Kentucky Farm Bureau Review: Auto & Home Insurance Complaints, AM Best & JD Power Ratings

Many Kentucky residents know Kentucky Farm Bureau is a major insurer of homes, trucks, and automobiles in the Bluegrass State. But how does Kentucky Farm Bureau compare to other major car & home insurance companies competing in the state of Kentucky, such as Progressive, GEICO, State Farm, Allstate, Nationwide, Travelers, Safeco, Auto-owners, Alfa, & Liberty Mutual? This review analyzes the JD Power customer satisfaction ratings, AM Best financial strength ratings, and the most recent three-year home & auto insurance customer complaint records for the Kentucky Farm Bureau insurance companies, and compares them with major competitors. There is a lot of useful information in this review, but if you don’t want to read the entire review, you can skip to my review summary in the last section (section #7), to find out if my analysis concludes the auto & home insurance customer service, claims handling, and rates for Kentucky Farm Bureau is below average, average, or above average. Reading this review can help you decide if Kentucky Farm Bureau is a good company to insure your cars, trucks, or home.


Kentucky Farm Bureau Insurance Review

This Kentucky Farm Bureau insurance review is divided into seven parts, consisting of: 1. an overview of the company, the Kentucky Farm Bureau website, and the best way to get auto or home insurance price quotes, 2. The AM Best Financial Strength ratings for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, 3. The JD Power auto & home insurance customer satisfaction ratings for the Kentucky Farm Bureau, 4. the auto insurance customer complaint ratings for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company over the last three years, 5. the home insurance customer complaint ratings for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company over the last three years, 6. Kentucky Farm Bureau auto & home insurance compared to major competitors, and 7. a Kentucky Farm Bureau insurance review summary, rating the company average, better than average, or below average, based on its annual auto & home insurance complaint records & ratings over the last few years.

1. Kentucky Farm Bureau, its website, and requesting auto & home insurance price quotes

Here’s some basic information potential customers should know about Kentucky Farm Bureau:

About Kentucky Farm Bureau Insurance

Kentucky Farm Bureau has been providing insurance in KY for over 70 years, and sells auto, home, condo, renters, farm, boat, business, and life insurance through Kentucky Farm Bureau agent offices located in every county of Kentucky. Kentucky Farm Bureau insures vehicles garaged & property located in the state of Kentucky only, and is available to non-farmers. Kentucky Farm Bureau provides insurance coverage for nearly 500,000 Kentucky families & businesses. However, to to be eligible for its insurance coverage, and to receive other Kentucky Farm Bureau benefits & discounts, one must pay an annual membership fee to join the Kentucky Farm Bureau.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Insurance Website & Getting Auto or Home Insurance Price Quotes

Kentucky Farm Bureau customers can create an account on the company website to pay a bill, but other services, like filing a claim, cannot be done online. The Kentucky Farm Bureau does not provide auto or home insurance price quotes over the Web, nor can you request a quote online direct from the company, but the website will provide you with the contact information for an agent near you, and you can contact a local Kentucky Farm Bureau insurance agent’s office to quote your auto, home, or other insurance needs.

Source: Kentucky Farm Bureau Insurance website

2. AM Best Financial Strength Rating for the Kentucky Farm Bureau insurance companies

The Kentucky Farm Bureau provides insurance coverage through Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company had its “A” (Excellent) AM Best Financial Strength Rating with a stable outlook (no ratings upgrade or downgrade is expected in the near future) reaffirmed on 03/12/2015. The AM Best rating of “A” is the third highest rating for AM Best.

AM Best financial strength ratings are not a measure of customer service or the quality of the claims adjusting for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, but an opinion about its 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 higher financial strength ratings than Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, 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.

Source: AM Best Rating for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company

3. JD Power Auto & Home Insurance Customer Satisfaction Ratings for Kentucky Farm Bureau

Kentucky Farm Bureau is included in only one of the annual JD Power insurance studies: The JD Power US Auto Insurance Customer Satisfaction Study — Southeast region.

2015: Kentucky Farm Bureau scored the same as the 2015 Southeast region average, at 825 out of 1,000 points.

Here is how Kentucky Farm Bureau rated in the Southeast Region for the five factors used to determine its overall auto insurance customer satisfaction score in 2015:

Policy Offerings: Three Power Circles (about average)

Price: Four Power Circles (better than most)

Billing & Payment: Three Power Circles (about average)

Interaction: Three Power Circles (about average)

Claims: Two Power Circles (lowest rating)

Overall Customer Satisfaction: Three Power Circles (about average)

North Carolina Farm Bureau, State Farm, and Auto-Owners scored about the same (within three points) as Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2015 Southeast Region study.

These companies scored .4% or more higher than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2015 Southeast Region study (from highest scoring company to lowest scoring company): USAA, Tennessee Farm Bureau, Alfa, Allstate, and Progressive.

These companies scored .9% or more lower than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2015 Southeast Region study (from highest scoring company to lowest scoring company): GEICO, Nationwide, Travelers, Liberty Mutual, and Safeco.

2014: Kentucky Farm Bureau had the lowest score of the companies rated four power circles for overall auto insurance customer satisfaction in the SE region, scoring 824 out of 1,000 points in the 2014 Southeast region study — which was only 8 points (on a 1,000 point scale) or .8% above the 2014 Southeast regional study average.

Here is how Kentucky Farm Bureau rated in the five factors used to determine its overall auto insurance customer satisfaction score in 2014:

Policy Offerings: Three Power Circles (about average)

Price: Three Power Circles (about average)

Billing & Payment: Three Power Circles (about average)

Interaction: Four Power Circles (better than most)

Claims: Three Power Circles (about average)

2013: Kentucky Farm Bureau scored 18 points (on a 1,000 point scale) or 1.8% below the 2013 Southeast regional study average, at 786 out of 1,000 points.

2012: Kentucky Farm Bureau scored the same as the 2012 Southeast regional study average, at 814 out of 1,000 points.

Summary: Kentucky Farm Bureau has performed inconsistently in the SE regional auto insurance customer satisfaction study average each year since 2012. scoring 8 points above average in 2014, scoring 18 points below average in 2013, and scoring the same as the average in 2012 & 2015. Based on its poor performance in the SE study two years ago in 2013, & lowest rating for the category of claims in 2015, I’d be wary of acceptable customer satisfaction with Kentucky Farm Bureau auto insurance, until Kentucky Farm Bureau consistently scores around average or above average each year in the most recent three years.

4. Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings for Kentucky Farm Bureau

The complaint ratios for the Texas Farm Bureau 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 a good or poor complaint record.

Here’s how I establish my auto 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.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

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

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (0) (No complaints)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $467,917,871

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.02)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $479,745,813

2011 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.34)

2011 US auto insurance premium = $476,590,401

Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company has a consistent, better-than-average auto insurance complaint history from 2011 to 2013, with the number of auto insurance complaints in its worst year (2011) during this period, still only 34% of the industry average. I prefer to choose auto insurance companies with a consistent history of lower than average number of auto insurance complaints each year, like Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company.

The auto insurance market share for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company decreased from 2012 to 2013, which may be a sign Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company no longer has competitive auto insurance rates.

5. Home Insurance (Homeowners & Renters) Complaint Statistics & Ratings for Kentucky Farm Bureau

My home insurance complaint rating definitions are the same as my auto insurance complaint rating definitions, and the home insurance complaint ratios work the same as the auto insurance complaint ratios, where you want to see complaint ratios less than 1.00 each year, over the last three years.

Here’s how I determine my home 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 home insurance complaint ratios slightly worse than average (1.01 to 1.25) and a plus sign (+) for home 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.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company Homeowners Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

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

2013 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.05)

2013 US home insurance premium = $230,317,781

2012 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.28)

2012 US home insurance premium = $232,640,884

2011 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.55)

2011 US home insurance premium = $220,131,659

Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company has a consistent, better-than-average home insurance complaint history from 2011 to 2013, with the number of home insurance complaints in its worst year (2011) during this period, still 55% of the industry average. I prefer to choose home insurance companies with a consistent history of lower than average number of home insurance complaints each year, like Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company.

The home insurance market share for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company decreased from 2012 to 2013, which may be a sign it no longer has competitive home insurance rates in Kentucky.

6. Kentucky Farm Bureau compared to Progressive, GEICO, State Farm, Allstate, Nationwide, Liberty Mutual, Safeco, Travelers, Auto-owners, & Alfa Auto & Home Insurance

Although there are sometimes less than a 1% difference in auto insurance customer satisfaction scores among companies, the insurance industry does not have a reputation for good customer service, so it’s wise to choose an insurance company with consistently higher than average customer satisfaction scores, or switch to an insurance company consistently performing better than the insurance company you have now.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Auto Insurance compared to:

Progressive: Progressive auto insurance has lower JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring .7% or more higher than Progressive each year. Progressive scored 5 points better than Kentucky Farm Bureau in 2013, but both companies scored more than 1% below the 2013 SE region average.

GEICO: GEICO auto insurance had about the same (only 1 point higher) JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction score as Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 Southeast region study. GEICO scored 5 points better than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2013 Southeast region study, but both companies scored more than 1% below the 2013 SE region average. Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring 4 points better than GEICO in the 2014 Southeast region study.

State Farm: State Farm auto insurance has higher JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 and 2013 Southeast region studies, with State Farm scoring .7% or more higher than Kentucky Farm Bureau each year. In 2014, Kentucky Farm Bureau scored 5 points higher than State Farm.

Allstate: Allstate auto insurance has lower JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring .8% or more higher than Allstate each year. Allstate scored 4 points better than Kentucky Farm Bureau in 2013, but both companies scored more than 1% below the 2013 SE region average.

Nationwide: Nationwide auto insurance has lower JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring 1.7% or more higher than Nationwide each year. Nationwide scored 13 points better than Kentucky Farm Bureau in 2013, but Nationwide still scored .5% below the 2013 SE region average.

Liberty Mutual: Liberty Mutual auto insurance has lower JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring .5% or more higher than Liberty Mutual each year. However, Liberty Mutual scored 24 points better than Kentucky Farm Bureau in 2013, and .6% above the 2013 SE region average.

Safeco: Safeco auto insurance has lower JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring 1.9% or more higher than Safeco each year. Safeco scored 9 points better than Kentucky Farm Bureau in 2013, but Safeco still scored .9% below the 2013 SE region average.

Travelers: Travelers auto insurance has lower JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2012 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring 1.9% or more higher than Travelers each year. Travelers scored 5 points better than Kentucky Farm Bureau in 2013, but Travelers still scored 1.3% below the 2013 SE region average.

Auto-owners: Auto-owners auto insurance has higher JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2013 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Auto-owners scoring 1.5% or more higher than Kentucky Farm Bureau each year. In 2012, Kentucky Farm Bureau scored 12 points higher than Auto-owners, with Auto-owners scoring 1.2% below the 2012 SE region average.

Alfa: Alfa Insurance has better JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction scores than Kentucky Farm Bureau in the 2013 and 2014 Southeast region studies, with Alfa scoring .8% or more higher than Kentucky Farm Bureau each year. In 2012, Kentucky Farm Bureau scored 20 points higher than Alfa, with Alfa scoring 2% below the 2012 SE region average.

Summary: None of the auto insurance companies (except USAA, which is restricted to military & honorably discharged veterans and their families) included in the JD Power SE region auto insurance customer satisfaction study (and selling insurance in Kentucky) consistently beat Kentucky Farm Bureau in each of the last three years. State Farm, Auto-Owners, & Alfa have higher auto insurance customer satisfaction than Kentucky Farm Bureau in two of the last three years, as measured by the JD Power SE region study.

However, Kentucky Farm Bureau did not consistently outperform for auto insurance customer satisfaction any of the other companies in the SE region study over the last three years, so if Progressive, GEICO, State Farm, Allstate, Nationwide, Liberty Mutual, Safeco, Travelers, Auto-owners, or Alfa have a better auto insurance rate for you with the same or better coverage, they may be a better option for you.

Kentucky Farm Bureau home insurance compared to competing companies in Kentucky:

JD Power does not include Kentucky Farm Bureau in any of its home insurance studies.

Based on the recent home insurance complaint ratios for Kentucky Farm Bureau, Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company has home insurance complaint records about the same or better than almost any other home insurance companies insuring homes in Kentucky.

7. Kentucky Farm Bureau Auto & Home Insurance Review Summary

Here’s my summary to give you the bottom line on the customer satisfaction & rates for the auto & home insurance of the Kentucky Farm Bureau, to see if it performs better than average, average, or worse than average.

Although Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company has very good auto insurance complaint statistics from 2011 to 2013, it does not have consistently above average scores in JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction studies. In spite of Kentucky Farm Bureau scoring somewhat above average (8 points above the average on a 1,000 point scale) in 2014, Kentucky Farm Bureau score almost 2% (18 points) below average in 2013. I hope 2013 was an off year for Kentucky Farm Bureau, but since it scored significantly below average for auto insurance customer satisfaction only last year, I think Kentucky Farm Bureau auto insurance customers should be pessimistic for now, and expect below average customer service. However, please consider the agent or agency you choose can have a big impact on the quality of the customer service you receive.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Auto Insurance Customer Satisfaction & Claims Handling:

Worse Than Average

Since Kentucky Farm Bureau is not rated by JD Power for home insurance satisfaction, my evaluation for its home insurance is limited to its three year home insurance complaint statistics for Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company. Kentucky Farm Bureau has a great home insurance complaint record from 2011 to 2013, but there is more to providing better-than-average customer service than not having customers file complaints with the Kentucky Department of Insurance. Insurance companies with great reputations for customer service, like Amica, USAA, & others, consistently scoring above average in JD Power customer satisfaction studies, usually do so for both auto & home insurance. Using the performance of Kentucky Farm Bureau in recent JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction studies as a proxy for its level of home insurance customer satisfaction, I think Kentucky Farm Bureau home insurance customers should expect average customer service. Kentucky Farm Bureau had a below average score for auto insurance in the 2013 JD Power study, but I don’t think it’s fair to say customer satisfaction for Kentucky Farm Bureau home insurance policyholders is below average based on an auto insurance customer satisfaction score for this single prior year. As I mentioned above regarding auto insurance customer satisfaction, please be aware the agent or agency you choose can have a big impact on the quality of the customer service you receive.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Home Insurance Customer Satisfaction & Claims Handling:

Average

I summarize the auto & home insurance customer & claims satisfaction in this same way for over 40 other major companies on my homepage. Compare Kentucky Farm Bureau with other insurance companies at: smartshopyourcarinsurance.com.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Auto & Home Insurance Rates

For pricing, the most reliable way to know if any auto or home insurance company is over-priced is to conduct your own pricing survey, by requesting price quotes from all the leading auto & homeowners insurance companies in your state to find the best company for you. However, JD Power studies, and a company’s recent rapid increase or decrease in market share, may be an indication whether a certain company has higher or lower auto or home insurance rates.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company has seen a slow decrease in Kentucky market share for both auto & home insurance in recent years, and received only the “about average” rating of three power circles in the category of pricing for the 2014 JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction study. However, no single insurance company has good rates for every person’s situation, and even if Kentucky Farm Bureau does not have the most competitive rates for a lot of consumers, it does not mean Kentucky Farm Bureau won’t have the best rates for your situation.

It can be an expensive mistake to make assumptions about an auto or home insurance company’s rates without getting a price quote, but to help you comparison shop:

The following companies offering auto insurance in Kentucky rated better than average for pricing in the 2014 JD Power auto insurance customer satisfaction study: GEICO, USAA, ALFA, and AUTO-OWNERS.

The following companies insuring homes in Kentucky rated better than average for pricing in the 2014 JD Power homeowners insurance customer satisfaction study: AMICA, GEICO, HARTFORD, and AUTO-OWNERS..

Some auto & homeowners insurance companies charge twice as much or more than other companies for the same coverage, and a company’s size or market share growth may have more to do with advertising than competitive rates. Like with any auto or home insurance company, if you are insured with Kentucky Farm Bureau, you may have good rates or you may be able to save a lot of money, while keeping the same or getting better coverage, by insuring with another company.

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. With auto & home insurance, you don’t get better service or coverage because you pay more. Some of the best companies have competitive rates. But 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!

Information & sources used in this review are explained here.

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