Wednesday 12th of October 2016 07:45:19 PM
To be fair... I have had a previous policy (home & auto) with AARP/Hartford before, about five to six years ago. Upon the renewal of the policy the first time, there came the increase in the premium. The reason... nothing specific based on the conversation I had with the representative. I did not renew the policy then and life went on. Fast forward to present day. I decided to try AARP/Hartford once again after wading through other companies with either very bad customer service or rates, or both. I know... say it ain't so, you might say! Based on their statements, it appeared that they may have cleaned up their act, but since I am submitting this review, obviously that did not happen. My bad!To be honest, we have an insurance claim that was called in about four years ago for damage caused by a water heater, which based on the reaction of the insurance industry, I must have planned and executed. Since then, it has been my destiny to be punished with higher home insurance rates for five years until I learn my lesson (obviously, to never file a claim). It is worth mentioning that I no longer own the home that the damage occurred in (no matter, the person is being held accountable, not the house). Also, one of us in the household has a moving violation, also four years old. That too, is an excuse for higher insurance rates for five years. The game being played here, is "risk". No, not the board game... rather the means to an end for higher rates and profit for the insurance industry. Again, to be fair, AARP/Hartford did not invent the higher rate category due to claims and tickets... all companies do this.Back to present day. I saw the bus coming (based on a previous history with this company), but got run over nonetheless. Our home insurance premium rose twenty percent (in our case ~$400.00). Our auto insurance premium rose a modest one percent. All of this after applying all the "discounts" that they offer, to include the plug-in gadget that gathered driving profiles in our cars for six months, excellent credit ratings for both of us, etc. So, I called the company to ask why the rates, regardless of all the discounts, increased. The answers... get ready because some of this not new information for some of you... we live in the mid-west, with lots of storms, so home insurance rates will increase due to bad weather, plus the representative let slip the word "lawsuits", but quickly recovered and never mentioned that word again. There was no clear answer for the slight increase of the auto insurance.Being curious and playing along with the "mid-west" theory, I asked what the average increase of home insurance was for the past couple of years in our area. The answer was "fifteen percent". If true, then I have a fair idea of what will happen to our home insurance rates for the forthcoming years should we stay with this company. Where do we go from here one might ask? We decided to suffer with this insurance company for at least one more year. Why? We want to rid ourselves of the insurance claim and ticket burdens before we switch to another company. Those two issues need to go away before we start this process all over again. Meanwhile, we will shop for another company that MIGHT... actually offer a good rate for home and auto, then stick with their offer of reasonable rates in the years thereafter. I understand increases in price due to replacement costs, etc, but not in the $400 range. We'll see what comes up and hopefully I have not just described the quest for the holy grail of the insurance world! My recommendation for this particular company? Look elsewhere or try them for a year with the idea of shopping for another company before renewal. Who knows, they may get the hint and actually follow through with rates that make sense for more than one year. Good luck!UPDATED ON 06/14/2016: This is an update to a review I posted last year 2015 regarding premium increases of our homeowners and auto insurance policies from 2014 to 2015. As expected, there was an increase of the homeowners premium of 25% for 2016. This "bill" was sent to us after the policy had been cancelled and replaced by another policy/company. It seems once you become a customer of Hartford, it is hard to rid yourself of them and their emails. I have already contacted Hartford to confirm our cancellations of the policies (home and auto), however, the policy bill notices continue to arrive. Fortunately, we have not suffered any loss of escrow funds through our mortgage company (they acknowledged the change of insurance provider), plus we did not have any automatic payments set up for auto premiums. A brief history of premium increases from 2014 to this year include an increase of 20% in year 2015, and the latest, 25% for this year (had we continued with Hartford). Overall, from the beginning, year 2014, to this year, there was an increase of 32%. This, with no claims, late payments, or anything else that would have prompted an increase of this magnitude.We have since clarified through our new/current insurance provider, what a reasonable increase of premium can be (specifically the homeowners policy) and the answer is... ~5%. This due to replacement cost increases (materials, labor, home valuation, etc). Our current insurance provider has a local office and agent, that has made the communication between ourselves and them, much easier and less stressful. We cannot emphasis more, how this type of business relationship/communication has helped us, to understand our insurance needs, clarify our expectations and establish long term goals. Again, good luck!!