7.6 / 10

State Auto Homeowners Insurance Review

State Auto provides affordable coverage, including protection for personal belongings and business property, service line coverage, and equipment breakdown coverage. But many of the best features are only available in the higher product tiers.

Tim Torres

Tim Torres

Published September 10, 2020

Methodology
info

At Policygenius, we're committed to providing objective and transparent advice through strict editorial standards to help you get insurance right. Read more about our methodology.

State Auto

OVERALL

7.6

THE GOOD

    Several available coverage add-ons

    Multiple discount opportunities

    Accepts all dog breeds

THE BAD

    Limited dwelling coverage options

    Only available in a handful of states

THE BOTTOM LINE

Don’t let the automotive name fool you. State Auto sells homeowners insurance, too — and for a decent price. If you live in one of the 28 states where it’s available, State Auto can provide affordable and high-quality coverage, including enhanced protection for your personal belongings and business property, service line coverage, and equipment breakdown coverage. However, many of the best features are only available in the higher product tiers, meaning you may need to pay a significantly higher premium to have access to State Auto’s most valuable coverage features.

Cost

info

8.3

Confidence

info

8.5

Customer Satisfac...

info

8.3

Policy Options

info

6.0

Customer Experience

info

6.7

STATE AUTO COMPANY SPOTLIGHT

N/A

info

J.D. Power Rating

A trusted customer satisfaction and product quality research agency

A+

info

BBB Rating

A nonprofit organization focusing on marketplace trust and product quality

A-

info

A.M. Best Rating

100-year-old U.S. credit rating agency focused on the insurance industry

policygeniusSymbol

The Bottom Line

State Auto, one of the oldest and largest insurance companies in the United States, offers homeowners insurance in three separate product tiers: Standard, Protection Plus, and Premier. While customers have a variety of coverages to choose from, the reality is State Auto’s base policy, the Standard option, may be a little too standard since many of the most valuable policy add-ons are only available in the higher-priced product tiers. Furthermore, State Auto has minimal dwelling coverage enhancements compared to many of its competitors, limiting structural protection for your home.

The Details


greenCheckCircle

The Good

Several available coverage add-ons. State Auto offers several optional coverage add-ons, including valuable endorsements like service line coverage and equipment breakdown coverage.

Multiple discount opportunities. You can lower your insurance premiums by taking advantage of several available discounts offered by State Auto. Protective devices like smoke alarms, fortified roofing, and smart home devices can help you save money.

Accepts all dog breeds. Most homeowners insurance companies are picky when it comes to covering dog breeds. State Auto is one of the few insurers to provide liability protection for all breeds, including mastiffs, pit bulls, and rottweilers.

redXCircle

The Bad

Limited dwelling coverage options. Many companies offer extended replacement cost coverage of up to 50%, meaning your insurer will pay up to an extra 50% of your dwelling coverage amount if rebuild costs happen to exceed your specified coverage limit. While State Auto does offer this valuable coverage add-on, it’s only offered up to 25% of your dwelling limit. That may not be enough to cover homes in disaster-prone areas.

Only available in a handful of states. State Auto’s insurance offerings are only available in a smattering of states in the Midwest, South, and along the East Coast. Shoppers in several states — including California, New York, and New Jersey — will have to look elsewhere for coverage.

The Breakdown

Cost

info

8.3

Homeowners insurance rates are largely impacted by the location of your home. If you live in a densely populated city or a coastal area prone to natural disasters like hurricanes, you’ll likely have to pay higher premiums than if your home was in a milder climate in the suburbs. Your home's construction type and age will also affect your rates, as will the coverage amounts in your policy.

You can expect to pay around $1,803 annually for around $300,000 of coverage for State Auto homeowners insurance, according to Policygenius quoting data. That's about five percent higher than the average quote with Policygenius. Homeowners insurance with State Auto should be fairly affordable for most customers, and you can drive down rates even further if you’re eligible for the following discounts.

Discounts

State Auto gives you several ways to save money on premiums, including a discount if you have smart lights or thermostats installed in your home, and a discount for homeowners with recently renovated roofs.

Here are the discount opportunities you can expect to see from State Auto:

  • Advanced quote discount. Receive a discount if you get a home insurance quote more than eight days before your coverage starts
  • Dwelling age discount. Save money if you live in a newer home
  • Previous carrier discount. If you had coverage through your previous home insurance company for at least three years, you get a discount
  • Alarm systems and protective devices discount. Get lower rates by installing burglar alarms, smoke alarms and other safety devices
  • Roof construction discount. Save more if you have a new roof or if it’s constructed with materials like concrete, metal, slate, or tile
  • Smart home discount. If you have smart smoke alarms, thermostats, or lights installed in your home, you can save on insurance premiums
  • Fortified Home discount. Houses that are built with materials that can withstand severe weather — such as hurricanes, strong wind, and hail — are eligible for this discount
  • Loyalty discount. State Auto policyholder five years? That’s another discount
  • Multi-policy discount. Bundle your home insurance with an auto insurance policy to save on premiums

Confidence

info

8.5

Insurance companies need to be able to pay out any claims customers may have in the future. That means insurers must be financially stable enough to weather economic downturns and survive long down the road. To see how company coffers are doing we turn to independent credit rating agencies that keep tabs on the insurance industry.

State Automobile Mutual Insurance Company was founded in 1921 in Columbus, Ohio. So, it has been around a long while now. Unfortunately, the only agency rating available is from A.M. Best. That’s the rating we’re basing our score on.

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Year founded: 1921
  • A.M. Best: A-
  • Moody’s: N/A
  • Standard & Poor’s: N/A

Credit rating firm A.M. Best focuses on the insurance industry. Their A- rating for State Auto means customers can expect to have their claims paid out without worry.

Analysis firm Standard & Poor’s has not scored State Auto. Moody’s does not have a current rating either.

Customer Satisfaction

info

8.3

Currently, there’s not much of a window into what customers think of State Auto. The company is absent from J.D. Power’s homeowners satisfaction survey, nor are there pages about the company on Consumer Affairs, Consumers Advocate, or Trustpilot.

Here’s what we got so far as customer satisfaction ratings go:

  • BBB: A+
  • Consumers Advocate: N/A
  • Consumer Affairs: N/A
  • J.D. Power: N/A
  • Trustpilot: N/A
  • NAIC complaint index: 0.85

The Better Business Bureau looks at a company’s advertising and customer complaints. They give State Auto an A+. There’s a 1-star customer review rating based on 64 reviews. Customers often have issues with claims and payments, according to those reviews.

Third-party review site Consumers Advocate focuses on a company’s reputation, coverage details, customer service, and stability. They do not have a review available for State Auto. Similarly, customer review sites Consumer Affairs and Trustpilot do not have State Auto pages. J.D. Power, which ranks insurance companies based on billing and policy information, and pricing, did not include State Auto in any recent homeowners insurance studies.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), which tracks complaints submitted to state insurance departments, gives State Auto a rating of 0.85, which is below the baseline average of 1. A zero means there weren’t enough customer complaints to count. This means barely anyone complained to their state about State Auto.

Policy Options

info

6.0

State Auto offers three coverage packages separated into “good”, “better”, and “best” tiers, or Standard, Protection Plus, and Premier. State Auto also has condo and renters insurance available.

The Protection Plus and Premier policies are the noteworthy packages here. State Auto touts customizability but basic features like replacement cost contents coverage are not included in the base policy — you need to add it as an endorsement. State Auto has several optional endorsements, including valuable add-ons such as utility service line coverage and home appliance breakdown coverage, which are worthwhile features only a handful of companies offer.

Since replacement cost is included with Protection Plus, we recommend most shoppers skip the Standard tier altogether and go for the Protection Plus plan to get the best amount of coverage possible.

Standard

The Standard package includes all basic homeowners protections such as:

  • Dwelling coverage. Covers the cost of rebuilding or repairing your home in the event of a loss
  • Other structures coverage. Covers other structures on your property such as garages, workshops, or tool sheds
  • Personal belongings. Covers damaged or stolen property, including furniture, clothing, fur, jewelry, and other valuable items
  • Additional living expenses. If you can’t live in your home due to damage or repairs, this pays for hotel stays
  • Personal liability. Pays legal costs if you or other covered persons suffer personal injury or property damage
  • Medical expenses. Pays medical bills for anyone injured on your property

There are some noteworthy coverages included in the Standard package, too, like watercraft protection for your dinghies and open-peril property protection, which is a type of all-risk policy that will pay out for damages or repairs to property for most types of property loss.

Standard package policyholders can add the following endorsements for an additional premium. These are also automatically included in the Protection Plus and Premier tiers:

  • Replacement cost contents coverage. Provides replacement cost coverage for your personal property
  • Identity theft coverage. Includes recovery services, education and prevention assistance, and fraud expense coverage up to $15,000

Protection Plus

Customers who opt for this package get everything in the Standard policy, plus expanded replacement cost personal property coverage, identity theft coverage, and watercraft liability coverage, as well as:

  • Golf cart coverage. Protection for rented golf carts to and from the links and on public roads
  • Freezer contents coverage. State Auto will pay for the loss of any frozen goodies, medication, or other contents in case of a loss
  • Arson, fraud, or theft reward coverage. If you happen to suffer any of these three unfortunate events, State Auto will pay out up to $1,000 of the reward for any information about the incident
  • Computer replacement off premises coverage. Pays for the loss of any computers used for your off-premises business
  • Business property coverage. This pays for the loss of any computers or equipment used in your home office
  • Credit card coverage. Up to $3,000 in replacement coverage for credit card loss
  • Lock replacement. You guessed it: Covers the costs for replacing locks
  • Fire department service charge coverage. State Auto will foot the bill if your local department charges you for fighting a fire

Premier

The Premier package offers everything in the first two tiers, including the optional add-ons and replacement cost contents coverage, and unlimited additional living expenses coverage (for up to two years).

  • Extended replacement cost dwelling coverage. Increases your dwelling coverage an additional 25 percent in the event a loss exceeds your specified coverage limit
  • Land restoration. State Auto will pay for the replacement of any trees or shrubs damaged in a loss
  • Vault coverage for jewelry, securities, and silverware. State Auto will pay for the costs of keeping your valuables locked up safe and secret
  • Volunteer wrongful acts coverage. Liability protection in case you volunteer somewhere and find yourself on the wrong side of a lawsuit
  • Increased limits for business property coverage. Up to $10,000 of increased coverage for your home office equipment

Policyholders can add the following endorsements to any package:

  • Home-sharing coverage. If you rent out whole homes or individual rooms using Airbnb or other home-sharing services, you can get coverage for your property in case it’s damaged or vandalized
  • Home systems breakdown coverage. This optional coverage pays for repairs of your air-conditioning unit, furnace, stove, or other home appliances in the event they break down
  • Service line breakdown coverage. Covers excavation and repairs if utility lines that run underneath your property are damaged

Depending on which state you live in, these options will vary. For a personalized look at coverage options, speak to a Policygenius home insurance agent. For more information about what homeowners insurance can cover, refer to our comprehensive homeowners insurance explainer.

Customer Experience

info

6.7

In the event of a property damage claim, State Auto will help you find a repair center. If you suffer property damage in a natural disaster or bad storm, State Auto also has a dedicated catastrophe claims center that assigns you a representative and adjusters who will immediately travel to your home to assess damages, make estimates, and help you settle your claim as quickly as possible.

However, you won’t find much in the way of online tools, at least through State Auto. There’s no mobile app, no way to apply online, and no online quote tool at State Auto’s website. However, you can easily apply and receive a quote online through Policygenius.

State availability

State Auto is available in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Digital tools

  • Online bill payment and policy management
  • Online claim submission and management

The application

To apply or receive an estimation you need to contact a Policygenius agent or call State Auto’s customer service.

Ease of claims

You can file a claim online or by calling customer service.

Payment methods

  • Credit or debit card
  • Check
  • Online

Policygenius offers insurance policies from many of the nation's top insurers, who pay us a commission for our services. However, all editorial choices are made independently.

Reviews Expert

Tim Torres

Reviews Expert

Tim Torres is the reviews editor at Policygenius. His work has appeared in Computer Shopper, Tom's Guide, and numerous other outlets over the last ten years.

Policygenius’ editorial content is not written by an insurance agent. It’s intended for informational purposes and should not be considered legal or financial advice. Consult a professional to learn what financial products are right for you.

Was this article helpful?

thumbsUp
thumbsDown