30 November 2020

Erie Insurance: An Overview


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Mila Araujo is a personal lines insurance broker and the director of personal insurance for Ogilvy Insurance. She is a personal insurance expert for The Balance.

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Mila Araujo

Updated January 15, 2020

In the personal insurance business since 1925, Erie Insurance has grown to be a multi-state, A.M. Best “A+” Superior rated company with over 5 million policies in force. Erie Insurance ranks high in customer satisfaction for auto claims and service, and provides car, homeowner, property, liability, life, and business insurance.

Erie Insurance may be a good fit for you if you live on the Eastern Seaboard or in the Midwest, have multiple insurance needs, just need car insurance, or want the ease of one provider. It’s also a good match if you prefer speaking with a human being about your insurance needs and claims. 

Speaking to an agent can have advantages over getting an online quote, where insurance is concerned. A live agent can identify more discounts, tailor quotes to your needs after gathering information, and can make coverage suggestions you might not figure out via an online form.

Erie Insurance is available in 13 states and districts including Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, New York, Ohio, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.

  • Multi-year rate lock

  • Home insurance guaranteed replacement

  • Multiple insurance coverage types

  • Limited geographic availability

  • Limited online services

  • Multi-Year Rate Lock: Lock in your car insurance rate for several years, as long as your address, car, or drivers on the policy do not change.
  • Home Insurance Guaranteed Replacement: While you can insure a home for actual cash value or replacement cost, Erie’s Guaranteed Replacement (if available; not available in all states) takes the “replacement cost” settlement option further by providing a little extra coverage for you if the replacement of your home exceeds the insured dwelling value found on the declaration page of your policy.
  • Multiple Insurance Coverage Types: Erie offers home, car, motorcycle, boat, life, and business insurance options. Having your insurance in one place can ease claim settlement if a claim impacts more than one policy. And, in some cases, it may give you a discount for combined insurance policies.
  • Limited geographic availability: Erie is available in 13 Mid-Atlantic and Midwestern states. So if you live on the West Coast, Erie most likely won’t be an option for your insurance needs.
  • Limited online services: Erie doesn’t offer many online services, but Erie’s agents can help over the phone.

Erie Insurance offers several types of insurance policies for personal and business needs.

  • Property insurance: Homeowners, renters, condos, and mobile homes 
  • Vehicle insurance: Cars, motorcycles, recreational vehicle insurances, boats, collector and classic cars, ATVs, snowmobiles, and golf carts
  • Personal insurance: Term, universal life, and whole-life insurance, along with insurance for retirement, personal catastrophe liability, long-term care riders, a Medicare supplement, and identity theft recovery 
  • Business insurance: Auto, restaurant, wholesaler-distributor, workers compensation, and other industry packages

Erie’s Advance Quote discount gives a reduction if you get your quote 7-60 days pre-renewal. You can also save if you have safety equipment such as fire alarms and sprinklers.

When it comes to your vehicles, Erie offers multi-car discounts, plus vehicle storage, young and college-attending driver discounts, lump-sum premium payment discounts, diminishing deductibles for years without claims, and discounts for safety equipment. If you lock your keys in your car, Erie will reimburse you up to $75 for what you paid out of pocket for a locksmith on the insured car.

Erie offers a multi-policy discount of up to 25% if you insure your home and car.

Erie Insurance also has a few unique types of coverage and benefits that not every insurance company may offer.

ERIE YourTurn for young drivers is an app-based driving telematics program that tracks your teen’s safe driving habits, giving them the chance to earn rewards. It also offers First Accident Forgiveness. If you’ve been an Erie customer for at least three years, there’s no surcharge for your first accident.

You can also get insurance for your computers, tech equipment, and even your pet. If your furry friend gets hurt in a car accident that you make a claim for, Erie will pay up to $500 of vet bills (per pet, up to two pets at a total of $1,000).

If you’re on a road trip with friends and your insured car fails, Erie will give you up to $75 per passenger to make paying for your food and lodging needs that much easier.

Erie insurance ranks very high across several J.D. Power studies. It ranked second-highest in overall customer satisfaction among homeowners in the 2019 J.D. Power U.S. Home Insurance Study, with a rating of “Among the Best.” Erie was also rated highest in customer satisfaction for providing an excellent purchasing experience for the seventh year in a row in J.D. Power’s 2019 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study. It ranked the highest for auto insurance customer satisfaction in the Mid-Atlantic region in the 2019 J.D. Power U.S. Auto Insurance Study, too.

A.M. Best has also awarded Erie Insurance’s life, casualty, and property insurance arms financial strength ratings between “A (Excellent)” and “A+ (Superior).”

Lastly, Erie Insurance is considered a top 10 writer of homeowners insurance in the U.S. based on the value of its direct premiums written and its market share.

With over 90 years in the insurance business, Erie Insurance is a solid company with strong financial strength and a good track record for customer satisfaction, pricing, and claims handling. So if you’re shopping for insurance and Erie Insurance operates in your state or district, a discussion with one of its agents may reveal if its a good fit for your needs.

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