Feel like you’re a prisoner to an overpriced car insurance policy? Believe me, there are lots of people in the same boat.
Since consumers have many options when it comes to car insurance, it’s nearly impossible to find the right insurer.
Don’t miss out on these ten money-saving discounts
The price of auto insurance can be rather high, but companies offer discounts to cut the cost considerably. Certain discounts will be applied when you purchase, but some may not be applied and must be specifically requested before you will receive the discount.
- Drivers Ed for Students – Cut your cost by having your teen driver enroll in driver’s education in school.
- More Vehicles More Savings – Insuring multiple cars or trucks on one policy qualifies for this discount.
- Federal Employees – Simply working for the federal government could cut as much as 10% off with a few car insurance companies.
- Paperless Signup – A few companies will give a small break for buying your policy online.
- 55 and Retired – Older drivers may qualify for a small decrease in premiums.
- Claim Free – Good drivers with no accidents can earn big discounts compared to accident-prone drivers.
- Sign Early and Save – Some insurance companies reward drivers for switching policies before your current policy expires. It can save you around 10%.
- Seat Belts Save – Buckling up and requiring all passengers to buckle their seat belts could save 15% off the personal injury premium cost.
- Life Insurance – Select insurance companies reward you with a break if you buy auto and life insurance together.
- Driver Safety – Successfully completing a course in driver safety could cut 5% off your bill if you qualify.
Consumers should know that most of the big mark downs will not be given to the entire cost. Most only apply to the cost of specific coverages such as liability and collision coverage. Just because you may think adding up those discounts means a free policy, you won’t be that lucky. But any discount will cut your premiums.
But don’t I need an insurance agent?
Some consumers would rather buy from a local agent. The biggest benefit of comparing insurance prices online is you can get better rates but also keep your business local. Buying from local agencies is especially important in Haverhill.
To find an agent, once you fill out this form (opens in new window), your coverage information is transmitted to participating agents in Haverhill who will give you bids to get your business. You don’t have to leave your house due to the fact that quote results will go to the email address you provide. It doesn’t get any easier! You can find better rates AND an agent nearby.
Types of insurance agents
When researching a good Haverhill insurance agent, there are a couple of different types of agents to choose from. Insurance agencies in Haverhill are classified as either captive or independent.
Independent agencies do not work for one specific company so they have the ability to put coverage amongst many companies and possibly get better coverage at lower prices. If you are not satisfied with one company, they simply move the coverage in-house and you don’t have to find a new agent.
When searching for an agent, it’s recommended you include multiple independent agents to get the best comparison.
The following are Haverhill independent insurance agencies willing to provide rate quotes.
Phaneuf Insurance Inc – 123 Lafayette Sq – Haverhill, MA 01832 – (978) 372-3636
Pentucket Insurance – 741 S Main St – Haverhill, MA 01835 – (978) 372-2111
Captive Insurance Agents
Captive agencies can only place business with one company and some examples include Allstate, State Farm and Farmers Insurance. They are unable to give you multiple price quotes so it’s a take it or leave it situation. They receive extensive training on their company’s products which helps them compete with independent agents.
Picking an auto insurance agent should depend on more than just the premium amount. Here are some questions to ask:
- How many years of experience in personal lines insurance coverages do they have?
- If you have an accident, are you able to get your vehicle repaired at the shop of your choice?
- What insurance company do they write the most business with?
- Is vehicle mileage a factor when determining depreciation for repairs?
- Is vehicle damage repaired with OEM or aftermarket parts?
After getting satisfactory answers to any questions you have in addition to an acceptable price estimate, it’s possible that you found an insurance agency that is a good match to service your policy.
Save 15 percent in 15 minutes? Is it for real?
Companies like Allstate, Geico and Progressive continually stream television and radio advertisements. All the ads have a common claim about savings after switching your policy. How do they all claim to save you money?
Insurance companies are able to cherry pick for the type of customer that earns them a profit. For instance, a profitable customer could possibly be between 30 and 50, has no tickets, and chooses high deductibles. Any new insured who fits that profile will get the preferred rates and most likely will save quite a bit of money when switching.
Potential insureds who are not a match for the “perfect” profile will have to pay a higher premium and this can result in the driver buying from a lower-cost company. Company advertisements say “drivers who switch” not “everybody who quotes” save money. That’s why insurance companies can confidently state the savings.
Because of the profiling, it’s extremely important to get as many quotes as possible. It’s just too difficult to predict which company will provide you with the cheapest rates.
Learn more today
Much more information about car insurance in Massachusetts is located on the website for the Massachusetts Division of Insurance found here. Massachusetts drivers can file complaints about an insurance agent or broker, view agent and company licensing information, and download brochures.
Auto insurance coverages
Knowing the specifics of your policy helps when choosing which coverages you need for your vehicles. The terms used in a policy can be impossible to understand and reading a policy is terribly boring. These are typical coverages found on the average car insurance policy.
Auto liability insurance – This coverage can cover injuries or damage you cause to other people or property. It protects you against other people’s claims, and does not provide coverage for your own vehicle damage or injuries.
Liability coverage has three limits: bodily injury for each person injured, bodily injury for the entire accident and a property damage limit. Your policy might show values of 50/100/50 which stand for a $50,000 limit per person for injuries, a per accident bodily injury limit of $100,000, and $50,000 of coverage for damaged propery. Alternatively, you may have a combined limit which combines the three limits into one amount and claims can be made without the split limit restrictions.
Liability can pay for claims such as medical services, pain and suffering, bail bonds and structural damage. The amount of liability coverage you purchase is a personal decision, but you should buy higher limits if possible. Massachusetts state law requires minimum liability limits of 20,000/40,000/5,000 but it’s recommended drivers buy higher limits.
Comprehensive protection – This coverage pays to fix your vehicle from damage that is not covered by collision coverage. You first must pay your deductible and then insurance will cover the rest of the damage.
Comprehensive can pay for claims such as a broken windshield, damage from getting keyed and hail damage. The highest amount a car insurance company will pay at claim time is the ACV or actual cash value, so if the vehicle is not worth much consider dropping full coverage.
Collision – Collision coverage pays for damage to your vehicle from colliding with another car or object. You first must pay a deductible and the rest of the damage will be paid by collision coverage.
Collision coverage protects against claims like rolling your car, crashing into a ditch, damaging your car on a curb, hitting a parking meter and driving through your garage door. Paying for collision coverage can be pricey, so you might think about dropping it from vehicles that are 8 years or older. Drivers also have the option to choose a higher deductible to get cheaper collision coverage.
Medical expense coverage – Medical payments and Personal Injury Protection insurance provide coverage for immediate expenses such as prosthetic devices, doctor visits and pain medications. They are used to fill the gap from your health insurance program or if you are not covered by health insurance. It covers not only the driver but also the vehicle occupants in addition to any family member struck as a pedestrian. PIP is not universally available but it provides additional coverages not offered by medical payments coverage
Uninsured or underinsured coverage – Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist coverage protects you and your vehicle’s occupants from other motorists when they either are underinsured or have no liability coverage at all. This coverage pays for injuries sustained by your vehicle’s occupants as well as your vehicle’s damage.
Since a lot of drivers only carry the minimum required liability limits (which is 20/40/5), their liability coverage can quickly be exhausted. For this reason, having high UM/UIM coverages should not be overlooked. Usually the UM/UIM limits are identical to your policy’s liability coverage.
And the best car insurance company is…
You just read some good ideas how to compare car insurance prices online. The key concept to understand is the more times you quote, the better your chances of lowering your rates. Drivers may discover the lowest rates come from a smaller regional carrier. Smaller companies can often insure niche markets at a lower cost as compared to the big name companies such as Allstate or State Farm.
Cheap car insurance can be bought both online as well as from independent agents in Haverhill, and you should compare price quotes from both in order to have the best chance of saving money. Some companies don’t offer online quoting and usually these regional insurance providers provide coverage only through local independent agents.
When you buy insurance online, never buy poor coverage just to save money. There are too many instances where someone dropped liability coverage limits and discovered at claim time that a couple dollars of savings turned into a financial nightmare. Your strategy should be to purchase a proper amount of coverage at an affordable rate while not skimping on critical coverages.