We have created our life insurance reviews with one focus in mind: to inform our visitors on the top life insurance companies in the U.S. Our goal is simple, to provide the best life insurance quotes and rates to our clients by aligning them with the company that best fits each client’s individual needs, goals and objectives. In this Erie Insurance review, we will discuss the company’s history, financials, ratings, products and services. Is Erie Insurance the right company for you?
Review of Erie Insurance: Auto, Home, Life and Business Insurance
Erie Insurance is one of over 800 life insurance companies. With so many companies to choose from it can be daunting when trying to determine who is right for you. The best place to start is through the gathering of information. With that in mind, let’s learn a little more about the company.
About Erie Insurance Co
History – In 1925, two men decided they wanted to create a life insurance company that would focus solely on customer service. While others would balance customer service with the need to make money, Erie wanted the customers to have the polices that best suited their lives both now and years into the future. On a ten-cent tablet, the two men, Crawford and Hirt, wrote down a business plan and they managed to raise the $31,000 they needed from 90 stakeholders to get the business going.
After Hirt actually insured his Dodge touring car as the first policy, the company continued to grow with two eyes on customer service. In fact, their logo had the ERIE raised in the word service; e.g. sERvIcE. Within three years, the business started to grow and they encouraged all policyholders to phone one of the two owners directly if they had a problem with their policy.
Over the decades, Erie Insurance opened in more states and with more policies available for the American people. Now, they have over five million insurance policies in force and this is managed by over 5,000 members of staff. In 1967, the Erie Insurance Group opened a brand-new subsidiary for the industry named ‘Erie Family Life Insurance Company’ and this is where our focus is going to be today in terms of products.
Today, Erie Insurance is available across twelve different states as well as the District of Columbia; this includes Tennessee, Virginia, New York, Ohio, Kentucky, Wisconsin, and North Carolina.
Financials – According to their 2016 financial reports, nearly $200 million was collected in 2016 alone in insurance and annuity premiums which was an increase of over 4.5% compared to the same figure in 2015. Furthermore, they have $6.3 billion worth of direct written premium with the number of policies in force growing by nearly 3% year-on-year. Finally, Erie Insurance also has over $1.55 billion in assets which has increased in the last two years alone from $1.31 billion.
Erie Insurance Ratings
If you really want to get a good indication of the security of a life insurance company, we find that the financial ratings are always a good place to start so this is what we have for you here. After finances, we also have information pertaining to customer service so you get the full picture (although we’re not sure you need the latter with the focus Erie Insurance has on customer service!).
A.M. Best – When it comes to financial strength, there’s no better agency than A.M. Best since they’ve been providing the market with ratings for over 100 years. As we discovered earlier, this business has two separate entities depending on what type of product you’re looking for; while Erie Insurance covers everything from business insurance to motorcycle insurance coverage, Erie Family Life Insurance Company tends to deal with life insurance alone and we’re going to take a deeper look at the products a little later.
With A.M. Best, the two entities have two separate financial ratings with the Insurance Group earning a rating of A+ while the life insurance entity has been rated at A. Considered ‘Superior’ and ‘Excellent’ respectively, these two grades are superb and two of the best ratings you’ll find in the insurance market. When experts give advice as to which provider to choose, they often say a company who has been granted at least an A- by A.M. Best and Erie Insurance has earned higher than this on both sides of the business.
Essentially, this means the company has enough money to survive the short and long-term while also paying out all claims.
Standard & Poor’s – Although this particular provider hasn’t been listed with Moody’s or Fitch Ratings, they have been given a credit rating from Standard & Poor’s and this little letter will tell us how able the company is to pay all liabilities such as claims, interest, and debt. With a rating of Api, the ‘A’ means they have a strong ability to meet all financial commitments even though they remain slightly susceptible to changes in economic conditions. With the ‘pi’ section of the grade, this is known as a ‘qualifier’ and it means the grade was given after a combination of public domain information as well as the published financial accounts for the year.
Better Business Bureau (BBB) – Sometimes, companies find it hard to juggle so many insurance products and still offer a good service and this has been seen many times in the past. However, the A+ rating from the BBB shows us Erie Insurance has no such issue. For the insurance group as a whole, they achieved the best possible rating which shows they don’t receive too many complaints, they have secure business practices, and they’ve never been involved in advertisement or branding issues.
Customer Service – Before we go through the products that will be available to you with Erie Insurance, we first want to discuss the customer service of the brand because they provide a perfect example of how it should be done for all companies in the industry. Nowadays, the journey seems to start with the ‘Contact Us’ page and this page for Erie Insurance has been split into different sections to make it easier for those with certain needs. Whether your request and call relates to a claim, office location, a specific agent, media relations, or customer care, you’ll find specific numbers and contact information so you aren’t wasting fifteen minutes just trying to get through to the right person.
What’s more, they even have an extensive list of all their offices and phone numbers so you can call your local office directly. At a time where most companies are outsourcing their customer service and call centers, Erie Insurance is teaching the industry a lesson in how to interact with customers.
Products offered by Erie Insurance
Erie Insurance has an extensive product offering, including annuities, home/auto, business and life insurance.
First and foremost, Erie Insurance offers annuities as an investment tool for those looking for additional retirement income. Depending on where you are in life, you have an opportunity to receive the benefits immediately or allow the fund to grow on a tax-deferred basis. When it comes to Erie Insurance, you have a plethora of options for annuities including;
- Flexible-Premium Deferred Annuity – With what they call the ‘FPDA’, the premiums are completely flexible which means you contribute if and when you can rather than being locked into a specific amount per month.
- Single-Premium Immediate Annuity – With the SPIA, this can be a great idea if you’re looking for a simple, easy to understand, no hassle annuity. After setting up the policy, you can choose between being paid over a set period of years or for the rest of your life.
- Single-Premium Deferred Annuity – the SPDA allows a minimum investment of $10,000 before then guaranteeing a period of time between three, five, or seven years of growth.
In truth, Erie Insurance Group’s foray into the insurance market is wide and varied depending on what you’re looking for. Below, you’ll see the different options available;
- Home Insurance – If you want to keep your home protected against weather damage and general wear/tear, home insurance is the best way to do it. With Erie Insurance, you can buy condo insurance, renter’s insurance, homeowner’s insurance, flood insurance, personal valuables insurance, and mobile home insurance. As you can see, this really allows you to meet your needs in the future.
- Auto/Leisure Insurance – With this department, you have an opportunity to purchase motorcycle insurance, auto insurance, insurance for teen drivers, insurance for car collectors, and even boat insurance. Although we do our best to stay safe on the road, we can never be sure of the actions of others and this could place us into danger. By having insurance, we stay protected against what could happen.
- Business Insurance – Finally, insurance is also important for your business just in case there’s a natural disaster, burglary, or any other type of damage/theft. For this reason, Erie Insurance has a number of products for auto services, wholesalers/distributors, restaurants, and more.
Life Insurance offered by Erie Insurance
When it comes to Erie Family Life, the section of the business dedicated to life insurance, you’ll struggle to find a better solution for your needs regardless of whether you’re planning for retirement, paying your child through college, or just planning your estate for what happens after you’re gone. With Erie Family Life Insurance Company, up to $250,000 of coverage can be achieved for less than $15 per month as long as you meet the requirements which shows the affordability of the policies offered.
Term Life Insurance
Available at lengths of 10, 15, 20, and 30 years, this is a great way to cover those expenses that come to an end within a certain period of time. Without the need for a medical examination, the simplified issue life insurance policy can be set up after a few simple medical questions and coverage can reach $90,000.
With level term life insurance, you payment is fixed for the term, so your premium is the same from the last month compared to the first month no matter what length you choose. Regardless of age, health, and occupation, you can also convert this term life policy into a permanent life insurance policy with a simple phone call at any time.
Whole Life Insurance
For the duration of your policy (until you pass away), your death benefit will remain at the same and your premiums will not change even if your circumstances do change. Compared to the term life policy, this will remain in place until death and you also have cash value growth on your coverage, up to $90,000.
With whole life insurance, Erie Family Life throws in accidental death benefits for no extra charge which allows for more protection. Once again, only a few medical questions are required and you should receive an answer for whether you’re eligible for coverage within fifteen minutes.
Erie also focuses on whole life insurance for children. The company understands the benefits to your child, including cash value growth and protecting your child’s (or grandchild’s) future insurability.
Universal Life Insurance
As the third and final option, we have universal life insurance and the key word for this type of policy is ‘flexibility’. For starters, your payments will be flexible and the coverage amount can be adjusted so it suits your needs at every given point in time. In addition to building a cash value, you can also have immediate access to funds for.
With universal life insurance, Erie Family Life offers several features including a guaranteed interest rate, guaranteed cash value, guaranteed level death benefit, flexible payments, tax-free policy loans, and more. If you need to borrow a loan against the cash value of your policy, this can be achieved and this is a superb feature to have.
Erie Insurance offers some great products and combines its awesome product line with fantastic customer service. If you have already made the decision to choose Erie Insurance for your insurance needs, then we say go for it.
However, if you are considering life insurance and you are on the fence with whether or not Erie Family Life Insurance Company is right for you, please give us a call or run some online life insurance quotes. We are here to serve!
So what are you waiting for? Give us a call today to see what we can do for you!