NerdWallet Auto Insurance Review (2020 Guide)

NerdWallet auto insurance reviews and quotes cover companies like Allstate, Liberty Mutual, and Progressive. They focus mainly on finances but also offers auto insurance quotes, not directly, but through an affiliation with another service.

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Mathew B. Sims is Editor-in-Chief and has authored, edited, and contributed to several books. He has been working in the insurance industry ensuring content is accurate for consumers who are searching for the best policies and rates...

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance...

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Reviewed byDaniel Walker
Licensed Insurance Agenthttps://res.cloudinary.com/quotellc/image/upload/insurance-site-images/aiorg-live/d98a9f52-daniel-walker.png

UPDATED: May 5, 2020

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We partner with top insurance providers. This doesn't influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

NerdWallet Overview
Key InfoDetailsSource
FoundersTim Chen and Jacob GibsonNerdWallet
Founded2009NerdWallet
Headquarters875 Stevenson St 5th Floor, San Francisco, CANerdWallet
Employees201-500Glassdoor
Revenue$500 millionCNBC
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You may be most familiar with NerdWallet as a credit card comparison tool, as this is the main way it markets itself on commercials and radio ads. What most people aren’t aware of is that NerdWallet also offers an auto insurance comparison tool. Our quick review of NerdWallet will tell you everything about this that you need to know.

Before you jump into using NerdWallet’s tool, it’s important to understand that not all auto insurance comparison tools work well, and some are even designed to scam you out of your personal information.

So before you jump into NerdWallet’s quote form, you need to read our NerdWallet auto insurance review. We’ll cover NerdWallet’s ratings, rate data, how to get a quote, and more.

If you would like to start comparing cheap auto insurance rates today, enter your ZIP code in our free rate tool above.

NerdWallet’s History

Founded in 2009 by Tim Chen and Jacob Gibson, NerdWallet has grown into a multi-million-dollar corporation. It provides advice on credit cards, banking, investments, mortgages, loans, insurance, money management, and travel.

This is a broad focus, but NerdWallet is dedicated to helping customers get the best products through comparison tools for credit cards, banking, insurance, and more.

To collect data on insurance, NerdWallet has partnered with insurance companies to provide rates in NerdWallet’s quote form. To make sure this data is accurate, in this section, we’re going to go over NerdWallet’s ratings, how it makes money, and where its information comes from.

What are NerdWallet’s ratings?

Whenever you’re considering using a company’s products or services, you probably start by looking at reviews, either online or by word of mouth. Reviews are one of the best ways to determine if a company is trustworthy and has quality services, so we’re going to go through a few ratings of NerdWallet.

To find the best auto insurance reviews you should check numerous sources. Take a look at the table below to see some different customer reviews of the company.

NerdWallet Ratings
ReviewerRatingTotal Customer Reviews
Shopper Approved4.5 out of 52,576
Trustpilot2 out of 537
Better Business BureauA+ BBB rating (but 2 out of 5 stars for customer reviews)7
PC Magazine3.5 out of 5NA
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While NerdWallet has a great overall rating from Shopper Approved, its rating suffered on the other sites. One in particular that we want to point out is the Better Business Bureau (BBB). While NerdWallet has the highest rating possible from the BBB (an A+), the customer reviews only gave NerdWallet an average of two out of five stars.

So why is NerdWallet’s BBB rating still so high? Well, the BBB’s ratings are based on more than just customer complaints and reviews. The BBB also looks at the following:

  • Type of business and time in business
  • Transparency of business practices
  • Any licensing and government actions the BBB is aware of
  • Advertising issues
  • Company’s failure (or success) to honor its commitment to the BBB

Customer complaints are just one part of how the BBB rates businesses, so NerdWallet still ranks well on the BBB despite poor customer reviews.

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How does NerdWallet make money?

Like other comparison sites, NerdWallet is an affiliate marketing company. This means that it promotes the best products on its site and earns a small commission for each sale.

These partnerships with other companies to promote products is what allows NerdWallet to collect insurance quotes to attract customers.

NerdWallet also has quality informational content that ranks high in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and generates traffic to NerdWallet’s site. The more traffic from visitors there is, the more money NerdWallet makes.

Since NerdWallet can pay for commercials and ads, it’s clear that NerdWallet is doing something right in terms of attracting customers and beating out the competition.

Where does NerdWallet’s information come from?

Now that you know how NerdWallet makes its money, it’s time to discuss in more detail about where NerdWallet’s information comes from. As we stated before, NerdWallet Is an affiliate company. Currently, NerdWallet is partnered with the following list of car insurance companies:

  • Allstate
  • Esurance
  • Liberty Mutual
  • Metromile
  • Progressive
  • USAA

This is a short list compared to other quote comparison companies, but to be fair, NerdWallet’s main focus is credit cards, not auto insurance. If you’ve ever heard ads or seen commercials like the one below, then you know that NerdWallet promotes credit card comparison, not auto insurance comparison. The list does include some of the best car insurance companies out there. Most of the are among the top 10 auto insurance companies in the USA.

Even though NerdWallet focuses less on auto insurance, there are still some top insurers on its list, such as Allstate, Liberty Mutual, Progressive, and USAA.

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How to Get a Quote from NerdWallet

In addition to reviews, going through the quote process is a great way to spot any flaws with NerdWallet. It will also give you a step-by-step guide on how to get a quote from NerdWallet.

This will allow you to prepare the information you need ahead of time, such as past accidents and vehicle information. So stick with us to learn about the steps to get a NerdWallet car insurance quote.

Step #1 – Visit NerdWallet’s Website

The first thing you’ll need to do is go to NerdWallet.com’s homepage. You’ll see a screen similar to the following:

NerdWallet Website Homepage

Unlike other rate comparison sites, you won’t see a quote box for auto insurance on the screen. You’ll have to click on INSURANCE on the top part of the screen. On the drop-down menu, select “Compare Car Insurance Quotes” under Auto. You’ll be taken to the following page.

NerdWallet Website Auto Insurance Insurance Quote Page

Scroll down a little until you see the following quote box.

NerdWallet website Quote Box

Enter your ZIP code and click Start Saving to start the process. NerdWallet will redirect you to Insure.com to fill out your quote.

Step #2 – Answer Discount Questions

The first questions NerdWallet will ask deal with discounts, such as if you’re a homeowner (drivers who own homes often have cheaper rates than renters).

NerdWallet website Are You a Homeowner

NerdWallet will also ask if you own multiple vehicles.

Step #3 – Enter Personal Information

Next, NerdWallet will ask for your birthdate. This is because teen drivers will have higher rates than older drivers.

NerdWallet website When is Your Birthday

Once you’ve entered your age, NerdWallet will want to know who your current insurer is (clicking on the All providers drop-down menu will bring up more insurers).

NerdWallet Website Select Your Current Insurer

If you’re not currently insured, you can also select this as an option. Keep in mind that not having insurance while driving is a red flag to insurers, and you’ll be viewed as a high-risk driver.

Of course, if you didn’t need insurance because you weren’t driving or were on someone else’s insurance, this won’t raise your rates at all.

Step #4 – Enter Vehicle Information

In this part of the quote process, you’ll be asked to fill out information about your current vehicle.

NerdWallet website select your Vehicle Year

You’ll be asked to fill out your vehicle year, make, and model. If you aren’t sure what your vehicle year is or its make and model, check your current insurance card. This vehicle information is important, as you can earn discounts if your vehicle has safety features such as anti-crash or anti-theft technology.

You can also receive a lower rate if your vehicle does well in a crash. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has great information on crash testing by vehicles. If you’re shopping for a new car, check out the IIHS’s 2020 list of the safest vehicles.

Step #5 – Enter Driver Information

NerdWallet will switch back to asking personal questions to determine discounts, such as your marital status, gender, military associations, and driving history.

NerdWallet website Driving History

NerdWallet will also ask for your credit score, which has a significant impact on your rates.

Step #6 – Finish Quote Form

Before you can get your quote, NerdWallet will ask for contact information.

NerdWallet website Enter Your Contact Info

While it initially seems that NerdWallet only wants your name and email, the next step will also ask for your address and phone number.

NerdWallet website Final Step

Unless you want to receive multiple calls and emails, uncheck the blue box next to “I agree to be contacted by insurance companies.”

Step #7 – View Quotes and Buy Insurance (Optional)

Once you finish the quote form, you’ll see the following page.

NerdWallet website Get Quotes

The bad news is that if you don’t see a money amount in the blue button to the right of the insurer’s name, it means you’ll have to fill out another quote form on the company’s site. Clicking on Get Quote will redirect you to the company’s actual quote page.

We found that none of the insurers who came up for our step-by-step sample had amounts displayed. To get quotes, we would have had to fill out more forms. If you wish to buy insurance at this point, you’ll have to contact the insurer directly.

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NerdWallet Pros & Cons

To simplify the choice of using NerdWallet to compare car insurance rates, we want to take a moment to go over the pros and cons. Laying things out this way will allow you to decide if NerdWallet is the right fit for you. So stick with us to learn about the main assets and flaws of NerdWallet’s quote process.

NerdWallet Pros

There are several great pros to using NerdWallet to get auto insurance quotes.

  • NerdWallet provides you with up to 10 companies’ rates after filling out one form.
  • The quote process is simple and easy to understand.
  • NerdWallet is partnered with numerous insurers, including Allstate, Esurance, Liberty Mutual, Progressive, and USAA.
  • NerdWallet has good ratings on Shopper Approved and BBB.
  • NerdWallet is one of the top comparison sites.

Unfortunately, the list of pros is rather short, especially once you read through the cons list in the next section.

NerdWallet Cons

There are quite a few cons to NerdWallet that can eliminate it as an option for some users. Take a look at the list below.

  • NerdWallet’s rate comparison tool for auto insurance is hard to find on the website, as it’s not NerdWallet’s main focus.
  • NerdWallet is partnered with Insure.com, which means NerdWallet doesn’t have its own software for rate comparison.
  • You may have to fill out multiple forms on different insurers’ websites if NerdWallet doesn’t provide rates on the final form.
  • NerdWallet requests both your email and your phone, which can lead to spam calls and emails.
  • Since NerdWallet’s main focus isn’t auto insurance quotes, it means the data and software may not be as good compared to a site that focuses only on auto insurance.
  • You can’t adjust the coverages on your final quote to see different rates.
  • NerdWallet does have some poor customer reviews on a few review sites (such as the BBB).

While it’s up to you to determine if the cons outweigh the pros (or vice versa), in our opinion, the cons tend to carry more weight than the pros.

Why? Rate comparison tools are meant to save you time and effort on comparing quotes. We found that we would have had to fill out more quote forms to compare prices, which defeats the whole purpose. So if you want a quick process, NerdWallet may not be for you.

Frequently Asked Questions: NerdWallet Auto Insurance

We still have a few things we want to go over about NerdWallet and car insurance quotes in general. This list of frequently asked questions and answers should clear up any remaining concerns you may have. Let’s jump right in.

#1 – What factors affect an auto insurance quote most?

Many factors affect your insurance quote, but some do have more influence on your rates than others. The most important factors for an insurer are:

  • Your driving record</strong – Drivers who have numerous accidents, DUIs, or speeding tickets are riskier to insure. Insurers will charge more to insure high-risk drivers, as there is a higher likelihood of insurers having to pay out a claim.
  • Your location – There’s a reason most quotes start by asking for your ZIP code. Location risks include theft, natural disasters, inclement weather, and traffic.
  • Your age – Quotes will always ask for your birthdate, as insurers drastically change rates depending on how old you are.
  • Your credit score Drivers with bad credit scores can be charged over $1,000 more than drivers with good credit scores.

These four factors are the main building blocks of how insurers set rates, so quote forms will usually ask you questions dealing with each of these factors.

#2 – What is the average auto insurance quote?

Most quotes are broken up by monthly payments, so you may see amounts for under $100 quoted by companies. The average car insurance quote is based on three coverages: liability, comprehensive, and collision coverages. While only liability coverage is required, comprehensive and collision coverages should always be added onto a policy.

Why?

Liability coverage will pay for the other driver’s accident costs if you caused the accident, but it won’t protect your assets. Comprehensive auto insurance coverage and collision auto insurance coverage will pay for your vehicle repair costs, regardless of who or what caused the accident.

So when you see your quote, these three coverages are likely already included in the base quote. Some quotes will also allow you to adjust coverage types and levels to see different rates.

#3 – How often should I shop for auto insurance?

You should shop for auto insurance at least once a year using a quick rate comparison tool to make sure you have the best rate. Most times, you’ll find that your insurer may no longer have the best rate. Insurers are constantly battling each other to steal customers, so there are often deals and sales on car insurance that can bring your costs down if you switch.

Of course, you’ll also need to make sure that your chosen insurer doesn’t have lower rates because they’re skimping on coverage limits or setting higher deductibles. It’s not worth having cheap rates if the service you receive is subpar.

#4 – Do auto insurance quotes affect your credit score?

Not at all. Usually, insurers only check credit when you sign up. On quote forms, insurers will usually ask outright what your credit score is to give you a better estimate, but this has no bearing on your credit score. Even when insurers do check your credit card score, this is called a soft pull.

Soft pulls don’t affect your credit score — your banker won’t change your credit score just because someone double-checked it. However, your credit score does have an impact on your auto insurance rate.

#5 – How long does an auto insurance quote last for?

It depends on the insurer, but generally, your quote will only be saved for a month or two. If too much time has passed between when you got the quote and when you apply for insurance, you’ll have to fill out a new quote form. Why?

Insurance rates are always changing, and so are your circumstances. You may not have had a speeding ticket two months ago or had the new driver to your family plan yet. Insurers need the most up-to-date information to give you a quote and sign you up for car insurance.

#6 – Where can I find car insurance reviews by real people?

Whether you are looking for customer-written Amica insurance reviews or AAA insurance reviews, Nerdwallet doesn’t offer individual reviews of insurance companies. You’ll also find that even one of the popular sources for finding the best car insurance, Consumer Reports, won’t offer those types of reviews. A few places to find review by customers are the BBB – check the link above – or Yelp.

For unbiased reviews by experts, check out our full list of auto insurance company reviews.

Now that we’ve concluded our quick review of NerdWallet’s auto insurance comparison, you should be able to determine if NerdWallet is the right tool for you. We hope we answered all your questions, and you’re ready to start saving on car insurance.

If you’d like to start comparing rates today, enter your ZIP code in our free rate tool below.

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