Choosing the right policy at an auto insurance company is essential to cover the vehicle and the liability for the driver. And while car insurance isn’t cheap, paying too little for the wrong coverage is more expensive than the incorrect coverage. The average American vehicle owner pays $129/month for their insurance. So, this list of the top 10 US auto insurance companies in 2020 will give you some basis to make your insurance purchasing decisions into 2021.
Of course, when you shop for car insurance, always carefully choose your provider. The best insurance companies have to be able to pay out on a claim if you make one. So, they must have stable finances, good customer reviews and options for comprehensive coverage at fair prices. But choosing your car insurance provider is still a subjective process.
There are five independent agencies that rate the financial strength of the individual insurance companies. These agencies are:
- A M Best
- Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA)
- Standard & Poor’s
Each one of these uses its own unique rating scale system, with its own rating standards, its own specific population of companies they rate, and its own distribution of the companies across the scale. Each of these agencies uses plusses and minuses or numbers that indicate even minor variations in the ratings between each of the rating classes.
Although the agencies work to rate the same companies on the same metrics, they often disagree. And they disagree often enough that it is important to consider an insurance company’s ratings from several of these agencies to judge whether you should buy (or hold onto) a policy purchased from that company. In addition, these agencies regularly announce changes in the ratings on any given day. So, it is absolutely prudent to continually check the ratings at least once a year for any of the insurance companies you have any interest in.
How to Use these Agency Ratings
Firstly, check the agency ratings at the source. The agencies measure several factors, and you’ll want to see all of the ratings, not just the top ratings that could be highlighted by the insurance carrier.
And make a point to understand how the ratings systems and codes are different from one agency to the next. For example, from A.M. Best, an A+ is the second-highest rating of the 15 categories. But from Fitch, Kroll or S&P, an A+ is the fifth-highest rating of the 24 categories from Fitch, 22 categories from Kroll and 19 categories from S&P.) Also, to add to the confusion, Moody’s doesn’t even have an A+ rating. However, each of the ratings can be easily classified generally as “secure” or “vulnerable” in the overall categories.
Here’s our list of the suggestions for the top 10 US auto insurance companies in 2020 based on our research. These are not necessarily the insurance companies with the highest number of policies because we use several criteria to make these various ratings. But first, let’s look at the individual agencies’ ratings to see how each insurance company stacks up.
The Top 10 US Auto Insurance Companies in 2020
The insurance market is jammed with what seems like an endless number of auto insurance companies. But we’ve done some of the research and narrowed down the list for you. Everyone has different auto insurance needs because factors like age, credit ratings and budgets determine the best provider for any individual. This chart shows the basic statistics overall.
|Avg Full Coverage Annual Premium
|AM Best Financial Strength Rating
|JD Power 2020 Claims Satisfaction Score
And Market Share
By looking closely at these insurance providers, you can see the scores based on the ratings across the board. But some of the insurance companies, like State Farm as an example, received high ratings from multiple research companies. So, we used the average ratings from multiple sources to create these rankings.
You’ll also notice that the top four providers combined, State Farm, Geico, Progressive and Allstate, have a 50 % market share. (17 % + 13 % + 11 % + 9 % = 50 %) So, these four carriers are now covering half of the drivers on America’s roads. State Farm has continually dominated the private passenger auto insurance market in the # 1 spot, because they have over 17 % of the national US marketplace.
Nationwide specializes in auto insurance with rates lower than average for anyone with poor credit. This provider offers the full range of standard coverage and additional optional coverage, including accident forgiveness and a vanishing deductible. Also, the widely used mobile app lets you file a claim, pay your bill, and directly contact roadside assistance from your smartphone. In addition, the conscientious driver program allows drivers to enroll in the Nationwide Smart Ride program, which saves you up to 40% as you maintain your safe driving habits.
In JD Power’s 2020 US Insurance Shopping Survey, Nationwide ranked as #2 for providing satisfying buying experiences to customers. Then, the “On Your Side” Nationwide program reviews your insurance annually, giving you the opportunity to qualify for even better rates.
Nationwide has specifically affordable rates that make this insurance an attractive option for budget-conscious drivers and for drivers with less than ideal credit. So, ask about their discount programs as the affinity member discount, accident-free discount, and the good student discount quickly add up to substantial savings.
Amica Mutual has been providing great customer service and excellent coverage for a long time, in fact, since 1907! The Amica Insurance company continues to thrive as the oldest automobile mutual insurer in the United States. Ranked #1 in the New England’s JD Power’s 2020 US Auto Insurance Study, and Amica was ranked as a top provider in the JD Power’s 2020 US Auto Claims Satisfaction Study.
- Assets Dec. 31, 2019, recorded as $5.4 billion
- Policy count of Dec. 31, 2019, recorded as 1.6 million
Amica offers specifically helpful add-ons to policies like glass coverage and roadside assistance. Amica also offers a wide range of standard auto coverage, like uninsured and underinsured motorist protection and personal injury protection. In addition, the Platinum Choice Auto package is a top of the line option that features a premium bundle of benefits, like accident forgiveness, monitoring for identity fraud and a zero deductible full window glass coverage.
Chances are you will quickly understand why Amica Mutual was ranked as a top provider for vehicle claims satisfaction. And you can always get free lock replacements if you ever lose your keys! A drag if you live in Hawaii, though, but Amica is available nationwide, otherwise.
Amica caters to drivers who want extraordinary customer service and excellent insurance coverage and understand it is necessary to pay a premium. So, this provider ranks near the top in almost every category. They offer a defensive driver discount through the Safety Serve program for good drivers, which is worth asking about. And a unique legacy discount is available for people who are under 30 years old whose parents are Amica auto policyholders for five years or more. Then, after two years, Amica offers you a loyalty discount, which seems exceptionally popular, too.
Erie insurance is known explicitly for offering young drivers some specific benefits to help parents feel better about letting their kids drive their cars. All of Erie’s policies provide rental car coverage, roadside assistance and pay for up to $350 worth of personal items if they are damaged in a vehicle accident. Even the standard policies will pay for up to $500 for each pet if they are injured riding in the insured car.
The Erie policies all cover up to $75 in locksmith services when you carry collision or comprehensive insurance coverage. Plus, parents who have unmarried children under 21 years old save up to 20% when they add the kids to an existing auto policy. Erie is ranked as above average with JD Power for 2020 in the North Central region in the US Auto Insurance Study. The Erie insurance company currently provides products and services for the following 12 states: Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, the District of Columbia, Kentucky, Maryland, New York and North Carolina.
Also, Erie Insurance is an excellent option for drivers who have just received their license. This is one of the very few auto insurance companies offering a discount to drivers who are under 21 years old and who live with a parent. Then, after three years, there is a first accident forgiveness program. Also, you can take advantage of the Erie Rate Lock optional program that guarantees that you keep paying the same rate unless you change something in your policy. The Erie Insurance diminishing deductible programs lower your accident deductible by $100 every year in a row, but you can’t make a claim, for up to five years and $500.
Choose The Hartford for everything you need, especially for drivers over 50 years old and active seniors. This is where you get your insurance for your ATV, boat, classic car, golf cart, RV, and snowmobile. Available nationwide, including Washington, DC, The Hartford also offers the complete line of auto coverage with a rather unique partnership they have with AARP. As an AARP member, you will be able to take advantage of several discounts and special offers with The Hartford.
The Advantage Plus plan from The Hartford is jam-packed with customizable benefits, like discounts for hybrid vehicles, emergency expense coverage, accident forgiveness, and the disappearing collision deductible when you don’t file any claims. The Hartford is undoubtedly one of the very top-rated insurance providers based on the 2020 JD Power’s US Auto Claims Satisfaction Study.
Plus, you’ll get additional discounts for a car alarm or anti-theft installation, airbags, and if you have more than one vehicle insured or more than one policy.
You can count on Farmers Insurance to offer all the base vehicle insurance policies that anyone could need. You can buy collision, liability, comprehensive, and medical payment insurance, plus uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. However, at Farmers, the optional coverage options really stand out. These optional coverages include new car replacement coverage, increased vale customized equipment insurance, original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts replacement, as well as spare parts coverage.
Also, the claims satisfaction levels at Farmers are above average on the 2020 JD Power’s Auto Claims Satisfaction Study. So, the easy claims process and exceptional reliability of Farmers Insurance make this organization a great choice. You will find that Farmers does stand out from other providers by offering many options for comprehensive coverage for drivers of all ages. So, if you seek a wide range of coverage and need ways to add customization to your policy, check out Farmers first.
A discount for a shared family car (but not in CA) is available for households with only one driver under the age of 20 and more drivers than there are vehicles in the household. In addition, the good student discount applies to drivers under the age of 25 eligible to save on the family’s insurance premiums.
USAA is the absolute best insurance provider for veterans, active members of the military, and qualified military family members. This insurance provider customizes the car insurance coverage option for the needs of a military member. So, it offers reduced rates if you have low annual mileage numbers and a discount of up to 60% for your vehicle when it is stored during an active member’s deployment.
Additionally, the exceptional ratings for USAA show in the consistent ranking as one of our nation’s best insurance companies. Also, the 2020 JD Power’s US Auto Claims Satisfaction Study gives USAA the highest possible scores. As one of the most comprehensive insurance carriers, USAA also offers qualified members discounts on options like travel, shopping, and an entire portfolio of USAA’s financial products. So, check out their checking and savings accounts, retirement accounts and investment portfolio products.
USAA is known for excellent customer service and high satisfaction ratings for claims. Much of this is because of their solid online support and good mobile-friendly tools. From anywhere in the country, military members can receive a quote to compare with other providers. This is an excellent choice for military families looking for top-notch customer service and personalized customized customer experiences.
In addition, drivers from military families whose parents have had a USAA auto insurance policy save up to 10% more on their policies. Also, military members who use the garage to keep their vehicle on the military base save an additional 15% on their comprehensive coverage. Additionally, military drivers who do not use their car very frequently could qualify to save even more with an Annual Mileage discount.
Allstate Insurance always ranks among the top vehicle insurance carriers in most of the regions across the country. Also, in the JD Power 2020 US Auto Insurance Study, Allstate earned the #1 spot in Florida, again. Initially, in 1931, Allstate was a division of Sears, Roebuck and Co. Known for reliability and because of the dependable customer service, this insurance provider is great for customers who like face-to-face interactions. Allstate is precisely that, operating in All States, because they have local agencies in all of the 50 states, plus Washington, DC. The offices are available for drivers to go in person for renewing coverage, filing claims and purchasing additional coverage.
But if you prefer to work online instead of in-person, Allstate Insurance has an intuitive mobile app and good online tools to perform all your transactions. Check out the exceptional discounts for teenaged drivers, too. With policies using a standard 6-moth term, Allstate has always been a great insurance carrier for all drivers. But drivers who really care about getting excellent customer service and having their claims handled efficiently will really appreciate Allstate. And if you move from state to state, Allstate provides extraordinary coverage and service since it has agents in every state.
The safe driver program, Allstate Drivewise, means good drivers save on their auto insurance. Also, check out the reduction of up to 25% on their premiums, plus a 10% new sign up bonus discount. Sign a new policy with an Allstate agent at least a week before the policy’s effective date, and you qualify for another discount. Plus, drivers who own a new car as the first owner, this current model year or last year’s model, get the new car owner discount, too.
Progressive Insurance offers a “Name Your Price” online tool that makes getting a quote in your price range quick and easy. For high-risk drivers, you can then redeem your driving record using Progressive’s Snapshot app program. The Snapshot app monitors the driving habits with the mobile app. And then rewards high-risk drivers with additional discounts when they start driving more safely. So, the average savings through the Progressive Snapshot program for safe drivers is $145 a year.
Overall, Progressive ranked well in several regions across the country in the 2020 JD Power US Auto Insurance Study. One reason could be because of the gap insurance offering. That way, if you have an accident where the vehicle is badly damaged or totaled, then the gap insurance from Progressive kicks in. So, it covers the balance between what your car is worth on paper, which is what your standard insurance pays, and whatever amount your current loan (or lease) has for an outstanding balance. So, you never carry over debt after an accident for a vehicle you don’t own anymore. Progressive also gives you the option of custom equipment and specialized parts coverage.
Progressive will also reward you with a special discount when you switch from your old company. But only if you stayed with your previous vehicle insurance provider over an extended period of time. And you never let your coverage lapse.
Geico Insurance is the company that consistently provides the lowest rates for the most drivers. Because it is a division of the Berkshire Hathaway company, it is Geico that earns the AM Best highest financial rating in the country. And Geico has the second greatest share of the insurance market at 13.8%, based on the statistics from the Insurance Information Institute (III). In addition, Geico Insurance was rated as the best car insurance company in 3 different regions across the US in the 2020 JD Power’s Auto Insurance Study.
Starting in 1936, Geico only offered its insurance to military members and federal employees. It still offers specific group discounts to these drivers even today. Now, federal employees still qualify for the Geico Eagle discount, which is up to 8% off their total premiums. Also, active military service members save on their premiums up to 15%. Then, any military service member on an emergency deployment gets a specific discount, which is up to 25% on their premiums. But now, there are also discounts offered to seniors, multiple policies, students, and more.
So, if you are shopping for the lowest possible rate on your car insurance, make sure you check out Geico. You will also find that Geico is best for those drivers looking for minimal coverage. Coverage without any fancy, expensive custom extras.
State Farm Insurance
No matter where you live anywhere across the country, State Farm offers you an entire line of comprehensive insurance policies. They offer auto, life, health, and property insurance options, and also investment and banking products. Best known for how it provides dedicated, local agents all across the nation, drivers expect robust coverage options from State Farm. So, for many customers, the ability to bundle auto insurance with other insurance and financial services makes for great convenience.
State Farm earns high ratings in the 2020 JD Power US Auto Claims Satisfaction Study. So high that it even ranked in the #1 spot as the best auto insurance carrier in both the Mid-Atlantic and New York regions. State Farm has made a name for in-person, personalized service as one of the best auto insurance companies in the country. Because they have over 19,000 agents nationwide, State Farm makes it easy to find your local agent pretty much anywhere.
If you enroll in the State Farm Drive Safe and Save optional safe driver program, then you could save anywhere between 5-50% on your insurance premiums. For young drivers, they enroll in the State Farm Steer Clear program and then qualify for discounts of up to 15% on vehicle insurance premiums. Also, once you have State Farm auto insurance for at least 3 years without an accident claim, you earn an additional discount.
Methodology – How the Companies were Analyzed
We began with Quadrant Information Services because we wanted to analyze the rates for all US ZIP codes and insurance carriers in the 50 states and in Washington, DC. Thus, the quoted rates used a 40-year-old male and female driver with cleaning driving records, good credit ratings and full coverage limits:
- $500 comprehensive deductibles
- $500 collision deductibles
- $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury for each accident
- $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury for each person
- $50,000 property damage liability for each accident
- $300,000 bodily injury liability for each accident
- $100,000 bodily injury liability for each person
So, for the determination of minimum coverage limits, minimum coverages meet the requirements in each state. The sample drivers drive a new Honda Accord. Also, they drive back and forth to school or work five days a week and drive 12,000 miles a year.
The overall ratings use averages of scores on important qualities, such as prices, customer satisfaction, corporate financial strength, etc. These ratings were considered:
- JD Power figures measure customer satisfaction levels. JD Power rates providers on how their customers rate overall satisfaction, price, policy offerings, billing processes and policy information, claims and interaction.
- AM Best rates the financial strength of the insurance provider and measures its ability to pay out claims.
- S&P Global analyzes how easily the insurance company meets its financial commitments.
- Fitch Ratings evaluate the carrier’s credit rating.
- Moody’s also evaluates the credit rating.
These different ratings help to compare auto insurance companies more efficiently.
Auto insurance rates and coverage vary significantly. Factors such as your:
- type of vehicle
- driving record
- and credit rating
all will make a difference in determining how much you pay. By shopping for rates and coverage at these top 10 auto insurance companies with the highest ratings, you can find the insurance that is right for you. We cannot endorse any of these companies specifically. But this in-depth discussion of some of your options should give you a good place to start to form your opinions of the different options. Of course, we can’t be responsible for how anyone uses this information and these opinions. Still, we hope the discussion gives you a better idea of how to compare the top 10 auto insurance companies.