Price shopping your Bakersfield car insurance can be challenging for consumers not familiar with buying insurance online. Consumers have so many companies to choose from that it can be a challenge to compare prices in Bakersfield.
It’s a good habit to do rate comparisons periodically due to the fact that insurance rates tend to go up over time. Even if you think you had the lowest price a couple years back you will most likely find a better rate today. Starting right now, forget anything you know (or think you know) about car insurance because we’re going to show you how to use online quotes to lower your annual insurance bill.
Car Insurance Prices in Bakersfield
Shopping for lower car insurance rates is a ton of work if you don’t understand the most efficient way to do it. You could waste a few hours talking to agents in Bakersfield, or you could use online quoting to accomplish the same thing much quicker.
Most of the best insurance companies participate in a marketplace that allows shoppers to submit one quote, and each participating company then gives them pricing determined by their information. This prevents consumers from doing quotation requests to every company.
To find out how much you’re overpaying now click to open in new window.
The one disadvantage to pricing coverage this way is you are unable to specify which providers to get pricing from. So if you want to select specific insurance companies for rate comparison, we put together a list of companies who write car insurance in California. Click here for list of insurance companies in California.
It’s up to you how you get prices quotes, just make darn sure you compare apples-to-apples coverages with every price quote. If your comparisons have different limits and deductibles on each one it will be very difficult to make a fair comparison in Bakersfield.
Do drivers who switch really save $386 a year?
California drivers constantly see and hear ads for car insurance savings from the likes of State Farm and Allstate. They all have a common claim about savings if you move your coverage to them.
How does each company say the same thing? It’s all in the numbers.
All companies have a certain “appetite” for the driver that makes them money. An example of a profitable customer could be over the age of 50, has no prior claims, and has a high credit rating. A propective insured who meets those qualifications will qualify for the lowest rates and therefore will save when they switch companies.
Consumers who don’t meet the requirements must pay higher premiums and ends up with the customer not buying. The ads state “drivers who switch” not “everybody who quotes” save that much. That is how companies can truthfully advertise the way they do.
This illustrates why it’s extremely important to quote coverage with many companies. You cannot predict which insurance companies will provide you with the cheapest rates.
Rate influencing factors
An important part of buying insurance is that you know the different types of things that play a part in calculating the rates you pay for car insurance. Having a good understanding of what impacts premium levels enables informed choices that could result in much lower annual insurance costs.
- More than one policy can earn a discount – Most car insurance companies give discounts to insureds who carry more than one policy, otherwise known as a multi-policy discount. Even with this discount, you still need to compare other company rates to make sure you are getting the best deal.
- Don’t buy coverages you don’t need – There are quite a few extra coverages that can waste your money on your policy. Insurance for vanishing deductibles, accident forgiveness and additional equipment coverage may be wasting your money. They may seem like a good idea initially, but now you might not need them so eliminate the coverages to reduce your premium.
- High deductibles save money – Your deductibles represent how much money you are required to spend out-of-pocket before your car insurance pays a claim. Physical damage coverage, otherwise known as comp (or other than collision) and collision, protects your car from damage. Some examples of claims that would be covered could be colliding with a building, vandalism, and burglary. The more money the insured has to pay upfront, the less your car insurance will be.
- Battle of the sexes – The statistics show that men are more aggressive behind the wheel. That doesn’t necessarily mean that men are worse drivers. Men and women have accidents at a similar rate, but men cause more damage. Men also receive more costly citations such as DWI and reckless driving. Male drivers age 16 to 19 are the most expensive to insure and thus pay the highest rates.
- Being married is a good thing – Getting married can get you a discount on your car insurance policy. Marriage is viewed as being more mature and responsible and it’s statistically proven that married couples file fewer claims.
- Liability coverage protects you – Your policy’s liability coverage will protect you if ever a court rules you are at fault for personal injury or accident damage. It will provide you with a defense in court which can be incredibly expensive. This coverage is very inexpensive as compared to coverage for physical damage, so do not skimp.
- Type of vehicle determines base rates – The make and model of the car you own makes a huge difference in how high your rates are. The lowest rates are usually for small economy passenger cars, but there are many factors that impact the final cost.
Don’t overlook these discounts
Properly insuring your vehicles can get expensive, but there could be available discounts that you may not even be aware of. A few discounts will automatically apply at the time you complete a quote, but a few must be manually applied in order for you to get them. If they aren’t giving you every credit you qualify for, you are paying more than you should be.
- Memberships – Affiliation with a qualifying organization could qualify you for a break on car insurance.
- Seat Belts Save – Buckling up and requiring all passengers to use their safety belts can save up to 15% on the medical payments or PIP coverage costs.
- Life Insurance – Larger companies have a discount if you purchase life insurance from them.
- Save over 55 – If you qualify as a senior citizen, you may receive better car insurance rates.
- Accident Forgiveness – Certain companies will forgive one accident without raising rates as long as you don’t have any claims for a particular time prior to the accident.
- Pay Upfront and Save – By paying your policy upfront instead of making monthly payments you can actually save on your bill.
Drivers should understand that some of the credits will not apply to the entire policy premium. Most cut the price of certain insurance coverages like liability, collision or medical payments. So even though they make it sound like you would end up receiving a 100% discount, it doesn’t quite work that way. Any qualifying discounts will bring down your premiums.
For a list of insurance companies with the best car insurance discounts in California, click here.
Is my situation unique?
When choosing the right insurance coverage for your vehicles, there isn’t really a “best” method to buy coverage. Coverage needs to be tailored to your specific needs.
These are some specific questions may help highlight if your situation could use an agent’s help.
- Does medical payments coverage apply to all occupants?
- Do no-fault laws apply in California?
- What is the difference between comprehensive and collision coverage?
- Does my liability insurance cover pulling a trailer or camper?
- How do I file an SR-22 for a DUI in California?
- What happens if I owe more than my vehicle is worth?
- Which companies will insure high-risk drivers?
- How much liability coverage do I need in California?
If it’s difficult to answer those questions but you think they might apply to your situation, you might consider talking to a licensed agent. To find an agent in your area, complete this form. It is quick, free and may give you better protection.
Best coverage at the best price
When shopping online for car insurance, do not skimp on critical coverages to save a buck or two. In many cases, someone dropped physical damage coverage and found out when filing a claim that it was a big mistake. The aim is to buy enough coverage at the best price while not skimping on critical coverages.
Drivers switch companies for a variety of reasons including delays in paying claims, unfair underwriting practices, questionable increases in premium or high prices. Regardless of your reason, switching companies is not as hard as you think.
We just showed you some good ideas how you can save on car insurance. The key concept to understand is the more price quotes you have, the better your comparison will be. You may even find the best prices are with a smaller regional carrier.
Much more information about car insurance in California is located on the California Department of Insurance website located here. Visitors are able to view a list of available companies, find disaster information, find out industry alerts, and read industry bulletins.