Whether you have just purchased a new car or you are considering switching insurance providers, nothing is more important than getting the best quote possible. The internet has made getting and comparing auto insurance quotes easier than ever, and there are numerous sites available that can help you to aggregate quotes from multiple companies. Tools available on The Zebra and Nerdwallet provide a great starting point. Once you have narrowed your search down to the companies that offer the best quotes, there are several more factors you should consider to make sure that you are getting the lowest rate possible.
Understand Hidden Factors That Affect Your Rate
A large variety of factors that you may not expect will affect the rate that you are quoted by an insurance company. Although there is often very little you can do to affect these in the short term, knowing the factors that are working for or against you can still be helpful in understanding why your rates seem to be higher than you expected.
The number one "hidden" factor that will affect your rate is your credit score. Unfortunately, if your credit score is suboptimal, then it is likely that you will receive a higher rate than you otherwise would. If you are actively working on improving your credit, it may be useful to avoid any major changes in auto insurance until your credit has improved. This will guarantee that you get a rate that isn't being dragged down by your credit.
Aside from your credit score, your rate may also be affected by your marital status, the location that you live in, and possibly even your occupation.
Consider Safe Driving Devices Carefully
Several insurance companies offer devices which track your driving habits and offer discounts to safe drivers. These devices usually come with very large initial discounts that then scale based on the data collected by the device over time. These devices potentially offer large savings, but you should always research the specific device in depth before agreeing to install one in your car. There may be a penalty for removing the device after a certain period, and some devices are extremely sensitive and may penalize you if you normally drive in chaotic environments such as cities.
Avoid Monthly Payments
Most insurance companies offer the ability to pay your premiums yearly or every six months. In most cases, paying in this way will provide a discount (usually a pretty hefty one) over monthly payments. Not everyone can afford to pay six or twelve months of insurance premiums up front, but if it is within your means to do so, then you can potentially save a fairly large amount of money.
Talk to a Real Person
One of the simplest and most effective ways to save money is to simply speak with insurance agents. Once you have a short list of insurance providers, contact the companies you are considering and speak directly to their representatives. You can negotiate with the agents that you speak with and, knowing the factors that may be affecting your rates, you can potentially work your quote down. Insurance agents may also have special discounts available that they can offer.Share