How to lower your Auto Insurance cost.

There will be plenty of things that affect your auto insurance rate and insurance score. The biggest factor will be your driving record. While having a great driving record may provide you with a decent head start you can further reduce your insurance cost by

  1. Shop Your Coverage
    1. Prices will vary from company to company and time to time. While a company may have competitive rates this year they may not be the best next year. 
    2. Get at least 4 price quotes from A rated insurers admitted to your state. You can check most insurance company ratings with ratings companies A.M. Best (www.ambest.com) or Standard & Poor’s (www.standardandpoors.com/ratings)
    3. Get quotes from Independent and Captive Agents and know the difference. Independent agents represent more than one carrier, a captive agent can only offer the coverage of only one carrier. Most captive carriers spend heavily on marketing and brand awareness. (Yes, we are not naming but naming names.
  2. Plan for the insurance on the car you will buy before you buy it. 
    1. If planning to replace or add a vehicle find out how much the change or addition will cost before purchasing.
    2. Find out how safe the vehicle is as its safety rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (www.iihs.org) this may be a good indicator of how much it could cost to insure.
  3. Increase your plan deductibles.
    1. Increasing your deductibles may relieve some of the high cost of insurance from your plate however this comes at an out of pocket cost if you have an accident.
    2. Consider dropping collision and/or comprehensive coverage on older cars that may not have any resale value. If the vehicle is worth less than 10 times the premium purchasing the added coverage may not be cost effective.  Do this only after careful review of your needs and be sure you understand the risks in having too little coverage.
  4. Build, Rebuild, and Maintain good credit. 
    1. A solid credit history can reduce your insurance costs. 
    2. Most insurers use credit information to price auto policies. 
    3. Carriers have done the research and studies have shown that those who effectively manage their credit have fewer claims. 
    4. Pay your bills on-time especially your insurance bills. 
  5. Bundle and save
    1. Look for opportunities to bundle your home and auto or other policies together with the same company. Companies can give significant discounts due to bundling or may rate you differently.
  6. Drive Less & Safer
    1. Some companies may rate you differently if you drive a limited amount of miles per year.
    2. If you carpool or use mass transit to get to work you may be able to save.
    3. Have no accidents or moving violations in 3 years.  
  7. Seek out other discounts
    1. Defensive Driving Courses
    2. Group Rates available from insurers, alumni, and other associations.