Shelter Insurance Homeowner's Policy Review
One of the biggest investments you will ever make is your home. In the event of an unexpected loss, you need a homeowner’s insurance company you can depend on to restore your home and its contents to their previous condition. One company that deserves consideration for your homeowner’s insurance needs is Shelter Insurance.
Shelter Insurance was founded in 1946 under the name of MFA Insurance Companies. In the beginning, the company only offered auto policies to residents of Missouri. From these small beginnings, the company grew to be one of the most successful regional property and casualty (P&C) insurance companies in the United States. In 1981, the name was changed to Shelter Insurance. This was taken from the insurance company’s famous slogan, “M.F.A. is your Shield of Shelter.”
The headquarters of Shelter Insurance is located in Columbia, Missouri. States of operation include Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, Oklahoma, and Tennessee. Shelter Insurance writes the following types of insurance policies:
- Apartment owners
- Boat owners
- Commercial fire
- Farm fire
- Farm liability
- Farm owners
- General liability
- Inland marine
- Personal umbrella
Shelter Insurance opened an international reinsurance operation in 1986.
The other Shelter Insurance Companies are Shelter Mutual, Shelter General, Shelter Life, Shelter Reinsurance, AmShield Insurance, and Haulers Insurance. Shelter Insurance employs over 4,100 employees and agents.
According to Shelter Insurance's CEO, "Surplus has grown to almost $2 billion and our premiums are now $1.8 billion, an increase over 10 years of 60% and 66%, respectively." In 2018, the global net income was $142 million, an increase of $36 million over the previous year.
Financial Strength and Customer Satisfaction
Customers who choose Shelter Insurance for the homeowner’s insurance needs can feel good about the company’s financial standing.
In 2008, Shelter Insurance was named as one of the top 50 performing P&C companies by The Ward Group. The company has an A (Excellent) rating from A.M. Best.
Shelter Insurance has been a Better Business Bureau accredited business since 2000. The company has an A+ rating with the BBB. There are only 23 total customer complaints listed on the BBB website. Shelter Insurance has a 5 out of 5-star composite score rating with the Better Business Bureau.
The J.D. Power & Associates Power rating for Shelter Insurance is 4 out of 5, with the customer service rating also listed as 4 out of 5. In 2018, J.D. Power & Association awarded Shelter Insurance "highest customer satisfaction among auto insurers in the central region, two out of three years."
The Shelter homeowner’s policy will pay for restoration costs, which means that damaged items in your home will be replaced with new materials. The policy has a good selection of coverage options and generous homeowner’s insurance discounts.
Types of Coverage
You have coverage for your residence and attached buildings as well as coverage for damages to heating systems, cooling systems, construction materials, outdoor antennas or reception dishes, water softeners, and water heating systems.
Other structures coverage will pay for damages from a covered loss to buildings permanently attached to the premises such as sheds or fences.
Personal property coverage pays for damages to the contents of your home or other structures. If you own another home that is not your primary residence, you have coverage for contents at a reduced amount. There is limited coverage for money, securities, jewelry, silverware, and on- or off-premises business property. If you want to make sure you have enough coverage for your personal property, you can purchase a personal articles insurance policy.
Additional Living Expenses
If you cannot move back into your home because of damages caused by a covered loss, you have additional living expenses to pay for the costs of living away from home.
Personal liability homeowner’s coverage pays for property damage or bodily injury to others that occur on your property.
This portion of the homeowner’s policy is to pay for medical expenses if someone is injured on your property. This coverage does not apply to you or members of your family.
You also have debris removal, emergency removal of your property, necessary repairs after a loss, fire department charges, and limited coverage for losses to trees, shrubs, plants or lawn damage.
Additional Coverage Options
If you have the need for additional coverage, you can add the following options to your homeowner’s insurance policy: business located on your property, farming, sewer damage, personal computer damage, earthquake damage, additional premises, docks, and piers and liability related to watercraft activities. Your Shelter Insurance agent has more information about the specific details of additional coverage available.
The homeowner’s policy comes with many discounts, including for alarm systems, deadbolt locks, claims-free discounts, new home discounts, and heating system discounts. There is also a companion policy discount available if you have your auto insurance with Shelter.
Getting a Homeowner’s Insurance Quote
From the Shelter Insurance website, you can get a quote for auto, motorcycle, RV, ATV, Boat, Renters, Life, Home, Condominium, Umbrella, Personal Articles, Business, and Farm Insurance.
To get a quote for homeowner’s insurance, you’ll first enter your zip code. Next, you will enter some personal information including name, address, telephone number, and email address. You are also asked if you have any other active policies with Shelter Insurance (in order to receive the companion policy discount). You’ll be asked to select a local agent and whether you prefer to be contacted by telephone or email. You can include any additional comments to the agent up to 250 characters when submitting your quote request.
Pros and Cons
- Excellent financial strength rating
- Strong customer service ratings
- Better Business Bureau A+ Rating
- There have been some customer complaints about the claims handling process, some claiming that the claims payment process was slow.
- Coverage is only available in 14 states.
Company Contact Information
For more information about a homeowner’s policy or to learn more about the other insurance products available through Shelter Insurance, you can visit the Shelter Insurance website or call 1-800-SHELTER (1-800-743-5837). You can also contact Shelter Insurance by email.
Shelter Insurance. (2019). Shelter Insurance 2018 Annual Report. [online] Available at: https://www.shelterinsurance.com/media/shelterinsurance/contentassets/documents/2018_Annual_Report.pdf [Accessed 31 Oct. 2019].
National General Insurance Co. (2019). National General Holdings Corp. Reports Third Quarter 2019 Results | National General Insurance Co. [online] Available at: http://ir.nationalgeneral.com/news-releases/news-release-details/national-general-holdings-corp-reports-third-quarter-2019 [Accessed 31 Oct. 2019].