Paying for high-priced auto insurance can overdraw your bank account and make it hard to pay other bills. Shopping your coverage around is a great way to tighten up your finances.
With consumers having so many auto insurance companies to choose from, it can be diffult for consumers to choose the lowest cost company.
It’s a good idea to compare rates periodically because rates change quite often. Just because you had the best deal last year other companies may now be cheaper. Forget anything you know (or think you know) about auto insurance because you’re about to learn the things you must know in order to reduce your cost while improving coverage.
Discounts are great for lower rates
The cost of insuring your cars can be expensive, but companies offer discounts that can drop the cost substantially. Some trigger automatically at the time of purchase, but lesser-known reductions have to be inquired about in order for you to get them.
- Employee of Federal Government – Simply working for the federal government may qualify you for a discount with certain companies.
- Save with a New Car – Adding a new car to your policy is cheaper compared to insuring an older model.
- Discounts for Safe Drivers – Safe drivers can pay as much as 50% less than their less cautious counterparts.
- Lower Rates for Military – Having a deployed family member may qualify for rate reductions.
- Low Mileage – Keeping the miles down can qualify you for lower rates on the low mileage vehicles.
As a disclaimer on discounts, most of the big mark downs will not be given to the entire policy premium. A few only apply to the cost of specific coverages such as liability, collision or medical payments. So even though they make it sound like you could get a free auto insurance policy, you won’t be that lucky. Any qualifying discounts will reduce the cost of coverage.
To see a list of companies offering auto insurance discounts in Hartford, follow this link.
Auto Insurance Comparison Rates in Hartford, South Dakota
The are a couple different ways to get quotes and find the best price. One of the best ways to find the lowest rates consists of shopping online. This can be done in just a few minutes using one of these methods.
- One of the simplest ways to find the lowest comparison rates is to use a rate comparison form (click to open form in new window). This easy form saves time by eliminating a different quote to each individual auto insurance company. In just a few minutes this one form will get you rate comparisons instantly.
- A slightly less efficient method to obtain and compare quotes online requires a visit to each individual company website to complete their respective quote request forms. For instance, we’ll pretend you want rates from State Farm, Allstate and Progressive. To get each rate you have to go to every website to enter your coverage information, which is why the first method is more popular. For a list of links to companies insuring cars in Hartford, click here.
It’s up to you how you get prices quotes, just double check that you are using identical coverage information for every quote you compare. If each company quotes mixed coverages then you won’t be able to make a fair comparison in Hartford. Quoting even small variations in coverages can result in a big premium difference. And when comparing auto insurance rates, know that quoting more gives you a better chance of getting the best price.
You may need specialized coverage
When choosing the right insurance coverage for your vehicles, there really is no best way to insure your cars. Everyone’s situation is unique and your policy should reflect that. These are some specific questions can help discover whether you will benefit from professional help.
- Does my insurance cover damage caused when ticketed for reckless driving?
- What can I do if my company denied a claim?
- When should I not file a claim?
- Will my vehicle be repaired with OEM or aftermarket parts?
- Do I need rental car coverage?
- When should my teen driver be added to my policy?
- What is high-risk coverage and where do I buy it?
- Should I buy more coverage than the required South Dakota minimum liability coverage?
- Am I covered if I wreck a rental car?
- Is my custom paint covered by insurance?
If it’s difficult to answer those questions then you might want to talk to an insurance agent. If you want to speak to an agent in your area, complete this form or go to this page to view a list of companies.
Auto insurance coverages and their meanings
Learning about specific coverages of a auto insurance policy can help you determine appropriate coverage for your vehicles. Auto insurance terms can be confusing and nobody wants to actually read their policy. These are the usual coverages found on most auto insurance policies.
Medical payments coverage and PIP
Coverage for medical payments and/or PIP kick in for bills such as X-ray expenses, doctor visits, chiropractic care, prosthetic devices and pain medications. They are often utilized in addition to your health insurance program or if you are not covered by health insurance. It covers both the driver and occupants and will also cover getting struck while a pedestrian. PIP coverage is only offered in select states and gives slightly broader coverage than med pay
Collision insurance pays to fix your vehicle from damage caused by collision with a stationary object or other vehicle. You will need to pay your deductible then your collision coverage will kick in.
Collision coverage pays for claims like sideswiping another vehicle, driving through your garage door, colliding with another moving vehicle, hitting a mailbox and scraping a guard rail. Paying for collision coverage can be pricey, so consider removing coverage from vehicles that are older. Another option is to bump up the deductible to save money on collision insurance.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage
This gives you protection from other motorists when they do not carry enough liability coverage. It can pay for injuries to you and your family as well as damage to your vehicle.
Due to the fact that many South Dakota drivers only purchase the least amount of liability that is required (25/50/25 in South Dakota), their liability coverage can quickly be exhausted. That’s why carrying high Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage should not be overlooked. Frequently these coverages are set the same as your liablity limits.
This coverage covers damage caused by mother nature, theft, vandalism and other events. You need to pay your deductible first then your comprehensive coverage will pay.
Comprehensive coverage protects against claims such as a tree branch falling on your vehicle, theft, damage from a tornado or hurricane, vandalism and rock chips in glass. The maximum amount your auto insurance company will pay is the cash value of the vehicle, so if the vehicle is not worth much consider removing comprehensive coverage.
This will cover damage that occurs to other’s property or people in an accident. It protects you from legal claims by others, and does not provide coverage for damage sustained by your vehicle in an accident.
It consists of three limits, per person bodily injury, per accident bodily injury, and a property damage limit. As an example, you may have liability limits of 100/300/100 which means a $100,000 limit per person for injuries, a total of $300,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and a total limit of $100,000 for damage to vehicles and property. Alternatively, you may have one number which is a combined single limit which provides one coverage limit without having the split limit caps.
Liability coverage protects against things like structural damage, medical services, bail bonds, medical expenses and emergency aid. The amount of liability coverage you purchase is up to you, but it’s cheap coverage so purchase higher limits if possible. South Dakota requires drivers to carry at least 25,000/50,000/25,000 but you should think about purchasing better liability coverage.
More quotes mean more savings
While you’re price shopping online, it’s a bad idea to buy less coverage just to save a little money. There are a lot of situations where someone sacrificed uninsured motorist or liability limits and learned later that the small savings ended up costing them much more. The aim is to get the best coverage possible at an affordable rate while still protecting your assets.
We just presented some good ideas how to get a better price on auto insurance. The key thing to remember is the more rate quotes you have, the better your chances of lowering your rates. You may even find the most savings is with the least-expected company. Regional companies may only write in your state and offer lower rates than their larger competitors like State Farm or Progressive.
Discount auto insurance can be purchased on the web and with local Hartford insurance agents, so you should compare both to get a complete price analysis. Some auto insurance companies do not offer online quoting and many times these small, regional companies only sell through independent insurance agents.