Hippo

Extra coverage for electronics and great customer service make Hippo an appealing home insurance provider.

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InsuranceRanked Score 4.7
Contact Number 877-838-8866
Year Founded 2015

Hippo 2020 Review


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Hippo Home Insurance Review – Pros, Cons and Coverage

Extra coverage for electronics and great customer service make Hippo an appealing home insurance provider.

If you are a homeowner, you do you everything you can to keep your home safe and sound.

Unfortunately, emergencies do happen – so you also want to do everything you can to ensure that you are protected. That means working with a trusted home insurance provider.

That’s where Hippo Home Insurance comes in.

In fact, we really love how comprehensive Hippo’s coverage is, as well as their top-notch customer service.

In this guide, we will cover everything you need to know about buying homeowners insurance, what Hippo insures that other companies don’t, how to file a claim, and much more.

Hippo: What You Need to Know

Hippo came to be when they realized that 60% of US homes are underinsured. So, they set off to provide better, cheaper home insurance that was accessible to everyone.

Hippo is a data-driven home insurance company.

They don’t use commissioned insurance brokers, but instead relies on partners Zillow and Heap for real estate data to inform their policies. They also partner with TOPA and Spinnaker Insurance Company – an all their partners are rated A-Excellent by A.M. Best, the top insurance rating authority.

Hippo joins Lemonade, Ethos, and Bestow in piloting new insurance models driven by technology. New Hippo customers can get a quote in 60 seconds and get insured in minutes!

How Does Hippo Home Insurance Work?

Home insurance is required by most home loan lenders, so it is a necessary part of owning a home for many people.

But, not all home insurance is created equal. High prices and limited coverage offers deters homeowners from other insurance companies. Plus, many companies make it difficult to file a claim due to limited technology.

Technology has changed so why shouldn’t the way people buy and use insurance change as well?

In fact, it’s hanging the way people buy insurance because many people can get a quote in as little as 60 seconds online – and even making accident prevention easier than ever.

With Hippo, customers get a free smart home monitoring system that detects open doors, temperature changes, and water leaks in order to prevent damage.

Most of Hippo’s 2018 claims were due to water damage. Offering added protection against this makes sense. That’s why Hippo gives more coverage for major appliances like washing machines, dishwashers, plumbing, and the like.

Hippo makes filing a claim easy. You get an assigned claims concierge to guide you through the process. They will even help you in case you need transportation or a hotel for the night while your home is in disarray.

Where is Hippo Insurance Available?

Hippo insurance is available in Alabama, Arizona, California, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin.

They are rolling out to more states nationwide so keep checking in with their website if yours isn’t listed yet.

How Much Does Hippo Cost?

The cost of Hippo home insurance can differ for each customer and depends on a few main factors.

What Affects Premium Costs?

  1. Rebuilding Costs
    1. These have the biggest effect on your premium
    2. Equals how much it would cost to rebuild your home (to the same standard) if a disaster struck
    3. Based on the size of your home, the quality of the building materials, and the number of rooms and stories
    4. Updated kitchens and bathrooms and remodeling also lead to higher premiums
  2. Location 5. High-Risk Areas 1. Can only be controlled before you buy your home 2. Flood, tornado, hurricane and earthquake zones increase your premiums 3. High crime rates increase your premiums too 6. Fire Hydrants/Fire Station Nearby 4. Lowers your premium
  3. Personal History 7. Insurance companies look at credit and driving history and past insurance claims

Additionally, having a home security system can decrease your premium by as much as 20%. Every Hippo enrollment comes with a free Notion Smart Home Sensor Kit. Attach the device and sensors to your walls. You will get alerts if windows are opened or if your smoke or carbon dioxide alarm goes off.

What Does Hippo Home Insurance Cover?

Hippo has comprehensive coverage to insure you against a wide array of events.

These are the four main areas of Hippo’s homeowner’s insurance.

Personal Property Coverage

  • This is an estimate of the worth of all the personal property in your home
  • You can choose the full replacement cost or how much you bought it for (higher deductible plans)
  • Get all valuable items professionally appraised
  • Check out https://myhippo.com/homeownersinsurancebuyersguide to find local appraisers near you

Dwelling Coverage

*   Home Rebuilding Coverage
*   Extended Replacement Cost
    *   Extra coverage (25-50%) to cover all costs of rebuilding your home
*   Separate Structure Coverage
    *   Such as garages
*   Roof Surface Coverage
*   Ordinance Protection
*   Foundation and Water Damage

Additional Living Expenses

*   Loss of Use Payments
    *   If your home is unlivable
    *   Help with hotels and eating out

Liability Coverage

*   Dog Bites 
    *   Up to $100,000 or $300,000 depending on the policy
*   ‘Vicious breeds’ like pit bulls likely aren’t covered
*   Medical Payments 
    *   Coverage up to a certain amount if someone gets injured on your property

How to Make Sure All Your Belongings are Covered

If disaster strikes and you need to file a claim, you’ll need to give evidence of everything you owned.

The best way to prepare for this is to film a 5-minute video of all your belongings. The easiest way is to go room by room (attic, basement, garage, etc.) hold up each item and record a short description of it. Make a separate video for each room.

For safety, consider keeping such videos on a cloud hosting service like DropBox.

Also, keep a written list of your items with receipts organized by room. If you don’t want to list everything, it’s a good idea to at least list items worth more than $1,000. This will make it easier for you to keep track of everything.

Enhanced Coverage

Hippo distinguishes itself from other insurance companies by offering enhanced coverage.

This includes the following:

  • Equipment Breakdown
    • Coverage for almost all your electronic equipment
    • Washing machines, refrigerators, dishwashers, and even computers and laptops
    • Up to $100,000 with a $500 deductible
  • Service Line Breakdown (water, sewer)
    • Up to $10,000
  • Domestic Workers (nannies, gardeners, babysitters)
    • Coverage if a domestic helper becomes injured on your property
  • Home Office
    • Covers home office and printers for damages of up to $10,000
  • Computers
    • Laptops, desktops, other storage devices covered up to $10,000
  • Extra Water Backup
    • Doubles the standard level of protection for water backup
  • Foundation & Water
    • Up to $25,000
  • Loss Assessment
    • Covers you in case of costs shared amongst condo homeowners association members
  • Jewelry & Watches
    • Covers against loss by theft of jewelry, watches, gems, stones, furs, semi-precious stones up to $5,000
  • Ordinance of Law
    • Extra coverage in case changes in ordinances make your home more expensive to repair

What Is Generally Not Covered

  • Mold Damage
    • Not approved if it’s due to negligence
  • Earthquake Insurance
    • Purchased through Hippo’s partner Palomar
    • Added to your portfolio and tracked through your Hippo account
  • Flood Insurance
  • Wind Damage
    • Purchased through Hippo’s partner Velocity
    • Added to your portfolio and tracked through your Hippo account
  • Home Office
    • Customers with home businesses might want to opt for extra coverage
  • Infestation
  • Normal Wear and Tear
  • Government Seizure or Confiscation of your Land
    • Insurance companies can’t do anything about this scenario
  • Faulty Workmanship
    • Make sure you only partner with reputable contractors!

Hippo Home Insurance Features

  • Opened in 2016
  • Offices in Mountain View, CA and Austin, TX
  • Free Notion Smart Home Sensor for all policyholders
  • Coverage for equipment breakdown and service lines
  • 24/7 claims handling
  • Multiple discounts
  • Great customer service and care

Pros and Cons of Hippo Home Insurance

Here are some pros and cons we found for Hippo insurance.

Pros

  • Has already weathered the 2018 California wildfire season and come out intact
  • Includes designated claims concierges
  • Offers a smart home monitoring system
  • Convenient online account portal
  • Includes equipment breakdown coverage
  • Includes service line coverage
  • Includes home office coverage
  • Offers helpful online resources
  • Many people get low rates
  • Customers can Tweet, chat, email, or call to contact them
  • 24/7 claim filing

Cons

  • A new company with short claims filing history
  • Still rolling out to all states
  • No mobile app
  • Not an actual insurance carrier - backed by other companies
  • Doesn’t send out policy documents in the mail - online only

Discounts on Hippo Home Insurance

  • Early Bird: Start your policy in 8 days or more - save up to 15%
  • Recent home purchase: for customers buying a new home or have owned it for less than a year
  • No mortgage discount: Save up to 20%
  • No claims discount: 10 or more years with no claims, save up to 15%
  • Homeowner’s Association member discount: Discount may vary
  • New home discount: Save up to 10%
  • Existing smart home devices: Save up to 20%
  • Home with storm shutters: Discount may vary
  • Home with fire extinguishers: Discount may vary
  • Home with built-in sprinkler systems: Discount may vary
  • Home with a certified hail-resistant roof: Discount may vary
  • Home in a gated community: Save up to 5%

Hippo Home Insurance Customer Reviews

Most customer reviews of Hippo are positive. Customers love the quick sign up process, clear language, and that there is no need to pick up a phone if they don’t want to.

Hippo has no customer complaints and two 5-star reviews on Better Business Bureau.

Most customers praised the low rates and great customer service.

Here are some examples of Hippo home insurance customer reviews from around the web:

_“Affordable and comprehensive coverage. I filed a claim that was handled with concierge service. Great experience.” _- Nath

“Hippo insurance is the best. We WERE paying $1100 per year with a previous carrier and with Hippo $575 per year. My mom was paying $1600 per year previously and now $800 per year with Hippo.” - Dalep

How to Apply for Hippo Home Insurance

Applying for home insurance is made easy with Hippo. You can either apply online or by phone.

By Phone

Call 1-877-838-8866 between the hours of Monday - Friday, 7 am - 7 pm CST and Saturday and Sunday, 10 am - 8 pm CST. A licensed sales agent can answer all your questions.

Online

  1. Go to www.myhippo.com
  2. Enter your home address.
  3. Select whether your home is a house or condo.
  4. Hippo’s data partners pull in public data about your home if available - check that it is correct.
  5. Select who is living in your house (you, renters, or vacant).
  6. Select the level of your house’s finishes (basic, some extras, or top-of-the-line).
  7. Enter your name and email.
  8. Get your quote.
  9. Select your desired level of coverage and pay online.

How to File an Insurance Claim with Hippo

Hippo wants to make filing a claim easy and seamless. That’s why it provides a dedicated claims advocate to every claimant. No more getting the runaround from different agents who don’t know your situation.

To file a claim:

  1. Call Hippo 24/7 at 1-877-838-8866.
  2. Your claims concierge will advocate on your behalf to get a swift outcome to your claim.
  3. If needed, they will arrange hotels and transportation for you.

How to Contact Hippo

Headquarters: 191 Castro St #B Mountain View, CA 94041-1201 Sales and support: 1-877-838-8866 1-800-886-0318 Hours: Monday - Friday, 7am - 7pm CST Saturday - Sunday, 10am - 8pm Claims: Available 24/7 by phone and email Call 1-855-999-9746 Email: [email protected] Contact CEO Assaf Wand: [email protected] Facebook: www.facebook.com/myhippo.insurance Twitter: @hippo_insurance

Does Hippo Offer Other Kinds of Insurance?

Hippo also offers Condo insurance. They do not offer Renters insurance.

Summary

Hippo is new on the scene but isn’t making newcomer mistakes.

For example, during the 2018 California wildfire season, Hippo showed its insurtech chops.

They used aerial imaging data to find their customers that lived in places with active wildfires, and helped them file their claims. They were able to contact 80% of its customers first – making sure they had places to stay for the night.

We like that Hippo hasn’t just simplified the process by making it faster. It has also added to the home insurance experience.

For instance, having one dedicated claims concierge per claimant is a huge bonus. Insurance for household helpers is another welcome addition.

Hippo is an insurtech company but has not given up the human touch. It’s a young company but has great financial backers and is off to an excellent start.

Natural disasters are becoming more and more common. It is important to have a reliable insurance provider.

With Hippo, you won’t send off your SOS into the void, wondering if anyone is on the other end. Instead, you can rest assured that someone who cares will pick up the phone and give you a place to stay if you need it.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I install a pool in my backyard? Should I update my homeowners policy?

Yes. If you make any major changes to your home, you need to increase your coverage limits. If you don’t, you won’t be covered for the full replacement costs of your home.

It is extra important to update your insurance company about your pool. You need coverage if something happens to a guest at your home. You'd be responsible for medical payments and bills if you didn’t tell your insurance company.

I want to switch to Hippo from my existing insurer. Should I call them directly?

Hippo can handle the insurance switch. When you enroll, let them know about your existing policy. They will call your insurer for you and also get your prorated policy dollars back!

What makes Hippo insurance different?

Hippo offers more coverage for things you care about like electronics and appliances. There’s more coverage for water damage, which is the leading cause of home insurance claims.

Are claims representatives available 24/7?

Yes! Your Hippo claims concierge is ready to help you 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

I have put a lot of work into my home. Will that increase my premium costs?

Yes. The costs it would take to rebuild your home in the case of a disaster are called Rebuilding Costs. The quality of your building materials, fixtures, and finishes factor into these costs.

We’ll Introduce You!

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