Optimum General Insurance is a Canadian Insurance company offering a variety of home, auto, farm, and business coverage options to customers in Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec, and British Columbia.
|Employees in Canada||~200|
|Canadian Mkt. Share**||0.27% (2019)|
|Insurance Products||Residential Insurance, Auto Insurance, Business Insurance, & Farm Insurance|
|Provinces Licensed||AB, BC, MB, ON, QC, SK|
** Of all private P&C in Canada by net premiums written, excluding life and purely A&S companies.
Optimum General Inc. is a subsidiary of The Optimum Group, having been established to underwrite property and casualty insurance in 1988 when The Optimum Group consolidated the insurance providers it had acquired since 1976 under one, centralized.
Today, Optimum General Insurance offers home, farm, commercial, and auto insurance in five Canadian provinces, although not every coverage area is available in each province. The reason for this is the fact that Optimum General is not a single dedicated insurer — it’s an amalgamation of smaller companies operating in smaller geographic areas, acquired separately by The Optimum Group over time.
Customers can generally expect the following when they purchase protection from Optimum Insurance:
- Working with 100% Canadian company whose products are aimed at the needs of real Canadians
- A personal touch from a large company that feels like a small one
- Access to a large network of brokers throughout Canada
Optimum General claims to have a massive distribution network consisting of over 600 independent brokers serving more than 1100 locations across five provinces. This makes it easy for customers to find the Optimum coverage that works for them with the company having to invest heavily in customer outreach.
Optimum General Insurance positions itself as a “modern” insurer, offering sets of coverage that fit the needs of Canadians in the Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec, and British Columbia. Customers enjoy the following benefits of buying coverage from Optimum:
- Working with regional specialists in certain types of coverage: As mentioned, not every Optimum Insurance product is available in every province, due to Optimum General being formed as a central brand that encompasses a number of smaller providers. While this excludes some prospective policyholders from certain Optimum products, it means that customers for whom a coverage area is available benefits from working with a specialist in that area. For example, farm insurance is only available in Quebec, which isn’t ideal for farm owners in other provinces, but means that farm owners in Quebec can trust that their insurance company understands their unique needs and priorities.
- Claims that are handled through brokers, rather than hotline: Optimum General Insurance says that in the event of a loss, it will be handled by local brokers instead of the company at-large. Many of these brokers already have a relationship with customers and will better understand the specifics of a claim, which can be a comfort to customers after a loss event.
- Coverage options to fit a diverse range of customer needs: Optimum General Insurance doesn’t offer blanket coverage. Each of its main coverage areas are broken up into more specific and in some cases, specialized options to fit most customers’ unique risk profiles, especially for holders of commercial coverage.
Optimum General Insurance Products
Optimum General Inc. offers farm, business, home, and auto coverage. As mentioned, not every Optimum product is offered in every province. We’ll specify the areas in which customers have access to each coverage area, but it’s important to note: just because a type of coverage is available in a certain province doesn’t mean individual product offerings are the same across different geographic areas.
Home insurance is available in all five provinces served by Optimum Insurance, but individual coverage areas vary between provinces.
Standard homeowners insurance is available, offering protection of a home, a property, and all possessions on the premises. When purchasing a home policy, new customers are able to choose between Silver protection, which is minimal coverage — named perils for the dwelling and personal possessions — up to Gold and Platinum, to Optimum, which is maximum coverage that includes all risk for everything covered.
Discounts are available for policyholders who meet certain requirements, including the following:
- If they purchase coverage for multiple different dwellings
- If they bundle residential insurance with any other products
- If they have an operational security system on the property
- If they don’t have a mortgage on the home
- If they have a tankless water heater
Other residential coverage options include:
- RV owners
- Condo owners
- Cottage owners
- Owners of home businesses
- Seasonal homeowners
- Boat owners
- Dwelling under construction, which covers the risks incurred during the time a home is being built
- Special risks
- Hobby farm insurance
Optimum also offers add-ons, which it calls “added values”:
- A green home extension, offering incentives for residential customers with a commitment to being carbon neutral, investing in green appliances, and other environmentally friendly behaviors.
- Identity theft protection
- Legal assistance
Optimum offers auto insurance to customers in Quebec, Ontario, and Alberta, but coverage is in Alberta is limited to the most basic products listed: private auto, commercial auto, and motorcycle, while the more specialized coverage areas apply to Quebec, Ontario, or both.
Standard car and truck insurance coverage is available, with an optional accident forgiveness endorsement. Customers can also get several discounts if they’re eligible:
- If they cover multiple vehicles
- If they buy multiple different coverage areas
- If the policyholder is a retiree or uses the vehicle in a low-milage capacity
- If the driver is a professional
- If the vehicle has an on-board anti-theft system installed
Other auto insurance coverage includes the following:
- Private motorcycle
- Commercial auto
- Antique and classic cars
- All-terrain vehicles (ATVs)
- RVs, motorhomes, and campers
- Special risks
Commercial insurance is available in all five provinces and is one of Optimum General’s most expansive product areas. Featuring “OptiPak” coverage for a variety of different industries — coverage specially designed and packaged for certain types of businesses — Optimum allows business owners to pick and choose the exact protections they want to include in a comprehensive insurance configuration. Some of these options include:
- Basic commercial coverage
- Commercial auto
- OptiPak Clinic
- OptiPak Retailer
- OptiPak Contractor
- OptiPak Professional Services
- OptiPak Restaurant
- OptiPak Manufacturing
- OptiPak Automotive Services
Farm coverage is only available to Optimum customers in Quebec. Farm coverage includes the following:
- Farmhouse coverage includes much of the coverage that standard residential coverage does, but with special protections for the unique needs of farm owners.
- Farm operations coverage includes risk protection for assets like buildings, livestock, and produce.
- Vehicle coverage includes auto coverage for personal vehicles and insurance for any vehicles used on a farm.
Farm coverage offered by Optimum Insurance can also be paired with a set of Added Values, including:
- The same green-home extension as is offered to residential customers
- Prevention bulletins, which educate farm owners about preventative actions they can take mitigate risk
- Prevention services, which may involve inspections and work done on the property to avoid potential risk
- Free legal assistance and advice
Flood repair negligence leading to mold.
Absolute worst company to deal with. Had a flood in main floor bathroom approx 2 years ago. They came and “fixed” the damage but did NOT remove the flooring at all. The flood went down into my basement and was quite substantial. How can you possibly not think to even check the subflooring for water damage??? Well guess what, 2 years later I discovered black mold. Not just a little bit of of black mold, the entire sub flooring. Now they refuse to come back and do anything about the issue because there is a 2 year window apparently. Meanwhile my son and I are just in here breathing black mold. I’m doing the repairs myself now because I can’t afford anyone else to do it. I’m sure the lawsuit will be pretty substantial when we end up getting sick from the mold though. Don’t choose this insurance company unless you want to deal with headache after headache and them trying to save a buck through every possible technicality they can come up with.
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