A couple things you should really check out if you are shopping for car insurance. Pay by the mile is now offered in California by several carriers. If you drive less than 12,000 miles per year, you can really save with pay as you drive. Find carriers in the beige zip code box at the top.
JD Powers puts out some dynamite ratings on insurers. Financial ratings like Moody’s, Fitch, S&P only give you the financial health of the carrier, not how they treat their customers.
Car insurance can be a big ticket item. With the national average around $1,000 per year, over a decade, you could spend $10,000 on car insurance. Enough to buy a decent used car!
Companies change rates, customer acquisition or retention strategies often. So you cannot go wrong by shopping. Give yourself the gift of a great deal on auto insurance. Cheapen your auto insurance by improving your credit, increasing deductibles, and checking your driving record. Insurance carriers have to check their databases with your personal info before giving you an accurate price. Don’t invest your time in getting an”estimate” from direct writers based on generic surveys. Guesses may not help you.
If your insurer has raised your rates excessively or treated you badly, read how to switch auto insurance companies. Even though you may be focused on switching, changing car insurance could cost you a cancellation fee if you do not time it properly. After getting rates, take a minute and phone the company. Get familiar with their service. It may be years before you switch again, so make this change count!
Auto insurance basics
Property Damage Liability is mandatory and pays for the damages to the car and possessions of the other party in an accident that is your fault. Never choose just the minimum.
Bodily Injury Liability covers damages and legal fees from injury or death in an accident where you are at fault. With the price of healthcare and legal costs, get over the minimum.
Medical Payments are used to pay medical expenses incurred by you and your passengers during an accident, regardless of who is at fault.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage is not mandatory but with up to 25% of drivers uninsured Motorist protects you and your passengers and should not be waived.
Collision covers damages caused to your own vehicle in a collision. Collision is required if you have a loan on the vehicle. When looking at collision coverage keep in mind the actual value of the vehicle is being insured. Older used vehicles would not get much collision compensation. New car depreciation will leave a gap or difference between the loan balance and the totaled value.
Comprehensive Coverage will pay for damages from theft, fire, acts of nature, vandalism and animal collisions. if you finance your car, lenders will require comprehensive to protect their 2 in the loan.
Auto related insurance facts
- The cost of the average disabling injury caused by an auto accident is $35,000
- The average annual premium for American drivers is $1,446.49. This varies from a low of $675 in Wyoming to a high of $2,424 for Drivers in New York.
- The average cost of an auto accident resulting in death is over a million dollars. A great reason to consider Personal Umbrella Insurance, if you can afford the $300-$400 additional premium.