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When shopping for auto insurance, it is important to do your research. It is a very important financial decision in one's life, and there are many things people are unaware or uncertain of. We also provide tips to help you save, and find the best combination of price and coverage for each individual. Click the articles below to begin your research!

Tips to Save on Auto Insurance

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Most states require that anyone who owns a vehicle must have insurance on that vehicle. In addition, states require minimum coverage with the average being $25,000 per injured person for bodily injury, $50,000 per accident for bodily injury and $10,000 for property damage. Some states have lower minimums while others have higher. Regardless of the minimum required in every state, vehicle owners like to save as much as possible on auto insurance. These tips can help you keep your costs down while still providing you with the coverage you need to protect yourself and your family.

Higher Deductibles

Increasing your deductibles by several hundred dollars could save you 15-40% on the collision and comprehensive costs of your auto insurance. The deductible is the amount that the insurance company will not pay on a claim so it is important to remember that higher deductibles could mean more out of your pocket should you be involved in an accident. Placing the amount of your deductible in a savings account so that it can be used should you need to file a claim.

Unnecessary Coverage

If you are driving an older car that has been paid in full, check the Kelley Blue Book value of the vehicle. If you are paying more than ten percent of the value of the car in collision and comprehensive insurance, consider dropping the coverage. If your car is totaled, you may receive less for the car than you paid in insurance premiums since the car’s value is lower. Dropping collision and comprehensive coverage means that you will receive no value for your vehicle if you are deemed at fault in a car accident, however, so be sure your financial situation is such that you will be able to purchase a replacement vehicle should your car be totaled.

Consider Insurance Cost Before Buying

If you are buying a new vehicle, look at the cost of insuring it before you purchase. Auto insurance premiums differ greatly between types of vehicles and are based on such values as price, engine size, average repair costs, safety record and the incidence of theft for that type of vehicle. Cars that are stolen or pulled over for speeding more than others often have higher rates of insurance. According to Forbes Magazine, the Honda Accord, Honda Civic, Chevrolet Silverado, Ford F-150 and Toyota Camry were the top five most stolen vehicles in 2018. The Nissan Altima, Ford Fusion, Ford F-150, Toyota Corolla and Chevrolet Impala were the most stolen new cars in 2018. These makes and models may have higher insurance rates than other vehicles simply because they are stolen more often than others. In addition, the Mercedes-Benz SL Class, Toyota Camry Solara and Scion tC are among the most ticketed vehicles, also indicating that they may have a higher insurance rate.

Combine Policies

Very often, insurance companies will offer reduced rates if you combine all your insurance with one carrier. Multi-policy discounts are offered if you purchase your homeowners and auto insurance from the same company. In addition, if you insure all the vehicles in one household with the same policy, you may also be offered a discount. However, depending on the driving record and age of drivers living in your house, you may find that it is more cost effective to keep separate policies rather than combine them.

Drive Less and Drive Safe

Low mileage discounts are common among auto insurers. The reason for this is that insurance companies understand that the less you drive, the less likely you are to be in an accident. Some companies offer carpool discounts or reduced rates for drivers whose vehicle mileage is below the annual average in their area. In addition, the safer you are behind the wheel, the less your insurance will cost. If you have a clean driving record, your insurance rate will be lower than someone who has even a few points. Taking a defensive driving course is another way to indicate that you are a safe driver and many policies offer discounts on insurance as soon as you have completed a certified defensive driving course. Insurance companies are also offering devices that can be installed in your vehicle that monitor speed, distance, hard braking, throttle position and other driving habits. If the device indicates that you and other drivers in your vehicle are safe drivers, you can receive a discount on your insurance. Certain safety features on your vehicle may also qualify you for additional discounts. These features include antilock brakes, automatic seatbelts, running lights or an alarm system.

Compare Insurance Companies

When looking around for insurance, it is recommended that you talk to at least three different insurance companies before choosing one. Talk to family and friends about their rates, call different companies or get quotes online. One valuable resource is your state insurance department, which can provide you with rate comparisons, customer ratings and information on complaints they have received regarding a particular company. Be sure to talk to people about how the company handles claims as well since you will probably not have to deal with them unless you have an accident or emergency.

Other Discounts

Insurance companies sometimes offer discounts that are not widely publicized. Some offer discounts for teens whose grades are good or who have gone through a driving course. There may be discounts for your college student whose school is more than 100 miles from home or if you are over a certain age, normally 50 or 55. If you are a member of an organization, such as the Lions Club or the Rotary, you may be eligible for a discount. Employers occasionally offer discounts on auto insurance as well and, because some occupations have a higher risk of accident than others, you may be offered a lower rate if you are in a low-risk occupation, such as teacher, engineer or doctor. AAA partners with many organizations and, as a member, you could save as much as 15 percent on your auto insurance.

High Credit Score and Occupation

Statistics indicate that drivers who maintain good credit have fewer accidents than those that do not, which is why many insurance companies check credit ratings before providing a quote. It is advisable to check your credit score on a regular basis not only to keep your auto insurance low, but also to protect yourself from identity theft.

These tips can help you reduce your auto insurance costs, although it is important to review all aspects of any change in your policy before making a decision. For instance, raising deductibles may save money now but could cost you more should you have to file a claim. However, a phone call to your insurance agent to ask about discounts, safety features in your vehicle or a how being a safe drive could save you money is one of the best places to start when you want to lower your car insurance rates.

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