Kemper Preferred is a middle-of-the-pack car insurance company. It doesn't universally offer the lowest rates, and its customer service reviews were below average. However, it does offer some compelling discounts and coverages, especially for families.
Kemper Preferred Auto Insurance: Our Thoughts
Kemper Preferred is a good auto insurance option for drivers who prefer or are open to purchasing their car insurance through an agent, as well as families with young drivers.
Kemper, formerly called Unitrin, is particularly desirable for families for two reasons. First, it offers very affordable rates to families with teenage drivers: no small consideration when teenagers are the most expensive drivers to insure nationwide.
Second, the packages and bundles offered by Kemper Preferred may help families save even more on their car insurance bills. For example, teen drivers can receive discounts for good grades, taking driver safety classes, and being away at college. Kemper also offers bundle discounts for insuring multiple cars, as well as your car and home, through the company.
You can only get Kemper Preferred quotes through independent car insurance agents, meaning you can't buy coverage directly from Kemper online or over the phone—if you'd like to customize your rates and coverages yourself, you'll need to look elsewhere. However, customers can log into their accounts, make bill payments and file claims online 24 hours a day if their insurance agent is not available. Drivers can also check the status of their claims online.
Our biggest concerns with Kemper are varying prices and subpar customer service reviews. Every insurance company's rates vary depending on the profile of the driver, but the competitiveness of Kemper Preferred's rates fluctuate significantly by who is buying coverage. It offered the lowest rates we found for one of our sample drivers, and the highest rates for another. This is offset somewhat by the fact that Kemper is only available through an independent agent: If you're considering purchasing car insurance through an agent, they'll generally comparison shop for you and help you find the lowest price.
With regards to customer service, some Kemper customers noted dissatisfaction with Kemper's claims process, noting both delays in payment and low payouts after a crash.
Bottom Line: Kemper Preferred offers competitive car insurance rates, with a few special coverages and discounts that make it particularly appealing to families.
Cost of Kemper Insurance
Overall, the cost of Kemper Preferred car insurance is slightly less than its competitors. Across our three sample driver profiles in the Los Angeles, California area, we found that insurance policies from Kemper cost an average of $3,942 per year. Tha’ts 14% less than the overall average of $4,601 annually, and $187 cheaper than the overall second-cheapest insurance company, GEICO.
However, Kemper didn't perform equally well for all of our sample drivers. The company offered the best rates by far for a three-person family with two cars and a newly licensed 17-year-old son: at $4,178 per year, it was $1,807 cheaper than the second-cheapest option, GEICO. However, Kemper Preferred also provided the most expensive quote to a 30-year-old man. At $4,608, that driver would spend $1,095 more than if he went with the cheapest insurer, Progressive.
Every insurance company calculates its rates differently, so we always recommend insurance shoppers check with multiple companies for the best prices on car insurance. It's especially important when considering Kemper Preferred, which offers favorable but somewhat inconsistent rates.
Auto Insurance Coverages from Kemper Preferred
Besides standard coverages like liability, comprehensive, and collision coverage, Kemper Preferred offers a few notable coverage packages. One is Kemper Total, which bundles multiple benefits for owners of new cars. First, it includes new car replacement coverage: If your car is totaled in a crash or stolen, Kemper will pay for you to purchase a completely new vehicle, even if your vehicle is more than a year old. You'll also receive an increased allotment for renting a car while your vehicle is being repaired. Kemper Total is only available when you're insuring a brand-new vehicle.
Another notable coverage option from Kemper is Parked Auto protection. With this optional coverage, your collision deductible is waived if your car is parked and unoccupied when it is struck by another vehicle.
Finally, Kemper Preferred offers Auto Loan/Lease coverage—sometimes also called gap insurance. If your car is totaled in a crash or stolen, loan/lease coverage pays the difference between what your car is worth and the amount you have left to repay on your loan or lease.
Standard Coverages from Kemper Preferred
- Liability (bodily injury/property damage)
- Uninsured motorist
- Roadside assistance
Discounts Available From Kemper Preferred
Kemper Preferred offers a wide range of discounts to its customers, allowing you to reduce your bill every month. The discounts available for families with young drivers are particularly desirable, as they allow Kemper customers to lower the typically high cost of car insurance for a family with a teen driver—especially since Kemper Preferred already offers competitive rates to families. It also offers discounts for driving a car with advanced safety features, as well as savings for bundling multiple policies together.
All Discounts Available From Kemper Preferred
- Family Discounts
- Away at school
- Good student
- Driver training (young and senior drivers)
Car Safety Features
- Anti-lock brakes
- Anti-theft device
- Passive restraints/airbags
- Multi-car discount
- Package plus (home and auto insurance bundle)
Other Kemper Companies: Kemper Direct and Kemper Specialty
Kemper Corporation also operates several other insurance companies, some of which use the Kemper name. However, the companies all operate independently of one another. Furthermore, prices, coverages, and regional availability differ by company.
- Kemper Direct: Sells online-only insurance policies directly to consumers. Quotes are not available from insurance agents. Can include rental car coverage.
- Kemper Specialty: Sells specialty car insurance in California and other states to drivers who can't find the right coverage elsewhere, such as for rare vehicles or high-risk drivers (such as those who require an SR22). Only available from independent insurance agents. However, drivers are able to login to use QuickPay to make a payment online, as well as EZPay to schedule recurring payments.
Other Insurance Companies Owned By Kemper
- Infinity Insurance
- Alliance United Insurance
- Unitrin Auto Insurance
- Financial Indemnity Company
Customer Service Reviews and Ratings
Kemper Preferred has below-average customer service reviews. It received a complaint rating of 1.52 from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. This means the company had more complaints than a typical auto insurance company, when adjusted for premium share. The most common complaints customers made about Kemper involved delays in claim payments, as well as low settlement amounts.
Kemper does have strong financial ratings, however. Kemper received an A- grade from credit agency A.M. Best. An A- indicates that A.M. Best believes Kemper has an "excellent" ability to pay out customer claims, even in negative economic climates.