The cost of Car Insurance has been on the rise over the past couple of years, but there are still ways to get cheap car insurance if you know where to look. With just a little bit of effort, and the following 6 tips on how to get cheap car insurance, you can get your coverage without breaking the bank. Let’s jump right in!
1) Comparison shop
By comparison shopping, you can make sure that you’re getting a good deal on car insurance. Don’t just go with your agent’s recommendation—but do be sure to check their record of customer service. Getting cheap car insurance is about finding a balance between cost and service; price can be an easy number to find but it doesn’t tell you anything about how good or bad an insurer might be. You don’t want to go too cheap though because going bare-bones could leave you in trouble if you ever have an accident. You want to ensure that whatever car insurance policy you choose is comprehensive enough for your needs—but not so comprehensive as to break your bank account either. For example, choosing a higher deductible (which means more money out of pocket) means lower monthly payments which can free up cash for extras like roadside assistance. Just keep in mind what kind of situation you would need roadside assistance in; in most cases, if there are no injuries involved then calling AAA (or some other similar roadside assistance agency) isn’t worth paying extra money for each month because they won’t come out without one or more claims being filed first.
2) Take Advantage of Discounts
When shopping for car insurance, you can take advantage of discounts that could save you money. For example, if you have a teenager and you haven’t had an accident or received a ticket in years, you might be able to get a multi-car discount. You may also qualify for a military discount if your spouse is in active duty. You might even qualify for a senior citizen discount if you’re over 55 years old. If you don’t qualify for any discounts, ask your agent about them; many car insurance companies offer additional discounts.
3) Establish Good Credit
The easiest way to get cheap car insurance is to have good credit. If you have bad credit, your insurance company will charge you more for auto coverage. Although poor credit doesn’t affect rates across all carriers, most major insurers factor in a customer’s FICO score when setting rates. The higher your score, the cheaper your premiums are likely to be. Bad news: There’s no magic bullet or overnight fix if you want to improve your credit history and score. But here are three simple ways to start building and maintaining good credit today. (1) Pay on time. This may seem obvious, but it’s worth repeating nonetheless. Remember that paying bills late can quickly lower your credit rating by multiple points (and do so right away). Your goal should be to pay off accounts completely before their due dates. (2) Keep accounts open for as long as possible. Most experts recommend against canceling unused cards—doing so can hurt your score by reducing available credit lines—but it’s still okay to close an account every once in a while.
4) Install an Anti-Theft Device
Installing an anti-theft device in your car can significantly lower your premium. GPS trackers are especially effective, as they make it possible for police to find a stolen vehicle even after it’s been moved out of its original location. However, while these devices will save you money, they do come with drawbacks: First, some companies may consider your vehicle a high risk and choose not to insure you at all. Second, if your car is ever damaged or stolen, you’ll need to pay up front for repairs or a replacement before filing any claim—and since many low-cost insurance companies don’t provide coverage for those costs until after other obligations have been met (like auto loan payments), you could end up paying thousands of dollars out of pocket. That said, if you install one correctly (taking into account where on your vehicle and how high off the ground) and maintain good credit and/or get special coverage through another insurer if needed/available (i.e., rental reimbursement), there’s no reason that installing one shouldn’t help keep costs down over time.
5) Add Multiple Drivers
One of many ways to save on your car insurance is to add additional drivers. Many insurers offer a multi-car discount that can be substantial if you have several cars insured under one policy, or even if you have just two drivers on a single vehicle policy. Adding another driver means you’ll need to buy more coverage; however, if one person drives less than average (as determined by miles driven) they could make up for some lost revenue and cost less per month. Be sure to check with your insurer first before adding any new drivers to make sure it doesn’t come at an additional charge. If not, then consider lowering your monthly bill by asking friends and family members to drive more frequently so you don’t pay as much.
6) Know the State Requirements
Each state has different minimum car insurance requirements. Make sure you know what they are and follow them to a T. Buying too little insurance leaves you financially exposed in case of an accident or injury, while buying too much may cost you more than you’re prepared to pay. Know your financial limits and don’t spend more than is necessary for coverage that meets your needs. This includes personal liability coverage, uninsured motorist protection and medical payment coverage. Consider increasing your deductible if you can afford it without compromising on quality coverage. Also, check with all auto insurers in your area before choosing one because rates vary greatly between companies depending on factors like where you live and how old you are. Remember: Rates will only go up as you get older so avoid paying extra fees by switching to a new company each time your annual renewal comes around! For teenagers who want some independence but also need affordable auto insurance: Getting into an accident or causing bodily harm (regardless of whether it was intentional) can hurt their chances at getting cheap auto insurance when they’re under 25 years old.