Progressive offers affordable and comprehensive homeowners policies through its partner, Homesite Insurance, but its customer service could be better.
Progressive provides home insurance policies through its partner, Homesite Insurance. In the event you need to file a claim, you’ll deal with Homesite, not Progressive. The policies offered through this partnership provide coverage for most major perils, including fire, theft, and storm damage, along with plenty of endorsements you can add to customize your policy. Homesite is one of only a few insurance providers to offer Inflation Guard coverage, which adjusts your policy limits to keep up with the cost of inflation.
According to the 2016 J.D. Power home insurance satisfaction survey, customers are happy with the rates they receive through Progressive’s partnership with Homesite. This makes it a good choice if your primary concern is a low premium. However, there’s a tradeoff when it comes to customer service. Homesite’s claims handling received only an average rating in the survey.
|Price||Varies by location, home details, and coverage level|
|Best For||People whose top priority is a low premium|
|Not For||People who place a high value on customer service|
|A.M. Best Rating||A (Homesite Insurance)|
|In Business Since||1937|
Progressive promises comprehensive homeowners coverage and the flexibility to design a policy around your needs. Its rates are affordable and claims are handled efficiently, so you get the money you need fast, and without any additional headache.
Is it True?
Sort of. You may be able to get an affordable homeowners policy through Progressive’s website, but it won’t be underwritten by Progressive. The company doesn’t sell home insurance directly; instead, it partners with Homesite Insurance to offer this coverage to its customers. Once you complete your purchase, you’ll deal exclusively with Homesite. If you need to file a claim, it’ll be the Homesite that pays you.
Homesite’s coverage is fairly comprehensive, guarding against all major perils, including theft, fire and storm damage. There are also several endorsements available to those who want to increase their coverage limits to better protect their property and valuables. It offers a rare Inflation Guard endorsement, which continually adjusts your coverage to keep up with inflation, so you have the money you need for repairs even as construction costs continue to rise.
Progressive received an average rating in J.D. Power’s latest home insurance satisfaction survey, but customers expressed happiness with the available policy offerings and the cost. So this is good news if your main concern is a low premium. As with many companies that offer low rates, however, there’s a tradeoff when it comes to claims handling. Progressive received an average rating in this category, which helped to lower its overall score.
Our Deep Dive
- Policies are not underwritten by Progressive: Progressive doesn’t sell its own homeowners policies. Instead, it has partnered with Homesite Insurance to offer this coverage to its customers. Homesite boasts strong financial strength ratings from A.M. Best, which is a good indication that it will be able to pay out claims when the time comes.
- Few discounts: Homesite Insurance doesn’t offer much in the way of homeowners discounts. Buying a new home, installing a monitored security system, or being retired could earn you some savings. Customers who bundle home and auto, either through Progressive or Homesite, are also eligible for a discount, but there are few ways to save beyond this.
- Inflation Guard: As construction costs continue to rise, your insurance policy begins to lose its value. The optional Inflation Guard endorsement adjusts your limits to keep up with inflation, so you always have enough coverage to pay for repairs.
- Guaranteed replacement cost: This optional coverage ensures that you’ll get the full replacement cost of any damaged or stolen personal items in the event of a claim. Most standard homeowners policies factor in depreciation when calculating the value of lost personal property, and this may not always be enough to cover the full cost of a replacement. So while this optional coverage costs extra, it has the potential to save you quite a bit in the event of a claim.
- Extra coverage for valuables: If you have coins, jewelry, antiques, or other valuables that aren’t adequately protected by a basic homeowners policy, you can add a personal articles floater. This pays the full replacement coverage of the items, and you usually don’t have to pay a deductible.
- Coverage for money and securities: This optional coverage increases your policy limit on stolen or destroyed cash, banknotes, and securities.
- Credit card and identity theft protection: This coverage protects you if someone steals your credit cards or forges checks in your name. You won’t have to pay for any fraudulent charges and any stolen money will be refunded.
Homeowners insurance, like all insurance products, is highly personalized, taking factors like your location, creditworthiness, and claim history into account. Each insurer weighs these factors slightly differently, so you end up getting different rates from one company to the next. The only way to figure out how much homeowners insurance will cost you is to get quotes.
Your rate will also depend on how much coverage you want. A standard homeowners policy protects 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
If you need additional protection, like earthquake or flood coverage, for example, you’re going to pay more than someone who doesn’t purchase this coverage. The same is true if you add other endorsements for valuables or other personal property to your policy.
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Cheaper (or Free!) Alternatives
If you have a mortgage on your home, your lender will require homeowners insurance. It’s not a requirement if you own your home outright, but it’s still a smart investment. Rather than forgoing insurance altogether, try these tips to make your policy more affordable:
- Shop around. Compare rates from several different companies before you make a purchase. Choose the company that offers you the most coverage at the best rate.
- Bundle home and auto coverage. Purchasing auto and home insurance through the same company will almost always earn you a discount.
- Choose a high deductible. You’ll pay more out of pocket when you file a claim, but your premiums will be significantly lower.
- Work on your credit. Your credit score is considered a measure of risk, and a higher score will earn you a lower rate with every insurer.
- Install a security system. Many home insurers give discounts to customers who have monitored security systems installed in their homes.
- Prepare your home for disasters. For example, if you live in an area with bad storms, install storm shutters. This can help reduce the amount of damage to your home, lowering the cost of claims.
State Farm: Although State Farm doesn’t offer much in the way of homeowners discounts, its rates are generally reasonable. It scored well in J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction survey. Consumers were particularly happy with their interactions with company representatives. Its policies offer comprehensive coverage designed to protect against all major perils, including fire, theft, vandalism, and storms.
Allstate: Offering flexible homeowners policies with endorsements that are hard to find elsewhere, Allstate also allows you to purchase additional protection for your yard, sports equipment, and business property. In addition, there’s a green improvement reimbursement coverage if you want to make sure your home is repaired with energy-efficient items. Allstate also has one of the largest selections of homeowners discounts in the industry. Despite this, its rates are typically more expensive than many of its competitors.
GEICO: Like Progressive, GEICO doesn’t underwrite its own homeowners policies. Instead, it pairs you with one of its partner insurers to provide this coverage. Customers seem pretty happy with this arrangement, judging by the J.D. Power survey, in which GEICO scored fourth out of 28 companies. That being said, it’s a good idea to research the company who will actually be underwriting your policy before making a purchase.
The Bottom Line
Progressive offers flexible and affordable home insurance through its partner, Homesite Insurance. Even though its claims handling isn’t above average, it’s still worth taking some time to get a quote and see what it can offer you.