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The Hartford Auto Insurance Review: Costs & Coverage

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Car driving down the road
The Hartford Review
In Our Opinion:
The Hartford offers low auto insurance rates and unique perks to AARP members. While still available to drivers without AARP memberships, it is older drivers who will find the most benefit with The Hartford.
Industry Standing:
Availability:
Coverage:
Affordability:
Customer Service:
Online Experience:
Pros:
Wide range of auto insurance products
Can bundle home and auto insurance policies
Special rates and benefits for AARP members
Cons:
Average customer service reputation
Not many discount options for non-AARP members
3.9

Drivers over 50 looking for insurance coverage may be familiar with The Hartford auto insurance. The Hartford is the only car insurance provider to partner with the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) to provide exclusive benefits to the organization’s members. 

Because of this relationship, AARP members may find especially low auto insurance rates with the provider. Our team wanted to see how The Hartford compares to the country’s best car insurance companies, so we took a look at the company’s rates, coverage options, benefits, customer service, and more. Keep reading to see what we discovered.

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About The Hartford

Founded in 1810, The Hartford has a rich history. According to the company’s history, it once insured the home of Abraham Lincoln. Today, The Hartford is among the top 25 insurers in the country, and is the only one officially endorsed by the AARP. For that reason, you may have heard it referred to as “AARP car insurance.”

While certain benefits and discounts are only available to AARP members, anyone can purchase a car insurance policy from The Hartford.

The Hartford Auto Insurance Costs

The average rate estimate for a full coverage auto policy from The Hartford is $2,134 per year – significantly more expensive than the average national estimate of $1,730 per year. These averages are based on a standardized profile of a 35-year-old driver with a clean driving record and good credit. Since The Hartford is designed more for older drivers, rates for those drivers may be more competitive.

The Hartford Auto Insurance Cost Factors

Six icons representing the most influential factors in the cost of car insurance premiums, including coverage choices, driving history, age, credit score, deductible, and location.

Your premium is unlikely to match the average estimate quoted above. Insurance companies calculate individual rates using several factors, including:

  • Coverage types: Liability insurance policies that only satisfy state minimum coverage requirements cost the least. Adding coverage for yourself and other options will increase your premiums.
  • Coverage limits: Setting higher coverage limits offers you more financial protection, but it also means you’ll pay more for an auto policy.
  • Age: While younger drivers tend to pay the highest rates of any age group, senior drivers sometimes see higher premiums than middle-aged drivers, too.
  • Deductible: The lower your deductible is, the higher your premium is likely to be. If you want to save money on your auto policy, set your deductible higher.
  • Driving history: If you have any car accidents or traffic violations on your driving record, you’re likely to face higher premiums.
  • Location: Rates vary between states and even between ZIP codes in the same state due to differences in regulations and the presence of different risk factors.
  • Credit history: Some states have made it illegal for insurers to use your credit score as a factor in your premiums. In states where it is still legal, people with lower credit scores tend to see higher premiums.

The Hartford Car Insurance Discounts

Many of the premium estimates we found for The Hartford were more expensive than industry averages. However, the company offers a robust set of discounts that can help bring premiums down, including:

  • Multi-policy discount: If you combine your auto coverage with other insurance products such as life, renters, or homeowners insurance, you can get an overall policy discount.
  • Paid-in-full discount: You can save money on your policy by paying your entire premium upfront, rather than across monthly payments.
  • Safety features discount: The Hartford offers a discount for having safety features such as anti-lock brakes and additional airbags installed on your vehicle.
  • Vehicle fuel type discount: People who drive hybrid or electric vehicles can get a discount on their auto policy.
  • Safe driver training discounts: Policyholders under the age of 21 (25 in Georgia) can earn a discount by completing an approved safe driving course.
  • Defensive driving discount: The Hartford offers a discount to drivers who complete an approved defensive driving course. This discount can apply for up to three years.
  • New vehicle discount: Policyholders can get a discount when covering a new vehicle.
  • Non-resident student discount: Households that have an insured driver that is currently attending school away from home without regular access to their vehicle can get a discount on their policy.

TrueLane by The Hartford

The Hartford is one of many insurers that offers a telematics program as an alternative to flat-rate insurance. This program, called TrueLane, uses a mobile app to monitor your driving behaviors, such as your speed, how hard you brake and turn, what times of day you drive, how often you use your phone in the car, and more.

The Hartford offers a 12% discount just for signing up for TrueLane. If you practice safe driving habits, the company says you can save as much as 25% on your policy when you renew. However, if you practice driving habits that The Hartford deems unsafe, you could end up paying more for coverage.

The Hartford Auto Insurance Coverage

Like with most insurers, you can build your car insurance policy with The Hartford by combining standard car insurance coverages with optional coverages and add-ons that fit your needs and budget. Most experts recommend having a “full coverage” policy that includes personal injury, collision, and comprehensive insurance along with liability coverage to ensure you’re protected financially.

Standard Coverage Options

The Hartford offers the standard types of auto insurance that you can find with most leading providers. These include:

  • Property damage liability insurance: Covers damage to other drivers’ vehicles and property in an accident for which you are found at fault.
  • Bodily injury liability insurance: Covers medical bills and other injury-related expenses resulting from an accident you are found at fault for.
  • Collision coverage: Covers damage to your vehicle and property resulting from an accident, regardless of who is at fault.
  • Comprehensive coverage: Covers damage to your vehicle from sources other than a car accident, such as theft, vandalism, fire, or floods.
  • Personal injury protection (PIP): Covers medical bills and lost wages for people in your party resulting from an accident, regardless of who caused it.
  • Medical payments (MedPay): Covers medical expenses for your party, regardless of who is at fault for an accident.
  • Uninsured motorist/underinsured motorist coverage: Covers injury and property damage if an at-fault driver lacks sufficient coverage.

The Hartford Additional Coverage Options:

The Hartford also offers a number of add-ons to help cover other costs related to owning and driving your vehicle. These include:

  • Car towing coverage: Pays for towing.
  • Full glass coverage: Pays for all glass damage and has a $0 deductible.
  • Rental car expense coverage: Provides reimbursement for rental car costs when your car is in the shop for repairs after an accident.
  • Personal umbrella insurance: Provides financial help if someone sues you for damages in excess of what is paid by your liability policy.
  • Gap insurance: Pays the difference between your car’s actual cash value and the amount you owe on your car loan if your car is stolen or totaled.
  • Disappearing deductible: Reduces your collision deductible each year you go without an accident (down to $0).
  • Accident forgiveness: Accident forgiveness for your first accident is automatically included if all drivers on your policy maintain a clean driving record for five years.

The Hartford Included Benefits for AARP Members

While many of the company’s benefits and options are available to policyholders at large, the provider includes a series of discounts and benefits for members of the AARP Auto Insurance Program From The Hartford. These include:

  • 24-Hour roadside assistance: Covers the cost of emergency services like towing, fuel delivery, and more.
  • Legal representation for accidents: Covers the cost of legal fees related to a car accident.
  • New car replacement coverage: Replaces your car with one of the same make, model, and equipment without subtracting anything for depreciation if it is new.
  • No deductible windshield repair service: Waives your auto policy deductible for windshield repair insurance claims.
  • RecoverCare essential services: Covers the cost of hiring services for tasks such as house cleaning, lawn maintenance, snow removal, transportation services, food preparation, and dog walking if you are injured in an accident and can’t do them yourself.
  • Homeownership credit: Discounts your auto policy if you own a home. This doesn’t apply if you are already getting a discount for bundling your homeowners insurance policy with your auto policy.

The Hartford Lifetime Car Repair Assurance

With any insurer, you always have the right to choose your repair shop. However, like many insurers, The Hartford has an approved repair facility program that offers benefits for using one of the more than 1,600 shops in their network.

If you use the program, The Hartford will find an in-network shop for you and handle communications and payment directly with the shop. Repairs made under this program at partner shops are guaranteed for the lifetime of the vehicle.

The Hartford Auto Insurance Reviews

The Hartford has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), but it is not accredited. The car insurance company currently has a 1.0 out of 5.0-star BBB customer review score, but this is based on a relatively low number of reviews. Keep in mind that customers are much more likely to visit the BBB website to complain than to leave positive comments.

There are only a small number of customer reviews, which means these scores may not accurately reflect the sentiment of the majority of The Hartford car insurance customers.

Positive Reviews of The Hartford 

Several reviews praise quality customer service, especially when switching to The Hartford from another provider. Customers report satisfaction with lower car insurance rates and professional agents.

“I really thought I was getting the lowest available rate on my car insurance, but to my surprise, [I] wasn’t. [The Hartford] helped me get better coverage at a lower premium. For that, I am happy.”

– Steven P., via Trustpilot

“I just bought a new vehicle and the insurance company that I’ve been with for the past two years raised my rates [even though] I have an excellent driving history. [I] spoke with an agent from The Hartford who was awesome, and he saved me $412.”

– Hiram C., via Trustpilot

Negative Reviews of The Hartford 

Some customers express frustration with slow claims servicing, denied claims, and difficulty canceling contracts. However, many of the negative reviews focus on the company’s home insurance products, not The Hartford auto insurance.

“This is the worst financial group ever. They take weeks to respond to your questions – if they even respond at all – and when they respond, they don’t answer your questions. [The Hartford] miscalculated my insurance in July. It’s almost January, and still no resolution.”

– Ben F., via BBB

“[My claim has] been approved, but [I have yet to] receive a payment going on 10 weeks… They never give you any correct information… I’m still waiting for a call back.”

– B. M., via BBB

The Hartford Auto Insurance: Conclusion

Auto insurance from The Hartford can be somewhat pricey for the average driver compared to many other top providers. However, the provider may offer some of the most competitive rates for AARP members in specific, especially after you factor in discounts. Members of the organization who get coverage through The Hartford also get a number of unique and valuable benefits included in their policy. RecoverCare, for example, is a thoughtful type of coverage that isn’t easy to find anywhere else and could be extremely helpful after an accident.

Younger drivers will likely find cheaper auto insurance elsewhere. But while anyone can get coverage from The Hartford, the company is designed more for older drivers and especially AARP Members. For those drivers, The Hartford should be one of the first options to consider.

The Hartford Auto Insurance: Top Competitors

Even if The Hartford seems like the right provider for you, it’s always a good idea to shop around. Another provider may offer better rates or more appealing coverage options. We always recommend getting car insurance quotes online from a few different providers. This allows you to compare and see which provider truly offers you the lowest rates. Both of the providers mentioned below scored highly in our auto insurance study and would make great options for many drivers.

GEICO: Best Discount Selection

GEICO features more discounts on its auto coverage than most of the providers we studied – earning it this year’s award for Best Discount Selection. In addition, we found that GEICO rate estimates were consistently among the lowest throughout our study. That means most drivers can find inexpensive coverage and bring those costs down even further with lots of discount opportunities. If it’s inexpensive coverage from a reputable provider you’re after, it’s certainly worth getting an auto insurance quote from GEICO.

Keep reading: GEICO car insurance review

State Farm: Best Overall

The nation’s largest insurer earned the highest score of all providers in our most recent auto insurance study, winning State Farm the award for Best Overall. State Farm offers competitive rates, plenty of discounts, and a large selection of coverage options in all 50 states. The company also claims the country’s largest network of local insurance agents, offering easy access to in-person services in most places.

Keep reading: State Farm car insurance review

The Hartford Auto Insurance: FAQ

Is The Hartford insurance company a good one?

The Hartford insurance company is a good company in terms of its industry reputation. In operation since 1810, it is one of the oldest companies in the U.S. It maintains an A+ rating from the BBB and also has an A+ financial strength rating from AM Best.

Is The Hartford owned by AARP?

The Hartford is not owned by the AARP, but it is the only official insurance partner of the organization. AARP members get access to special discounts and benefits on their insurance with The Hartford.

How much is the AARP discount with The Hartford?

The Hartford offers a 10% AARP discount on car insurance premiums to members of the organization. You must be more than 50 years old and have a valid AARP membership card to access this discount.

What is the cheapest car insurance for senior citizens?

State Farm and GEICO tend to offer the cheapest car insurance for senior citizens according to our research. USAA also tends to offer affordable coverage for senior drivers, but only military members, veterans, and their families are eligible for the company’s insurance. For AARP members, The Hartford may offer affordable coverage through special discounts for members of the organization.

Our Methodology

Our expert review team takes satisfaction in providing accurate and unbiased information. We identified the following rating categories based on consumer survey data and conducted extensive research to formulate rankings of the best car insurance providers.

  • Affordability: A variety of factors influence cost, so it can be difficult to compare quotes between providers. Our team considers auto insurance rate estimates generated by Quadrant Information Services and discount opportunities when giving this score.
  • Coverage: Because each consumer has unique needs, it’s essential that a car insurance company offers an array of coverage options. We take into account types of insurance available, maximum coverage limits, and add-on policies.
  • Industry Standing: Our team considers Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings, financial strength, and years in business when giving this score.
  • Availability: Auto insurers with greater state availability and few eligibility requirements are more likely to meet consumer needs.
  • Customer Service: Reputable car insurance providers operate with a certain degree of care for consumers. We consider complaints filed with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), J.D. Power claims servicing scores, and customer feedback.
  • Online Experience: Insurers with easy-to-use websites and highly rated mobile apps scored best in this category.