USAA Insurance Review: Auto / Homeowners Insurance Price Competitiveness, AM Best Financial Strength Ratings & Complaints 2009-2014

This USAA Insurance review will evaluate, for the most recent six year period where reliable statistics are available (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, & 2014), the home & auto insurance complaint record for the subsidiary companies of USAA insurance, to determine whether each subsidiary, such as USAA Casualty Insurance Company or Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company, has a better-than-average, average, or worse-than-average customer complaint record.

I’ll also look at the JD Power ratings for USAA auto & homeowner insurance pricing, and increases & decreases in market share (as measured by annual written premiums) for each USAA subsidiary, as a possible indication of high or low insurance rates. In addition, I’ll review the AM Best Financial Strength Ratings for the USAA insurance companies, too.

Be sure to use the information in this review and the ad below this paragraph (or the ad at the end of this review) to request price quotes from multiple insurance companies, and find the best auto or home insurance company for you.

There are plenty of insurance company reviews & customer complaints on the Web. Will positive or negative customer reviews help you choose a better auto or home insurance company? Can customer reviews at least help you avoid insurance companies with unacceptable customer service? You may really like your car or home insurance company, or you may have heard from relatives or friends about the insurance companies they think are best, but you never really know how good your insurance company will be, until you have a serious claim. The wise consumer should avoid insurance companies with a worse than average history of auto or home insurance complaints, but most reviews online don’t have enough complaint data to make a fair comparison among insurance companies.

The detailed information in this review, and my review of the JD Power auto & homeowners customers & claims satisfaction ratings for USAA Insurance, compare USAA auto, home, & life insurance to the industry average and competing companies for customer service, customer complaints, claims processing performance, and insurance rates, but if If you don’t want to read all the details, you can go to my review here, to see at a glance if USAA consistently performs better than average, average, or worse than average for customer service, claims, complaints, and pricing, and compare USAA to over 40 other U.S. auto & home insurance companies.

If you find this review useful, please like it on Facebook & share the link to this review or my site with your friends & family through social media. Bookmark this page for updates as the latest complaint data becomes available.


USAA Insurance Customer Complaints, Pricing, & Ratings Review

USAA sells auto and homeowners insurance in most US states & DC, direct from the company, by phone and through its website. USAA does not have local agents. To be considered for USAA insurance, you must be eligible for membership in USAA, by being a current military member or honorably discharged veteran, immediate family member of someone in the military, or a former policyholder. USAA is the 6th largest auto insurer in the US, and the 5th largest home insurer in the US, based on direct written premiums, per AM Best, as of 8/1/2012.

Like most insurance companies, USAA Insurance Group consists of several subsidiary companies. The use of more than one insurance subsidiary company is usually to offer different pricing to customers with specific risk profiles (for example, drivers with a clean driving record vs. drivers with tickets and accidents), operate in a certain US state or group of states, or offer different types of insurance, such as life insurance or motorcycle insurance. USAA has a subsidiary eligible only to military officers & their families, and a subsidiary for enlisted military personnel and their families.

This USAA Insurance review is divided into four sections, consisting of: 1. AM Best Financial Strength Ratings for the USAA insurance companies, 2. its auto insurance customer complaint record, 3. its home insurance customer complaint record, and 4. the competitiveness of USAA auto & home insurance rates compared to other major auto & home insurance companies.

1. AM Best Financial Strength Ratings for the USAA insurance companies

These USAA insurance subsidiaries operating in the USA, United Services Automobile Association, USAA Texas Lloyd’s Company, USAA Life Insurance Company of New York, USAA Life Insurance Company, USAA General Indemnity Company, USAA County Mutual Insurance Company, and USAA Casualty Insurance Company, had their A++ (Superior) AM Best Financial Strength Rating with a stable outlook (no ratings upgrade or downgrade is expected in the near future) affirmed on 12/04/2014, and they have maintained this rating for six years or more. A++ is the highest rating for AM Best.

The USAA auto & home insurance subsidiary, Garrison Property and Casualty Insurance Company, is not rated for financial strength by AM Best. I become concerned with any automobile or homeowners insurance company or subsidiary not rated or with less than an A- rating for financial strength from AM Best.

AM Best financial strength ratings are not a measure of customer service or the quality of the claims adjusting for any of the USAA companies, but an opinion about their ability to pay claims, remain financially solvent, and stay in business. I recommend avoiding, if possible or practical, any auto or homeowners insurance company with lower than an “A-” rating for financial strength from AM Best. Some major auto & home insurance companies have the same or lower financial strength ratings than the USAA companies, but the difference in financial strength among A++, A+, A, & A- rated companies is not significant to me unless higher rated companies are the same or better in terms of price, coverage, claims handling, and customer service.

USAA Auto & Homeowners Insurance Complaint Record 2009-2014

A measure of quality for an auto or home insurance company is the number of upheld complaints filed against it with a state’s insurance regulatory authority, compared to the industry average and competing companies. Sections #2 & #3 of this review will show you if USAA auto & home insurance has a better-than-average, average, or below-average complaint record, based on its 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 & 2014 customer complaint statistics. This portion of the review provides valuable information, to help you decide if USAA, or a competitor, like State Farm, is the better insurance company for you. By choosing a company with a better-than-average complaint history, or at least avoiding companies with consistent, worse-than-average complaint records, you decrease the likelihood you will have a negative experience, when you need your auto or home insurance company.

Some of the most common reasons, for people to file auto & home insurance complaints with a state insurance department against insurance companies, are for delays in a claim payment, unsatisfactory payment of a claim, and denial of a claim.

The complaint statistics, called complaint ratios, used in this USAA Insurance review are the number of upheld complaints filed against each of the USAA companies with a state’s insurance regulatory authority, adjusted for each subsidiary’s market share, as determined by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

The complaint ratios for the USAA insurance companies listed below display the ratio of the company’s U.S. Market Share of closed complaints compared to the company’s U.S. Market Share of premiums for a specific policy type. Complaint ratios lower than “1” have less complaints than average, and complaint ratios over “1” have more complaints than average. The lower the complaint ratio, the less complaints against the company. Ideally, you want to choose an auto or home insurance company with complaint ratios less than 1.00 each year, at least over the most recent three years.

So you don’t have to worry about comparing complaint ratio numbers, I devised a rating system to help you identify if USAA has a good or poor complaint record.

Here’s how I establish my auto & homeowners insurance complaint ratings:

B = Better than average. Insurance companies with complaint ratios less than 75% of the average insurance company.

C = Average. Insurance companies with complaint ratios from 75% to 125% of the average insurance company. I use a minus sign (-) to indicate auto insurance complaint ratios slightly worse than average (1.01 to 1.25) and a plus sign (+) for auto insurance complaint ratios slightly better than average (.99 to .75).

W = Worse than average. Insurance companies with complaint ratios more than 125% of the average insurance company.

I prefer companies with the longest recent history of “B” ratings each year (or at least in the most recent three years). Companies with “B” or “C+” ratings are okay, too, particularly if they have less market share, with less than $50,000,000 in premiums for that line of insurance (auto or home) each year. I prefer to avoid companies with a consistently higher than average number of complaints, or with inconsistent complaint records, unless there are mitigating factors, such as very small market share.

2. USAA Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

USAA auto insurance complaint record considering all subsidiaries:

Average

USAA Insurance has four subsidiary companies insuring private passenger vehicles in the states where USAA sells auto insurance:

United Services Automobile Association Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.69)

2014 US auto insurance premium = $3,903,721,358

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.54)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $3,807,362,971

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.49)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $3,684,359,888

2011 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.48)

2011 US auto insurance premium = $3,569,137,308

2010 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.73)

2010 US auto insurance premium = $3,511,237,633

2009 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.74)

United Services Automobile Association is the USAA subsidiary with the largest amount of auto insurance customers. It is authorized to sell auto insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The United Services Automobile Association subsidiary has a better-than-average auto insurance complaint history over the last six years, with its number of auto insurance complaints in its worst year during this period, at 74% of the industry average. The auto insurance market share for United Services Automobile Association has increased each year since 2010, which may be an indication of competitive pricing for its auto insurance.

USAA Casualty Insurance Company Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.97)

2014 US auto insurance premium = $3,272,266,066

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.77)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $3,093,247,806

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.81)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $2,907,695,742

2011 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.73)

2011 US auto insurance premium = $2,735,984,414

2010 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C- (1.01)

2010 US auto insurance premium = $2,636,607,844

2009 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C- (1.07)

USAA Casualty Insurance Company is the USAA subsidiary with the second largest amount of auto insurance customers. It is authorized to sell auto insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The USAA Casualty Insurance Company has an inconsistent auto insurance complaint history over the last six years, with a somewhat lower than average number of auto insurance complaints in the 2011, 2012, & 2013, but about average to slightly higher than average number of auto insurance complaints in 2009, 2010, & 2014. The auto insurance market share for USAA Casualty Insurance Company has increased each year since 2010, which may be an indication of competitive pricing for its auto insurance.

USAA General Indemnity Company Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.85)

2014 US auto insurance premium = $1,697,455,683

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.60)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $1,339,974,115

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.44)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $983,702,612

2011 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.40)

2011 US auto insurance premium = $774,615,282

2010 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.45)

2010 US auto insurance premium = $638,509,406

2009 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.58)

USAA General Indemnity Company is the USAA subsidiary with the third largest amount of auto insurance customers, and its auto insurance market share is about 3.5 times smaller than the largest USAA auto insurer. USAA General Indemnity Company is authorized to sell auto insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The USAA General Indemnity Company subsidiary has a better-than-average auto insurance complaint history over the last five years, although it’s been moving toward the average each year since 2011, with its number of auto insurance complaints in its worst year during this period (2014), at 85% of the industry average. The auto insurance market share for USAA General Indemnity Company has increased each year since 2010, which may be an indication of competitive pricing for its auto insurance.

Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.93)

2014 US auto insurance premium = $963,122,419

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.98)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $881,848,128

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.62)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $822,107,712

2011 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.33)

2011 US auto insurance premium = $645,241,815

2010 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.63)

2010 US auto insurance premium = $432,231,868

2009 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C- (1.06)

Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company is the USAA subsidiary with the least amount of auto insurance customers, but it still has a very large share of the US auto insurance market compared to the subsidiaries of many other well-known auto insurance companies. Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company is authorized to sell auto insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company subsidiary has an inconsistent auto insurance complaint history over the last six years, with better than average complaint ratios in 2010, 2011, & 2012, and about average complaint ratios in 2009, 2013, & 2014. The auto insurance market share for Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company has had large increases each year since 2010, which may be a strong indication of competitive pricing for its auto insurance.

3. USAA Homeowners Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

USAA homeowners insurance complaint record considering all subsidiaries:

Better than average

USAA Insurance insures homes & personal property through the five subsidiaries company listed below:

United Services Automobile Association Home Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.18)

2014 US home insurance premium = $2,409,571,403

2013 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.17)

2013 US home insurance premium = $2,286,481,486

2012 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.16)

2012 US home insurance premium = $2,093,670,708

2011 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.14)

2011 US home insurance premium = $1,929,570,173

2010 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.25)

2010 US home insurance premium = $1,820,182,861

2009 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.22)

United Services Automobile Association is the USAA subsidiary with the largest amount of home insurance customers. It is authorized to sell home insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The United Services Automobile Association subsidiary has an excellent, better-than-average home insurance complaint history over the last six years, with its number of home insurance complaints in its worst year during this period, at only 25% of the industry average. The home insurance market share for United Services Automobile Association has increased each year since 2010, which may be an indication of competitive pricing for its home insurance.

USAA Casualty Insurance Company Home Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.47)

2014 US home insurance premium = $1,335,139,710

2013 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.36)

2013 US home insurance premium = $1,270,986,692

2012 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.20)

2012 US home insurance premium = $1,157,264,729

2011 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.46)

2011 US home insurance premium = $1,060,250,605

2010 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.28)

2010 US home insurance premium = $989,903,049

2009 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.53)

USAA Casualty Insurance Company is the USAA subsidiary with the second largest amount of home insurance customers. It is authorized to sell home insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The USAA Casualty Insurance Company subsidiary has a better-than-average home insurance complaint history over the last six years, with its number of home insurance complaints in its worst year during this period, at 53% of the industry average. The home insurance market share for USAA Casualty Insurance Company has increased each year since 2010, which may be an indication of competitive pricing for its home insurance.

USAA General Indemnity Company Home Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.43)

2014 US home insurance premium = $384,778,509

2013 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.31)

2013 US home insurance premium = $285,809,030

2012 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.49)

2012 US home insurance premium = $200,098,668

2011 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.24)

2011 US home insurance premium = $135,820,578

2010 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = C- (1.01)

2010 US home insurance premium = $81,137,423

2009 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.37)

USAA General Indemnity Company is the USAA subsidiary with the fourth largest amount of home insurance customers, but its market share is rapidly growing. USAA General Indemnity Company is authorized to sell home insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The USAA General Indemnity Company subsidiary has better-than-average home insurance complaint ratios over the last four years, with its number of home insurance complaints in its worst year during the six year period (2010), at only 1% more than the industry average. The home insurance market share for USAA General Indemnity Company has greatly increased each year since 2010, which may be a strong indication of competitive pricing for its home insurance.

USAA Texas Lloyd’s Company Home Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.12)

2014 US home insurance premium = $388,546,740

2013 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.10)

2013 US home insurance premium = $337,663,320

2012 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.03)

2012 US home insurance premium = $291,540,622

2011 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (0) (No complaints)

2011 US home insurance premium = $250,543,279

2010 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (0) (No complaints)

2010 US home insurance premium = $219,411,933

2009 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (0) (No complaints)

USAA Texas Lloyd’s Company is the USAA subsidiary with the third largest amount of home insurance customers, and it’s authorized to sell home insurance in Texas only.

The USAA Texas Lloyd’s Company subsidiary has a superior, better-than-average home insurance complaint history over the last six years, with its number of home insurance complaints in its worst year during this period, at an extremely low 12% of the industry average. The home insurance market share for USAA Texas Lloyd’s Company has increased each year since 2010, which may be an indication of competitive pricing for its home insurance.

Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company Home Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.20)

2014 US home insurance premium = $178,888,481

2013 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.30)

2013 US home insurance premium = $147,064,741

2012 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.29)

2012 US home insurance premium = $113,818,904

2011 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.38)

2011 US home insurance premium = $86,344,093

2010 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.42)

2010 US home insurance premium = $64,816,972

2009 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.18)

Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company is the USAA subsidiary with the least amount of home insurance customers. It is authorized to sell home insurance in all the US states & DC, but this subsidiary may not be available in every state.

The Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company subsidiary has a better-than-average home insurance complaint history over the last six years, with its number of home insurance complaints in its worst year during this period, at 42% of the industry average. The home insurance market share for Garrison Property & Casualty Insurance Company has increased each year since 2010, which may be an indication of competitive pricing for its home insurance.

4. USAA Auto & Home Insurance Rates & Pricing Compared to Competitors

Homeowners Insurance Pricing

USAA received the highest rating of five power circles (among the best) for overall homeowners insurance customer satisfaction, as well as the highest score, in the national 2014 JD Power U.S. Homeowners Insurance Satisfaction study. Although the JD Power website does not show the rating for the homeowners insurance pricing factor in the study, its safe to assume USAA customers surveyed in the 2014 JD Power study rated satisfaction with homeowners insurance rates as above average.

The following companies rated better than average (4 power circles or 5 power circles) for lower homeowners insurance rates in the 2014 JD Power Homeowners Insurance Satisfaction study: Auto-Owners, Amica, Automobile Club of Southern California, Hartford, Erie, Mercury, and GEICO.

Auto Insurance Pricing

USAA received the highest rating of five power circles (among the best) in all 48 contiguous US states (Hawaii & Alaska customers were not surveyed by JD Power) for the category of auto insurance pricing in the 2015 JD Power Auto Insurance Customer Satisfaction study, which reflects the opinion of current USAA policyholders about the auto insurance rates they pay.

The following companies also rated above average (4 power circles or 5 power circles) for lower auto insurance rates in the 2015 JD Power Auto Insurance Customer Satisfaction study in the some of the same states where USAA was rated: Erie, GEICO, Grange, COUNTRY, Esurance, Wawanesa, Ameriprise, Auto Club of Southern California, Auto-Owners, Indiana Farm Bureau, Shelter, Progressive, PEMCO, Metlife (Florida only).

USAA received the highest rating of five power circles (among the best) for the category of Pricing in the 2016 JD Power U.S. Auto Insurance Purchase Experience Study, which reflects the opinion of auto insurance shoppers about the rates they were quoted by USAA. The following companies rated above average (4 power circles or 5 power circles) for lower auto insurance rates nationally in the 2016 JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience Study: Erie, Liberty Mutual, The Hartford, American Family, Automobile Club Group, Travelers, Ameriprise, CSAA Insurance Group, and Mercury.

Remember, the companies with the best rates for some people participating in a survey may not have low rates for you. To get lower auto or home insurance rates, the only way to know if any insurance company has high or low rates for you is to conduct your own pricing survey, by obtaining price quotes & reviewing your coverage with all the leading insurance companies in your state, to find the best company for you.

It pays to shop. Many people pay too much for their insurance because they never shop for better rates, or if they do shop, they don’t check the rates of enough companies. No single company has low rates for everyone. You have to shop with all the leading companies, to find the company with the best coverage and best price for you. The ad below will take you to links to get online quotes from leading Home, Auto, Health, & Life insurance companies in your area. Choose the type of insurance, put in your zip, and start shopping now!

Thanks for reading this USAA Insurance review about its auto & home insurance complaints. You can find other reviews of leading auto, home, & life insurance companies on my website & blog. What do you think of USAA auto & home insurance? Did you find this review useful? Comment on my facebook page. If you have questions, you can reach me at help@smartshopyourcarinsurance.com. Follow me on Twitter for important insurance consumer news & new blog entries at CarInsWatch.