Survey reveals nation’s drivers in the dark about insurance; First ever ‘credit score for insurance’ helps consumers understand what factors impact their individual insurance risk and rates and provides expert advice to lower both
AUSTIN, Texas— The Zebra, the nation’s leading insurance search engine, today introduced the Insurability Score™, a free, first-of-its-kind score which decodes for consumers what is affecting their individual insurance risk, by how much, and what they can do about it. As personal insurance is one of the top annual expenses for Americans and is an essential safeguard to protect people from disastrous events, it’s critical for people to know what information is behind their unique risk profile, and what role they play.
“At The Zebra, we know insurance is complicated. Time after time, people ask us how it works and why they get the rates they do,” said Joshua Dziabiak, Founder & COO at The Zebra. “What consumers don’t know is that they have much more control over their insurance than they think, but without insight into their individual risk profiles, they can’t take action to lower their risk – or their rates. This is particularly true for the 250 million drivers nationwide, which is why we’ve introduced a solution to provide that insight for auto insurance first.”
Introducing the Insurability Score™ by The Zebra
The Zebra’s patent-pending technology analyzes an individual’s information to calculate a score which represents a driver’s risk in the eyes of insurance companies – their “insurability.” As with a credit score, an Insurability Score varies depending on a person’s unique characteristics and behaviors (like their age or driving record) and shows how that might impact their auto insurance rates and coverage options.
The Zebra also provides a personalized scorecard which breaks down key risk factors, providing grades, descriptions, and degree of impact for each. Each risk factor includes customized expert tips telling the driver how they can improve their insurability. For example, a driver with no prior history of insurance should maintain continuous coverage with no lapses for six months, and someone with poor credit could raise their credit score to see a major improvement in their Insurability Score – and a likely reduction in their rates.
The company also released new survey data revealing the majority of American drivers are uninformed about auto insurance and thus at risk of being underinsured in times of crisis.
Survey: U.S. Drivers Get a Failing Grade on Basic Auto Insurance Concepts
The Zebra conducted a national survey* of auto insurance consumers to better understand their awareness of pricing, coverage, and the industry.
1. People are confident, yet uninformed, about their auto insurance.
Although 81% say they have the car insurance coverage they need, most don’t know coverage types. Nearly all – 99% – were unable to accurately identify 10 basic car insurance terms such as “collision coverage” or “deductible.”
2. They don’t understand which factors impact their auto insurance rates.
Only 21% scored a passing grade – a “D” or above – based on their knowledge of dozens of factors which impact rates.
The majority correctly named 11 factors (including the driver’s age, the make/model of the car, annual mileage, and getting a DUI), but a majority also missed 29 factors (including the driver’s location, credit score, coverage history, highest level of education, and marital status) which impact rates.
Many also incorrectly identified factors which have no bearing on car insurance at all: 23% think the color of their car affects rates, 25% think getting a parking ticket does, and 35% think their abilities/disabilities (ex. vision, mobility) do, all of which are false.
3. Consumers want to take action to lower their rates, but many don’t think they can.
Most people – 81% – want to lower their car insurance rates and 41% say they want to understand what impact their rates better.
However, 45% say they don’t know what to do to lower their car insurance rates, and 36% think there is nothing they can do about it.
“At The Zebra, we’ve always prioritized making insurance ‘black and white’ and educating consumers, and these survey results reinforce that need for education more than ever before,” Dziabiak said. “Now with the Insurability Score, we’ve taken another step in personalizing that knowledge so consumers have a clear-cut and actionable way to positively impact their own insurance health.”
About The Zebra
The Zebra is the nation’s leading auto insurance search engine. With its dynamic, real-time quote comparison tool, drivers can identify insurance companies with the coverage, service level, and pricing to suit their unique needs. The Zebra compares more than 200 car insurance companies and provides agent support and educational resources to ensure drivers are equipped to make the most informed decisions about their car insurance. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, The Zebra has sought to bring transparency and simplicity to insurance shopping since 2012 — it’s “insurance in black and white.”
*About the Survey
The Zebra’s Insurance Awareness Study presents the findings of an online survey of 1,165 U.S. auto insurance consumers ages 18 and older. The survey was conducted by independent research firm Survata from October 4-5, 2017. The margin of error for a sample of this size is +/- 3% at a 95% level of confidence.