Most independent insurance agents find over their years dealing with insurance shoppers that there are three groups an insurance shopper will likely fit in.
- The Fast and Furious – These are car insurance shoppers that typically want cheap insurance and they want it now. Most insurance agents can forget about having a discovery interview that lasts more than a few minutes.
- Wake me when it’s over – This group of car insurance shoppers is just the opposite of the fast and furious. They like to talk and they ask a gazillion questions about every facet of car insurance. I also call these calls my “insurance 101” calls.
- This ain’t my first Rodeo – This group is reserved for car insurance shoppers who think they know everything about car insurance and will be happy to argue about it for an hour before letting you know “they’ll think about it and get back to you.”
The good news is, no matter which group we think you may fit in, we are going to do everything we can to match your circumstances and budget with the best value out there. And, by the way, “value” and “cheap” are not synonyms.
In this article, we’re going to drill down into Mercury car insurance and offer a company review so you can make an informed decision about whether they will be the best car insurance company for you.
Who is Mercury Insurance?
Although Mercury Insurance offers Homeowners insurance, Business insurance, and Umbrella Insurance, this California based company is primarily known for offering very cheap car insurance rates.
Since Mercury was established in 1962, they are a newcomer when it comes to U.S. car insurance companies. Since opening their offices in 1962 and establishing a network of independent agents, the company has managed to grow there footprint, but only in certain states where they believe they can prosper the most. Mercury Insurance is currently being sold by independent agents in the following states:
Mercury General Corporation
4484 Wilshire Boulevard Los Angeles, California 90010
Telephone: (323) 937-1060
Fax: (323) 857-7116
Is Mercury Financially Stable?
Knowing the car insurance industry as we do, our agency always recommends that shoppers don’t make their insurance buying decision based solely on the policy’s monthly premium. It’s important to find out if the company you are considering will be there when you need them.
What good is a super-low car insurance payment if you can’t get your car repaired properly or replaced after you’ve been in an accident or experienced an auto theft? It’s about the stability of the company first and foremost.Here’s the rating scoop for Mercury:
|A.M. Best||A “Excellent”|
|J.D. Power||3 out of 5 stars – customer satisfaction|
The Mercury Auto Insurance Product
Like most other insurance companies, Mercury offers a traditional Personal Auto Policy that is a package of coverages (liability, comp, collision, uninsured motorist, etc) and the applicant can pick and choose the coverages, limits, and deductibles that best meets their needs and the needs of the state they live in and lender or leasing company requirements.Here are the coverages generally offered in the Personal Auto Policy:
|Bodily Injury Liability||Pays for injuries to other drivers or passengers in an at-fault accident subject to the limits in the policy.|
|Property Damage Liability||Pays for repairs or replacement of another person's vehicle or property during an at-fault accident subject to the limits of the policy.|
|Medical Payments||Medical Payments covers medical expenses for you and other passengers in your vehicle in an accident no matter who's at fault. This coverage will even cover you for injuries sustained in another person's vehicle or as a pedestrian up to the limit in the policy.|
|Personal Injury Protection (PIP)||PIP covers the driver, all passengers, or a pedestrian involved in an accident no matter who's at fault. PIP helps pay for medical expenses, lost wages, loss of services, and funeral expenses up to the policy limits. This coverage is typically mandatory in "no-fault" states.|
|Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist||Uninsured/Underinsured motorist covers your medical expenses if the other driver (at-fault) is uninsured or underinsured. Some states also allow uninsured/underinsured property damage that covers your vehicle as well.|
|Comprehensive Coverage||Comprehensive coverage pays to repair or replace your vehicle after a non-collision event such as fire, vandalism, theft, or acts of nature subject to your deductible.|
|Collision Coverage||Collision coverage pays to repair or replace your vehicle after an accident that involves another vehicle or object subject to your deductible.
|Emergency Roadside Assistance||Roadside assistance is available if you are locked out of your vehicle or required roadside assistance like a tire change or fuel for an empty tank. Your coverage for each event is subject to the limit you purchased on your policy.|
|Rental Reimbursement||Rental reimbursement helps pay for rental expenses if you are in an at-fault accident or
hit by an uninsured driver. Most policies will have a limit per-day and per-accident.
Is Mercury Competitive with the Top National Insurers?
It’s impossible to determine an individual’s car insurance premium without having the underwriting information about the driver(s) or the vehicle(s) that would be listed on the policy. However, we can use national averages to determine how Mercury Auto insurance compares with some of the other companies who are known for offering competitive rates.Here are the annual rate comparisons for Mercury, Farmers, Safeco, and State Farm using national averages for underwriting:
|Company||18-year-old Male||42-year-old Couple||81-year-old Female|
These rates were obtained from a rate comparison published by ValuePenguin
As you can see by reviewing the average rates from each carrier listed above, Mercury is the most competitive in the “young driver” category, very competitive in the “middle-age couple” category, and the most competitive in the “senior” category.
What about Discounts? Does Mercury offer Them?
When we compare the discounts available from Mercury with other highly-rated car insurance companies, Mercury’s list of available discounts is rather thin compared to the others.Here are the discounts available for Mercury Auto Insurance policies:
|Type of Discount||How You Qualify|
|Homeowner Discount||You qualify by owning your home. It doesn’t have to be insured with Mercury.|
|Multi-Car Discount||You get a discount when you have 2 or more cars on your policy.|
|Multi-Policy Discount (Bundling)||You will receive a discount on each type of insurance policy you buy when you buy 2 or more|
|Anti-Theft Discount||You get a discount for having an anti-theft device or system installed on your insured vehicle(s)|
|E-Signature||If you purchase your auto policy online and sign using an e-signature, you’ll qualify for this discount|
|Good Student||If any drivers on your policy are a student and maintain grade levels specified by the company, you’ll receive the Good Student Discount.|
What are Mercury’s Customers Saying?
Anytime you want to check out a prospective insurance company, take a few minutes to find out what its current and former customers are saying about their experience with that company. The easiest and quickest way to find this information is through rating platforms like J.D. Power and the Better Business Bureau.Here’s what customers are saying about Mercury Auto Insurance:
|Consumer Affairs||2 out of 5 stars||334 Reviews|
|ValuePenguin||3 out of 5 stars||Editor’s Rating|
|Better Business Bureau||A+||44 complaints closed out of 142|
|Yelp||1.5 stars out of 5||206 Reviews|
Anytime you check reviews on a published platform like those listed above, it’s always good to check their report and actually read the reviews. We have found that many negative reviews are published by disgruntled employees or customers who may have been denied coverage.
The Bottom Line
Over the years we have found that insurance companies who offer ridiculously low rates often offset their diminished profits by skimping on customer service personnel and outsourcing their claims service to third-parties.
If you are a fast and furious type of insurance buy who is only concerned about getting the lowest rate possible, don’t be surprised if the company you’ve chosen disappoints you after you file a claim.
Our recommendation is simple, check out any prospective insurance company because it’s easy to do and can save you a lot of headaches in the long run.