PEMCO Insurance History
PEMCO traces its history back to 1936 when Seattle schoolteacher Robert J. Handy created the Seattle Teachers Credit Union. Seven separate companies emerged out of that credit union, the largest of which is now known as PEMCO Insurance. The Seattle Teachers Credit Union, meanwhile, is now known as Inspirus Credit Union.
PEMCO is the largest personal lines insurance company in the Northwest United States, offering auto, home, boat, and umbrella coverage to policyholders across Washington and Oregon. The company differentiates itself from other insurance companies utilizing a “preferred risk” business model, which means PEMCO specifically targets low-risk policyholders. PEMCO wants to attract policyholders least likely to have traffic tickets or car accidents, for example, as well as policyholders who take proactive steps to protect their vehicles and property.
Today, PEMCO continues to be headquartered in Seattle and is based in the South Lake Union tech district. PEMCO also has regional offices in Lynnwood and Spokane.
PEMCO Insurance Rankings
PEMCO isn’t one of the largest car insurance companies in the United States, so it does not appear on the nationwide J.D. Power rankings. However, PEMCO is one of the largest car insurance companies in J.D. Power’s Northwest subregion, which includes five states in the Pacific Northwest.
PEMCO performs exceptionally well in the Northwest regional rankings. J.D. Power ranked PEMCO as the “highest in customer satisfaction among auto insurers in the Northwest region” every year from 2013 to 2019.
PEMCO received a perfect five-star rating in all six J.D. Power categories:
Overall Satisfaction: 5 out of 5
Policy Offerings: 5 out of 5
Price: 5 out of 5
Billing Process and Policy Information: 5 out of 5
Interaction: 5 out of 5
Claims: 5 out of 5
Only one other car insurance company received similar scores in the Northwest subregion: USAA. Overall, it’s rare to find any insurance company in any subregion to get perfect scores across all categories. The fact that PEMCO has received similar scores seven years in a row is significant.
However, PEMCO lags behind its competitors in terms of its financial strength and stability. PEMCO has one of the worst financial ratings among major car insurance providers in the United States. In 2016, A.M. Best downgraded PEMCO’s financial strength rating to B++ or “Good”, and that rating has not changed through 2019.
What Makes PEMCO Insurance Unique?
PEMCO has several features that make it unique:
Only Available in Washington and Oregon: PEMCO only serves residents of Washington and Oregon. The company has branded itself as, “The Defender of Your Northwest”.
Multiple Insurance Products: PEMCO offers numerous insurance products, including home, auto, umbrella, and life insurance.
Mutual Good Programs: PEMCO operates Mutual Good programs that aim to boost the community in various ways. PEMCO has programs to improve the environment, for example, enhance youth education programs, build stronger communities, and raise community safety, among other benefits.
Ideal for Those with Good Credit and a Clean History: PEMCO is unique among insurance companies. The company has a stated goal to attract policyholders with strong credit and a clean history. If you have a high credit score and minimal home or auto insurance claims on your record in the last seven years, then you will be able to enjoy very low rates with PEMCO.
Is PEMCO a Good Insurance Company? Our Review
PEMCO has been ranked as the best car insurance company in the Northwest United States for seven straight years by J.D. Power. The company is particularly well-respected for its claims satisfaction and customer service, although it also received perfect scores in terms of price, billing process, and policy offerings.
Despite the strong claims satisfaction and customer service ratings, PEMCO doesn’t charge significantly higher rates than its competitors. PEMCO is frequently the cheapest option for drivers in Washington and Oregon.
PEMCO also has a mission to specifically attract low-risk drivers and homeowners. If you have a long history of safe driving with no accidents, speeding tickets, or other incidents on your record, then you may be able to enjoy rock bottom rates through PEMCO.
Most ratings organizations reinforce the idea that PEMCO is a great insurance company. J.D. Power’s rankings speak for themselves, but other online review platforms are equally as positive. Typically, when searching for customer car insurance reviews online, you’ll find hundreds of complaints from people who had an unsatisfactory claims process. With PEMCO, it’s the opposite: customers are happy to share their wholesome experience with PEMCO.
Overall, the only bad thing about PEMCO is that it’s only available in Washington and Oregon.
PEMCO Auto Insurance Policies and Products
PEMCO separates itself from the competition with certain unique car insurance policies and products, including all of the following:
Supplemental Auto Insurance Coverage: PEMCO offers a standard range of collision, comprehensive, and liability coverage policies. However, customers can also add towing/labor, rental reimbursement, auto loan coverage, camper parts and equipment coverage, pet coverage, accidental coverage, and other bonus options.
Rideshare Coverage: PEMCO allows Uber or Lyft drivers to get additional coverage to protect them between rides.
Custom Parts, Equipment, and Trailer Coverage: PEMCO insures a lot of outdoorsy policyholders. The company offers specific insurance policies for campers, canopies, and tonneau covers, for example, as well as custom parts and equipment coverage for other items.
Timesaver Repairs: PEMCO has a preferred repair network called Timesaver Repairs. Shops on this list will work directly with the claims department to handle vehicle repairs. Customers can also select their own repair shop if they wish to do so.
PEMCO is a popular car insurance company for residents of Washington and Oregon. Every year from 2013 to 2019, PEMCO received J.D. Power’s highest award in terms of customer satisfaction for the Northwest subregion. The company also specifically targets low-risk individuals, including drivers and homeowners with a limited claims history, anyone with a good credit score, and those who take active steps to protect their property.
If you need good car insurance in the Pacific Northwest, then PEMCO is undoubtedly worth a look.