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Homeowners Insurance Reviews

Find the Best Home Insurance Using Homeowners Insurance Reviews & Ratings

All homeowners should purchase an insurance plan to cover the cost of damages to the home, and it's a requirement for anyone who has a mortgage. With so many companies to choose from, you want to feel certain that you end up with a company that's going to be responsive to your needs, that will handle claims in an efficient manner, and that will be there for all of the years that you spend in your home. Looking at reviews of homeowners insurance companies can help you make an educated decision when it comes to selecting an insurance company.

Cost of Coverage

Sometimes, you'll come across a review where the person mentions the cost of their annual premium. While this may be a good starting place to get an idea of how much you might end up paying, you have to take it with a grain of salt. Through an automated system, the insurance company determines the cost of replacing the home, and they'll ask you many details about your home, such as the materials for the siding and the roof, type of heating or cooling system you have, and other such things. The details for your home are likely to be completely different from the details of the reviewer's home. This could result in very different premiums.

Other things like low introductory pricing, multi-policy discounts, differences in deductibles and different choices when it comes to coverage options can also mean that the quote you receive from a company can be significantly higher or lower than the price that another consumer pays. There are also several other ways that customers can get cheap homeowners insurance which can impact rates that people get. For this reason, it's not a smart idea to be attracted to a company based on a price that someone else was paying. Instead, consider the other types of information you're likely to find in reviews.

Exclusions in Coverage

Insurance policies often have specific exclusions built into them, and it's important to keep this in mind when you're looking at reviews. For instance, you might read a review of someone talking about how the insurance company handled her claim after her basement flooded. If your home is in a flood zone, though, there's a good chance that whatever policy you have will specifically exclude damages from floods or you'll be paying significantly higher premiums.

Another thing to take note of is that sometimes, customer dissatisfaction stems from the customer misunderstanding the policy and its limitations. For example, most insurance policies only cover things built to today's standards. If someone had an older home with period details, they may write a scathing review of the company for not paying for these details to be maintained after damage. In this case, the person didn't realize that he needed to purchase additional coverage for that type of protection. The customer writes a bad review because he feels slighted, but the problem is that he didn't do his due diligence.

Claims Handling

When looking at home insurance reviews, it's a good idea to pay attention to what people say about how the company handles claims. Some home insurance reviews might mention having to jump through hoops for months, while others praise the company for responding quickly. Some customers might like that the company send them a check directly, while others will mention liking that the company worked directly with contractors. See if any of these types of things speak to you.

Customer Service and Billing

Most of the consumer reviews you read about homeowners insurance companies are going to relate to their customer service. You'll find that customers have a wide variety of reasons for staying with or leaving a company. In some cases, the reason for switching companies is simply getting a better rate through a different company. Some customers switch because they are unhappy with the company, though. If you see several complaints about being denied claims or the company taking too long to process a claim, you may want to consider a different insurance carrier. On the other hand, you might note positive aspects, like being able to quickly talk to an agent when you call or being able to use an email or online chatting feature.

Overall Satisfaction

Homeowner's insurance company reviews can give you a quick look into the level of satisfaction that people have with a company. Nowhere is this clearer than with star ratings. You can easily look at customers' satisfaction rating. Of course, these ratings are sometimes just an average of highs and lows, so look at how it's being calculated. For example, a company may score really well on both price and customer service, but fall short with claims processing. Averaging two high scores with a low one could give an inflated "overall" number.

Financial Ratings

In addition to looking at consumer homeowners insurance reviews, it's a good idea to look at the company's financial ratings. In particular, look at the AM Best ratings, the S&P ratings and the Fitch ratings. These independent third-party companies look at the financial reliability of the company. These ratings let you know how financially stable the company is and rate the company based on their ability to pay the claim. Though these can be an important piece of the puzzle, make sure you understand each companies ranking system. An A+ from one company might be the highest ranking available, but the same grade is only a fair rank through another company.

When you're able to put all of this together, you'll see how looking at these reviews can help guide your decision. There's a lot more that should go into your decision beyond price.