Being forced to pay for high-priced car insurance premiums can take a big chunk out of your monthly budget and put the squeeze on your family’s finances. There is such a variety of auto insurance companies to pick from, and although it’s a good thing to have multiple companies, too many choices makes it more difficult to compare rates and find the lowest cost car insurance.
Car insurance discounts help lower rates
Car insurance can cost a lot, but you may find discounts that may help make it more affordable. Some discounts will apply at the time you complete a quote, but some need to be specially asked for prior to receiving the credit.
- Passive Restraint Discount – Vehicles with factory air bags or automatic seat belts can receive discounts as much as 30%.
- Discount for Low Mileage – Driving fewer miles could qualify for lower rates due to less chance of an accident.
- Own a Home – Owning a home in Gypsum may trigger a policy discount on car insurance since owning and maintaining a home means you have a higher level of financial diligence.
- Accident Forgiveness Coverage – This isn’t a discount exactly, but some insurance companies will allow you to have one accident before hitting you with a surcharge so long as you haven’t had any claims prior to the accident.
- Cautious Driver Discounts – Drivers who avoid accidents could pay up to 40% less than less cautious drivers.
- Senior Citizen Discount – Drivers that qualify as senior citizens can possibly qualify for better car insurance rates.
As a sidenote, most of the big mark downs will not be given to all coverage premiums. Most only cut the cost of specific coverages such as physical damage coverage or medical payments. So even though they make it sound like it’s possible to get free car insurance, it’s just not the way it works.
A few of the larger companies and a summarized list of policyholder discounts include:
- American Family offers discounts for bundled insurance, accident-free, good student, multi-vehicle, mySafetyValet, and defensive driver.
- State Farm policyholders can earn discounts including multiple autos, good student, good driver, Steer Clear safe driver discount, driver’s education, and multiple policy.
- 21st Century offers discounts including 55 and older, anti-lock brakes, good student, teen driver, homeowners, and automatic seat belts.
- Travelers includes discounts for continuous insurance, IntelliDrive, payment discounts, good student, early quote, and multi-policy.
- GEICO may offer discounts for air bags, five-year accident-free, anti-theft, federal employee, military active duty, and multi-policy.
If you need lower rates, check with all companies you are considering which discounts you may be entitled to. A few discounts may not be available in your state. To view insurance companies that offer the discounts shown above in Gypsum, click here to view.
Car insurance policy specifics
Understanding the coverages of your policy helps when choosing the right coverages and proper limits and deductibles. The coverage terms in a policy can be difficult to understand and nobody wants to actually read their policy. Below you’ll find the normal coverages found on most car insurance policies.
Med pay and Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
Med pay and PIP coverage kick in for expenses like prosthetic devices, ambulance fees, rehabilitation expenses, nursing services and pain medications. The coverages can be used to fill the gap from your health insurance policy or if you do not have health coverage. Coverage applies to not only the driver but also the vehicle occupants and also covers being hit by a car walking across the street. PIP is not available in all states but it provides additional coverages not offered by medical payments coverage
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This coverage pays to fix your vehicle from damage resulting from a collision with another vehicle or an object, but not an animal. You will need to pay your deductible and then insurance will cover the remainder.
Collision coverage protects against claims like scraping a guard rail, damaging your car on a curb, sustaining damage from a pot hole and sideswiping another vehicle. Collision coverage makes up a good portion of your premium, so you might think about dropping it from lower value vehicles. You can also bump up the deductible to get cheaper collision coverage.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM)
Your UM/UIM coverage gives you protection from other drivers when they do not carry enough liability coverage. This coverage pays for injuries sustained by your vehicle’s occupants and damage to your vehicle.
Due to the fact that many Colorado drivers only carry the minimum required liability limits (25/50/15 in Colorado), it doesn’t take a major accident to exceed their coverage limits. This is the reason having UM/UIM coverage is a good idea.
Comprehensive insurance coverage will pay to fix damage from a wide range of events other than collision. A deductible will apply and then insurance will cover the rest of the damage.
Comprehensive insurance covers claims like a broken windshield, damage from flooding and hitting a deer. The maximum amount you can receive from a comprehensive claim is the ACV or actual cash value, so if your deductible is as high as the vehicle’s value it’s not worth carrying full coverage.
Liability car insurance
Liability insurance protects you from injuries or damage you cause to other’s property or people by causing an accident. Liability coverage has three limits: bodily injury for each person, bodily injury for the entire accident, and a limit for property damage. You might see limits of 25/50/25 which stand for a $25,000 limit per person for injuries, $50,000 for the entire accident, and $25,000 of coverage for damaged propery.
Liability coverage protects against things such as bail bonds, funeral expenses, pain and suffering and repair costs for stationary objects. How much liability should you purchase? That is your choice, but consider buying as high a limit as you can afford. Colorado requires minimum liability limits of 25,000/50,000/15,000 but you should consider buying more liability than the minimum.
Online resources for education
More tips and info about car insurance is available at the Colorado DORA Division of Insurance website. Colorado drivers can find out which companies have the most complaints, get help finding coverage, file complaints about an insurance agent or broker, and read consumer alerts.
One last thing about your coverage
We just showed you many ideas to lower your car insurance auto insurance rates. The key concept to understand is the more companies you get premium rates for, the better your comparison will be. You may even discover the best auto insurance rates are with the least-expected company. Regional companies can often provide lower premium rates in certain areas than the large multi-state companies such as Progressive and GEICO.
When trying to cut insurance costs, never buy less coverage just to save a little money. In too many instances, consumers will sacrifice uninsured motorist or liability limits only to discover later they didn’t have enough coverage. Your goal should be to buy a smart amount of coverage at the lowest possible cost while still protecting your assets.