Are you sick and tired of scraping the payment together to pay your car insurance bill each month? You are in the same boat as the majority of other drivers in Oregon. Popular companies such as State Farm, Farmers Insurance, GEICO and Allstate constantly bombard you with advertising and it can be hard to sift through the bull and effectively compare rates to find the best deal.
It is always a good idea to price shop coverage once or twice a year because car insurance prices are variable and change quite frequently. Despite the fact that you may have had the best deal six months ago you may be paying too much now. You’ll find a ton of advice on car insurance out there, but we’re going to give you some of the best ways to quit paying high car insurance rates.
If you currently have a car insurance policy, you stand a good chance to be able to save some money using these techniques. Buying car insurance in Astoria is quite easy. But Oregon car owners need to have an understanding of how companies sell insurance online and use this information to your advantage.
Save money by taking advantage of discounts
Car insurance is easily one of your largest bills, but you might already qualify for some discounts that could help you make your next renewal payment. Some of these disounts will be visible when you complete an application, but once in a while a discount must be asked for prior to getting the savings. If you are not receiving all the discounts you qualify for, you are not getting the best rate possible.
- Renewal Discounts – Some companies give discounts for signing up prior to your current policy expiration. You can save around 10% with this discount.
- Distant Student Discount – Kids who are enrolled in higher education away from home and don’t have a car may be insured at a cheaper rate.
- Theft Deterent Discount – Cars with anti-theft systems help deter theft and that can save you a little bit as well.
- Student Discount for Driver Training – Require your teen driver to complete a driver education course as it can save substantially.
- Defensive Driver Discount – Taking part in a course in driver safety could possibly earn you a 5% discount and also improve your driving technique.
- Military Rewards – Having an actively deployed family member could trigger a small discount.
- Accident-Free Discounts – Insureds who avoid accidents and claims have much lower rates when compared to policyholders that have many claims.
- Telematics Data Discounts – Drivers who elect to allow their company to monitor driving patterns by using a telematic data system like Allstate’s Drivewise might see lower rates if they show good driving skills.
Just know that some credits don’t apply to the entire policy premium. Most only apply to specific coverage prices like medical payments or collision. So despite the fact that it appears you could get a free car insurance policy, you won’t be that lucky. But any discount will cut the amount you pay for coverage.
To see insurers who offer discounts in Oregon, click here.
Buy Astoria car insurance online
To find the best car insurance rates, there are several ways to compare quotes from local Astoria car insurance companies. One of the best ways to compare rates is to perform an online rate comparison. This can be accomplished in just a few minutes using one of these methods.
- The easiest and least time consuming way to get quotes is an all-inclusive rate comparison (click to open form in new window). This type of form keeps you from doing separate quotation requests for each company. One form will get you rate comparisons from multiple low-cost companies.
- A harder way to compare rate quotes consists of visiting each individual company website and fill out their own quote form. For examples sake, we’ll pretend you want to see prices from Auto-Owners, Liberty Mutual and GMAC. In order to get each rate, you would have to take the time to go to each site and enter your information, which can be really labor intensive.
For a list of links to insurance companies in Astoria, click here.
- The old school way to find cheaper rates is to spend time driving to all the different Astoria insurance agencies. Comparing rate quotes online has reduced the need for local agents unless you have a need for the professional advice of a licensed agent. Although you can comparison shop your insurance online and still use a local agent.
Compare rates however you want, just do your best to enter equivalent coverage data for each price quote. If you compare different data it will be impossible to determine the lowest rate in Astoria. Quoting even small variations in limits may result in a large different in cost. Keep in mind that comparing a large number of companies will improve the odds of getting better pricing. Not every company allows you to get online rate quotes, so it’s important to compare price quotes on coverage from those companies, too.
Smart consumers know how to buy car insurance at a discount
Multiple criteria are part of the calculation when you quote your car insurance policy. Some are pretty understandable such as your driving history, although some other factors are less apparent like your vehicle usage or your commute time.
The factors shown below are some of the major factors utilized by car insurance companies to help set premiums.
- Alarm systems save money – Owning a car that has a built-in theft deterrent system can save you a little every year. Advanced theft deterrents such as vehicle immobilizer systems, OnStar, and tracking devices like LoJack can help prevent your vehicle from being stolen.
- Get a ticket, pay higher prices – Your driving record has a lot to do with how much you pay for insurance. Getting just one chargable violation can boost insurance rates by twenty percent. Careful drivers tend to pay less for car insurance than people who have multiple driving citations. Drivers unfortunate enough to have severe tickets such as DUI or reckless driving might be required by their state to submit a SR-22 form with their state’s licensing department in order to continue driving.
- How old are your drivers? – Teen drivers in Oregon are proven to get distracted easily when driving with friends therefore car insurance rates are much higher. More experienced drivers are more responsible, tend to cause fewer accidents and receive fewer citations.
- Good credit saves on car insurance – An insured’s credit rating factor in determining what you pay for car insurance. If your credit score is not that good, you could potentially save money when insuring your vehicle by improving your credit score. Consumers who have very high credit ratings tend to be more responsible than those with lower ratings.
- Rates can change based on your address – Living in less populated areas of the country has it’s advantages if you are looking for the lowest rates. Lower population translates into fewer accident claims and a lower car theft rate. Drivers in populated Oregon areas tend to have more road rage incidents and longer commutes to work. Spending more time driving translates into higher accident risk.
- Avoid policy lapses – Driving your car without having proper coverage can get your license suspended and your next policy will cost more because you let your insurance lapse for non-payment. Not only will rates go up, failure to provide proof of insurance may result in fines or a revoked license. You will then be forced to provide proof of insurance in the form of an SR-22 filing with the Oregon motor vehicle department.
- Your spouse saves you money – Being married may save some money on your car insurance policy. It demonstrates that you tend to be less irresponsible it has been statistically shown that drivers who are married file infrequent claims.
Everyone needs different car insurance coverages
When choosing proper insurance coverage, there is no “best” method to buy coverage. Everyone’s needs are different so this has to be addressed. For instance, these questions could help you determine if your situation could use an agent’s help.
- Does my policy pay for OEM or aftermarket parts?
- Is my vehicle covered for smoke damage?
- What are the best liability limits?
- What is covered by UM/UIM coverage?
- Are my tools covered if they get stolen from my vehicle?
- Will I lose any money if I cancel my policy before it expires?
- Am I covered when using my vehicle for business?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions but a few of them apply, then you may want to think about talking to an agent. To find lower rates from a local agent, fill out this quick form or click here for a list of car insurance companies in your area.
Independent versus captive insurance agencies
A lot of people prefer to sit down with an agent. A good thing about getting free rate quotes online is you can get lower auto insurance rates and also buy local.
After completing this form (opens in new window), the coverage information is submitted to agents in your area who will return price quotes for your car insurance coverage. It simplifies rate comparisons since you won’t have to even leave your home since price quotes are sent directly to your email. You’ll get the best rates without requiring a lot of work. If you want to compare prices from a specific car insurance provider, just navigate to their website and fill out the quote form the provide.
Picking the best company requires more thought than just a cheap price. Any agent should be willing to answer these questions.
- Do you have coverage for a rental car if your vehicle is in the repair shop?
- If your car is totalled, how to they determine the replacement cost?
- Is there a 24/7 contact number?
- Do you qualify for any additional discounts?
- Are there any discounts for paying up front?
- Will they give you a referral list?
- Where would your vehicle be repaired?
Different types of Astoria car insurance agents
If you need to find a good insurance agency, it helps to know the two different agency structures that you can select. Agents in Astoria can be classified as either independent agents or captive agents depending on their employer.
Captive Insurance Agencies
Captive insurance agents can only quote rates from one company and some examples include Farmers Insurance and State Farm. These agents are unable to provide other company’s prices so you need to shop around if the rates are high. Captive agents are usually well trained on sales techniques which helps overcome the inability to quote other rates.
Shown below are captive insurance agents in Astoria willing to provide comparison quotes.
Allstate Insurance – 104 10th St – Astoria, OR 97103 – (503) 325-8427
American Family Insurance – 1125 Commercial St – Astoria, OR 97103 – (503) 338-6299
Independent Car Insurance Agencies
Agents of this type are not locked into one company so they can quote policies with multiple insurance companies and find you cheaper rates. If prices rise, your policy is moved internally which requires no work on your part. If you are trying to find cheaper rates, you absolutely need to compare prices from at least one independent agent to maximize your price options.
Listed below is a list of independent insurance agencies in Astoria willing to provide rate quotes.
Eterno Insurance – 10 6th St – Astoria, OR 97103 – (503) 325-4300
To view more licensed insurance agents in Astoria, feel free to view this directory of Astoria insurance agents.
Buy online or local, you save
Lower-priced car insurance is possible from both online companies and from local insurance agents, so you need to with both so you have a total pricing picture. A few companies may not provide the ability to get quotes online and most of the time these small, regional companies provide coverage only through independent insurance agents.
In this article, we covered some good ideas how you can shop for car insurance online. It’s most important to understand that the more quotes you get, the better your chances of lowering your auto insurance rates. You may be surprised to find that the lowest priced car insurance comes from a smaller regional carrier. They can often insure niche markets at a lower cost as compared to the big name companies such as Allstate or State Farm.
Additional detailed information is located at the Oregon Insurance Division website. Oregon drivers can view a list of available companies, report car insurance fraud, and learn about insurance regulations.