Shelter’s auto insurance policies can be the right fit for some — but it’s limited availability and coverages may be a deal-breaker. Still, if you find those adequate and value customer service and modern conveniences it can be a solid option to consider.
Auto Insurance Review: Shelter
Shelter’s car insurance is somewhat hit-or-miss. It’s only available in 15 states, which can be difficult for people preparing or expecting to move states. While there are many opportunities to save, the basic coverage options themselves are somewhat lacking, as compared to other insurers. Still, it can be the right option for some, specifically those who only need basic coverage but are also looking for great customer service and discounts.
How Does Shelter Auto Insurance Rate?
Shelter has been rated by companies like the Better Business Bureau (BBB), AM Best and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) to mostly positive scores, especially when compared to other insurance providers.
Customer Satisfaction Rating
The BBB gives Shelter an A+ rating, while customer reviews give it three stars out of five. However, from a customer satisfaction standpoint, this may not be an accurate representation as the star rating is currently only based on two reviews.
Customer Complaint Ratio
The NAIC rates insurance companies on the number of complaints they receive in a given year. Companies are then ranked, producing a national median score of 1, with lower scores indicating fewer complaints. By comparison, Shelter comes out ahead of the competition with fewer complaints. The NAIC gave Shelter a score of 0.6, meaning that the insurance company receives fewer customer complaints than most other insurance companies.
AM Best’s rating system looks at the financial strength of a given insurance company and considers how likely each is able to meet its obligations to customers if they need to file a claim. AM Best gives Shelter an A rating. Shelter’s rating indicates stability in this area, though it’s important to note that this is not a warranty of their financial strength or ability to pay out for claims.
Shelter Insurance Features
Shelter offers a solid lineup of customer support features. And while its basic auto insurance coverages are somewhat limited, there are many other optional coverages available.
- Type of FeatureDescription
- Online Bill PayCustomers have the option to pay their auto insurance bill online, and they don’t have to log in to get it done, though that’s an option.
- Online ClaimsYou can also create online claims, with or without logging into your Shelter account.
- Mobile AppThe company has an iPhone- and Android-compatible mobile app, so customers can easily report claims and upload relevant photos, get roadside assistance, contact their agent, view their I.D. cards and pay their insurance bills.
Shelter Auto Coverage
Consider the coverages that would generally be included with a policy from Shelter.
- Type of CoverageDescription
- CollisionCovers physical damages to your vehicle in a collision.
- Personal Injury ProtectionCovers losses related to injuries from a car accident, like loss of income.
- UninsuredProvides protection for covered incidents if you get in a car accident with someone who doesn’t have car insurance or doesn’t have sufficient insurance to cover the costs.
- LiabilityIncludes both bodily injury and property damages incurred during a crash.
Optional Insurance Features and Coverage
Check the optional coverages customers can add to their insurance policy (though some options may not be available in all states) to determine what Shelter can offer you.
- Type of OptionDescription
- Rental ReimbursementPays for the cost of renting a car while yours is being repaired.
- Roadside AssistanceProvides help if you end up stuck on the side of the road.
- New CarApplies to cars that have fewer than 15,000 miles on the odometer and gives customers a brand new car of the same year, make and model if their car is totaled in an accident.
- Gap CoverageCan help bridge the gap between the amount you owe on a car and the collision coverage payment received after an accident.
- Medical PaymentsCan provide “reasonable” medical and dental bills incurred by you or passengers.
Available Discounts on Shelter Car Insurance Coverage
Shelter offers a solid lineup of discounts to its car insurance customers. However, some discounts are only available in certain locations.
- Type of DiscountDescription
- Safe DriverCan reward drivers who have been accident- and violation-free for the past three years. This discount can increase if those three years have been with Shelter as well as for those who can stay accident- and violation-free for six years.
- Driver TrainingAccident Prevention Course Discount - Rewards the primary driver of a vehicle for passing an accident prevention course by reducing premiums. The driver may be required to repeat the course to continue getting this discount. Driver Training Course Discount - Reduces premiums if every driver in the household under age 21 has completed an approved driver's education course. This discount is limited to a few states, though the company doesn’t specify which ones.
- Good StudentApplies to primary drivers under 19 who qualify as good students based on class rank, grade average or academic honors, and provide proof of such. Can be renewed as long as the driver remains an unmarried full-time student up until age 25.
- Multi VehicleApplies if you insure two or more vehicles with Shelter.
- Anti TheftApplies to drivers who install basic alarms, steering wheel locks, or ignition or fuel cutoffs in their vehicle.
Other Shelter Insurance Products
Shelter offers a wide variety of other insurance products, which can be especially useful to those looking to take advantage of bundling discounts. However, keep in mind that, even with those discounted rates, you may still be able to find cheaper options elsewhere, even if it requires you to use separate companies for different types of insurance policies.
- Type of ProductDescription
- Homeowners InsuranceIncludes options for homeowners, dwelling, mobile home, condominium, apartment owners and personal articles.
- Renters InsuranceProtects your belongings housed in your rental, in addition to providing liability and medical payments coverages.
- Umbrella InsuranceProvides additional coverage for your home and auto policies.
- Flood InsuranceProvides building and personal property coverages in the event of a flood.
- Personal Property InsuranceGives policyholders additional protection for their personal items, like jewelry, guns and livestock.
How to Make a Car Insurance Claim With Shelter
Customers can file a claim through the Shelter website, via their mobile app or by calling the toll-free customer service phone number, which is available 24/7. The company directs customers to visit one of their claims offices if they have any questions about filed claims.
Contact Shelter Car Insurance
Methodology and Assumptions
To evaluate and review auto insurance companies, MoneyGeek carefully weighs factors such as price, financial strength, policy features, customer satisfaction, service and other leading indicators. MoneyGeek also references publicly available data from industry leaders such as J.D. Power, AM Best and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) and the Better Business Bureau. Learn more about MoneyGeek’s review methodology here.
About the Author
- BBB. "Shelter Insurance Profile." Accessed March 26, 2020.
- NAIC. "NAIC Consumer Information Source Index, 2019: Shelter Mutual Insurance Company." Accessed March 27, 2020.
- AM Best. "AM Best Rating Services, Shelter Mutual Insurance Company." Accessed March 26, 2020.