UPDATED: Nov 30, 2018
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Hochheim Prairie Mutual Farm Insurance Association and Hochheim Prairie Casualty Insurance Company are the two branches of the company that was founded in the small farming community of Hochheim in 1892. The company grew over the decades from its roots as a farm insurer to provide a selection of products across the state.
The company’s website has an outdated feel that gives the impression they still hold to the older ways of doing things; that is an attitude that is not uncommon among small insurance companies that rely on word of mouth and face to face sales the same way they have since they were founded. The website does, however, offer modern conveniences like online bill payment.
Hochheim’s headquarters is located in Yoakum, Texas, and they sell policies through independent agents throughout the state.
The auto insurance program is a standard policy that covers liability, comprehensive, and collision, along with several options that can be added on as needed. From what little information the site offers, there are not a lot of bells and whistles to the program – which is not necessarily a bad thing.
Hochheim has a 24/7 glass repair program that they run directly, and not through a glass company as do many other insurance companies. They even offer mobile service.
They also offer a good but basic list of common discounts that include multi-policy, safety features, and good driver discounts.
The home insurance program is available to cover a number of different types of home. In addition to standard single-family home insurance, they also cover:
- Mobile and manufactured homes
- Multi-family homes
- Builder’s Risk
- Modular homes
It is very important to note that these are not complete package policies.
While most homeowner’s insurance policies include liability, Hochheim’s do not. Instead, in a highly unusual move, they sell liability insurance as a separate policy that can be added on. Liability insurance is a vital part of a complete home insurance package, and we highly recommend purchasing this coverage.
Farm and Ranch Building, Machinery, and Equipment coverage can also be added as an extra endorsement. This is treated as an add-on to home insurance rather than a separate product.
Small Business Insurance
Hochheim offers package policies for a variety of small businesses, particularly family-owned businesses.
Among the types of businesses that can be insured are:
- Professional Offices
- Service industry
- Bed and Breakfast
- Multi-family and garden apartments
We are not surprised to see that Hochheim does not have an option for online quoting. This type of company tends to operate on a personal basis and relies on agents and referrals to bring in new business rather than internet searches and quotes.
In general, we do not typically expect smaller companies to have the best rates – at least not in comparison to the major direct sales insurers. The value in these policies is added in the personal service offered by the agent, and hopefully by great claims handling.
Backing up our agent-driven view of this company is the recommendation that claims should first be directed to your agent. There is also an after hours toll-free line that can be called to report a claim when the agent’s office is not open.
There is a list of claims representatives in each area of the state, along with phone numbers and what appears to be a shared email address. The somewhat confusing instructions, however, seem to indicate that these people will contact the insured after the claim is filed through the agent – and should not be contacted directly to file a claim.
Since agent office hours may vary, and the ability to get a hold of the agent even during those office hours will also vary, this system leaves some gaps in the ability of the customer to reach someone in regards to their claim at all hours of the day. This is not an unusual problem with small insurance companies, but in the modern age will likely frustrate those who have become accustomed to constant and immediate access to assistance.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
Hochheim has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and there is only one complaint on file in the past three years. That single complaint was closed in the past three months.
We are not the least bit surprised that we found very little in consumer reviews for this company. With a company that does not operate heavily online, we also find customers that are not as likely to write a review online.
The Bottom Line
There does not seem to be any red flags when reviewing Hochheim, but there is also a general lack of detailed information that makes it hard to form a solid opinion. Hochheim is likely to appeal to people who like local, agent-run insurance where things are handled by traditional, old-school methods.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.