INSURANCE GUIDE
save big bucks on your car insurance
Read below to learn some tricky ways to save on your auto insurance. (Image source – FLICKR)

We all want to save money on our car insurance but sometimes it can seem like the bills just keep on coming. Even if you have a safe driving record, your insurance company has to take into account everyone they insure when set standard premium rates and because traffic accidents are so common, they have to recoup their losses. This means that your car insurance can be one of the hardest hitters when it comes to your budget. You can’t change the rate that insurance companies charge everyone but there are some steps that you can take to ensure you are doing everything possible to pay the least amount.

Don’t Drive

This may seem obvious because if you aren’t driving, that means you don’t need car insurance. But even if you own a car, there are ways you can reduce the amount you drive to save you money. If you commute farther than 3 miles a day, taking the bus or carpooling could be a way to save money on car insurance. One of the general questions that insurance companies will ask when quoting your policy is what the use of the vehicle is and how much you plan on driving it. If you can reduce the amount and length that you drive in any form, your insurance premiums will be lower because there is less risk you will be in an accident.

Ask for Higher Deductibles

A deductible is the amount of money that comes out of your pocket when you make a claim that the insurance company has to cover. For various types of coverage, there will be standard deductible limits but you can always speak with your insurance agent to request higher limits. While this may lower your overall premium, it also takes some careful planning on your part. Don’t set your deductible at $1,500 and then be caught off guard when you are in an accident and have to pay that amount. One of the best ways to prepare and save money is setting up an emergency fund that contains at least the amount of your deductible, if not more. This way you can reap savings in the long run.

Drive a Safe Car

Each year, the Insurance Institute for Information and the National Highway Institute for Safety conduct tests on various car models to determine how they withstand an accident. Based on their results, cars are given different safety ratings. If you are looking for a new car, its best to look into the various tests they perform and what exactly is being tested because it will give you a better idea of how you would fare in different types of accidents. Just because a care is given a good safety rating doesn’t mean that an excellent performer in all types of crashes. Generally though, a good safety rating is going to get your lower premiums. A safe car will protect you and your passengers better which means less payout for the insurance company.

Don’t Buy What You Don’t Need

Insurance agents can often scare people into purchasing insurance they don’t necessarily need. The thoughts of getting into a serious accident might prompt some people to shell out more money than they should for a car that isn’t worth insuring for a high amount. If you have an older car, stick to your guns when it comes to purchasing comprehensive coverage. Many older cars aren’t worth what it costs to pay for collision and comprehensive because the total loss value won’t equal to what you’ve been spending and you will essentially lose money. Be sure to check your car’s value before making any final decisions .

Maintain a Clean Driving Record

This can be the easiest and hardest thing you can do. You probably know all the rules and do your best to obey them but sometimes you are running late and if you don’t go 15 mph over the speed limit  you will not reach your destination in time. But you definitely aren’t going to get there if you get pulled over. One ticket is going to drastically affect your premiums but if they continue to add up you could your premiums rise and even risk cancellation of your license and your insurance policy. On the other hand, if you maintain a clean record, some companies offer a good driver discount that can lower your premiums. Make the smart choice and your wallet will benefit.

Put Your Teenager Up for Adoption

If you have a teen driver, this might seem like the best way to avoid a premium hike but it can hard to send them away once you’ve grown fond of your child so luckily, there are other options. Instead of insuring your teen on a separate policy, put them on yours. Your good driving record will be factored in and hopefully passed down. If you child consistently gets good grades, they may qualify for a discount and if the take driver’s safety courses, that may also help them qualify. If you help them become a better driver, they will eventually get their own insurance and yours will return to normal.

These are just a few ways that you can lower your insurance premiums but there are multiple other ways depending on your coverage and your driving history. Buying car insurance can be a click and purchase transaction in today’s modern times and while this increases ease of obtaining insurance, you may also be missing out on valuable discount. Be sure to explore your options online when looking for insurance but don’t forget about insurance agents. They can often be the one person that can find you the best deals and discounts. If the save you enough money, you may even have to send them Christmas card but that’s not too expensive.