Updated June 8, 2020

Largest Auto Insurance Companies

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Who is the number 1 insurance company? Depends on how you rank them. Read on for our list of top rated insurance companies.

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If you're shopping for car insurance, you probably know who the biggest players in the industry are.

Ads for companies like State Farm and GEICO are all over TV, radio, and online. You could probably recognize the famous gecko's accent right away.

But just because these auto insurers have big marketing budgets, doesn't mean they're all right for you. Some companies are better for families. Some are better for bad drivers.

Before you give these companies your hard-earned money, take a look at how they compare. Find out below what the top 10 largest auto insurers can offer you.

Here are the 10 largest auto insurers:
  1. State Farm for best discounts
  2. GEICO for claims satisfaction
  3. Progressive for lowest rates
  4. Allstate for families
  5. USAA for military members
  6. Liberty Mutual for good coverage options
  7. Farmers for bad credit
  8. Nationwide for bundling
  9. American Family for customer service
  10. Travelers for smart homes

Not sure if a big insurance company is for you? Check out the pros and cons before you commit.

Top 10 Largest Auto Insurance companies

When determining how big an insurance company is, you can look at two things:

  1. Direct premiums written: the total premiums a company gets from all its customers
  2. Market share: percentage of policies sold out of the total sold by all auto insurers

The first number tells you how much revenue a company is bringing in. The second number shows you how big the company is compared to competitors.

CompanyDirect Premiums WrittenMarket Share
1. State Farm$41.0 billion16.1%
2. GEICO$35.0 billion13.8%
3. Progressive$31.0 billion12.2%
4. Allstate$23.6 billion9.3%
5. USAA$15.2 billion6.0%
6. Liberty Mutual$11.7 billion4.6%
7. Farmers$10.5 billion4.2%
8. Nationwide$6.2 billion2.5%
9. American Family$5.8 billion2.3%
10. Travelers$4.9 billion1.9%

The top four auto insurers on the list own more than half of all personal auto insurance policies sold in the U.S. Combined, those top four auto insurance companies have been in business for 350 years.

Breakdown of the 10 Largest Auto Insurers

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Next up, find out what's special about each auto insurer. Which one is best for your needs?

Best Discounts: State Farm

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A++
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $1,379

State Farm earns the highest rating possible for its superior financial condition. The company performs well and has a strong ability to pay out claims.

About 1 in 5 dollars spent on private passenger auto premiums in the U.S. goes to State Farm. It offers some of the best discounts for families. State Farm also offers life, home, motorcycle insurance, and more. So you can bundle with them and save.

George J. Mecherle, a retired farmer, established State Farm as a mutual auto insurance company in 1922. At that time, it was owned by its policyholders and sold auto insurance for farmers.

Cost isn't the only thing you need to consider. Your car insurance company should also pull through with great service when an accident happens.

Claims Satisfaction: GEICO

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A++
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $1,445

The company sells car insurance to all consumers. It also sells homeowners insurance and life insurance underwritten by other companies. As the second largest auto insurer in the U.S., GEICO insures over 28 million vehicles.

GEICO has some of the cheapest rates. It offers an easy-to-use app that gives you complete access to your policy. The app even comes with a voice assistant that can answer questions about your insurance.

GEICO's name is an acronym for Government Employees Insurance Company.

Not everyone is a perfect driver. See which company is best if you have some dings in your driving history.

High-Risk Drivers: Progressive

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A+
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $1,264

This company caters to families, particularly those with high-risk drivers. In addition to automobiles, the company sells insurance for motorcycles, recreational vehicles, boats, and commercial vehicles.

Progressive is known for being innovative. It was the first auto insurer to offer 24/7 claims reporting and the first to sell policies on its website. The company also pioneered mobile browsers and smartphone apps to manage policies and usage-based auto insurance.

Families should stick together. This is especially true if you want to save on car insurance. Find out which company is best for family plans below.

Best for Families: Allstate

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A+
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $1,860

Allstate sells car, home, fire, life, inland-marine, business, and workers' compensation insurance. That's a lot of opportunities for bundling discounts. It's a great choice for families staying on the same policy.

You can conveniently access your policy through their app. You can easily pay bills, change your coverage, and manage claims.

Some insurance companies reward you for serving the country. The next pick offers the best customer service and lowest prices of the bunch.

Military Members: USAA

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A++
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 5/5
  • Average annual premium: $891

USAA has the lowest prices and best customer service out of the biggest insurers. But, it's only available to military members and their families.

The USAA was founded in 1922 by 25 U.S. Army officers when they were unable to get auto insurance. As military officers, insurers perceived them as high-risk.

Today, USAA is one of the biggest car insurance companies in the U.S. It sells auto, home, and life insurance. The company also provides banking, brokerage, and investment services. If you're able to get a USAA policy, you'll save a lot of money with it.

USAA sells most of its auto insurance policies via direct marketing, by phone, or over the internet.

What good is cheap insurance if it doesn't have the coverage you want? The next company offers plenty of coverage options.

Personalized Coverage: Liberty Mutual

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $1,611

Liberty Mutual has 50,000 employees in 30 countries. The company is unique in the way it sells its auto insurance policies. Customers start with its standard policy. You can then customize with add-on protection and coverages.

Add-ons include accident forgiveness, roadside assistance, and better car replacement. Liberty Mutual also offers home, life, boat insurance and more. So you can bundle and save.

A low credit score can hurt you in a lot of ways. Make sure you pick a car insurance company that doesn't penalize you so much for a lower score.

Bad Credit: Farmers

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $2,218

You don't have to be a farmer to get Farmers insurance. The company originally offered auto insurance to farmers, ranchers, and rural truck drivers. Today, it sells auto, home, and small business insurance throughout the continental U.S.

It has over 48,000 Farmers agents and independent agents. You can contact an agent or go online for a quote. They also have bundling options and an app to access your policy.

One of the best ways to spend less on car insurance is to buy multiple policies from the same company. Find out which insurer is best for bundling.

Bundling Discounts: Nationwide

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A+
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $1,704

Nationwide began in 1925 as a small mutual auto insurer for farmers in Ohio. It now offers insurance products to consumers across the U.S., including home, life, dental, accident, medical, and banking and investing services.

Nationwide is one of the first insurers to offer mileage-based auto insurance.

Not every company is the most helpful when you have questions or concerns. Choose a company with a great support team to get your concerns addressed fast.

Customer Service: American Family

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $2,158

American Family was started in 1927 as a low-cost auto insurance company for Wisconsin farmers. They now offer car, property and business, life, health, and travel insurance. Despite being available in only 19 states, it's the 9th largest car insurance company in the U.S.

If you're looking to save some money, try bundling your insurance with their home, renters, or life insurance policies.

Smart Homes: Travelers

  • AM Best financial strength rating: A
  • J.D. Power overall customer satisfaction rating: 3/5
  • Average annual premium: $2,132

This global insurance company has 30,000 employees and 13,500 independent agents and brokers throughout the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Brazil. It sells auto and home insurance for individuals, and insurance products for businesses.

Travelers lets you sync up your account with your Amazon Alexa. You can stay on top of your policy and keep track of important information.

Pros and Cons of Large Auto Insurance Companies

Pros

  • Greater availability
  • Lower prices
  • More coverage options
  • Greater financial strength and stability
  • More agents and claims adjusters

Cons

  • Less responsive customer service
  • Lower claims satisfaction
  • Slower issue resolution
  • Higher prices based on driving history

Large auto insurers have a lot going for them. They're great for bundling your coverages together. You can get your home, life, and car insurance all in one place. That means bundling discounts and cheaper prices for you.

Big insurance companies are also less likely to go out of business or fail to pay out claims. It's less risky than going with a new, unestablished insurance company.

But big companies aren't perfect. Although they employ a lot of people to respond to customers, they also have a huge customer base. It might take longer for customer service to get back to you because of the sheer volume calls they get.

Large insurers tend to charge more if you have a history of accidents. Smaller companies tend to offer more forgiveness for previous claims history.

How to Buy Auto Insurance

Start by getting several quotes from different auto insurance companies. The price of insurance varies by your location, vehicle type, driving record, and other factors, so it pays to compare.

The best way to get several auto insurance quotes at once is online or through an independent insurance agent or agency.

  • Online Insurance Marketplaces
    Enter some information and receive quotes from several auto insurers instantly. You can review the policies by coverage and compare prices. You can even purchase the policy directly online.

  • Independent Insurance Agents
    These agents may work for themselves or for an independent insurance agency in your local area. You can call, visit the office, or schedule a home visit to get quotes.

    Some agencies also have an auto insurance quote form on their websites. An independent agent can help you compare coverages and prices and find the right policy for your needs.

An auto insurance policy covers the vehicle, not the driver. Therefore, a member of your household or anyone else you allow to drive your vehicle is covered by your policy.

Know Your Coverage Needs

When buying auto insurance, be sure you are getting complete coverage. Most states require both bodily injury liability and property damage liability coverages. Beyond that, consider both collision and comprehensive coverages.

Comprehensive automobile coverage pays for things that happen to your vehicle not caused by a collision. Some examples are:

  • Your car is stolen or damaged by theft.
  • Your vehicle is damaged by hail or fire.
  • Your front hood is damaged and windshield shattered from hitting a deer.

Some auto insurance policies include convenient coverages for free or a low price. These include:

  • Rental car coverage
  • Roadside assistance or towing coverage
  • Windshield repair

When comparing prices for auto insurance, be sure to compare coverages and deductibles. The deductible is the amount you pay out of pocket in the event you have to file a claim.

If all things are equal, base your buying decision on the company with the highest rating for financial stability and claims satisfaction.

Bottom Line

With so many large auto insurance companies, it's hard to know which ones are the best to do business with. That's where reviews and insurance rating companies can help.

Each year, they rank auto insurance companies based on their size, financial stability, customer complaints, claims satisfaction, and a host of other factors. These ratings help differentiate large auto insurers so you can make an educated decision.

A large auto insurance company might not be the best one for you. Consider all your options and compare quotes before you decide on a company. Look for a company that offers the coverage and customer service level you need. You don't have to stick with an insurer you aren't happy with.

More from CreditDonkey:


Types of Auto Insurance


What Should I Be Paying for Car Insurance


Why is My Car Insurance So High


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