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Home > Changed my homeowners and auto insurance carrier...finally

Changed my homeowners and auto insurance carrier...finally

October 9th, 2012 at 10:19 am

For the 17 years I've owned my home, i've always had MetLife to cover both the house and car. Can't say i'm crazy about them. Not that I've had any dealings with them except to pay a consistently rising bill each year on both. From time to time, I would call to find out why, and they'd say, oh, there was an increase in claims filed in your area, so the rates go up for everybody.

This time, my homeowner's increased from $691 last year to $832 this year. That's a nearly 17% hike in one year. And that's with a $5,000 deductible. I've never made a claim.

Aside from being faced with bills that continue to spiral upward each year despite a claims-free record, I guess my dislike stems from having read something years ago saying that MetLife came in dead last when it came to honoring claims. In other words, a lot of unhappy customers, and that made me fairly uncomfortable. The last thing you need during some kind of catastropic home accident is to hassle with your insurer.

So from time to time I've checked prices elsewhere, but never found much better prices that would make me want to move. Until now.

I think I was on esurance.com, or one of those places where you supply the basic data on your home/car and a bunch of insurers will quote you a price.

I talked to Amica on the phone (my preferred carrier, since I've read very good things about them), but their combined quote for car/home was about the same as what I have now.

I got one phone call in response to the esurance.com visit from a very capable sounding guy with Allstate for auto, but who quotes from multiple carriers for the home. and I got one email from State Farm saying "call us if we can be of assistance." Talk about lazy. (And there was a typo in the word 'assistance' in the Subject Line.

So anyway. I already take advantage of all possible discounts I can, including taking a safe driving course for the car and deadbolt, smoke alarm and high deductible for the house with no fireplace or dogs with a bad rep. Plus I get the multi-policy discount.

Interestingly, both the Allstate guy and the woman from Amica came up with far lower replacement value estimates compared to MetLife after asking a lot of in-depth questions about the house. Metlife says replacement value is $339,600, while Allstate said just $250,000 and Amica said $245,000. This is the most important number since everything else is calculated as a percentage of that. So while I don't want to be under-insured, it kind of appears that MetLife overestimaed my replacement value, perhaps intentionally so, in order to bill me more for my insurance.

I'm going with Allstate now. Not that I like that company much more, but I did like the guy I spoke with. Straightforward, intelligent, local to me. I will see him tomorrow for the paperwork. The car will actually be about $10 more with Allstate compared to MetLife, but I'll save $92 on the homeowner's policy with Utica. (To achieve part of that savings, I had to agree to set up auto pay, which deducts payment from a checking account. I don't like making anything like that "auto," but it does give you 45 days before it takes the money, and if I wanted to pay by credit card (which I would, for the rewards points), I could call this guy and do it over the phone before the 45 days was up.

I had hoped to save a minimum of $100 to justify a switch, but I knew it would be tough to find that kind of savings becus I'm already doing everything I can...but i guess this is close enough. And I get away from MetLife. Just had a bad feeling about them.

3 Responses to “Changed my homeowners and auto insurance carrier...finally”

  1. North Georgia Gal Says:

    I hate it when a professional email or website has typos. It totally turns me off to that company.

  2. CB in the City Says:

    I switched to Allstate a few years ago after many years with State Farm. State Farm was good about claims, but pricy, and once I moved away from my agent, I didn't feel any loyalty any more. Allstate had much better rates.

  3. Xtreme Thunder Says:

    We currently have Allstate, been with them since I got my own car insurance back in 2006. I guess yours did go up quite a bit compared to ours. I guess complaining about a $60 increase in 2 years wasn't as bad, especially being we only have a $500 deductible.

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