How to Switch to a New Auto Insurance Provider
Before we get into the topic of “how to switch to a new auto insurance provider”, you should first ask yourself – Why switch to a new auto insurance provider? People move their car insurance coverage to another insurance company for many different reasons. Some of these include:
- Problems with service and support with your current provider.
- Job changes that make you eligible for group discounts with another car insurance company.
- More advantageous coverage options.
- Moving to a state where your car insurance carrier doesn’t offer coverage.
But here is the most important reason:
Your current company’s rates are simply not competitive for the same level of coverage you could get with another carrier, and switching providers could save you a lot of money.
At Insurance Panda, we help our customers save money on auto insurance every day. In fact, our customers often see savings of up to $600 or more when they use our simple process to shop and compare rates. To find out how much you could save, take a few minutes to review your coverage on Insurance Panda. Plus when shopping with us, you get quick online quotes and can buy directly online without any agents calling or any hassles whatsoever.
It Pays to Review Your Coverage
It’s a very good idea to review your vehicle coverage to make sure that you’re receiving the best insurance value for your money. When you do a review, you’ll find out that it very well may help you save money.
Premiums for virtually identical policies can vary widely between different auto insurance carriers – sometimes by $1,000 or more! There are many reasons for these differences, but it often comes down to a company’s experience with policyholders in the same coverage group. A coverage group typically includes people of similar age, the number of accidents in the group, type of vehicle, and other factors.
If you happen to be in a group that has had a relatively large number of claims filed in a certain year, your rates may go up. Other car insurance companies may not have had the same experience, however, and that means their rates may be lower. Additional factors may also affect rates for certain carriers that may not be true for their competitors. In these cases, you may find that you can get a significantly lower rate on your auto insurance.
If, after your review, you find that you could be saving more with another carrier, switching your policy to the new carrier is a relatively easy process.
Canceling Your Old Policy Is Not Difficult
In most cases, canceling your car insurance policy is easy. All you have to do is inform your current carrier in writing, making sure you specify the date you want the policy to be canceled. Some states require that your new agent notify your previous agent of the change. In some cases, your carrier may ask that you return the actual printed policy. They will also send you a “request for cancellation” form that you should sign and then send back to your insurance carrier. If you don’t receive one of these forms from your current carrier, you should contact them and ask them to give you the status of your existing policy. You should never just assume that your old policy is canceled without going through the process of formally canceling it.
Never Cancel Your Car Insurance Policy Without Your New Policy in Place
It’s never a good idea to not be covered by auto insurance – even for just a day or two. You never know what could happen. Because of this, you should never cancel a policy until you know you have a new one in place. The good news is that this rarely happens as most states have insurance laws that require proof of insurance to be presented to your old carrier before they will cancel the old policy. That means that you may need to show your old carrier a copy of the insurance card from your new carrier. In some cases, you may also need to show a copy of the “Declarations Page” from your new policy. The new carrier of your car insurance will be able to time the start of your new policy with the cancellation of your old one. It’s really a very simple process that’s done thousands of times every day.
Should You Switch Your Policy Now?
There really is no “better time” to switch your policy. Though the most convenient time is probably just before your old policy is about to renew, changing at any time is relatively easy. If you switch your policy before it is coming up for renewal, you do want to make sure your existing carrier refunds you any money for unused coverage.
Standard car insurance policies contain a provision that lets you cancel your policy at any time. As was noted above, you do need to give proper notice to your auto insurance carrier. If you want to cancel an existing policy after you have renewed it, you may want to consider timing the change to the end of your payment cycle. If you time the cancellation in this way, you won’t have to hassle with having to recover the unused portion of your premium from your old car insurance carrier.
Should you choose to cancel your policy when you are still in the middle of your payment cycle, the company will prorate your most recent premium payment up to the cancellation date and return the remainder to you. Most carriers will charge a cancellation penalty known as a “short rate” to pay the administrative costs of canceling the policy.
How Do You Know If Your Policy Is up for Renewal?
With most carriers, a renewal notice is sent out 30 to 45 days before the beginning of a new policy period. The timing and content of these notices may depend on the regulations in your state. These notices typically describe your coverage, note any discounts or rate adjustments, and show the amount of premium that you will owe for the new policy period. If you decide to switch to another carrier, as noted above, you’ll need to make sure you have a new policy in place before your existing coverage expires. Make sure you don’t miss the deadline, or you may be required to pay a fee for canceling your policy.
How Long Does Switching Carriers Take?
With most auto insurance carriers, your new agent or insurer can complete the change in just a day or two. As noted above, there are some things you’ll need to do to facilitate the switch to the new carrier. To see if you could get a better deal on your auto insurance, you can get free, fast, online quotes from up to 5 top carriers at Insurance Panda. Just fill out one simple form. It takes less than 5 minutes to get your quotes!