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Your car insurance protects you financially and provides peace of mind. You should pick a company that has cheap rates but also offers reliable coverage. Ask friends and family for recommendations and personal experiences. Your state insurance department can usually provide you with a companies complaints when asked. Getting an agent or representative to answer more specific questions can save you time and money along the way. Use these basic steps to lower your auto insurance costs:
- Compare insurance providers.
- Choose vehicles that are cheap to insure before purchasing a new car.
- Improve your credit score.
- Stay clear of accidents and violations.
- Take a defensive driving course.
- Offer to pay higher deductibles.
- Stop paying for car insurance you don’t need.
- Park in a garage.
- Bundle policies under the same company.
- Join group insurance.
- Earn low mileage discounts.
- Get good student discounts.
Compare Insurance Providers
Rates change depending on the insurance company. The Insurance Information Institute recommends that you receive three price quotes at a minimum. Most companies will offer quotes over the phone or through their website. Your state’s insurance department can often provide car insurance prices for some major companies in your area.
Some insurance providers sell insurance through company agents, while many go through independent agents that will provide quotes from several companies. Other providers will only give prices directly, usually over the phone or online.
Choose Vehicles That are Cheap to Insure Before Purchasing a New Car
Whether it is new or used, when deciding on your next car, compare auto insurance rates for the vehicles you are looking at. What you drive can determine your insurance rates, especially if you buy full-coverage insurance. According to Nerd Wallet, expensive roadsters, sports cars, and luxury cars will typically cost more to insure than safer mini-vans and SUVs.
Having a car that includes safety features, like antilock brakes, airbags, engine cut-off, and anti-theft systems can also lower your insurance premiums. This is because cars with security features are less likely to be stolen or vandalized, while the safety features of your car reduce the likelihood of being in an accident or being injured during an accident.
Improve Your Credit Score
Improving your credit score can drastically lower your insurance costs, according to Money Under 30. Insurance companies have found that drivers with good credit histories file fewer claims and thus cost them less money to insure. To improve your credit, pay bills before or on their due date, pay off any outstanding debt currently on your credit history, and remove any errors or credit hits caused by false accounts. Checking your record regularly to ensure that it is accurate can help to maintain lower rates over time.
Stay Clear of Accidents and Violations
At-fault accidents and moving violations will hike your car insurance premiums. Some states offer traffic schools for drivers who have received certain tickets. If you opt to take the class, either online or in-person, the violation may be reduced or removed from your record completely. Hundreds of dollars a year can be saved by staying away from accidents and tickets entirely.
Take a Defensive Driving Course
Most drivers take classes after a violation, although many insurance providers offer discounts for going through safe driving courses. Teenagers and seniors typically take defensive driving courses to lower their rates, however, according to Allstate, all drivers can benefit from lower insurance costs by completing driving courses.
Offer to Pay Higher Deductibles
Your deductible is the amount you pay before your insurance begins to cover costs. When agreeing to higher deductibles, your insurance costs usually drop. According to Policy Genius, Increasing your deductible by $300 could lower your full-coverage policy up to 30 percent and paying a $1000 deductible could be up to 40 percent in savings. How high you set your deductible should be based on the amount of money you are comfortable paying out of pocket to repair or replace your vehicle after an accident.
Stop Paying For Car Insurance You Don’t Need
If you own a cheap car, you may want to drop coverages that pay-out when your vehicle is damaged. Collision insurance will pay to repair or replace your car if you are in a traffic accident, hit a curb or another static object, or if your vehicle rolls over. Comprehensive coverage is for when your car is stolen, vandalized, or if you hit an animal. If it would be cheaper to replace the vehicle than pay annual premiums for these types of coverage, consider dropping them altogether.
Bundle Policies Under The Same Company
Many insurers offer discounts for bundling your policies together. If you have another insurance policy, such as homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, you may get discounted rates from the same insurance provider if they also offer car insurance.
Some companies also offer multi-vehicle discounts, so bundling might be worth looking into if your spouse has a vehicle or you own a second car. If you are a young driver, have your parents or a relative add you to their policy. You should receive cheaper rates bundling with an older relative because they have more experience behind the wheel.
Join Group Insurance
You might be able to join a group auto insurance policy that gives cheaper rates to motorists who get their insurance through an employer, professional group, alumni membership, or another association. Be sure to ask your employer or another organization you are a member of about joining their group auto insurance policy.
Earn Low Mileage Discounts
If you drive less than the average number of miles for your area, you may qualify for low-mileage discounts. You may also consider purchasing a “pay-as-you-go” plan that charges you based on how many miles you drive. These are especially useful if you work from home or have a very short commute.
Get Good Student Discounts
As a full-time student, you may qualify for a good student discount. You must be under 25 years old and single to enjoy most student discounts. Good student discounts are one of the best ways for young drivers to save money on insurance premiums.
Each insurer offers different discounts at varying rates. The easiest way to find the cheapest insurance that’s still right for you is to compare as many insurance providers as possible. Head online and compare quotes instantly today.
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