Ratings Methodology for Homeowners Insurance

Homeowners insurance

NerdWallet's ratings for homeowners insurance companies take into account the following details about each insurer:

  • Financial strength.
  • Consumer complaints.
  • Coverage.
  • Claims process.
  • Available discounts.
  • Website functionality.
The best homeowners insurers make it easy to understand and purchase a policy. They offer comprehensive coverage and a wide range of discounts. They're financially strong and able to keep their customers happy throughout the relationship.

Data collection and review process

We collect more than a dozen data points for each insurer from its public-facing website and from company representatives, public filings, state regulator data and third-party analyses. These data points are then compared against one another and against NerdWallet's standards for good insurance companies to determine a star rating.

Data is collected on a regular basis and reviewed by our editorial team for consistency and accuracy. Final star ratings are presented on a scale of one to five stars, where a one-star score represents "poor" and a five-star score represents "excellent."

The reviews team

The writers and editors behind our homeowners insurance reviews are insurance specialists who have had their work appear in The Associated Press, The Washington Post, The New York Times, the Chicago-Sun Times, U.S. News & World Report and the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing. Each writer and editor follows NerdWallet’s strict guidelines for editorial integrity.

In addition to homeowners insurance, the team covers renters insurance, auto insurance, pet insurance and life insurance.

Rating specifics

Our star ratings are weighted based on our editorial and professional opinions. We use the following weightings when rating homeowners insurers:

  • Consumer complaints (30%).
  • Financial strength (30%).
  • Coverage (20%).
  • Consumer experience (10%).
  • Discounts (10%).
Consumer complaint ratings are based on complaints to state regulators relative to a company’s size. NerdWallet examined complaints received by state insurance regulators and reported to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2020-2022. To assess how insurers compare to one another, the NAIC calculates a complaint index each year for each subsidiary, measuring its share of total complaints relative to its size, or share of total premiums in the industry. To evaluate a company’s complaint history, NerdWallet calculated a similar index for each insurer, weighted by market shares of each subsidiary, over the three-year period. NerdWallet conducts its data analysis and reaches conclusions independently and without the endorsement of the NAIC. Ratios are determined separately for auto, home (including renters and condo) and life insurance.

Financial strength ratings, which indicate an insurer’s ability to pay future claims, are based on assessments from independent agencies such as AM Best and Demotech.

Coverage ratings evaluate how companies cover a home’s dwelling and personal property (replacement cost vs. actual cash value, for instance) and how many common policy endorsements are available.

Consumer experience ratings evaluate how easy it is to interact with an insurance company, including getting quotes, accessing customer support and filing and tracking claims.

Discount ratings are based on how many potential discounts an insurance company offers its policyholders.

Bonus points may be awarded to insurers that offer useful features such as services to protect your home from damage or coverage that most policies don’t include.