Drivers can be a fickle lot. Many who say “I do” to a car insurance company aren’t looking for a lifelong union.
In fact, it doesn’t take much to turn the heads of these customers, even if they are wedded to some of the biggest insurers in the nation.
Consumer Reports’ latest car insurance survey — to which more than 90,000 CR members responded — found that seven car insurance companies lost at least 20% of their customers over a recent five-year period. Those companies are:
- Farmers Insurance: 27% of customers lost
- The Hartford: 27%
- Liberty Mutual Insurance: 27%
- Nationwide: 26%
- Allstate: 23%
- Progressive: 21%
- Travelers: 20%
Meanwhile, other insurance companies appear to generate more loyalty. For example, USAA lost just 2% of its customers over that five-year period. Amica (6%), State Farm (12%) and Geico (18%) also lost relatively low levels of customers.
So, why do customers leave their car insurance company? Most often, the answer boils down to dollars and cents.
According to the survey, 62% switched insurers because another company offered better rates, while 40% switched due to a rate hike at their old insurer.
By contrast, less than 10% of customers cited nonfinancial reasons such as following recommendations of family and friends, or having problems with an insurer’s honesty or level of courtesy.
Why you should shop around
If you don’t regularly shop for car insurance, you’re probably making a mistake. As Consumer Reports notes:
“Among the 22 percent of Consumer Reports members who told us they’d switched insurers in the past five years, 62 percent said they’d found a better price. And 77 percent of those who switched said they were highly satisfied with their new carrier.”
To really tap into those savings, though, you need to compare companies in the right way. It’s easy to make mistakes that will undo the best of your intentions. To learn more, check out “How to Avoid 7 Costly Car Insurance Shopping Mistakes.”
Want to cut straight to the chase? Then, check out Money Talks News founder Stacy Johnson’s advice in “How to Get the Best Possible Deal on Car Insurance.”
If you don’t have the time or desire to study the information in such articles, you might want to consider letting a third party like Gabi or The Zebra gather quotes from auto insurers for you. These companies specialize in streamlining the car insurance shopping process.
How do you save on car insurance? Share your tips in comments below or on our Facebook page.
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