How To Buy Auto Insurance Wisely

It wasn’t that long ago that going to buy auto insurance was a hassle. Fortunately technology has made this process much easier and hassle free. Now you can shop online, make quick phone calls, and avoid the drawn out hours and headaches that shopping for insurance used to cause. Here is what you need to keep in mind.

Driving Record

Before you start shopping for new insurance policies, you need to know that your driving record will greatly impact the rates offered to you. If you are a safe driver with no tickets or other violations, you can get pretty competitive rates and may even be able to negotiate with the insurance company. If, however, you have tickets or accidents in the past five years, or have had a DUI or DWI then you can expect your rates to be higher. Even though you will have higher premiums, you can still comparison shop. Just be honest with the insurance company to get the most accurate quotes.

Paying for Extra Features

When you are shopping for insurance rates, keep in mind that a lot of companies will lure you with the prospect of small coverage’s that really won’t matter in the long run. Make sure you are shopping for policies that cover the things you need covered. Most insurance companies will have a 24 hour claims center, so don’t let yourself get fooled in to thinking this is an added benefit. It’s just one the company chose to highlight. Most auto insurance companies won’t cover things left in your car, such as CD’s and laptops, but most homeowners insurance policies will. Don’t pay extra for coverage like this until you know your homeowners policy won’t. Things like this can add up, and you could end up paying extra money in premiums for things you don’t really need.

Get Your Own Quotes

While there are companies out there that offer to compare rates for you, it’s best to get your own quotes. The policies they are comparing for you are rarely the same, and you are putting yourself at their feet when you listen to their quotes only. It’s not uncommon to call one of their competitors and find a rate that is less than what was quoted in the original comparison. It only takes a few minutes either on the phone or on their website to get an accurate quote.

Full Coverage vs. Liability

If you have financed your car through a bank or other lender, chances are high that you will be required to have full coverage. If you don’t fall under this umbrella, then you need to weigh your needs independently. If the car is older and not worth a lot monetarily, then full coverage insurance may be silly. Take stock of the coverage options you need and want before you start getting quotes. If you wish, you can get quotes on both the state minimums and full coverage, and see which fits in your budget best.

Deductibles

A higher deductible will equal lower monthly premiums. While this may sound like a good money saving option now, what happens if you’re in an accident and suddenly can’t afford that high deductible you chose? Make sure you are choosing a deductible that is realistic for you. Sit down and look at your finances. Come up with an amount that you can comfortably pay out if anything happens. Your deductible should be lower than this number.
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