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The top home insurers of 2016

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The top home insurers of 2016
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When you’re getting ready to shop for home insurance, what considerations come into mind? For most people, it’s price first and foremost. What you pay is often the deciding factor in swaying you from one insurer to another.

But as Clark has long said, there are considerations beyond what that monthly insurance premium is going to look like in your life. There’s also brand equity to be considered, among other things.

If you’re not familiar with the idea of brand equity and how it relates to home insurance, it can be summed up with a couple of questions: Are you familiar with the insurer? Do you have an idea about whether their coverage is quality or not?

Those factors are often prerequisites in a consumer’s mind before they move on to purchase consideration.

Read more: These 11 dog breeds are most often blacklisted by insurance companies

Top home insurers in new brand equity rankings

The 2016 Harris Poll EquiTrend study has just come out with new insights into the home insurers with the most brand equity.

At the top of the list is State Farm Home Insurance, which has been named Home Insurance Brand of the Year by Harris Poll for 2016.

The top home insurers of 2016

After State Farm, you have AAA Home Insurance and USAA Home Insurance.

The top home insurers of 2016

The top home insurers of 2016

Other home insurance brands in the study ranked below category average, including Allstate Home Insurance, American Family Home Insurance, Farmers Home Insurance, GEICO Home Insurance, The Hartford Home Insurance, Liberty Mutual Home Insurance, MetLife Home Insurance, Nationwide Home Insurance, Progressive Home Insurance and Travelers Home Insurance (listed alphabetically).

The Harris Poll asked more than 97,000 of us about 3,800 brands in 500 categories. Rankings were then based on three factors: familiarity, quality and purchase consideration.

Do the Harris Poll results jibe with Consumer Reports?

Turns out there’s a glaring omission from the Harris Poll — Amica Mutual!

The top home insurers of 2016

According to Consumer Reports, USAA and Amica are virtual equals in the home insurance category. In fact, Amica noses out USAA by just a couple of points in the magazine’s recent rankings based on a survey of 90,301 Consumer Reports readers.

Amica gets the highest score on satisfaction in terms of damage amount, problem-free claims experience, agent courtesy and timely payment in the Consumer Reports tally. And Amica gets the second-highest mark on satisfaction with the price of premiums that you’ll pay.

So we’re left scratching our heads as to why Amica Mutual didn’t make it into the shortlist of insurers for Harris Poll to review. But that shouldn’t stop you from checking them out!

When you’re considering a new home insurer, it’s wise to get a lay of the land by consulting multiple deep dives into brand reputation like those done by the Harris Poll, Consumer Reports and J.D. Power too.

You can usually settle on a solid choice by culling the collective wisdom of these kinds of surveys. Look for the commonalities, like one insurer being at or near the top of survey results from a variety of sources. That way you’re more likely to find a winner!

It is possible to get great home insurance for a reasonable price

In other news, Consumer Reports recently took a look at the insurance industry and determined that both USAA and Amica are cheaper than the competition!

In a 23-state survey, Consumer Reports found USAA was the lowest-cost insurer for the average person. However, USAA is only available to those in the military or affiliated with the military through direct family ties. For everyone else, there’s Amica. Surveyed in 10 states, Amica Mutual was the second-lowest cost insurer.

The other insurers — the ones you hear advertising all over the place — range to as much as nearly double in premium vs. USAA to 50% more than what the average person pays with Amica Mutual.

If you do shop Amica Mutual, you should know that the first year is expensive. Because it is a mutual company, there are no shareholders and you must buy into it yourself. That’s what bumps up the price during your first year.

But after that, most Amica customers typically get an annual rebate from the company that’s about 20% of what they paid in premiums when they have a year with no claims.

So you should know that quality and low prices can both happen at the same time!

Read more: 12 things your homeowners insurance probably doesn’t cover

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Theo Thimou About the author:
Theo is director of content for clark.com. He has co-written 2 books with Clark Howard, including the #1 New York Times bestseller Clark Howard's Living Large in Lean Times.
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