Category Archives: Auto policy

Homeowners File Fewer Auto Claims | Wall Street Journal

According to an auto-insurance comparison company/site (, a performance study of their data/statistics suggests a direct comparison between people who own a home, and resulting in being a better driver…

Insurers have long observed that, on average, drivers who own their homes file fewer auto-insurance claims than renters. And, in fact, many companies take homeownership into account when calculating a customer’s premiums, says Des Toups, managing editor of

To determine whether homeowners or renters are most likely to file a claim, analyzed data from more than 700,000 drivers who completed an online questionnaire between Jan. 1, 2012, and July 14, 2014. The company then broke out the numbers both by state and by age group. Data weren’t available for Alaska, District of Columbia, Delaware, Hawaii, Louisiana, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming.

Most likely to file an auto claim are drivers between 18 and 24 who live with their parents. According to data, 24.4% of drivers in this group have filed a claim in the past three years. Meanwhile, 19.7% of renters 18 to 24 have filed a claim, while 17.6% of homeowners 18 to 24 have filed a claim.  The effect persists well into drivers’ 40s and 50s, albeit at lower levels. For instance, 15.2% of drivers 45 to 54 living with their parents filed claims, compared with 14.1% for renters and 13.4% for homeowners in the same age range.

As the saying goes, correlation doesn’t imply causation, and, Mr. Toups notes, the numbers don’t provide any explanation for why homeowners are less likely to file auto claims.  Asked to speculate, he says that income probably plays a partial role. “It’s also probably a function of stability”, but added, “we can’t look at this data & claim that to be true.”

When looking at the state level, identified Nebraska as home to the largest disparity between owners and renters, with 15.2% of owners filing auto claims compared with 22.6% of renters.  A few states, however, bucked the trend. In Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan and Oklahoma, homeowners were more likely than renters to file a claim.

And then there is old age—the great leveler. Owners and renters 65 to 99 are equally likely to file a claim, with 14.7% of both groups reporting one.  In fact, the safest drivers overall—with only 11% filing a claim—are those 65 to 99 living with their parents. Something tells us they probably aren’t sneaking beers in the basement.