Are you sick and tired of scraping the payment together each month for car insurance? Your situation is no different than many other Michigan consumers. Popular companies such as State Farm, Geico and Farmers Insurance increase brand awareness with ad campaigns and it is challenging if not impossible to ignore the propoganda and do the work needed to find the best deal.
It’s a good habit to get comparison quotes yearly because prices fluctuate regularly. Just because you found the lowest price on your last policy you can probably find a better price now. Don’t believe everything you read about auto insurance on the internet, so I’m going to show you some guaranteed methods to stop overpaying for insurance.
If you are insured now or need new coverage, you can follow these tips to find better prices while maximizing coverage. Finding the best rates in Kalamazoo is easy if you know what you’re doing. Michigan consumers just need to learn the most efficient way to compare price quotes over the internet.
Are you getting all your discounts?
Companies offering auto insurance don’t always advertise every available discount in a way that’s easy to find, so we break down both the well known and the more hidden auto insurance savings. If you aren’t receiving every discount available, you are throwing money away.
- College Student – Children who are attending college without a vehicle on campus can be insured at a reduced rate.
- Organization Discounts – Belonging to certain professional organizations may earn a discount on auto insurance.
- Theft Prevention Discount – Vehicles equipped with anti-theft or alarm systems help deter theft and will save you 10% or more.
- Passive Restraints – Vehicles with factory air bags can receive discounts up to 30%.
- Anti-lock Brake Discount – Cars that have steering control and anti-lock brakes are safer to drive and earn discounts up to 10%.
- Defensive Driver – Successfully completing a course in driver safety could possibly earn you a 5% discount and easily recoup the cost of the course.
- More Vehicles More Savings – Having multiple cars or trucks on one policy could earn a price break for each car.
- Claim Free – Good drivers with no accidents pay less when compared with bad drivers.
- Drivers Education – Have your child enroll in driver’s education if offered at their school.
Consumers should know that most discounts do not apply to your bottom line cost. The majority will only reduce the price of certain insurance coverages like medical payments or collision. Just because it seems like having all the discounts means you get insurance for free, auto insurance companies aren’t that generous.
To see a list of companies with the best auto insurance discounts in Kalamazoo, follow this link.
Can’t I compare rates from local Kalamazoo agents?
Some consumers would rather buy from a local agent and there is nothing wrong with that. Professional agents are trained to spot inefficiencies and give you someone to call. One of the great benefits of comparing insurance prices online is you can get better rates but still work with a licensed agent.
Upon completion of this form (opens in new window), your coverage information is transmitted to companies in Kalamazoo who will return price quotes for your insurance coverage. There is no need to visit any agencies due to the fact that quote results will go to your email. It doesn’t get any easier!
Deciding on an provider shouldn’t rely on just the premium amount. These are valid questions to ask:
- Do they make recommendations based only on price?
- Do they have any clout with companies to ensure a fair claim settlement?
- Are claim adjusters local or do you have to take your car somewhere else?
- How long have they worked with personal auto insurance coverage?
- Do they specialize in personal lines coverage?
- Are glass claims handled on-site or do you have to take your vehicle to a repair shop?
- How are claims handled?
Kalamazoo insurance agencies come in two flavors
When searching for a good insurance agency, there are two different types of agents that differ in how they can insure your vehicles. Insurance agencies in Kalamazoo can either be independent or captive. Both types can do a good job, but it’s important to know the differences because it can impact the selection process.
Captive Insurance Agents
Captive agents can only write with one company and examples are Allstate, State Farm and Farmers Insurance. Captives cannot give you multiple price quotes so they have no alternatives for high prices. They are trained well on the products they sell which helps them sell insurance even at higher premiums.
Below is a short list of captive insurance agencies in Kalamazoo that are able to give price quote information.
Allstate Insurance – 2929 W Main St – Kalamazoo, MI 49006 – (269) 388-8615
Farmers Insurance Group – 4523 W Main St – Kalamazoo, MI 49006 – (269) 349-9068
Liberty Mutual Insurance – 45 W Main – Kalamazoo, MI 49009 – (269) 372-4540
Farm Bureau Insurance – 4225 W Main St # F – Kalamazoo, MI 49006 – (269) 381-2311
State Farm Insurance – 4613 W Main St – Kalamazoo, MI 49006 – (269) 388-5758
Independent insurance agents are not required to write business for one company but rather can write business amongst many companies and potentially find a lower price. To transfer your coverage to a different company, an independent agent can move your coverage without you having to go to a different agency.
When comparison shopping, we recommend you get quotes from at least one independent agent to get the best comparison.
The following are independent agents in Kalamazoo that are able to give price quote information.
Liberty Mutual Insurance – 45 W Main – Kalamazoo, MI 49009 – (269) 372-4540
Lou Mc Dermott Agency – 5462 Gull Rd – Kalamazoo, MI 49048 – (269) 552-9880
Ticknor Agency LLC – 5015 E Michigan Ave – Kalamazoo, MI 49048 – (269) 488-1555
Minor Field Insurance – 5865 Venture Park Dr – Kalamazoo, MI 49009 – (269) 372-7171
Wassink Agency – 5421 W Gh Ave – Kalamazoo, MI 49009 – (269) 341-4542
To view a complete directory of licensed insurance agents in Kalamazoo, visit this site.
Once you have positive feedback to your questions as well as a affordable price, you may have just found an insurance agency that can service your policy.
When should I talk to an agent?
When buying the right insurance coverage, there really is not a best way to insure your cars. Each situation is unique and a cookie cutter policy won’t apply. Here are some questions about coverages that could help you determine whether or not you will benefit from professional help.
- How high should my medical payments coverage be?
- Am I covered when renting a car or should I buy coverage from the car rental agency?
- Is my dog or cat covered if injured in an accident?
- What discounts do I qualify for?
- Do all my vehicles need collision coverage?
- Are rental cars covered under my policy?
- At what point should I drop full coverage?
- What is covered by UM/UIM coverage?
- Does my policy cover me when driving someone else’s vehicle?
If you can’t answer these questions, you may need to chat with a licensed insurance agent. If you don’t have a local agent, take a second and complete this form or you can go here for a list of companies in your area. It is quick, free and can help protect your family.
Specific coverage details
Learning about specific coverages of your policy can help you determine the right coverages and the correct deductibles and limits. The terms used in a policy can be impossible to understand and coverage can change by endorsement. Shown next are the usual coverages found on most auto insurance policies.
Coverage for collisions
This coverage covers damage to your vehicle caused by collision with an object or car. You have to pay a deductible then the remaining damage will be paid by your insurance company.
Collision insurance covers claims like crashing into a ditch, sustaining damage from a pot hole and colliding with a tree. Paying for collision coverage can be pricey, so you might think about dropping it from vehicles that are 8 years or older. You can also raise the deductible to get cheaper collision coverage.
Coverage for medical expenses
Med pay and PIP coverage reimburse you for short-term medical expenses such as chiropractic care, hospital visits and rehabilitation expenses. They are often used to cover expenses not covered by your health insurance plan or if you are not covered by health insurance. It covers both the driver and occupants in addition to if you are hit as a while walking down the street. Personal injury protection coverage is not available in all states and gives slightly broader coverage than med pay
Comprehensive auto insurance
Comprehensive insurance pays to fix your vehicle from damage from a wide range of events other than collision. You first must pay your deductible and then insurance will cover the rest of the damage.
Comprehensive can pay for claims such as damage from flooding, hail damage and theft. The maximum amount a auto 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.
Coverage for uninsured or underinsured drivers
Your UM/UIM coverage protects you and your vehicle’s occupants from other motorists when they are uninsured or don’t have enough coverage. Covered losses include injuries sustained by your vehicle’s occupants and damage to your vehicle.
Since a lot of drivers only carry the minimum required liability limits (20/40/10), it doesn’t take a major accident to exceed their coverage limits. For this reason, having high UM/UIM coverages is very important.
Liability coverage provides protection from damages or injuries you inflict on other people or property in an accident. It protects YOU from legal claims by others, and does not provide coverage for your injuries or vehicle damage.
It consists of three limits, bodily injury for each person, bodily injury for the entire accident, and a limit for property damage. You might see policy limits of 50/100/50 that means you have a $50,000 limit per person for injuries, a limit of $100,000 in injury protection per accident, and a limit of $50,000 paid for damaged property.
Liability coverage pays for things such as emergency aid, legal defense fees, structural damage and pain and suffering. How much liability coverage do you need? That is your choice, but buy higher limits if possible. Michigan requires minimum liability limits of 20,000/40,000/10,000 but you should consider buying higher limits.
Additional detailed information is located at the Michigan Office of Financial and Insurance Regulation website. Michigan drivers can find out industry alerts, read industry bulletins, find out which companies have the most complaints, and download brochures.
When you buy insurance online, you should never buy poor coverage just to save money. There have been many situations where consumers will sacrifice liability limits or collision coverage only to regret they didn’t purchase enough coverage. The aim is to buy a smart amount of coverage at an affordable rate, not the least amount of coverage.
We just covered many tips how you can lower your auto insurance rates. The most important thing to understand is the more you quote, the higher your chance of finding lower rates. Consumers may even find the lowest priced auto insurance comes from a smaller regional carrier. They may have significantly lower rates on certain market segments compared to the large companies like Allstate or State Farm.