Tips and Tricks for Saving on Auto Insurance

Finding the best auto insurance rates can sometimes be tricky. It is absolutely necessary to be insured on the roads, though. In fact, it is required, by Illinois state law to have coverage. Some find auto insurance to be extremely expensive but, there are ways to help make it more affordable. Here are some things to consider to find the ideal price of insurance.

Shop Around

Get quotes from multiple insurance companies, including different types of companies. Also, realize that the lowest number does not mean the cheapest.

Consider Insurance While Shopping for Cars

Some vehicles have lower reliability ratings and other factors that contribute to higher premiums. While researching cars it is important to compare potential premiums for each of your options to ensure you are getting the best deal.

Increase Deductible

By increasing your deductible, you can decrease your premium. Just be sure that the deductible is manageable for your budget and that you have enough money saved in case you need to file a claim.

Bundle Insurance

If the insurance agency that you choose offers bundling, take advantage of it. If not, try to stay with the same company for all of your insurance needs. This results in discounts in most cases.

Keep Good Credit

Having good credit helps lower insurance rates. Researchers have found a significant relationship between your credit score and amount of claims filed. Insurance companies tend to rely on this correlation to define your financial responsibility.

Low Mileage Discounts

Research mileage averages and see if you fall below that. Do not be afraid to ask about a low mileage discount. This discount could also apply to you if you are someone who carpools.

Group Insurance

Some people fall into the category of people who receive insurance from their employer or other groups they belong to. Some insurance providers offer discounts on auto insurance to people who fall into this category.

Other Discounts

Ask your agent if there are any additional discounts you are qualified for based on certain qualities such as how you drive, etc.

Purchase 10+ days before you actually need it

By purchasing coverage before you need to use it helps drive down premium costs.

Pay in Full Up Front

If possible pay in full, rather than setting up a payment plan. The amount you save annually will add up.

Get New Policy When You Move

Especially out of state! Some states have significantly higher insurance rates than others.

Older Cars

Buying a brand new car, just released is exciting, but if your priority is lower insurance premiums it is better to purchase models that are 5+ years old. They are considered more reliable.

VIN Number for Quotes

The purpose of this is to see if you are eligible for a discount if you have anti-theft devices.

Go Paperless

Some companies value using less paper and offer a small discount to those who opt out of using paper which is not hard to do in this age if technology. It is a small offering, but it adds up.

Insurance Vocabulary

Be sure to understand what the verbiage means so that you have a good idea of what you actually need covered and what questions you need to ask your agent.

Automatic Billing

This is another way to save over time, similar to going paperless.

Education

Some insurers offer discounts based off of the level of education you have. For example, some offer discounts for college graduates.

Teen Drivers

Teen drivers are known to drive up insurance costs, since they are more accident prone. But, if they are in a college that is 100+ miles away without a car some insurers allow them to be temporarily taken off of the plan. Additionally, most companies offer a “good student” discount implying that they correlate this test of intelligence with responsible driving habits. Proof of a safe driving class can also save some money on teen auto insurance.

Change Insurance When Lifestyle Changes

If you expect to drive less due to retirement or other factors, report this to your insurer. This can reduce the amount that you have to pay for insurance.

Most importantly, be aware of your needs and form a relationship with your insurance agent. Awareness is the first step towards savings.

Alaska Auto Insurance Laws and Car Insurance Requirements

Alaska auto insurance laws are amongst the most stringent in the United States, a fact not lost on the state’s citizens. However harsh these laws may appear, ultimately they are intended to ensure the safety of all road users. The purpose of these laws, therefore, isn’t to be punitive, but rather to keep citizens on the road safe in all eventualities. That’s why every vehicle must be insured and proof of insurance must be offered at the scene of every accident in the state.

According to Alaska auto insurance requirements, every driver must have a currently active liability insurance policy at all times. This applies whether the vehicle is being operated on a street, highway or public property. The only exceptions to the insurance requirements are off-highway vehicles, areas where registration is not required and non-registered non-operational vehicles.

The minimum coverage required under Alaska auto insurance laws is the highest in the nation. Every driver must carry coverage of at least $50,000 for injury or death to any person, $100,000 for total injuries or deaths per accident and $25,000 for property damage. The rates are set at a high level to minimize the number of lawsuits that tend to follow accidents.

As in most states, drivers are required to provide proof of insurance at particular times. In Alaska, this includes any time you are involved in an accident or any time you are pulled over by a police officer and asked for proof of insurance. Failure to provide adequate proof can result in a range of penalties depending on your driving history.

According to Alaska auto insurance requirements, failure to provide proof of insurance can result in immediate suspension of your driver’s license and the period of suspension can range from 90 days to 12 months, depending on your previous record. The more times you are issued a motor vehicle liability insurance, or MLI, violation, the longer the suspension.

Along with the license suspension, drivers can also be charged a fine for MLI violations. A first violation carries up to a $500 fine and any subsequent violation can carry up to a $1,000 fine or a 6-months driver’s license suspension or both. As with other areas of Alaska’s insurance laws, the penalties are particularly austere in order to ensure the safety of all road users.

Under Alaska auto insurance laws, owners of new cars with outstanding loans must also carry full coverage insurance. Full coverage insurance is also required on all rental cars. If you do not have collision coverage for a rental car, your insurance company is required to offer it in order to mitigate any physical damage to the car.

Alaska does not take the idea of auto insurance lightly and neither should you as a driver. It is therefore in your best interest to ensure that you are covered for any eventuality. You should not take risks with your life or those of other drivers. Put safety first with a full coverage auto insurance plan for complete peace of mind.

Factors That Impact Auto Insurance Premiums

Many people face rising auto insurance premiums each year without knowing how to stop the increases. There are a number of factors that can adversely impact the premiums that are paid for auto insurance. Knowing these factors and managing them can make a big difference when it comes time for your policy renewal.

The make and model of your car has a big impact on your premiums. In many cases, more expensive cars are more expensive to insure. This is because replacement parts and labor are more expensive. Safer cars, even if they are larger, can reduce premiums, because drivers and passengers have a lower likelihood of dying or becoming seriously injured in these cars.

Personal driving history has a dramatic effect on ones premiums. Accidents can and often do increase your premiums, and too many accidents can result in non-renewal of a policy. Traffic tickets not only cost you money when incurred, but they are tracked by the insurance companies. Drivers that get tickets are considered to be a higher risk and cost more to insure.

In most cases, cars become cheaper to insure as they get older. At a certain point, the replacement value of an older car is low enough that collision coverage is not needed, as the premiums would be more than the cost of buying an identical car of the same age.

The number of miles driven over a year is a question that insurers ask about. This is because a car that sits in the driveway has a much lower risk of getting into an accident than a car that is in traffic. People who work at home and only drive for leisure will save a lot more than people who commute twenty or thirty miles or more each day.

Similarly, a car owner who lives in a rural area will have lower premiums than one who lives in a high traffic urban area. This is due not only to increased risk of accidents in urban areas, but also because of higher auto theft rates in urban areas. Some people in urban areas incur a very high cost of transportation, including parking garage fees, and some of them decide to rely entirely on public transportation.

A driver’s age is another factor in setting rates. Younger drivers are more expensive to insure, as they tend to be in more accidents than older drivers. Older drivers are safer and more experienced drivers in most cases. These higher rates can be offset somewhat by having all drivers in a household on the same insurance policy, thus incurring a multiple driver discount.

Every driver needs insurance, but hopes to never need to use the insurance coverage. Taking the time to understand the factors that drive increases in auto insurance premiums can help the consumer to save a great deal of money on insurance.