Geico is well known for its auto insurance policies, but the Berkshire Hathaway company also offers affordable homeowners insurance. Geico doesn’t provide homeowners coverage directly but, instead, relies on a partner network to underwrite its homeowners insurance policies. This network includes some of the nation’s top home insurance providers, including American Family, Chubb, Foremost, Homesite and Liberty Mutual.
By working with affiliated and non-affiliated insurance carriers, Geico is able to provide home coverage nationwide. And Geico makes it easy to get started, providing an online quote tool which enables you to choose the level of coverage you need and get a premium estimate in minutes. Policies purchased through Geico consistently offer affordable rates, so if price is your primary concern in purchasing home insurance then Geico is worth considering.
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Geico home insurance deep dive
Founded in 1936 by husband and wife team Leo and Lillian Goodwin, Geico sells auto, business, life, pet, home and travel insurance policies. Geico employs more than 40,000 people, who work in nearly 20 offices across the United States. According to the Insurance Information Institute, Geico is the second largest auto insurance company by direct premiums written, insuring over 28 million automobiles.
As a Berkshire Hathaway company, Geico sits on a firm financial foundation to meet its claims obligations. Berkshire Hathaway ranks third on the Fortune 500 list and earns revenues of nearly $248 billion per year.
In its 2019 U.S. Home Insurance Study, J.D. Power ranked several Geico partner companies among its top 20, including, American Family, Chubb and The Hartford.
|J.D. Power rating||Not ranked|
|AM Best rating||A++ (Superior)|
|National market share||6.44% all lines (not ranked for home insurance)|
|Price||Varies by location, home details and coverage level|
|Best for||Price-conscious shoppers|
|Not for||Customers who want to choose their underwriter|
|In business since||1936|
|Digital tools||Online quotes, mobile app|
Geico claims to offer “top-quality coverage at an affordable rate.”
Is it true?
Since dozens of insurers underwrite Geico’s homeowners policies, the “top-quality coverage” claim may vary by location. It’s true that a handful of Geico’s partners hold top positions in J.D. Power’s 2019 U.S. Home Insurance Study, but many didn’t make the cut at all.
We can’t argue with Geico’s “affordable rate” claim. We requested an online quote from Geico for a 1,200-square-foot home in the heart of San Francisco, California, and were pleased with the coverage and rate we received. The standard policy, underwritten by Homesite, included $358,000 in dwelling coverage, $300,000 in personal liability coverage and $179,000 in personal property coverage. The quote also included an ample level of loss of use coverage, $107,000, as well as $5,000 in water backup and sump overflow coverage, which many providers only offer as optional coverage. For this home, Geico quoted us a rate of around $90 per month.
Geico home insurance coverages
Geico’s standard homeowners insurance policies include:
- Dwelling coverage: Dwelling coverage pays to repair or replace the structure of your home, including attached structures like porches and garages.
- Personal property coverage: Following a covered loss, personal property coverage helps you pay to repair or replace your personal belongings, like clothing, electronics and furniture.
- Personal liability coverage: If someone sustains an injury on your property, and you’re found liable, personal liability insurance helps pay the person’s medical expenses. If the victim sues you, this coverage can also help pay your attorney’s fees and a legal award. It also protects you if you accidentally damage someone else’s property. For example, if a limb from your tree falls and damages your neighbor’s home, your personal liability coverage can help pay for repairs.
- Additional living expenses: If your home gets damaged or destroyed, and you’re unable to live there, additional living expenses will pay for costs such as hotel and restaurant bills.
- Medical payments coverage: If someone is injured in your home, regardless of who is at fault, medical payments coverage will help cover their medical expenses.
In addition to the standard coverages, Geico offers add-on coverages for maximum protection, including:
- Identity theft protection: For as little as $8 per month, you can add identity theft protection to your Geico home insurance policy. The coverage includes access to your credit report on the TransUnion website, as well as credit monitoring alerts when suspicious activity occurs.
- Flood insurance: Standard homeowners policies don’t cover damages to your home or personal belongings caused by floods. However, if you live in an area prone to flooding, Geico can help you purchase flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program.
- Jewelry insurance: Geico’s standard homeowners policies only pay $500 to $2,000 for covered jewelry losses. But for just 1% to 2% of your jewelry’s value, you can cover your most expensive gems.
- Pet insurance: Geico’s pet insurance can help pay up to 90% of veterinary expenses if your pet sustains an injury or faces serious illness. Policies start at around $1 per day.
- Umbrella insurance: If you’re worried about personal liability, you can add umbrella insurance to your homeowners policy for an additional $1 million in personal liability coverage.
The coverages and endorsements of your Geico homeowners policy may vary, depending on which partner company underwrites your policy.
Geico discounts offered
Geico insurance reviews show that customers are happy with the price they pay for homeowners insurance through partner companies. However, you may be able to save even more money by taking advantage of Geico discounts. Some of the most common homeowners insurance discounts include:
- Policy bundling: If you purchase Geico home and auto insurance policies, you can qualify for a discount.
- Employee and membership discounts: Geico offers employee and membership discounts to more than 800 organizations.
- Military discounts: If you’re an active duty or retired member of the U.S. Armed Forces, National Guard or Reserves, Geico offers you up to a 15% discount.
Discounts available to you may vary depending on your location and the Geico partner that underwrites your home insurance policy.
Geico home insurance cost
As with all insurance products, homeowners insurance premiums depend on many factors, including the age, size and construction of your home, its location and your credit rating. Every company weighs these factors a little differently, so you need to request a personalized quote for the most accurate pricing.
Rates also depend on what level of coverage you get. All homeowners policies protect against the following perils:
- Fire or lightning
- Windstorm or hail
- Riot or civil commotion
- Damage caused by aircraft
- Damage caused by vehicles
- Smoke damage
- Volcanic eruption
More comprehensive policies are available but the greater the level of protection, the higher your premium. If you live in an area prone to earthquakes or floods, you’ll have to purchase separate coverage for these hazards because they’re not included in a traditional homeowners policy. You also have the option to add endorsements. These provide extra coverage for valuables, such as jewelry or firearms.
Cheaper (or free!) alternatives
Lenders require you to purchase homeowners insurance, so there’s no getting around it. But there are a few things you can do to lower your rates:
- Shop around. Compare rates from several companies to see which one offers you the most protection for the best price.
- Bundle your home and auto insurance policies. Most insurers give discounts to customers who purchase their home and auto insurance together.
- Choose a higher deductible. Although your out-of-pocket costs will be higher when you file a claim, you’ll save money on your premium.
- Prepare your home for disasters. Do what you can to disaster-proof your home. For example, if you live in an area prone to severe storms, install storm shutters on your windows.
- Beef up security. Having an alarm system in place can help deter would-be thieves and earn you a discount on your homeowners insurance.
Geico might not be the most ideal option for you. Request quotes from several insurance providers and carefully compare coverages, discounts and rates. Here are a few other great providers you might consider.
- State Farm: State Farm offers coverage for most major perils, including theft, fire and storms. It offers discounts for homes with fire or burglar alarms installed and those that use certain kinds of roofing materials. Bundling your home and auto insurance policies will earn you additional savings as well. State Farm ranked fourth in the nation in J.D. Power’s 2019 U.S. Home Insurance Study.
- Progressive: Like Geico, Progressive doesn’t underwrite its own homeowners insurance, so once you’ve purchased a policy, you deal exclusively with Progressive’s partner. Progressive offers an impressive collection of discounts for new home purchases and home safety and security devices, as well as up to a 12% discount for bundling home and auto policies.
- Allstate: Allstate has one of the largest selections of homeowners discounts in the industry, including up to a 25% discount for bundling auto and home insurance policies. The provider also offers an annual 10% loyalty discount each year you renew your policy, plus special discounts for retirees and those over 55 years of age. Allstate also offers Claim RateGuard, which protects your rate from going up after filing a claim (Claim RateGuard offers rate protection for one claim every five years).
What others are saying
Geico has received praise for its workplace practices, earning spots on Forbes’ America’s Best Employers By State 2019, Best Employers for Women 2019 and Best Employers for Diversity 2020 lists. In spring 2020, Geico also received media attention for giving its auto, motorcycle and RV insurance customers a 15% premium credit as part of its financial relief efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Better Business Bureau gives Geico an A+ rating. Since Geico doesn’t underwrite its homeowners policies, it doesn’t qualify for ranking in J.D. Power’s Property Claims Satisfaction Study, but some of its partner companies rank very favorably. For example, in Power’s 2020 study, The Hartford ranked second, with 896 out of 1,000 points, and American Family ranked eighth.
The bottom line
If you’re on a budget, Geico might offer the affordable home insurance you need. We’re impressed by the generous coverage limits Geico offers in its standard policies. We also appreciate the solid financial footing Geico provides and its nationwide coverage.
But if you’re looking for a wide range of home insurance coverages and great discounts, Geico might leave you wanting more. When we requested our San Francisco quote, we expected to find an earthquake insurance option, but Geico didn’t offer one. We also weren’t offered dwelling or personal property replacement cost coverages, which come to the rescue following a catastrophic loss. While Geico offers a few good discounts, it doesn’t reward customers with loyalty or electronic billing discounts.