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GCI was incorporated in 1999, making them a relative newcomer in the insurance industry. With headquarters in Greer, SC, the company serves customers through independent agents as well as online and over the phone.
Products are available in North and South Carolina, although the website notes that renter’s insurance is offered in South Carolina only, while their motorcycle insurance is only available in North Carolina. Auto products are offered in both states.
Although the website does not say so, the company appears to cater to higher risk drivers, offering SR-22 insurance as well as non-owners products. The website offers very little in the way of information about the company or its products. It appears to be an amalgam of two websites, where the link to renter’s or motorcycle insurance goes through to a different website format; this may be the result of ongoing updates or an oversight.
GCI offers four basic products: auto, non-owners auto, motorcycle, and renters.
The website does not offer further information on these products, including details regarding coverage or discounts. As noted, the company currently offers motorcycle coverage in North Carolina only, but the website states expansion into South Carolina is planned in the near future.
One of the more unusual products offered by GCI is non-owners auto insurance, which is designed for drivers who do not own a car. This policy is most often issued to those who are required to file an SR-22 with the state as the result of a major violation such as a DUI/DWI. That again lends the impression that this company caters to the non-standard market.
We were surprised to see that GCI has added the option of online quoting since our last review and has also added quotes by phone. In some cases, the company can issue policies online as well, which is unusual for such a small, regional insurer. Quotes can also be obtained by speaking to a local agent.
Due to the regional nature of this company’s coverage, we were unable to run a comparison rate based on our usual sample data.
GCI advertises that they have low down payments and low rates, but caution is always urged with this type of promise, as it is usually accomplished by offering bare-bones policies with only state minimum required coverage. The lowest rate does not always mean the best value.
GCI does offer online claims reporting, another surprising advance for a small company. Claims can also be reported through the general toll-free customer service phone number.
While the website does appear to offer links to detailed information in regards to claims processing and various types of claims, these links returned a 404 error when we attempted to view them. While GCI appears to have made strides in online services in some areas, they appear to need to pay some attention to their website in other areas.
Ratings and Customer Reviews
Greenville Casualty Insurance has an A rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) at the time of this review. The page notes that the grade was affected by a failure to be transparent about ownership, location, or services. Further information is not offered to explain what specifically resulted in this downgrading.
There are five complaints on file with the BBB in the past three years. The complaint number is down by more than 50% since our last review. Only one complaint was closed in the past 12 months.
We did find some scattered reviews of the company on a few sites, most of which are decidedly negative. Yellow Pages has two one-star reviews, while Yelp has three; one of these appears to be cross-posted in both locations and has the same wording. All of the complaints refer to poor customer service and bad claims handling.
On Google, there are three reviews, and one of them is positive, citing an easy claims experience. The other two are again negative.
The Bottom Line
In spite of upgrades to the website in recent years, GCI fails to provide a lot of pertinent information to help an insurance shopper make a wise decision. While we did not find any major red flags here and the complaint volume is not particularly high, we did not find a lot in the way of information to fully recommend the company.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.