Ten Best Ways to Save on Car Insurance in 2011

Aug 3rd, 2011 | By Hot News Reporter | Category: Insurance Today

Hard economic times mean that more and more people are finding it harder to maintain auto insurance coverage on their vehicles. Apart from exposing them to crippling financial losses if they are ever involved in an accident, uninsured motorists may also face fines and jail time if they are ever stopped and cannot produce proof that they are insured. Fortunately, there are a number of simple methods that you can use to make car insurance premiums more affordable.

1.    Decide which types of coverage you must have and which you can forgo. Of course, you have to obey your state’s minimum car insurance coverage requirements, but once you get past that you have a lot of leeway in deciding which coverage features to keep. For example, if you already have health insurance through your employer, you don’t need to have personal injury protection coverage.

2.    Take defensive driving classes. One of the major factors that insurance companies take into account when deciding what premiums to charge is the driver’s level of experience. This is why young drivers are generally imposed higher premiums compared with older ones, since their lower levels of experience make them more likely to get into an accident. Taking a class in safe driving can cancel out this factor and make it more likely that the insurer will charge you less.

3.    Avoid making a lot of claims for small items. If you were involved in a minor accident that resulted in your fender being dented, pay for it yourself. When you make several claims on your policy, the insurer will charge you a higher rate when you renew. Make claims only when significant damage is involved.

4.    Accept a higher deductible if you can afford it since this will mean lower monthly premiums. However, you should also keep in mind that this is risky, since it means that you will pay more of the damages out-of-pocket if you’re ever involved in an accident. But if you have a buffer fund that can cover the deductible, you can save a substantial amount on your premiums.

5.    Buy several types of insurance from one provider. Many insurance companies offer bundled options in which you can get a discount by purchasing both your car and homeowner’s insurance from them. You can also get discounts by insuring several cars under one policy.

6.    Buy less coverage on older cars. It makes no financial sense to maintain high levels of coverage on cars that are several years old, since their depreciated values mean that you will be able to claim less from the insurance company if they are in an accident.

7.    Maintain a good credit history. Most insurers keep track of the credit records of those who buy insurance from them, and use this as one of the factors in deciding the amount of premiums to charge them. By preserving a high credit score, you are adding a positive factor to your profile that could lead the insurance company to give you lower rates when it comes time for you to renew your policy.

8.    Become a member of a credit union or other professional organization. Many of these organizations may offer more affordable group rates for auto insurance to their members which are substantially less than what you would pay by taking out an individual policy.

9.    Explore other discounts that you may qualify for. For instance, if you mainly use your car to travel to and from your office, you may be eligible for low mileage discounts. If you install anti-theft devices on your car, your insurer may also offer you a discount since you are lowering the risk your vehicle will be stolen.

10.    Shop around for quotes. Comparison shopping is a tried and true method for saving money by finding the best deals. Visit online insurance sites that will provide you with quotes from several providers. Or you can discuss your coverage options with a reputable insurance agent.

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