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Hippo Homeowners Insurance Review: For Those Seeking Home Wellness in Their Homeowners Policy

Refreshed Review Updated Aug. 1, 2022
Dana George
By: Dana George

Our Insurance Expert

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This homeowner insurance is a good fit for: The homeowner looking for all the bells and whistles at a fair price.

Like many tech companies, Hippo homeowners insurance was born in Northern California and was designed to make life easier for the end-user. Hippo says that they offer more than home insurance. They offer "home wellness." By allowing a homeowner to care for their home in a way that prevents minor problems from becoming expensive headaches, they save customers time, money, and frustration.

Founded in 2015, Hippo is streamlining the insurance process without sacrificing customer service. The homeowners insurance company claims that potential customers can get a quote in as little as 60 seconds and have a policy in hand in five minutes.

Although it's currently available in only 37 states, Hippo plans to move into other states soon. The only real downside for customers who depend on bundling their insurance policies is that Hippo offers only homeowners and condo insurance. While it is possible to bundle products by purchasing car insurance coverage through a Hippo partner, it may not be the auto insurance coverage every driver is looking for.

Hippo

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Full Hippo homeowners insurance review

Pros

  • Customers can purchase a policy in less than five minutes
  • Provides insurance coverage for expensive items not normally covered, like office equipment
  • Offers complimentary smart home devices
  • Provides enhanced rebuilding coverage
  • Customizable policies
  • Dedicated claims concierge
  • A- rating by AM Best, meaning Hippo appears to have strong financial backing and the ability to pay out claims.

Cons

  • Currently available in only 37 states
  • Claims cannot be filed online
  • No J.D. Power rating yet, a fact that makes it difficult to get a sense of Hippo's true customer satisfaction record

Hippo homeowners insurance at a glance

Top perks

Ability to customize policy

One customer may have little to protect while the other may have loads of upgrades in their home. The ability to pick from a menu of coverage options allows customers to choose the level of insurance coverage they need and are comfortable with.

Outstanding "extra" coverage for those with newer homes

Policyholders with homes less than 15 years old have access to a high level of coverage on features not typically covered by other policies. For example, equipment breakdown and service line protection are exceptional coverage options for newer homes. Older homes do not enjoy the same level of coverage.

Innovative approach to customer service

The fact that Hippo routinely reaches out to customers when it's clear they may be impacted by a severe weather event illustrates the company's level of commitment to protecting its customers and its customers' property.

What could be improved

Bundling option may not be attractive to all customers

The sole option current Hippo customers have for bundling is to purchase auto insurance from a Hippo partner, Metromile. As a pay-by-the-mile insurance company, Metromile may not be the best fit for all drivers or represent the best premiums.

Not available in all states

The fact that Hippo is not available in all states means anyone who moves regularly for work may have to start all over with a new insurance company once they've relocated.

Alternatives to consider

When looking for homeowners insurance with a proven record: Allstate and State Farm fare well in J.D. Power's Homeowners Insurance Customer Satisfaction survey and offer a wide variety of discounts and coverages. What a homeowner won't find are companies driven by technology that allows the customer to take control of the application process and find out how much their rates are going to be in under one minute. They also won't have access to the same full array of unique coverages, like household worker coverage or equipment breakdown protection.

Rates / Pricing

Hippo offers competitive homeowners insurance rates, particularly in light of how comprehensive the coverage can be. However, for homeowners with an existing insurance company, it is possible to find a lower rate through bundling all their policies, such as life and auto insurance.

Discounts available

As long as there are discounts available, it makes no sense to pay full price for a homeowners policy. Here are some of the discounts on homeowners insurance Hippo offers:

  • Claim-free discount
  • Affinity discount (for customers who purchase through a group, like a college, membership club, or business)
  • Hail resistant roof discount
  • Home buyer discount
  • Homeowners association (HOA) discount
  • Smart home discount
  • Theft protection device(s) discount
  • Product bundling (for customers who purchase pay-per-mile auto coverage from Hippo's partner company, Metromile)

Coverage options

Perhaps one of the most attractive features of a Hippo homeowners policy is the ability to customize it to fit the needs and budget of a particular homeowner. As the homeowner's needs change or their budget increases, Hippo makes it possible to alter the homeowners insurance policy to change along with their circumstances. Here's a look at Hippo's coverage options, some of which can be added on:

Enhanced rebuilding coverage

If a policyholder's home is destroyed, enhanced rebuilding coverage pays to rebuild the home, even if the costs exceed the estimated value by up to 25%

Personal property

Personal property coverage is commonly referred to as "home contents insurance" or "Coverage C" by Hippo. It protects the homeowner's belongings from damage or needed repairs resulting from a covered peril or theft.

Liability

Liability coverage protects against lawsuits stemming from injury or property damage caused by the policyholder, their family members, or their pets.

Other structures coverage

Other structures coverage means that Hippo will pay to repair or replace structures other than the policyholder's home. This includes structures like detached garages, fences, and tool sheds.

Loss of use

If a policyholder is unable to stay in their home due to a covered peril, the homeowners insurance company will pay for them to stay somewhere else until they can get back into the home.

Equipment breakdown

Hippo will pay for anything that uses power and breaks. How much they'll cover depends on the age of the equipment, but it means that the policyholders know they have coverage for everything from the AC unit to the washing machine.

Home office

Home office equipment like computers and printers are covered for up to $10,000.

Increased limits for high-value items

Valuable personal items like jewelry are covered for up to $5,000.

Service line protection

Covers up to $10,000 for the excavation, repair, and damaged-property costs resulting from problems with any service line that runs from the street to the policyholder's home. The policy covers up to $2,500 for homes more than 50 years old.

Sewer backup

Homeowners are covered for up to $20,000 for damage caused by backup and overflow of water.

Household workers

This add-on covers policyholders if a household worker -- like a nanny, housecleaner, or gardener -- is injured on their property.

Application process

Applying for Hippo homeowners insurance is fast and easy. To get a quote, a homeowner can either fill out a few questions on the company website or call a toll-free number listed on the site. Within minutes, they can tick off the options they prefer their policy to include, make a payment, and print their policy.

Customer service and ratings

J.D. Power -- the gold standard in customer satisfaction -- has not issued Hippo a rating. To offer a better sense of how customer-centric the home insurance provider is, though, Hippo co-founder and CEO Assaf Wand gave out his personal phone number to customers during the 2019 California wildfires, offering to personally help those who reached out to him. Another way the home insurance company illustrates its customer-centric nature is to contact customers before a major weather event, offering advice as to how they can protect their home and property from loss.

This homeowners insurance is the best option if:

Hippo homeowners insurance is best for customers who:

  • Seek a home insurance company with a reputation for putting customers first
  • Hope to customize their homeowners insurance
  • Want to partner with their insurer to create a safer home
  • Appreciate a streamlined application process

But homeowners may want to consider State Farm or Allstate if they're looking for a home insurance provider with a longer, more established track record.

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