While we don’t often regard auto insurance as an invisible protective shield against many possible driving misfortunes – it is just that. Without it, not only would we be driving illegally in all the states where it is mandatory by law, but we would also be financially vulnerable in the event of an automobile accident. Think about having to pay everything …from damage to your vehicle, to damage to another vehicle, to injuries you may have caused to other drivers…completely out of pocket. It’s a devastating thought.
So, in a sense, auto insurance is invisible, except for your premium payments, of course, until you actually need it. And, when the time comes to put it to good use, are you glad to have it. That’s why, before launching yourself into a mad search for auto insurance, whether it’s your first time shopping for the right policy or you’re just looking for a better deal on your existing rates, you may want to consider the following simple guideline.
1. Never settle for the first quote – The idea of shopping is getting several comparative quotes. You have many options out there – use them. Be sure to compare a minimum of three auto insurance companies in order to have a fairly good idea of competitive rates available to you.
2. Always get the proposal in writing – Do this if dealing directly with an agent, especially over the phone. It will avoid any disputes later should you be billed for a higher rate than you agreed to.
3. Know your state’s minimum liability requirements – Don’t fool around with this one. Although you can subscribe to the minimum liability coverage in your state, it’s always a good idea to get more coverage, in case you need it.
4. Consider comprehensive coverage – This can protect your car from theft, vandalism, fire, wind and hail or any other damage not related to collision. If you have a loan or lease on your vehicle…you have no option. It’s required.
5. Consider collision coverage – Think about this one if your car’s value isn’t worth the price of the coverage. Just be aware that any damage you incur in an accident will come out of your pocket if you intend to repair the car. Also, if you have an active loan or lease…there’s no way around it. You’re required to have it.
6. Choose an affordable deductible – The rule of thumb is – the higher your deductible, the lower your premium. The lower your deductible – the higher your premium. Decide what you can best afford in case you have a loss or damage to your vehicle. Depending on your financial situation, if your deductible is too high, it may prevent you from getting your car repaired.
7. Don’t mislead or lie about your driving record – Being less than truthful when shopping for auto insurance will only lead to problems. Insurance companies have more ways of getting to the truth than you have lies to tell. If they discover any untruths, they will drop you and your coverage faster than you can imagine, possibly making it difficult for you to find other coverage.
8. Inquire about discounts you may qualify for – Insurance companies offer numerous discounts as a means to attract new policyholders or to retain the ones they have. Chances are you qualify for some discounts; it’s just a matter of taking advantage of the ones you’re eligible for.
As a final point, remember – the more you compare insurance companies – the more money you’re likely to save.
Don’t just accept what you’re currently paying – make sure you’re getting the best rate on your auto insurance. Why not get a free auto insurance quote today?
Are you a smart shopper when it comes to picking the auto insurance company and coverage that’s right for you? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.