If you are looking for a car insurance provider that offers a variety of coverage options, discounts, and features, Safeco Insurance might be a good choice for you. Safeco is a well-established company that has been serving drivers, homeowners, and businesses for nearly a century.
In this article, we will provide an overview of Safeco car insurance, its pros and cons, and its coverage and options.
Overview of Safeco Car Insurance
What is Safeco Insurance?
Safeco Insurance is a part of Liberty Mutual Insurance, a Fortune 100 company, and the sixth-largest personal lines insurer in the country. Safeco was founded in 1923 in Seattle, Washington, as the General Insurance Company of America.
The name Safeco was derived from its subsidiary, Selective Auto and Fire Insurance Company of America, which was established in 1953. Safeco sells its products exclusively through independent agents, who offer ease, choice, and advice to customers.
Availability in all states
Safeco car insurance is available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. However, some coverage options and discounts may vary by state. You can check the availability of Safeco car insurance in your state by entering your ZIP code on the Safeco website.
Market share of Safeco
According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), Safeco had a market share of 1.64% in 2019, ranking 13th among the top 25 private passenger auto insurers in the United States. Safeco had a direct written premium of $3.6 billion and a direct earned premium of $3.5 billion in 2019.
History of Safeco
Safeco has a long history of innovation and expansion. Some of the milestones in its history are:
- In 1957, Safeco became the first insurance company to use a computer to process policies and claims.
- In 1964, Safeco moved its headquarters to the Seattle Tower, which was later renamed the Safeco Plaza.
- In 1979, Safeco acquired American States Financial Corporation, which expanded its presence in the Midwest and East Coast.
- In 1997, Safeco launched its website, which allowed customers to get quotes and buy policies online.
- In 2008, Safeco was acquired by Liberty Mutual Insurance for $6.2 billion.
- In 2016, Safeco introduced RightTrack, a program that tracks driving habits and rewards safe drivers with discounts.
Pros and Cons of Safeco Car Insurance
Advantages of Safeco Insurance
Some of the benefits of choosing Safeco car insurance are:
- A wide range of coverage options and features, such as new vehicle replacement, rental car reimbursement, diminishing deductible, accident forgiveness, claims-free cash back, roadside assistance, and more.
- A network of independent agents who can help you customize your policy and provide personalized service.
- A user-friendly website and mobile app that allows you to access your policy documents, pay your bill, file and track your claim, get roadside help, and more.
- A variety of discounts that can help you save money on your premium, such as multi-policy, multi-car, safe driver, low mileage, anti-theft device, paid-in-full, paperless billing, teen safety rewards, and more.
Disadvantages of Safeco Insurance
Some of the drawbacks of choosing Safeco car insurance are:
- Higher than average rates compared to some competitors. According to WalletHub’s analysis of quotes from 46 insurers across 50 states for various driver profiles, Safeco ranked 36th in terms of affordability.
- Lower than average customer satisfaction ratings. According to J.D. Power’s 2020 U.S. Auto Insurance Study, Safeco ranked below the industry average in all regions except California for overall customer satisfaction. According to the NAIC’s complaint index report for 2019, Safeco had a complaint ratio of 1.21 for private passenger auto insurance, which was higher than the national median of 1.00.
- Limited online quoting capability. You cannot get a quote directly from the Safeco website; you have to contact an agent or call a toll-free number to get a quote.
Safeco’s response to COVID-19
Safeco has taken several measures to support its customers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of these measures are:
- Offering a personal auto customer relief refund of 15% on two months of premium for customers with policies in force as of April 7th or April 30th depending on their state.
- Extending coverage for customers who use their personal vehicles to deliver food, medicine, or other goods for commercial purposes during the pandemic.
- Waiving late fees, pausing personal auto and home coverage cancellations due to non-payment, and extending payment dates for customers who need it.
- Providing free identity protection services to all Safeco customers until the end of 2020.
Car Insurance Coverage and Options
Safeco offers the standard types of car insurance coverage that are required or recommended in most states. These include:
- Liability coverage, which pays for the bodily injury and property damage that you cause to others in an accident.
- Medical payments coverage, which pays for the medical expenses of you and your passengers in an accident, regardless of fault.
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, which pays for the bodily injury and property damage that you suffer in an accident caused by a driver who has no or insufficient insurance.
- Collision coverage, which pays for the repair or replacement of your vehicle in an accident with another vehicle or object.
- Comprehensive coverage, which pays for the repair or replacement of your vehicle in case of theft, fire, vandalism, weather, animal collision, or other non-collision events.
Additional policy options
Safeco also offers several optional coverages and features that can enhance your protection and convenience. These include:
- New vehicle replacement, which pays for the value of a comparable new car if your car is totaled or stolen within the first year or 15,000 miles of ownership.
- Rental car reimbursement, which pays for the cost of renting a car while your car is being repaired after a covered loss.
- Diminishing deductible, which reduces your collision deductible by $100 at every renewal if there are no claims filed against your policy, up to a maximum of $500.
- Accident forgiveness, which waives the first accident on your policy after a set number of years with Safeco without an at-fault collision or violation.
- Claims-free cash back, which rewards you with a check for 2.5% of your policy premium (up to 5% each year) if you are claims-free over a six-month review period.
- Roadside assistance, which provides 24/7 help for towing, battery jump-starts, flat tires, lockouts, fuel delivery, and more.
- Gap coverage, which pays the difference between the actual cash value of your car and the amount you owe on your loan or lease if your car is totaled or stolen.
- Custom equipment coverage, which pays for the repair or replacement of custom parts and accessories that you have added to your car, such as stereo systems, wheels, spoilers, etc.
Auto insurance discounts
Safeco offers a variety of discounts that can help you lower your car insurance premium. Some of these discounts are:
- Multi-policy discount, which applies if you bundle your auto and home insurance with Safeco.
- Multi-car discount, which applies if you insure more than one vehicle with Safeco.
- Safe driver discount, which applies if you have a clean driving record for at least three years.
- Low mileage discount, which applies if you drive less than 8,000 miles per year.
- Anti-theft device discount, which applies if you have an alarm system or other device that deters theft on your car.
- Paid-in-full discount, which applies if you pay your annual premium in one lump sum.
- Paperless billing discount, which applies if you sign up for online billing and policy documents.
- Teen safety rewards, which apply if you have a teen driver on your policy who completes a driver education course, maintain good grades, or signs a safe driving pledge.
Pricing based on tracked driving habits
Safeco also offers a program called RightTrack that tracks your driving habits and rewards you with discounts based on how safely you drive. RightTrack uses a mobile app or a device that plugs into your car’s diagnostic port to monitor four factors: braking, acceleration, nighttime driving, and mileage. You can earn up to 30% off your premium based on your driving score. You also get a guaranteed discount of 5% to 10% just for signing up and participating in the program.
Safeco car insurance is a reputable company that offers a wide range of coverage options and features to suit different needs and budgets. Safeco also has a network of independent agents who can provide personalized service and advice. However, Safeco may not be the cheapest option for some drivers, and its customer satisfaction ratings are below average. Therefore, it is advisable to compare quotes from multiple insurers before choosing Safeco car insurance. You can contact an agent or call Safeco’s toll-free number to get a quote today.