Several national rating institutions rate insurance companies. Do coverages, rates, and service vary from company to company? Why can you pay less with one company than another can for the same coverages? Choosing the best insurance company for you is a crucial financial decision. Does your insurance company have the financial strength to safeguard you and your family? If the company cannot pay future claims or benefits, other issues become far less relevant. Financial strength ratings are an analysis of a wide variety of risks that could affect an insurance company's long-term viability. Insurance companies have failed or ceased to operate due to inadequate financial strength, competitive forces, or changing dynamics in the marketplace.
Standard & Poor's Ratings (http://www.standardandpoors.com)Financial strength ratings of insurance companies, plus detailed financial Insurer Profiles on nearly 4,000 companies.
Fitch Ratings (http://www.fitchratings.com) Financial strength ratings of insurance companies.
Have you heard of the company where you are considering purchasing coverage? Do you have any experience with the company?
Ask your peers what experiences they have had. What is your sense of the reputation of the company? How quickly and easily are claims processed? Is there 24-hour claims service? Is the claims management in the house of the insurance company or have they outsourced? Auto insurance is meant to make you whole in the case of an accident with injury or property damage. It is to protect your assets and protect you from liability. You will want the peace of mind of a superior rated company when it comes time to manage and pay the claim. The financial health of a car insurance company is an often-overlooked area when shopping for the best auto insurance rate. It is human nature to make your comparison solely on the rates for the coverages. While this is certainly important, you should be aware of the company's overall rating and level of satisfaction. Consulting insurance company ratings is crucial. Each insurance company issues a quarterly report that is publicly accessible. You cannot always tell the future from the past. However, the past performance is a valuable insight into what expectation to have for your future coverage. One of the factors that are used in order to determine the companies' ratings is how long they have been in business. If there is no history, you may be taking an unnecessary chance. Look for a company that has a history and make sure that history shows good performance.
What about the reputation of the insurance company? It is very simple to find this information. Just ask around. There are your peers, the BBB, and family. Many times these resources closest to you will be able to share experiences that are favorable or unfavorable regarding the company you are considering. In addition, each state has a Department of Insurance that keeps public information about companies. Use all the resources you can to determine which company is best for you. Once you have paid for the policy, you will then become keenly interested in customer service. Be aware of what the source of information is regarding the insurance company. Many companies put our information about themselves in the form of illustrations that are intended to make them look as good as possible. Of course, while these illustrations must be factual, you should be aware that you are not receiving objective information.