American Modern Insurance Review: What to Know About the Specialty Insurer
American Modern offers insurance even if you don't qualify for traditional coverage, but it won't come cheap.
American Modern Insurance Group (AMIG) is a specialty insurer, meaning that it insures residences, vehicles and other items that a traditional provider may not cover. Available in all 50 states, American Modern may be a good option if you cannot find a home insurance policy through a mainstream company. However, specialty coverage is limited and costly. Here's what to know about American Modern:
- American Modern Insurance ratings and reviews
- American Modern home insurance
- Other American Modern policies
- American Modern company overview and subsidiaries
Our take on American Modern
In analyzing American Modern, we found that it's best for people who need specialized coverage, such as people who own old, vacant or rental properties. Here's our thinking.
American Modern Insurance Group received an A+ rating from both the Better Business Bureau and A.M. Best. The Better Business Bureau rating is based on a number of factors, including complaint history, age of company and government action against the company. The A.M. Best rating indicates that American Modern is financially stable, so you shouldn't have to worry about AMIG having financial difficulty paying out a claim.
AMIG's largest subsidiary, American Modern Home Insurance Company, received a complaint index of 2.49 from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC)
in 2018. The national median complaint index for that year is 1.04, which means that American Modern received more complaints than average. The NAIC also indicates that over half of complaints about American Modern Home Insurance Company are about claim handling. This suggests that you may be less than satisfied with your claims experience with American Modern.
Consumer reviews of American Modern Insurance tend to be middle of the road. Although American Modern Insurance Group's customer satisfaction is lower than average, it is important to remember that the complaints are largely related to claims experience. The nature of specialty insurance policies is that they offer less extensive coverage. For this reason, slight dissatisfaction is to be expected and is reasonable relative to the size of the company. The Better Business Bureau rating reflects this, as it hasn't received enough complaints to demote AMIG from an A+.
To summarize, here are American Modern's pros and cons at a glance:
|Best if||Avoid if|
|You want to insure a specialty recreational item||You just need a standard policy|
|You own a rental or vacant property||You want a lot of coverage|
|You live in an aging home|
Available home insurance policies
American Modern Insurance Group offers a handful of different specialty home insurance policies, but as specialty policies, they come with limitations. For example, American Modern often writes actual cash value (ACV) replacement policies. This means if your insured property is damaged or destroyed, AMIG will pay out the claim based on the market value at the time, depreciation included. This is opposed to replacement cost (RC) policies, which pay the cost to replace or fully repair the property. RC policies are sometimes available through American Modern as a coverage enhancement, which will raise your premium.
A standard home insurance policy provides "open peril" or comprehensive coverage, meaning it includes coverage for perils not explicitly included in the policy. AMIG usually writes "named perils" policies, which only cover the explicitly written perils. That means American Modern policies may exclude damage from:
- Earth movement and flood
- Water from plumbing, heating or A/C
While you can sometimes add coverage for these perils to your policy, each added coverage will increase your monthly premium. Extended coverage is the main difference between AMIG's specialty homeowners insurance policy (H0-10) and its enhanced HO-10 policy.
AMIG's main residential insurance products are listed below, along with their replacement policy, coverage and type of property they cover.
|Policy||Property type||Dwelling coverage||Personal property coverage||Replacement|
|DP-1||Primary, seasonal, rental, vacant||Named peril||Named peril||ACV|
|DP-3||Seasonal, rental, temporarily vacant||Open peril||Named peril||RC|
|HO-10||Primary, seasonal||Named peril||Named peril||ACV|
|HO-10 Enhanced||Primary, seasonal||Extended named peril||Extended named peril||RC|
|MHP||Mobile/manufactured homes||Varies by state||Varies by state||ACV|
Home insurance companies can deny you coverage for a number of reasons. For example, if you have an aging roof or home, live too far from the nearest fire station or you want to fix and flip a vacant house, you may not qualify for regular coverage. You can also be denied if your home is appraised at a price vastly different than the neighborhood average. In these and similar scenarios, specialty insurance from a provider like AMIG may be your best or only option.
Other available policies through AMIG
American Modern Insurance does not only cover homes — it offers a number of other policies. Below are a few more of the types of policies, dwellings and items that American Modern will cover. American Modern is particularly well-known for offering collector or classic car insurance, so even if you have a vehicle that falls out of the normal auto insurance market, you might still be able to find coverage through American Modern.
|Full-time homes||Collector or classic cars|
|Seasonal and vacation homes||Boats, yachts and other watercrafts|
|Vacant properties||ATV, UTV, golf carts and snowmobiles|
|Mobile or manufactured homes||Pet insurance|
|Landlord insurance||Commercial auto rental|
Company overview and structure
American Modern Insurance Group grew out of Midland, which was founded in 1949 as a mobile home finance company. American Modern entered the mobile home insurance industry in 1965 and has since expanded its insurance product portfolio to include specialty residential and recreational policies.
American Modern Insurance Group operates in all 50 states, with 1.7 million policies in effect. It is owned by Munich Re, a company with profits exceeding $2 billion per year. American Modern has its own subsidiaries, which can be very confusing. So if you come across any of these insurers, know that they fall under the AMIG umbrella:
- American Modern Home Insurance Company
- American Family Home Insurance Company
- American Modern Lloyds Insurance Company
- American Modern Property and Casualty Insurance Company
- American Modern Select Insurance Company
- American Southern Home Insurance Company
- American Western Home Insurance Company
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