewhere, but the lack of customer service is a downer. We are in Pueblo, but her name is Sandra Gram and her number is ###-###-####.
Good luck!

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J.L.

answers from Pocatello on

All I can tell you is that I have had Allstate for a long time and have been very happy with them. They have always been very helpful when we have made a claim and their rates compare well with the other companies. We have switched agents several times because of moves and all of them have been excellent.

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T.D.

answers from Denver on

Hi Z.,
We have Country Insurance and they are GREAT!!!!! Low prices and great customer service. We have 2 cars, 2 houses and our wedding rings with them and have more then enough coverage and pay $165 a month. Let me know if you would like my agents name and number! Good luck!

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C.J.

answers from Provo on

not sure where you are but I used to rotate between three diff companies depending on who had the best deal -- but for the last ten years or so we have just stayed with Foote Ins -- he's an independent and holds no company loyalty -- he's in provo but can write anywhere in the state

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