What makes you leave a company you've been a 12-yr customer?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by DaveF, Aug 16, 2006.

  1. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    What would make you leave a service provider you've had otherwise good service from for a long time?

    I'm pricing updated car insurance now that I'm married. My wife was with State Farm but they're far too high for us as a couple. I've been with Geico for 12 years and had generally good experiences and found their rates to be the lowest available.

    However, the process of trying to get a new quote from them has been discouraging. For simplicity, we initially used their online quoting service, which gave a tremendously low rate. But when I called, they quoted a new rate double the online quote. Now, I've spent several hours on the phone over two weeks, talking to three agents; I've been promised two calls by an underwriter neither of which happened. I've had to reiterate my story each time I call. No one has been able to explain the discrepancy except that I shouldn't actually expect an online quote to be completely accurate.

    The last agent also informed me I've been overpaying (for a while?) -- if I increase my coverage my rates will drop by 15%! Great news, but why couldn't they have sent me a note that I can have better service and lower rates?

    One bad phone call is a fluke, but a series of agents unable to answer my questions, a wildly misleading online quoting service, a failure to followup as promised makes me think the company would provide equally poor service should I have to file a claim.

    Still, I've been a customer for 12 years, have the history established for "accident forgiveness" should I need to file a claim, and they still have the best rates available to me.

    I need to talk to a supervisor and ask if I just had a run of bad luck with customer reps, or if Geico just sucks now.
     
  2. Dennis*G

    Dennis*G Supporting Actor

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    I never understood these car only insurance places. Don't you have renters/home owner insurance also? I find you get the best rates when you insure everything under one roof.

    Anyway, good luck on your hunts. Shopping for insurance is not fun.
     
  3. Zen Butler

    Zen Butler Producer

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    Dave, simply put for me, service. I left my bank of nearly 15 years because of a decline in friendly service. After reading your post I realized I'm truly loyal to businesses that give me friendly, prompt and consistent service,

    Dave, and another thing you eluded to has been an ongoing conversation with a buddy of mine. Can anyone do their job anymore? The constant call transfers etc. When I find someone who actually knows their job; I tend to only ask for that specific person.
     
  4. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    That's a good point. I didn't expect much trouble, so I didn't track names for future reference.

    My expectations for customer service are going up these days, and I'm finding it's ever harder to find what I want. I'm annoyed by recent policies at Verizon and would like to leave them, but doubt any other mobil phone co would be better.

    But I've found the retail store Bed Bath & Beyond, of all places, to have excellent service when it comes to returns and exchanges!
     
  5. Chris Lockwood

    Chris Lockwood Producer

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    > No one has been able to explain the discrepancy except that I shouldn't actually expect an online quote to be completely accurate.

    Why not? If they can't provide accurate quotes online, they should remove that "feature".

    I mean, it's car insurance, not having a 10,000 square foot mansion built. There are only so many factors that go into it.

    I bought my insurance thru Progressive- did it all online, never talked to anyone, just the way I like it. [​IMG] That keeps their costs down and should result in lower rates.

    I don't agree that insurance is automatically cheaper if all bought through one agent. That's like expecting one store to be cheaper on every single item. Allstate has my condo policy, but their quote for car insurance was about $300/year higher than Progressive for the same coverage. So much for my "discount".
     
  6. Mort Corey

    Mort Corey Supporting Actor

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    You might want to look into Wawanesa.....better rates than Geico for the most part.

    Mort
     
  7. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Dave, if you can find a lower priced company, PLEASE LEAVE GEICO!!! I've been with GEICO from the start (14 years now) and I HATE THEM! I won't go into details because it's long and I don't want to derail the thread, but I've done everything I can to talk people out of going to GEICO due to my experience with them.

    Once I find a lower company, I'm definitely leaving. It just sucks that GEICO is usually the lowest.
     
  8. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Well, it's all been clarified and I'm back in the fold.

    An underwriter called me this evening and she was able to explain the current rate quotes and from that I unraveled the customer service problems I'd been having.

    Geico is introducing a new rate structure in NY later this month. The online quoting system is using this new system, but it's not available yet to agents to reference. They know a new structure is coming, but they can't access it for quoting to existing customers. So all three agents I spoke with were shackled by Geico's internal systems. There were some other issues, but that's the major problem I encountered.

    The underwriter, if I understand, had to get special permission to work against this new rates to clarify everything to me and give me a new quote effective on the changeover date.

    These new rates are incredible. My coverage will be much higher than when I was single and I'll be paying less. It's nearly 40% lower than the best quote I've found elsewhere.

    So, I'm still a bit concerned about how Geico's systems had hinder the employees from dealing with customers as best possible. But with the excellent call from the underwriter and an understanding of the root cause, I'm satisfied.

    Mark -- if you're fully unhappy with Geico, call Amica. They have very competitive rates (cheaper than Geico before the new rates) and have an excellent reputation. I still wonder if I should have switched to Amica, but for now I'm more comfortable saving more money and retaining my good rating with Geico.

    Now, if I can get similar resolution from Verizon, I'd be even happier.
     
  9. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    hmm, what is this geico you speak of, i've not heard of them. perhaps if they showed commercials constantly, i would know that i could save 15% with a 15 minute phone call. wish i knew.

    yes, i'm bitter. well, more like annoyed. i hate the commercials, but we can't even get geico in massachusetts, there are VERY few companies that will write policies in MA. try to get an online rate quote...it's next to impossible.

    CJ
     
  10. Ron Pinsonneault

    Ron Pinsonneault Auditioning

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    I've lived in NH all my life and started with State Farm since 1978 when I was 16 years old for car insurance.

    I recently added an addition onto my house and the insurance from State Farm doubled. Was going from $700 to $1400/year. I also had 2 car policies, RV policy, jewelry policy and personal policy with them.

    To make a long story short I switched to AAA insurance and am saving $1000/year.

    In this day an age it is all about MONEY.
     
  11. Dave_Brown

    Dave_Brown Supporting Actor

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    Now don't be upset. They went on to apologize as really, they had no idea you guys even existed anymore. [​IMG]
     
  12. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Some kind of wacked out move. I was a very satisfied Allstate customer, and I mean very satisfied, till they decided my sport touring motorcycle needed to be insured as a hardcore sportbike out of the blue and wanted to more than quadruple my rates. Bye.

    I sent them a nice long letter explaining why they lost me.

    P.S. Geico is the worst. Call Amica if you want fair rates and the best service in the industry (by a vast margin).
     
  13. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I can't argue quality service -- Amica has a good reputation and may well be better than Geico. Geico does still have the best rates by far: nearly 45% cheaper for car insurance and 27% lower for car and home total. And I've found Geico to generally be good; the past experiences were frustrating, but they got it together in the end.
     
  14. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Which makes sense as to why they are so bad. You get what you pay for, I guess.
     
  15. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    Those commercials are a crock. I've got two quotes from GEICO over the past few years and both were more than 25% higher than my current company.
     
  16. Philip Hamm

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    It's probably an urban legend, but I heard a few years ago that Geico donates radar guns to police. More tickets = higher premiums.
     
  17. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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  18. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    I checked Geico 5 years ago when I was laid off from my job and money was really tight. Their quote was over $1200/yr higher than what I was currently paying through Shelter.
     
  19. CapnSharpe

    CapnSharpe Stunt Coordinator

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    This is ironic. I left Amica when I watched their customer service go straight downhill. I found numerous problems with my homeowners insurance policy (e.g., claiming my house was 3 stories witha basement when it's 2 stories on a crawlspace). Similar to your experience with Geico I got a great online quote for auto insurance, only to have it double when I called on the phone. Amica had the nerve to tell me my credit was bad - naturally I was looking at all 3 credit scores online and knew she was lying.

    Long story short, I'm a Liberty Mutual insurance customer and I pay less for more coverage.
     

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