Safeco Insurance History
Safeco was founded in Seattle, Washington in 1923 as the General Insurance Company of America. The company specialized in property and casualty insurance while selling car insurance from its headquarters in downtown Seattle. Safeco still sells certain insurance products under the General Insurance brand.
In the 1950s, the company founded the Selective Auto and Fire Ensurance Company of America, also known as S.A.F.E. Co. The company sold car insurance and life insurance under both brands throughout the 1950s. In the 1960s, however, the company officially changed its name from the General Insurance Company of America to Safeco Corporation.
Over the years, Safeco mostly specialized in insuring drivers along the west coast. After several acquisitions and major restructuring operations, however, Safeco expanded across the United States. In 2008, Liberty Mutual acquired Safeco. Today, Safeco continues offering property and casualty insurance across the country.
Safeco Insurance Rankings
Safeco has about average ratings from most consumers and review websites. The company had more than the average number of complaints to state regulators, for example, but it scores about average in most J.D. Power rankings and similar surveys.
Insurance Shopping (Auto): About average
Auto Insurance Claims Satisfaction: About average
Home Insurance: Among the rest
Property Claims: About average
Safeco also has an “A” or “Excellent” rating from A.M. Best, which measures the financial strength of insurance companies. Other insurance companies typically score somewhere between A- and A+ from A.M. Best, putting Safeco right in the middle in terms of financial strength.
What Makes Safeco Insurance Unique?
Safeco offers a range of insurance policies under both the Safeco brand and the Liberty Mutual family. Some of the things that make Safeco unique include:
Website and Mobile App: Safeco’s website and app are useful and easy to navigate. You can log in and track a claim, get a quote, pay your bill, download policy documents, and more. Both the website and app make it easy to manage all aspects of your Safeco insurance.
Other Insurance Products: Safeco offers umbrella insurance, landlord protection insurance, and other insurance products. Insurance is available directly through Safeco and through the Liberty Mutual family of insurance companies.
Good Home Insurance: Safeco is best-known for its car and home insurance. Unique home insurance policy options include identity recovery (for victims of identity theft), valuable articles protection, equipment breakdown coverage, personal property replacement, single loss deductible, and more.
Good Value for Some, But Not Others: Safeco has mixed ratings for price. Some drivers claim they got great, low rates from Safeco. Others claim Safeco was hundreds of dollars more expensive than similar options. Your mileage may vary. Younger drivers and drivers who drive fewer than 8,000 miles per year seem to get the best rates from Safeco.
Is Safeco a Good Insurance Company? Our Review
Safeco isn’t one of America’s largest or best-known insurance companies. It also isn’t the best insurance company for customer service or value, getting mixed ratings in each category. Generally, Safeco customers pay a little more for car insurance without getting significantly better claims satisfaction than competing insurers.
Depending on your unique demographics, insurance needs, and location, however, you may find Safeco the right insurance option for you. Some people like the experience of dealing with a smaller company while still getting the amenities of a larger group of insurance companies (because Safeco is part of the Liberty Mutual Group).
Safeco may also be a good choice for those who need home insurance. The company offers good, customizable home insurance. That home insurance comes with several unique options, like the ability to add identity theft protection for $1 per month.
Safeco Auto Insurance Policies and Products
Safeco has a standard range of auto insurance policy options and products. The company also has certain unique auto insurance policies. Notable things about Safeco’s insurance include:
Glass Repair and Replacement: Safeco lets policyholders get their glass repaired or replaced for free (just pay your deductible) at the shop of your choice, or at one of dozens of Safelite Solutions’ locations across the country. If you’re near a Safelite Solutions location, then the company may even send a technician to your home or office to replace your glass on-site.
Safeco Claims Valet Service: If you get into an accident, Safeco may send a valet driver to help you out. That valet driver will deliver a rental vehicle to you, drive your vehicle to an authorized repair shop (if your car is driveable), then return your repaired car to your location, all at no additional cost.
Safeco RightTrack: Like most other major insurance companies in the United States, Safeco offers a telematics driver tracking program. RightTrack tracks your driving behavior and gives you a discount ranging from 5% to 30%. Safeco ships you a device that attaches to your vehicle and tracks your driving habits over a 90 day period.
Unique Car Insurance Options: In addition to offering standard car insurance, Safeco has certain unique car insurance options. All Safeco policyholders receive reimbursement for first aid up to $10,000, for example. Safeco also offers accident forgiveness and a diminishing deductible in addition to a standard range of auto insurance discounts.
Safeco isn’t the largest or best-known car insurance company in the United States. It’s also rarely the cheapest option. The company seeks to differentiate itself from the competition with higher levels of service: you pay a little more money in exchange for more coverage options, including automatic medical payments coverage among other benefits.
Current reviews for Safeco are relatively mixed, and Safeco earned average ratings from J.D. Power in terms of claims satisfaction and value. Despite these issues, Safeco may be the right option for certain drivers.