Farmers vs. USAA: Pros & Cons (2021)

Our Farmers vs. USAA auto insurance guide will help you choose between two companies with customers pleased with the claims process. We look at rates for both companies based on age, driving record, and credit score. USAA is available only to members of the military, veterans, and their immediate family members. USAA has cheaper auto insurance rates overall, but Farmers has a wider variety of discounts.

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Rachel Bodine graduated from college with a BA in English. She has since worked as a Feature Writer in the insurance industry and gained a deep knowledge of state and countrywide insurance laws and rates. Her research and writing focus on helping readers understand their insurance coverage and how to find savings. Her expert advice on insurance has been featured on sites like PhotoEnforced, All...

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insurance...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years

UPDATED: Jul 18, 2021

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What You Should Know

  • USAA is available only to members of the military, veterans, and their immediate family members.
  • You can save 42 percent on auto insurance for your teen driver by choosing USAA over Farmers.
  • Farmers has a wider variety of discounts, but USAA has some discounts as high as 90 percent.

In our Farmers vs. USAA auto insurance guide, we examine rates by your particular characteristics: age, gender, marital status, driving record, and credit score. We also compare discounts and ratings from credible agencies that rate all of the best auto insurance companies.

USAA will have some of the best rates across the board but is available only to members of the military, veterans, and their immediate family members.

You can still find cheap auto insurance rates. Keep reading to compare Farmers insurance and USAA insurance, or enter your ZIP code to find affordable auto insurance rates from local companies in your area.

Is Farmers auto insurance or USAA auto insurance cheaper based on age?

The older we get, the more driving experience we have. auto insurance companies use age as one of the most influential factors in determining your car insurance rates.

It’s legal to base auto insurance rates on marital status and gender in most states; however, some states have outlawed it. Let’s compare Farmers and USAA auto insurance rates based on age, gender, and marital status.

Farmers vs USAA Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates by Age, Gender, and Marital Status
Age, Gender, and Marital StatusFarmers Average Annual RatesUSAA Average Annual Rates
Single 17-year-old female$8,522$4,808
Single 17-year-old male$9,144$5,386
Single 25-year-old female$2,947$1,989
Single 25-year-old male$3,041$2,126
Married 35-year-old female$2,557$1,551
Married 35-year-old male$2,558$1,540
Married 60-year-old female$2,337$1,450
Married 60-year-old male$2,448$1,449
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USAA is a much better option if you have a young driver in your household. You will save 42 percent with USAA to cover your teen driver.

When it comes to auto insurance for drivers 25 and older, USAA is around 37 percent cheaper than Farmers.

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Is Farmers auto insurance or USAA auto insurance cheaper based on driving record?

Speeding tickets, accidents, or DUIs on your driving record will raise your auto insurance rates no matter what company you pick because you become a high-risk driver.

Farmers vs USAA Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates by Driving Record
InfractionFarmers Average Annual RatesUSAA Average Annual Rates
Clean record$3,461$1,934
With one speeding violation$4,079$2,193
With one accident$4,519$2,516
With one DUI$4,719$3,506
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Again, USAA will usually have the best rates, but it’s also important to take a closer look at how punitive each company is if you sign up with a clean driving record but then later get an infraction.

Farmers is not as punitive with current customers as USAA. If you have a clean record now and choose Farmers, your rates would increase by only 18 percent if you got a speeding ticket, 31 percent if you caused an accident, and 36 percent if you got a DUI.

With USAA, your rates would increase by 13 percent if you got a speeding ticket, 30 percent if you caused an accident, and 81 percent if you got a DUI.

Is Farmers auto insurance or USAA auto insurance cheaper based on credit score?

A good credit score can drop in a matter of months if you experience some type of financial trauma such as medical debt or going through a divorce.

In most states it is legal for car insurance companies to base rates on your credit score; however, some are outlawing this along with basing rates on gender and marital status.

Based on the assumption that those with higher credit scores are more responsible and overall safer drivers less likely to file a claim, auto insurance companies justify using your credit score to determine your rates.

Let’s take a look at how Farmers and USAA address rates for drivers with low credit scores.

Farmers vs USAA Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates by Credit Score
Credit ScoreFarmers Average Annual RatesUSAA Average Annual Rates
Good Credit (670-739)$3,677$1,821
Fair Credit Score (580-669)$3,899$2,220
Poor Credit Score (300-579)$4,864$3,691
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No matter what your credit score is, your rates will be cheaper with USAA than with Farmers.

Once you are with Farmers, and your credit score drops, expect your auto insurance rates to increase by 32 percent as compared to USAA which will more than double.

Before you judge these two companies’ rates based on credit score alone, read about your state auto insurance requirements and examine rates from a variety of companies.

Hopefully, if you have bad credit, you live in a state that has outlawed this practice.

Does Farmers or USAA have better auto insurance discounts?

Auto insurance company discounts vary widely, and they are usually based on a company’s values and philosophy. That’s why it pays to shop around, especially if you have a bad driving record or low credit score. Discounts can help offset high rates.

Farmers vs USAA Auto Insurance Discounts
DiscountsFarmers Discount Availability and PercentageUSAA Discount Availability and Percentage
Adaptive Headlightsyesn/a
Anti-lock Brakesyesn/a
Anti-Theftyesn/a
Claim Freeyes12
Continuous Coverageyesn/a
Daytime Running Lightsyesn/a
Defensive Driveryes3
Distant Studentyesn/a
Driver's Edn/a3
Driving Device/Appyes5
Early Signingyes12
Emergency Deploymentyesn/a
Engaged Coupleyesn/a
Family Legacyyes10
Family Planyesn/a
Farm Vehicleyesn/a
Federal Employeeyesn/a
Garaging/Storingyes90
Good Credityesn/a
Good Studentn/a3
Green Vehicle5n/a
Homeowneryesn/a
Life Insuranceyesn/a
Loyaltyyesn/a
Marriedyesn/a
Militaryyesn/a
Military Garagingn/a15
Multiple Vehiclesyesn/a
New Graduateyesn/a
Newer Vehicleyes12
Paperless Documentsyesn/a
Paperless/Auto Billingn/a3
Recent Retireesyesn/a
Renteryesn/a
Roadside Assistanceyesn/a
Safe Drivern/a12
Stable Residenceyesn/a
Switching Provideryesn/a
VIN Etchingyesn/a
Young Drivern/a75
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When comparing discounts offered by either company, Farmers has a total of 35 auto insurance discounts, but our data source doesn’t include the percentage of each discount. USAA has a total of 14 discounts.

USAA offers auto insurance discounts between 10 and 75 percent, and the best discounts are for garaging your vehicle while deployed and also for teen drivers.

The discounts offered by auto insurance companies often target specific types of drivers, so, when you get your USAA and Farmers quotes, be sure to ask if there are any additional discounts.

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What types of auto insurance coverages are offered by Farmers and USAA?

Since both Farmers and USAA are two of the 10 companies that make up the most of the market share, they have the means to offer a wider variety of auto insurance coverages that go beyond the standard six coverages which are listed below.

Be sure you understand the various auto insurance coverage types before purchasing each one:

  • Liability auto insurance coverage – bodily injury and property damage
  • Comprehensive auto insurance coverage
  • Collision auto insurance coverage
  • Uninsured/Underinsured auto insurance coverage
  • Medical Payments (MedPay) auto insurance coverage – particularly important in states that require no-fault auto insurance
  • Personal Injury Protection (PIP) auto insurance coverage

Be sure to take a closer look at any specialty coverages such as rental reimbursement, roadside assistance, guaranteed auto protection (GAP), mechanical breakdown, and recreational vehicles such as ATVs or boats.

Does Farmers or USAA have better mobile apps?

Usage-based auto insurance has become an individualized trend in the last decade or so, and all of the bigger auto insurance companies have a driving app that uses your mobile phone or a device installed into your auto.

Large auto insurance companies also provide a more general app to enable you to view your policy, make changes, and pay your bill. Usually, your Farmers login or USAA login will work with both the general app and the driving app.

Read our Farmers Signal review and compare it to USAA’s SafePilot to decide if usage-based auto insurance is right for you.

How do Farmers and USAA auto insurance compare in financial strength and customer satisfaction?

Buying auto insurance is a big financial responsibility, so you want to make sure you are choosing the right company that will be there for you when you need it.

A company’s financial strength, customer satisfaction with the claims process, and customer complaints should be examined before you make your decision.

The following three agencies provide insight into these factors:

A.M. Best scores companies based on their ability to meet their ongoing insurance obligations such as balancing premiums collected and claims paid. The highest score A.M. Best awards is Superior A++.

Consumer Reports collects annual data from its subscribers regarding customer satisfaction of the Farmers claims process and the USAA claims process, step by step. In their 2017 survey, 27 insurance companies were rated, and scores ranged between 86 to 96.

And the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) calculates a complaint ratio based on the total number of customers against the total number of complaints. In 2017, the national average complaint ratio was 1. The lower the ratio, the better.

Let’s take a closer look at external ratings for Farmers and USAA.

Farmers vs USAA Company Ratings
Rating AgencyFarmersUSAA
AM Best RatingAA++
Consumer Reports8995
NAIC Company Complaint Ratio0.590.74
NAIC Total Complaints7296
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Both Farmers and USAA are highly rated when it comes to customer satisfaction with the claims process. Farmers has earned A from A.M. Best and USAA has earned an A++ which is the highest possible rating.

USAA, however, has a higher customer complaint ratio and a higher number of complaints overall.

Ready to buy auto insurance? When you’re unsure which company to choose, you can always use our FREE comparison tool to compare auto insurance quotes from the auto insurance companies in your area.

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