The Andover Companies Insurance Review & Complaints: Home & Business Insurance

The Andover Companies rating is A+ with both A.M. Best and the Better Business Bureau. This insurance review covers the group of insurance companies including Merrimack Mutual, Cambridge Mutual, and Bay State, with more than $600 million in business between them. Insurance quotes are available in nine states, and rates will vary based on which company serves your area.

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Eric Stauffer is a former insurance agent and banker turned consumer advocate. His priority is to help educate individuals and families about the different types of insurance they need, and assist them in finding the best place to get it.

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years

UPDATED: Apr 23, 2021

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The Andover Companies

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Financial Strength



Company Summary - The Andover Companies
Key InfoCompany SpecificsSource
Year Founded1828Company web site
Current ExecutivesMalcolm W. Brawn, Chairman and CEO
Charles J. DiGrande, President
Company web site
Number of EmployeesJan-50Glassdoor
Headquarters Address95 Old River Road, Andover, MA 01810Company web site
Phone Number(800) 225-0770Company web site
Company Websitewww.andovercompanies.comCompany web site
Premiums Written (2019)$585,949,320NAIC
Best ForHomeowners, CommercialCompany web site
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Finding out what you need to know about insurance companies can be complicated. So many home insurance companies have similar-sounding names, there can be related companies with different names, web sites can be confusing or completely unhelpful, there are different types of coverage, and the list goes on. Even when you know what company you want to research, as with The Andover Companies, there may be more than one company in a group. Andover Companies insurance quotes may come from any of the group’s companies.

Our experts have done the research for you in the guide to The Andover Companies below. Keep reading this The Andover Companies insurance review for an in-depth analysis of their $600 million/year business, products, and customer feedback, and also information about Andover home insurance rates.

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What Types of Insurance Products Are Offered?

The Andover Companies’ website offers basic information regarding their products.

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Andover Home Insurance

Andover offers several home insurance types:

  • Homeowner’s Insurance from Andover covers guaranteed replacement cost on the home itself – which means they will cover whatever it costs to replace, and not a scheduled amount. Also covered are personal property, liability, and other costs associated with a claim.
  • Renter’s Insurance is also available to cover personal property and liability for tenants who aren’t responsible for the structure itself.
  • Condo Insurance is similar to the homeowner’s policy but doesn’t cover anything that is protected under an association policy.
  • Dwelling Fire is the final home insurance policy type and offers basic coverage for the structure and property. This is a named perils policy and can be customized for landlords by adding specific liability coverage.

Whether you need the best home insurance for new builds or are looking for the best home insurance for older homes, be sure to shop around and compare home insurance so you can find the company and policy that will best meet your needs and budget.

What Other Personal Coverage is Available?

In addition to the above, the Andover Companies insurance includes these coverage options:

  • Home Systems Protection, available to cover losses for permanently installed items such as central heating and cooling systems, boilers, electric garage door openers, electrical, plumbing, and sewage lines on the property.
  • Identity Recovery, which provides insurance coverage along with additional services to assist customers with restoring and correcting their credit records.
  • Personal Umbrella, which goes above and beyond other policies to insure against catastrophic loss and any related lawsuits.
  • Watercraft, which covers losses related to property damage and liability for smaller powerboats and sailboats.

Coverage for in-home businesses and scheduled personal property can also be added to a home insurance policy.

What Types of Commercial Coverage do Andover Companies Offer?

Andover also offers a wide range of policies for commercial customers:

  • Business Owners’ policy protects business structures and property against either specific perils or on an all-risks basis. This policy also includes liability protection and assistance in the event of a lawsuit. Equipment breakdown coverage and loss of income protection are also part of this package policy. The policy is available for a range of different business types including retail and apartment buildings.
  • Commercial Umbrella, to provide catastrophic coverage that goes above and beyond the primary coverage in place.
  • Equipment Breakdown insurance covers losses due to the equipment breakdown, either mechanical or electrical.
  • Liability Coverage to protect against bodily injury including product liability, damage to property, and personal injury.
  • Loss of Income & Excess Expense, coverage for loss of business, and any related expenses.

Andover seems well-positioned to meet the coverage needs of homeowners, business owners, and landlords.

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The Andover Companies: What Other Products do They Have?

Auto insurance is no longer listed as an available product.

Inland marine coverage pertains to products, materials, and equipment that are transported overland or warehoused temporarily.

This insurance is provided through the AIM program of an affiliate company, Mutual Fire Insurance Association of New England, Inc. AIM is a specialized reinsurance pool that allows for the underwriting of larger potential losses on behalf of the member companies.

Does the Company Offer Competitive Rates?

Andover Insurance Company’s website does not offer any information regarding insurance rates. Quotes can only be obtained by contacting an agent. There is an agent locator service offered on the website, although most people are likely to find this company when an existing agent recommends their products. However, average home insurance rates in Massachusetts are $124/mo or $1,488/yr.

The table below offers the average annual rates nationwide for different types of home insurance policies.

Average Annual Homeowners Insurance Rates by Policy Type
Policy TypeAverage Rate
Dwelling Fire$688
HO1 (Basic)$1,657
HO2 (Broad)$1,144
HO3 (Special)$1,211
HO5 (Comprehensive)$1,292
HO6 (Condo)$989
HO8 (Older Home)$1,211
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The NAIC has compiled the insurance premiums written by each of The Andover Companies, as follows:

Insurance Premiums Written by Company for The Andover Companies
CompaniesPremiums Written
Merrimack Mutual$366,965,907
Cambridge Mutual$128,936,387
Bay State Insurance$90,047,026
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It’s obvious that of all of the Andover mutual insurance companies, Merrimack Mutual Insurance Company is by far the largest of the three companies. Additionally, we can see the various lines of business broken out within each company:

Premiums Written Written by Line of Business and Net Income The Andover Companies
CompaniesHomeowners Multiple Peril Premiums WrittenCommercial Multiple Peril Premiums WrittenFire Premiums Written2019 Net Income
Merrimack Mutual$190,259,542$42,014,476$45,302,889$48,030,946
Cambridge Mutual$75,558,041$14,618,501$10,788,408$7,267,337
Bay State Insurance$74,274,995$4,547,422n/a$20,112,109
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Only the major lines of business are included in this table, which is why they don’t total the full amount of premiums written for each company for that year. However, we can see that Merrimack Insurance, as the largest of the three companies, brings in the most net income for The Andover Companies and that most of its business comes from the Homeowners Multiple Peril line of business.

How Can I Pay My Premium?

The independent agents that represent The Andover Companies can arrange for customers to pay their premium electronically, through the use of electronic funds transfer, or EFT.

Customers with The Andover Companies make a payment on their monthly premium by first completing an Andover Companies EFT form that authorizes the transfer of monthly premium payments from their checking or savings account to The Andover Companies.

All of Andover’s mutual insurance companies’ premiums, including Merrimack Mutual Insurance bill payments, are handled through The Andover Companies.

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How Are Claims Handled?

According to the Andover website, claims, including Merrimack Mutual insurance claims and Cambridge Mutual insurance claims, should be reported directly to your insurance agent. Although this is commonly an option offered by an agent-based company, it is rare for this to be the primary claims reporting system.

The website does not offer an option to report a claim online.

There is an after-hours and weekend toll-free number available to file a claim when your agent is not available. Overall, the website pays little attention to providing claims assistance.

Are the Insurance Ratings Positive?

The Better Business Bureau (BBB) gives The Andover Companies an A+, its highest rating. The BBB’s rating system is based on its opinion of how each company interacts with its customers, including customer complaints. The video below shows what all goes into a BBB company rating.

As shown in the table below, the NAIC, a national insurance oversight organization, reports very few complaints registered against any of The Andover Companies during the last three years:

NAIC Three-Year Trend of Complaints Against the Andover Companies
Andover CompaniesComplaints Reported in 2019Complaints Reported in 2018Complaints Reported in 2017
Merrimack Mutual2107
Cambridge Mutual223
Bay State Insurance114
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Andover Insurance’s A.M. Best rating was A+ until 2020 when they were downgraded to A. This rating agency cited two major drivers for this change:

  • Increased underwriting volatility most likely due to frequent direct and assumed weather losses related to the increased severity of hurricanes and other extreme weather events.
  • Recent downward trends in the stock market that place additional pressure on Andover’s ability to maintain their reserves, which are the funds they set aside to pay out future claims.

In spite of this downgrade, an A rating is still extremely favorable.

How do Customers Rate The Andover Companies?

Other than the complaints reported to the NAIC and discussed in the above section, we weren’t able to find much reliable data for customer ratings. There are currently 46 reviews on Google where customers scored The Andover Companies an average of 4.7 out of 5.

This small number of complaints could be a positive indicator or it may reflect the smaller size and regional nature of the company.

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Do Employees Enjoy Working at the Company?

Unlike many companies, there is no listing on their web site for Andover Companies insurance careers, although open positions are posted on Glassdoor and likely elsewhere. Smaller companies may not have the resources to support a full-blown human resources function, so this is not unusual.

What is the History of The Andover Companies?

Based in Massachusetts, The Andover Companies consist of three separate companies offering a range of property and casualty insurance products. Coverage is offered across New England and several other states. The company is one of the top seven largest in the city of Andover, MA.

The Andover Companies are formed by Merrimack Mutual Fire Insurance Company, founded in 1828; Cambridge Mutual Fire Insurance Company, founded in 1833; and Bay State Insurance Company, which was founded in 1955. All three companies, Merrimack Mutual, Cambridge Mutual Fire Insurance Co. Inc., and Bay State Insurance Company, are in Andover, MA, which is about 25 miles outside of Boston.

With these three mutual insurance companies operating under The Andover Companies, all Merrimack Mutual, Cambridge Mutual, and Bay State Insurance Company reviews are in tandem with our review on The Andover Companies.

Other Andover companies in that area include Putnam Investments and Vicor Corporation. Andover, MA is also home to the regional offices for many multinational corporations such as Schneider Electric, Pfizer, Raytheon Technologies, and Philips.

The Andover Companies’ main insurance options are homeowners, business owners, and dwelling fire insurance. They also list watercraft and a few other specialty policies on their website, although most of these are written through their partnerships with other companies.

Andover Companies policies are sold through local Andover agents in the states they serve: Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, and Rhode Island.

What’s the Bottom Line?

The companies sell their products entirely through insurance agents, and they depend on those agents to market and manage products on their behalf. As a result, this company is only likely to land on the radar of consumers who do all of their insurance shopping through a trusted agent.

With little information on the products or rates, we are unable to make a recommendation for this company.

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Frequently Asked Questions: The Andover Companies Review

Here are a few frequently asked questions that you might find helpful.

Is Merrimack Mutual the same company as Merrimack Insurance & Retirement Services?

No, although both companies are located near the Merrimack River. Merrimack Insurance Company is located in North Andover; other North Andover insurance companies include Foster Sullivan, MacDonald & Pangione, and MTM.

Similarly, Quincy Mutual Fire Insurance Co. is located in MA, but is unrelated to The Andover Companies. Therefore, Quincy Mutual Fire Insurance ratings and Quincy Mutual Group reviews are included in other reviews.

Can I pay online for my Cambridge Mutual Fire insurance?

Yes, customers with Cambridge Mutual Fire Insurance Company can make a payment online. In addition to EFT options available through their agents, The Andover Companies provide a policyholder portal on their web site through which insurance customers can make online payments. This portal is located at https://www.andovercompanies.com/customer-login and requires a 7- or 8-digit policy number for login purposes.

Merrimack Mutual Fire Insurance online payments are the same.

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What states does The Andover Companies do business in?

The Andover Companies operate in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island. Illinois, New Jersey, and New York.

What coverage options do The Andover Companies offer?

The Andover Companies offer a variety of property loss coverage for consumers. Merrimack homeowners insurance, Cambridge homeowners insurance, and Andover homeowners insurance are all the same thing and are offered through the Andover Companies coverage.

What is Merrimack Mutual Fire Insurance Company’s payment address?

All payments can be mailed to The Andover Companies at its main office in Andover, MA:

The Andover Companies
95 Old River Rd.
Andover, MA 01810

References:

  1. https://andoverma.gov/440/Largest-Employers
  2. https://www.bbb.org/us/ma/andover/profile/insurance-companies/the-andover-companies-0021-21953

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