The Best Home and Auto Insurance in California

Californians have unique coverage needs for both their homeowners and auto insurance. The best home and auto insurance in California can deliver superior coverage options and competitive pricing.

Best Overall

The Best Home and Auto Insurance in California Option Amica

Amica

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Runner-Up

The Best Home and Auto Insurance in California Option Liberty Mutual

Liberty Mutual

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Best Auto Discounts

The Best Home and Auto Insurance in California Option Nationwide

Nationwide

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A good homeowners insurance and auto insurance bundle can do more than protect someone’s most valuable property; it can offer peace of mind and extra financial protection. Californians face distinct challenges when it comes to insurance coverage because both homeowners and auto owners face environmental hazards such as wildfires and earthquakes that could affect availability, cost, and coverage terms. In fact, residents may find that there are fewer insurance carriers offering property insurance in the Golden State, which can significantly limit their options.

Even so, there are still plenty of quality insurance companies offering home and auto bundles in California. Buying homeowners insurance and auto insurance through the same company not only provides a more convenient way of managing insurance policies, but it may also offer significant cost savings, too. By seeking out the best home and auto insurance in California, residents can get the most value from their insurance policies through minimizing costs while enjoying robust coverage.

Editor’s note: Californians continue to face challenges with regard to insurance coverage in their state due to the increased number of wildfires, with some insurance carriers temporarily suspending new applications and others leaving the California market altogether. Customers will want to have a clear understanding of whether the company they’re considering offers coverage in California before going through the quote or purchase process.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Amica
  2. RUNNER-UP: Liberty Mutual
  3. BEST AUTO DISCOUNTS: Nationwide
  4. BEST FOR SERVICE MEMBERS: USAA
The Best Home and Auto Insurance in California Options
Photo: istockphoto.com

What to Consider When Choosing One of the Best Home and Auto Insurance Companies in California

When considering a carrier for the best homeowners insurance—or a home and auto bundle—it’s critical for shoppers to make sure it offers coverage in California. If a company doesn’t write auto or homeowners policies in California, then it’s easy to cross it off the list and move on to the next one.

Shopping around for homeowners insurance—as well as auto insurance—and comparing insurance providers allows Californians to check rates and coverage options across a wide range of policies. There are numerous factors worth considering in addition to cost, so California residents may want to weigh a variety of factors to help them select the best home and auto coverage for their specific needs.

Coverage Amount

With homeowners and auto insurance, different coverage limits are available to policyholders. When weighing homeowners insurance options, in particular, California residents will want to take a close look at the different types of coverage included in a policy—dwelling, personal property, and liability coverage, for instance—and check coverage limits. These caps determine how much an insurance company may pay out on an approved claim, and policyholders often have the option to adjust them up to a certain amount. Coverage limits can vary from one insurance provider to another, so it’s worth reviewing them when getting quotes.

According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, California drivers are required by law to carry liability insurance with the following minimal amounts of coverage:

  • $15,000 for injury or death to one person.
  • $30,000 for injury or death to more than one person.
  • $5,000 for damage to property.

Because policies that only meet these minimum requirements offer bare-bones coverage, shoppers may want to check that any insurance provider they are considering offers higher coverage limits.

Policy Options

It’s important for shoppers to consider an insurance company’s policy options before choosing a home and auto bundle to ensure they receive the coverage they require for their specific needs. Careful evaluation of coverage terms and conditions can help policyholders avoid gaps in coverage or prevent them from paying for more insurance than they require, thereby ensuring adequate protection for both the home and automobile. For homeowners insurance, policy options include coverage to the house itself for damage resulting from fire, wind, hail, and theft, among other perils, plus liability coverage, which protects policyholders if they are found liable for damages or injuries to a third party. Medical payments to others provides some coverage if a third party is injured at the policyholder’s house regardless of who is at fault.

Meanwhile, a standard auto insurance policy can include various types of coverage, such as:

  • Bodily injury liability, which helps pay for medical bills of others if the driver is at fault in an accident.
  • Personal injury protection, which helps pay for medical bills of the driver and their passengers, regardless of fault.
  • Property damage liability, which helps pay for the cost of repairs if the driver is at fault in an accident.
  • Comprehensive coverage, which protects the insured vehicle from perils including hail, wind, and theft.
  • Collision coverage, which pays to repair damage to the insured vehicle regardless of fault.
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, which provides coverage for damages and injuries if an accident is caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver.

Exact policy options can vary from one company to another, though, so it may be worthwhile for shoppers to carefully verify what’s covered with each policy before making a decision.

Insurance Premiums

Insurance premiums are the costs a policyholder pays in return for insurance coverage. The premium amount varies based on a wide range of factors as a homeowner, including coverage amount, policy add-ons, deductibles, property location, and available discounts. The same goes for auto insurance, but a policyholder’s driving history, vehicle, optional coverages, and deductible amounts also impact premiums. Rates can vary quite a bit across insurance companies in the same markets, so California residents looking for home and auto bundles may find it beneficial to get quotes from multiple providers.

Insurance carriers may offer different payment options for policyholders to consider, including annual, monthly, or quarterly payment plans. Shoppers who prefer a particular plan may want to confirm that their choice is available so there are no surprises when it’s time to make a payment.

Quote Process

One of the best ways to save money on homeowners and auto insurance in California is by shopping around, getting insurance quotes for home and auto coverage, and comparing the rates of multiple providers. This is why the quote process is a critical point when selecting an insurance provider—it gives potential policyholders a realistic snapshot of how much coverage they’ll receive and how much their insurance will cost.

Many companies have an online quote tool, but it may not always be available for California residents. Given the state’s unique claims considerations—wildfire, for instance—insurance companies may require residents to get a property insurance quote by speaking to an agent over the phone or in person at a local branch. Whichever method is preferred by the potential policyholder, the quote process can be an important consideration, as it may shed some light on the customer experience. An insurance company that offers a quick and streamlined online quote platform may also have other digital resources to explore. On the other hand, a company that requires potential policyholders to get a quote from a local agent may also set the same requirements if a policyholder needs to file a claim.

Claims Process

Another major consideration is the claims process—in particular, the options that are available to policyholders and what works best for them given their preferences. Homeowners and drivers who need to file a claim with their insurance company may have just gone through a stressful or even traumatic event, so finding an insurance provider that’s easy to work with can make a big difference in the overall experience.

Carriers can offer policyholders a variety of methods for claims submissions, including using a mobile app or online platform, calling a claims representative over the phone, or working with a local agent. For shoppers who have a preferred method of communication, it’s a good idea to verify what the carrier offers so they can have the best experience possible in the event they need to file a claim.

Deductibles

Deductibles are the amount of money a policyholder owes when filing a claim, but they work differently for home insurance than for auto insurance. With homeowners insurance, policyholders do not have to pay the deductible out of pocket; rather, the insurance company deducts that amount from the payout. With auto insurance, though, policyholders pay the deductible amount out of pocket to the repair facility while the insurance provider pays the difference for any covered damages.

Insurance carriers often offer a range of deductible options, and the difference between the lowest and highest option can be significant in some cases. Taking on a higher deductible may offer an opportunity for a policyholder to lower their premiums, but that could mean a smaller claim payout down the road (or paying more out of pocket on covered repairs, in the case of auto insurance). It may be best for shoppers to keep in mind how deductibles can affect the total cost of coverage when they are considering coverage for both their home and autos.

Additional Policies

Californians interested in bundling their home and auto insurance policies may be interested in purchasing other types of coverage from their insurance provider as well. In addition to homeowners and auto insurance, California customers may be able to purchase life insurance; coverage for boats, motorcycles, or pets; and other types of policies from their insurance provider. Bundling multiple policies could make it easier for policyholders to manage their insurance needs as they will only need to work with one company. Since customers who bundle have all their policies under the same account, they are better able to keep an eye on coverage terms, outstanding claims, payment options, and other details regarding their insurance with relative ease. The availability of different types of insurance can vary from company to company, though, so California residents interested in a streamlined customer experience may want to take that into consideration.

Discounts

Discounts can play a major role in reducing insurance costs for eligible policyholders without sacrificing the quality or scope of coverage. Bundles, including the best home and auto insurance bundles, present some of the best ways for shoppers to save money on coverage, as policyholders may receive a hefty bundling discount—as much as 30 percent, in some cases.

Other discounts are often available to both new and returning customers as well. Homeowners who install protective devices such as smoke alarms or security systems may qualify for a discount on their homeowners insurance, and those who purchase new homes may also save money on their premiums. Auto owners can often save money with good driver discounts or by participating in safe driving programs. Additionally, insurance providers may offer policyholders additional discounts for enrolling in automatic payments and paperless statements.

AM Best Ratings

AM Best offers an unbiased, third-party rating system specifically tailored to insurance carriers. The company reviews the creditworthiness of each carrier and rates its ability to meet its financial obligations. The highest rating AM Best assigns is an A++ (Superior), while the lowest rating is a D (Poor). Insurance carriers with higher AM Best ratings can be expected to have better creditworthiness, and are therefore more likely to be a reliable option for shoppers looking for insurance coverage.

As such, AM Best ratings provide a helpful snapshot into a company’s financial standing and long-term outlook. These grades can be a useful reference point for any prospective customer because they offer the benefit of financial analysis that would otherwise be difficult for the average consumer to obtain when searching for a reliable insurance provider.

Our Top Picks

When shoppers are identifying companies that can offer the best and most affordable auto and homeowners insurance in California, there are a variety of factors to weigh. The right insurance company may offer extended coverage, large discounts, low deductibles, and high AM Best ratings.

Best Overall

Amica

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Why It Made the Cut:

Amica offers a major bundling discount, high personal liability coverage limits for homeowners, and low deductible options, making it a great option for California residents.

Californians who want to bundle auto and home insurance may want to seriously consider Amica for their insurance needs. It has one of the most generous bundling discounts available in the California market—up to 30 percent—which could represent a major savings opportunity for homeowners and auto owners. In addition, Amica offers deductibles on homeowners insurance policies as low as $500, which could lead to a larger payout if a policyholder needs to file an insurance claim.

Although policyholders may want to keep in mind they’ll have to pay for 2 months’ worth of coverage up front, there are plenty of benefits to make up for that initial expense. For instance, Amica offers high personal liability coverage limits of up to $2 million for homeowners insurance policies. A higher limit like this could be especially appealing to homeowners concerned about paying any damages they may be found liable for, including injuries or property damage to a third party. As such, policyholders who opt for a higher liability limit may have less to worry about with regard to paying medical bills, repair costs, or legal fees out of pocket. Amica customers can also purchase a water backup endorsement—which covers water damage resulting from overflowing water and backed up drains—with coverage of up to $50,000. Having this extended coverage could help homeowners pay for water damage that otherwise would not be covered by a standard homeowners insurance policy.

 

Specs

  • Quote process: Phone, agent
  • Claims process: Online, phone, agent
  • Bundling discount: Up to 30 percent
  • Deductibles: $500 to $25,000
  • AM Best rating: A+

Pros

  • Generous home and auto bundle discount up to 30 percent
  • High $2 million personal liability coverage available
  • High $50,000 water backup coverage available
  • Low $500 deductible option

Cons

  • 2 months’ worth of payment due up front

Runner-Up

Liberty Mutual

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Why It Made the Cut:

Liberty Mutual includes standard tropical storm coverage with its homeowners policies, and it offers a wide range of home and auto discounts for added savings.

Liberty Mutual offers numerous benefits for policyholders in California, such as standard tropical storm coverage included with the company’s homeowners insurance policies. Since California is subjected to tropical storm activity, this can be a huge benefit for residents who may be affected by storm damage. Policyholders can also add an endorsement for earthquake damage so they wouldn’t need to purchase a separate earthquake insurance policy. Liberty Mutual earns an A rating from AM Best, which although slightly low in the California market is still considered an excellent rating.

With a wide variety of home and auto discounts, such as discounts for newly purchased, newly built, or remodeled homes; buying a policy online; enrolling in paperless billing; and setting up automatic payments, Liberty Mutual offers customers the ability to reap substantial savings. A variety of deductible options can help with premium costs, too. Homeowners may be particularly interested in the low $500 deductible option, which could lead to a larger payout if they ever need to file an insurance claim.

 

Specs

  • Quote process: Phone, agent
  • Claims process: App, online, phone, agent
  • Bundling discount: $950 on average
  • Deductibles: $500 to $2,500
  • AM Best rating: A

Pros

  • Standard hurricane and tropical storm coverage
  • Earthquake damage add-on available
  • Wide variety of home and auto discounts available
  • Low $500 deductible option

Cons

  • Relatively low “A” AM Best rating

Best Auto Discounts

Nationwide

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Why It Made the Cut:

Nationwide offers an abundance of auto insurance options, including a generous safe driver discount and pay-per-mile program, which could deliver meaningful savings for policyholders.

Nationwide offers a variety of discounts and payment options on auto insurance, which may be very appealing to Californians who are considering bundling their home and auto coverage. For example, drivers who enroll in Nationwide’s SafeRide program could save as much as 40 percent if they practice safe driving habits.

Although Nationwide doesn’t disclose its deductible options online, it does give policyholders a free annual consultation on their homeowners insurance with an in-house expert. This consultation could help policyholders identify any coverage gaps in their policy, unnecessary endorsements they’re paying for, or additional discount opportunities.

Nationwide also gives Californians the option to enroll in a pay-per-mile insurance coverage program, which calculates premiums based on the mileage policyholders put on their insured vehicles. This could lead to lower insurance rates for policyholders who work from home, commute using public transportation, or otherwise don’t drive their car that often.

 

Specs

  • Quote process: Phone, agent
  • Claims process: Online, phone, agent
  • Bundling discount: Up to 20 percent
  • Deductibles: Unknown
  • AM Best rating: A+

Pros

  • Generous 40 percent safe driver discount available
  • Pay-per-mile auto insurance option
  • Free annual homeowners insurance consultation

Cons

  • Unknown deductible options

Best for Service Members

USAA

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Why It Made the Cut:

USAA offers replacement cost coverage with every homeowners insurance plan, plus exclusive perks for service members and an A++ AM Best rating.

USAA works exclusively with active or retired military members and their families, which does limit membership availability. However, there are plenty of perks to consider for those in California who do qualify. For instance, USAA provides standard replacement cost coverage with every homeowners policy, which means that the company will not account for depreciation when calculating the value of personal property after a covered loss. This may result in larger payouts on property claims since standard homeowners insurance policies often factor in depreciation for personal property after a covered loss.

Although it doesn’t list available deductible options for homeowners insurance, USAA does offer a generous discount of up to 60 percent if a vehicle is put into storage (such as during a deployment). USAA receives an impressive A++ AM Best rating, which is the highest possible rating a carrier can earn. California residents may view an insurance company with such a high AM Best rating as being more reliable in the long run, and that may be a highly sought-after feature, especially as other insurance companies exit the market.

 

Specs

  • Quote process: Online (for USAA members), phone
  • Claims process: App, online, phone
  • Bundling discount: Up to 10 percent
  • Deductibles: Unknown
  • AM Best rating: A++

Pros

  • Standard replacement cost coverage
  • Large discount of up to 60 percent for vehicles in storage
  • A++ AM Best rating

Cons

  • USAA membership limited to service members and their families
  • Unknown deductible options

Our Verdict

We chose Amica as our Best Overall pick because of the substantial bundling discount and high personal liability coverage, plus add-ons Californians may be especially interested in purchasing. Liberty Mutual earns the Runner-Up spot thanks to the tropical storm coverage included as a standard term with its homeowners policies—which is a peril California homeowners may face and want to protect against.

How We Chose the Best Home and Auto Insurance Companies in California

When we were choosing the best insurance companies for homeowners and auto insurance bundles in California, availability was a key concern as many major carriers and smaller insurance providers have stopped offering property insurance in California. Cost considerations were also very important, as someone interested in a home and auto bundle is likely trying to save money on their insurance without sacrificing on the quality of coverage.

California residents may be particularly budget-conscious with the potential for rising insurance costs due to the risk of wildfire. Because of this, we also considered other discounts, too, particularly those discount opportunities that might be exclusive to California or appeal to its residents. Coverage options were also major factors in our rankings, along with each company’s quote and claims processes.

Before You Choose One of the Best Home and Auto Insurance Companies in California

First and foremost, Californians will want verification that a carrier does offer both home and auto coverage in California for new policies. A growing number of insurance companies are now refusing to extend new policies in the state due to the risk of property damage from wildfires—and some are beginning to drop coverage for existing customers as well. This could lead to more limited options in insurance providers compared with other states that do not face the same environmental threat.

California homeowners may want to independently research and verify coverage options offered by carriers in their state and get price quotes for comparison. It may also be beneficial to read customer reviews and ask friends and family members for any recommendations they may have. Such personalized feedback could provide more insight into the customer experience and what shoppers who are selecting an insurance provider can expect.

A common concern for residents of California is the threat of wildfire. While they may believe they need dedicated fire insurance, California policyholders will want to know that their homeowners insurance will likely cover wildfire damage, according to the Insurance Information Institute.

Cost of Opting for One of the Best Home and Auto Insurance Companies in California

The average homeowners insurance policy costs anywhere from $378 to $3,593 per year, but this amount varies significantly based on the home’s location in California and numerous other factors such as the coverage options selected and the structure and condition of the home. It’s possible for Californians to face increased premiums due to the additional environmental hazards with wildfires. An auto insurance policy cost varies significantly as well, based on coverage limits chosen for liability, comprehensive, collision, and personal injury coverage, among other options. Plus, factors such as the policyholder’s age, ZIP code, and driving history all have a significant impact on auto insurance premiums for Californians.

Bundling home and auto policies can lead to discounted rates, which may help keep insurance costs down for California residents. Other discounts may be available as well, lowering the cost of coverage for eligible policyholders.

The Advantages of Opting for One of the Best Home and Auto Insurance Companies in California

Purchasing the best home and auto insurance coverage in California from one reputable carrier offers numerous benefits including peace of mind in the event of a catastrophe. Top-tier insurance companies may also provide an easier quote process, substantial savings with a bundling discount, streamlined policy management options, and a stress-free claims process. Bundling insurance can mean one less hassle for policyholders managing their insurance policies and who need to keep up with their monthly, quarterly, or annual premiums. In addition to these benefits, the best home and auto insurance providers in California can offer:

  • Large discounts on home and auto bundles, helping save homeowners money on their insurance;
  • High coverage limits on personal liability, water backup, and other forms of insurance to protect against more expensive property losses; and
  • Standard policy terms such as replacement cost coverage and declining deductibles that raise the value of a home and auto bundle.

FAQs

California residents may have numerous questions about coverages and premiums when shopping around and comparing providers for home and auto insurance. Knowing the answers up front to some of the most common questions can help Californians during the research and carrier selection process.

Q. What is the average cost of homeowners insurance in California?

California homeowners insurance rates depend on the policy options, carrier, and property location, among other factors. High property values and the risk of wildfire could also impact rates. As such, while the national average ranges from $378 to $3,593 per year, averaging $1,383, the average homeowners insurance cost in California may not match those figures.

Q. Is homeowners insurance required in California?

Although state law does not mandate the purchase of homeowners insurance, California residents should keep in mind if they’re financing a home, their mortgage lender will likely require them to purchase homeowners insurance.

Q. What is a good amount of coverage for homeowners and auto insurance?

A policyholder’s homeowners insurance needs depend on the value of their home and personal possessions. Californians who live in areas with a high cost of living such as Los Angeles or Orange County may require more coverage. In those scenarios, they may want to explore their high-end homeowners insurance options. California and other states set minimum requirements for auto insurance coverage, but drivers may want to select higher coverage limits if they want more extensive financial protection.

Q. Should I bundle my homeowners and auto insurance?

It’s not required by any means, but a homeowners and auto insurance bundle discount can save someone a significant amount on their policy premiums. With that in mind, it may be worth weighing bundling options when considering the best homeowners insurance companies in California.

Q. Which age group pays the most for car insurance?

Teenage drivers cost more to insure than any other age group due to their inexperience. That being said, drivers over the age of 60 may see their insurance rates go up as well.

Q. Do State Farm and Allstate offer homeowners insurance in California?

Both Allstate and State Farm have suspended issuing new homeowners policies in California and will not underwrite new policies until further notice. Residents looking for the best homeowners insurance may need to consider other options.

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Sara Coleman Avatar

Sara Coleman

Contributing Writer

Sara Coleman is a full-time writer, editor, and published author. She covers personal finance and lifestyle topics ranging from insurance and credit cards to small business and pet ownership. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Bankrate, Joy Wallet, Wayfair, and Credible. When not writing, Sara enjoys ushering her kids from one activity to the next and spending time with friends and family.

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