When purchasing auto insurance, there are some critical things to keep in mind– from taking the time to see various quotes, to understanding your selected insurance claims procedure. Here are some things you can do to make sure you get the right insurance for you.
1. Quotes can vary a huge amount– don’t go with the first one you see.
It can sometimes seem that Auto Insurance quotes are a simple math equation adding up all of your history, car, and your personal information, different companies vary greatly in how much weight they give to each part of your profile. Even if your friend or relative got a great deal from one company, your quote could be totally different. Checking out several quotes before committing is worth the time and effort, or working with a trusted broker can translate into significant savings, not to mention better coverage.
2. Don’t just stick with your state’s minimums– find out your other options.
As any driver knows, the United States requires drivers to have insurance in the case of damages, but these requirements vary greatly from state to state. While at the very least, property damages and bodily injury are required, the minimums may not be enough. If for example, your state’s minimums are only up to $15,000 of medical expenses, a serious accident could see you having to cover tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket. While they provide a good starting point, state minimums are exactly that– the very least of what should be reasonably covered. It is possible, depending on where you live, that this is enough coverage for you, but be sure to delve into higher options before deciding.
3. Be mindful of hidden fees when choosing between monthly and annual premium payment options.
While most insurance companies now allow for monthly insurance payment options, this may not be the cheapest option. Check for hidden fees, processing amounts, and other potential price differentials, before deciding on monthly vs. annual payment. Try and think about what changes you are expecting in the upcoming year– while monthly can often be more expensive in the long run, if you expect your child to join or get off your policy mid-year, the monthly option may save you money.
4. Choose a realistic deductible.
When choosing a deductible, it is tempting to keep it high, so as to lower your premiums. However, accidents do unfortunately happen at a higher rate than you think — estimates show that a driver is likely to get in a crash every 18 years. It is essential to carefully check your budget and funds before selecting your deductible. Ask yourself: in the event of an accident happening tomorrow, could I part with the money without too much financial strain? Staying on the safe side, rather than playing an optimistic gambler, may be your best bet, even if it means higher premiums.
5. Be honest with yourself about what kind of driver you are.
Fess up; your texting while driving skills aren’t better than anyone else’s. One study quoted in the Association for Psychological science, found that when it comes to ranking driving skills, people consistently rank themselves as above average, even while admitting that others probably wouldn’t feel the same. While looking at the price of insurance, it is easy to reassure yourself, well I am a careful driver, the statistics don’t apply to me, ect. Take some time to really ask yourself what your risk factors are, what your patterns are, and accurately reflect on your abilities, and then decide on what it means for your coverage.
6. Review how your potential insurance handles claims.
Knowing what to do in the case of an accident is always a good idea. However, some insurance providers make it easier than others to file a claim. This can have a real impact on how much and how smoothly coverage kicks in when dealing with an accident. Knowing your insurance is easy to work with can ease the emotional burden of going through the claims process, especially after a traumatic event.