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PEMCO Insurance Review & Complaints: Auto, Boat, Umbrella & Home Insurance

Pemco Insurance Company's main offerings include auto, boat, umbrella, and Pemco home insurance policies. Pemco Insurance rates are best for drivers with a clean record, and may be costly for high-risk drivers. Our Pemco auto insurance quote for a 30-year-old single male driver in Seattle brought back a rate of $90.68/mo. Pemco Insurance is only available in Oregon and Washington state.

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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...

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UPDATED: Sep 21, 2020

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In our extensive Pemco Insurance review, we’ll cover Pemco complaints, how to get a Pemco insurance quote, and the company’s products.

Pemco Insurance Company is a Pacific Northwest regional insurance company providing personal insurance products for residents of Oregon and Washington. They are based out of Seattle and promise insurance that is designed for the needs of the area.

Pemco Insurance review is one of many of our insurance company reviews. Before you read more, get some rates. Enter your ZIP code in the FREE comparison tool above to compare the best insurance companies in your local area.

Pemco Insurance History

Pemco is an acronym for Public Employees Mutual Insurance Company and was founded in Seattle in 1950. It was created as the liability insurer to be partnered with PEMIC—a casualty insurer established the year before. The two companies were created to provide insurance products to the School Employees Credit Union of Washington. In 1977, the two merged into one company under the Pemco name.

Check out this Pemco Insurance Commercial to get a feel for how the company advertises to consumers.

Products are no longer limited to credit union members, and the company sells to the general public. They have grown to be the largest regional insurance company in the Pacific Northwest and continue to operate as a mutual insurance company. Pemco served only Washington until 2011 when they expanded into neighboring Oregon.

Today Pemco sells car insurance and home insurance as well as a handful of personal specialty policies. Their life insurance business started in 1963, was sold off in 2012, and the company no longer offers life coverage.

Pemco focuses on the preferred-risk market, which means they are not a good pick for high-risk drivers or even those with a blemish or two on their record. The company states that they keep rates lower by insuring drivers whose records indicate responsibility.

Pemco Mutual Insurance Co. is headquartered in Seattle, WA, with a branch office in Spokane. Policies are sold through agents across the service area. Pemco Insurance is found at 1300 Dexter Ave, and the Pemco Insurance phone number in Seattle is the same as the toll-free Pemco Insurance customer service number at 1-800-467-3626.

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Pemco Insurance Products

Pemco is mainly an auto insurance company, although they also write home, boat, and a few other policies. They do not currently offer any commercial insurance. You can buy Pemco Insurance directly or through an agent. Pemco Insurance quotes can be obtained over the phone or online.

Pemco Auto Insurance

Pemco offers a reliable basic auto insurance program with some added benefits that add value without gimmicks. Their policies differ between the two states they cover, with most of the extras offered only in Washington.

In addition to the legally required liability coverage and standard options like comprehensive coverage, collision coverage, and towing and labor, they also have several other additional coverages, some of which are automatically included in the policy:

  • Key replacement or re-coding coverage
  • Camper, Canopy, or Tonneau cover
  • Custom Parts and Equipment
  • Pet injury
  • Rental car damage coverage
  • Loan gap insurance
  • Rideshare (Uber or Lyft) coverage

There is a good list of discounts, and good driver/accident-free are automatically applied to every policy (since they insure preferred risks, all of their customers should qualify).

Discounts include one for educators, not surprising given the company’s history, and for the University of Washington alumni. In addition to the option of bundling for an auto/home discount, they also have a homeownership discount as well. Additional discounts include good student, defensive driving for mature drivers, low mileage, and paid in full.

Enrolling in full coverage could get you free Pemco towing coverage.

This company does not have much in the way of trendy or gimmicky discounts but does offer minor ticket forgiveness to drivers who have not had a ticket in at least five years.

Pemco also offers classic car insurance and covers motorcycles, scooters, and RVs.

Pemco Home Insurance

Pemco writes standard homeowner’s insurance as well as renters and condo insurance. Pemco home insurance reviews are not as common as car insurance reviews, but we looked into their policy options.

The homeowner’s package policy is relatively basic, including all of the coverage we expect and a few added benefits. Pemco includes water & sewer backup, which is often an add-on option, with their base policy. Replacement cost coverage is also included in their home insurance package.

The educator and U of W discounts are available on home policies and auto, along with a list of standard discounts. These include security and sprinkler system discounts and a newer home discount.

Both the renter and condo policies are also substantial but basic, although they include replacement cost coverage.

Pemco Boat Insurance

Pemco writes boat insurance for various boats and includes ocean-faring vessels with coverage along 75 miles of the coast of the U.S. and Canada.

Their boat policies include coverage for a mechanical breakdown as well as fishing equipment coverage at replacement cost. Personal property that’s on the boat can also be covered.

Boat policies are an agreed value rather than the depreciated value, which offers better overall coverage.

Other Insurance Services

Pemco also writes earthquake insurance, which can be added to a home insurance policy. With much of their coverage area being at risk of earthquakes, it is a good extra.

Personal umbrella insurance is available in amounts of $1, $2, and $3 million. This coverage provides additional liability above and beyond the limits of underlying policies. This coverage is only offered to those with both auto and home insurance through Pemco.

Pemco Insurance Rates

We ran a rate quote for a 30-year-old single male driver in Seattle, using the company’s headquarters zip code. The system stopped us just short of completion and required a social security number to continue, probably since it could not locate any records for our nonexistent sample driver.

The quote, which showed numbers in a sidebar despite our being unable to complete it, showed a 12-month premium of $1,088.21. We were not able to see what coverage this included since we could not complete the quote process. Since we do not usually quote in Washington state, we cannot compare this to other options.

Let’s look at the average insurance rates of the two states where Pemco provides insurance to give you an idea of how much you’ll pay for auto and home coverage.

Average Annual Auto and Home Insurance Rates of Oregon and Washington
StatesAnnual Auto InsuranceAnnual Home Insurance
Oregon$982$677
Washington$985$854
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These rates are averages reported from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). It’s pretty clear which state is cheaper. Annual Pemco insurance rate increases are often reported by customers, so rates may change over time.

One of the significant factors in insurance is the credit score. Did you know insurance companies issue lower rates if your credit score is excellent or good? According to the Federal Trade Commission, insurance companies give deals to consumers with high credit scores because they are likely to file a claim.

Since Pemco is preferred-risk drive insurance, we would expect them to offer their best rates to drivers with the best record and those with many years of experience. They are not going to have competitive rates for new drivers or drivers with tickets and accidents.

Pemco Insurance Claims

Pemco Insurance claims can be filed 24/7 either via the Pemco Insurance phone number for claims, which is toll-free, or the online claim form. To report a claim online, a Pemco Insurance login is required, which means it cannot be used by other drivers to file a claim against a Pemco insured.

Glass claims and towing or roadside assistance needs are handled through separate phone numbers, expediting the process, and providing direct assistance. Unlike other insurance companies, Pemco allows the insured to choose their glass shop to handle repairs or replacements.

Pemco’s preferred repair network is called Timesaver Repairs, and the shops on this list will work directly with the claims department to handle vehicle repairs. Customers can also select their repair shop.

While there is not a lot of in-depth claims information, the site does offer an overview of what to do in the event of an auto or home claim, with step-by-step instructions. The Pemco Insurance claims contact information is easy to find.

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Pemco Insurance Reviews and Ratings

Pemco has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), with only 11 complaints in the past three years. There are eight negative reviews, with complaints regarding claims handling and unexpected rate increases.

The Pemco Insurance financial rating with A.M. Best is a B++, which is a drop from the previous Pemco Insurance A.M. Best rating of A-.

J.D. Power has given Pemco its top award for auto insurance satisfaction in the Northwest region for several years in a row, including the latest 2018 ratings. Claims are the only category in which the company did not receive top marks.

There are 109 Yelp reviews of Pemco with an overall two-star rating. A lot of the complaints seem to be about rate increases, with some claims issues as well. A few positive reviews are scattered among the complaints.

Overall, Pemco has a good reputation and a low complaint volume for its size.

Pemco Insurance Review: The Bottom Line

Affordable Pemco insurance is probably available to you if you live in Washington or Oregon and have a stellar driving record. If you don’t, you might be better off with a different company.

The tread and rubber are the Pemco Insurance reviews and ratings. Since most people can’t get a Pemco auto insurance quotes outside of Oregon and Washington, Pemco will appeal to those who qualify for their best insurance rates and appeal to those seeking a local company.

In general, we would not expect this company to have the lowest rates around, but they do offer dependable products and a good reputation.

Frequently Asked Questions: Pemco Insurance Review

For the final section of the guide, we’ll answer frequently asked questions people see when they search for Pemco insurance reviews. These questions will add to what you’ve learned and provided you with confidence as you shop for insurance in your area.

Now that you know all about Pemco Insurace polciies, see how much oyu could save on car insurance by shopping around. Just enter your ZIP code in our FREE quote tool below to compare insurance companies in your area now.

#1 – Is Pemco a good insurance company?

According to A.M. Best, Pemco Insurance is still a good company with a good financial outlook. However, some experts and consumers may argue that the company is losing stream due to the drop from A- to B++.

#2 – Is Esurance a reliable insurance company?

Yes. Despite its place in the market share percentage, Esurance maintains a strong financial outlook and decent customer reviews.

#3 – Which insurance company has the best claims service?

According to J.D. Power, Amica Mutual the best company when it comes to claims service.

#4 – Why is State Farm the best insurance company?

State Farm is rated among the best insurance companies in the United States, according to A.M. Best and J.D. Power. Also, State Farm has one of the largest market shares in the insurance industry.

#5 – What are the worst insurance companies?

According to Consumer Reports, Esurance, Liberty Mutual, and Nationwide are the worst insurance companies.


References:

  1. https://www.naic.org/prod_serv_alpha_listing.htm
  2. https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0152-credit-scores

 

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About Eric Stauffer

Author: Eric StaufferI am a former insurance agent and banker turned consumer advocate. My 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.

5 Comments

  1. My complaint about pemco is when I turned 50 my rates went up, I’m 51 and my rates went from $88 for full coverage on my jeep to $103, I’ve been with them for over 20 years and getting frustrated, I have no accidents and no tickets…for me it seems I’m being penalized for my age.

    Reply
    • They did the same thing to me. As I had just turned 50, they jacked up my rates without explanation. I’ve been with them since 1992 and have never filed a single claim. I’m going to contact them to see what the deal is. If this is the case, where your rates are increased when you turn 50, they should at least notify the customer of this policy! Pretty sneaky if you ask me! Thanks for the heads up!

      Reply
  2. An elderly woman, with a cell phone stuck into her, with young children in the back of her car, backed into my path on the private property of a grocery store. I swerved to avoid hitting her, and jumped a plant divider, damaging the undercarriage of my motor home. Now, coming up for renewal, PEMCO has jacked up my rates, claiming “accident at fault”. Why do carriers insure one, always trying to upgrade coverage, and then penalize one [this was not my fault] as soon as one files a claim?

    Should I search for another carrier before renewal is due? I have excellent credit rating, and 20 safe driving years with PEMCO.

    Reply
    • Hi Robert,

      In my opinion, consumers are often too loyal to their insurance companies assuming they will do the same. Its simply not the case anymore. I have talked with numerous people that have been with their insurance company for decades with no claim, and get dropped as soon as they file a single one.

      There is no harm in bouncing around insurance companies. People are often tied to an agent they like, which is understandable. But an agent has just about zero say in anything that matters, such as a claim.

      There is nothing wrong with checking out the competitors.

      Best,
      Eric Stauffer

      Reply
  3. Looking for cheap insurance and pemco gave me great rates.but when I searched for info on them I found many negative remarks.
    So thinking about getting them but dont want horrible claim service if needed.

    Reply

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