Ten Ways to Save on Insurance
If you are looking to save on insurance, you are not alone. Insurance can cost a lot of money. The amount of your bill is dependent upon which insurance company your policy is with, you age, driving record, where you live and what kind of vehicle you drive, as well as other factors. Sometimes it can be frustrating to wonder where your premium dollars are going, especially if you have made few or no claims.
You need to have insurance, though. It is required by law in almost all fifty of the United States and in most places around the world. However, it is possible to save on insurance if you do a little research and are careful. Even though insurance companies are regulated by the insurance commissions of the states they conduct business in, the exact same coverage can cost different amounts depending on which insurer is selling it. Here are ten things that can help you save a lot of money on your automobile insurance bill.
First, shop around. This sounds like common sense, but believe it or not, many people buy automobile insurance from a company recommended by a friend, family member, or co-worker. Many young drivers just stay with their parents’ insurance company. It may be convenient to do that, but do you really want to pay for that convenience or do you want to save on insurance? Get at least three different quotes from three different companies. Do your own leg-work and do the calling or obtain the online quotes yourself. Contact the actual insurance company that you want a quote from; simply ask "how do I save on insurance with your company? Do not rely upon one company to tell you what another company would charge.
Keep in mind, however, that price is not everything. Pick an insurance company with a good reputation, one that you feel you can feel comfortable with, and one that has a good A.M.Best rating, an indicator that the insurance company will be around to pay your claim when you need it.
Second, be a safe driver. It is essential to keep a clean driving record if you want to be considered for premium discounts, and sometimes even any coverage at all. A clean driving record means no accidents and no moving traffic violations. This is the best way to get a good price and save on insurance.
Third: consider the vehicle that you drive carefully. Insurance rates are greatly affected by the type of vehicle being insured. Do you really want to pay the higher premium to drive that high-performance sports car? If you do, and you can afford it, that’s great. Even if you drive that high-performance vehicle like a Saint, it is still more tempting to a car thief. Also, new vehicles cost more to repair, so cost more to insure. To save on insurance, consider driving a more sensible vehicle.
Fourth: keep an eye on your credit report. Make sure to keep your rating as high as possible. An insurance company considers your credit history when determining your rate because there is usually a correlation between a person’s credit history and the risk that they will pursue a claim. Paying your bills in a timely manner and avoiding unnecessary credit cards can help your credit rating.
Fifth: take a look at your coverage. Some insurance coverages are required by all states, such as liability coverage and possibly uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Look at the rest of the coverage; do you really need rental car reimbursement if you have another vehicle or acceptable public transportation available to you? If you already have good health insurance, do you really need the first party Medical Payments coverage or Personal Injury Protection coverage? Remove anything that you can consider superfluous (and is not required by law).
Six: consider removing the collision and comprehensive (other than collision) coverage from your policy if you drive an older vehicle that is worth less than a couple thousand dollars. Otherwise, you will most likely pay more for the coverage than you will ever collect. Vehicles worth little money can be considered a total loss even with seemingly minimal damage. It is easy to find out what your vehicle is worth by checking the Kelly Blue Book, or with a local dealership or even your bank. Then make your decision accordingly.
Seven: if it makes sense to keep the collision and comprehensive coverage on your vehicle (especially if you have a lien-holder), take a look at the deductibles on those coverages. The higher the deductible is, the lower the cost of the insurance will be. Just be sure that you will be able to handle that deductible if you ever need to.
Eight: don’t drive so much. Hear us out. This might seem like a difficult one, but it really isn’t. Car pool with friends or co-workers, use public transportation, or simply run all of your errands on the same day. Not only will you save on your insurance if your mileage is lower than the insurance company expects, but you will save gas money too.
Nine: look into available discounts for safety or security features on your automobile. Most insurance companies will offer discounts on vehicles equipped with such features as air bags, anti-lock braking systems, automatic restraints (seat belts), and alarms and tracking systems. Such features reduce the risk of claims, both for vehicle theft or damage as well as injuries to the occupants of the vehicle.
Ten: ask about any other discounts that the company might offer. If you are working off the company’s website and it is not clear what you might qualify for, make a telephone call to the company. There might be something that didn't make it onto the website. To save on insurance, you need to do the leg-work; it will pay off.
This article is approved for informational purposes and is not intended to take the place of competent local legal counsel.
Other articles that may be of interest to you:
The Insurance Company's Claim Process Explained
What is an Insurance Lien-Holder?
First Party Insurance Coverage vs. Third Party Insurance Coverage
Umbrella Policies (PUPs) Explained
What to do When You Have Been Involved in an Accident
The Insurance Company's Preferred Body Shop Program
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