Owning a car means you have to get the compulsory auto insurance for it, unless you live in Virginia, New Hampshire or Mississippi. Paying for insurance can be tiresome, until you get involved in a car accident. Whether you’re the one at fault or it’s the other driver, or you just happened to be in the way as a pedestrian, then you’ll be grateful for insurance.
There are as many insurance companies as there are car accidents, so choosing one that you can trust and one that offers reasonable charges can be overwhelming. But did you know that you are not totally at the mercy of insurance companies because you can also control your auto insurance rates? Yes, although you cannot dictate the policies, there are ways to get lower insurance premiums. Read on to find out how:
- Opt for a higher deductible. A deductible is the amount of money you have to pay for the repair of your car in an accident before the insurance coverage takes effect. Usually, liability and property damage do not have an option for deductibles while comprehensive car insurance, collision and medical have deductibles.
- Avoid getting traffic tickets. Or, don’t get caught violating traffic rules, such as DUI, speeding, etc. The more traffic tickets you have, the higher your premium will be for auto insurance since companies have now labeled you as a risk. Even if you were issued a ticket in another state, it can still register in your home state.
Tip: if you plan to contest a traffic violation charge, don’t pay the fine for the ticket. Paying the fine can be construed as an admission of guilt.
- Avoid frequent filing for insurance claims. If you’re involved in a single car accident and your car suffers minor damages, it’s more advantageous for you not to file a claim. Car accident claims, regardless of who’s at fault, will spike up insurance premiums fast. Bodily injuries, vandalism and theft are legitimate claims, however.
According to www.advantageinsagents.com , insurance companies operate on different policies and it pays to compare them to get insurance that works best for you.
- Get married. Most insurance companies give lower rates for people who are married and they cannot be faulted for discrimination. The same goes for women drivers and for those over 25 years of age. Married couples usually own more than one car which earns them a discount for insuring multiple vehicles. They are also presumed to have less mileage and less “driving alone” time if they drive with the spouse riding as passenger. Being married presupposes having more responsible behavior, including driving. Plus, owning a home and generally being viewed as a safe driver are other factors that favor them.
- Change jobs. Your occupation plays a role in your auto insurance premiums. Work that is considered as highly stressful and demands driving at night increases rates compared to routine and sedentary day jobs. Doctors are seen as risky drivers, except in India where they get lower insurance rates in view of their profession. Business owners and high level executives have the highest premiums owing to the stressful nature of their positions and because they are always on their cell phones.
The difference in the amount is only a few dollars per month though, so maybe changing jobs is too drastic a move if it’s only to save on insurance. Further, by no means should you lie in your application as this could invalidate your policy and put you on the fraud list.
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Maarie Miller works as an insurance agent and gives tips on how to choose insurance policies.