Car Insurance in Sterling Heights, MI – 5 Tricks to Lower Rates

Nobody I know likes paying for car insurance, in particular when the cost is way too high. Lots of insurance companies contend for your hard-earned dollar, and because of this it can be hard to compare insurers and get the best coverage at the best price available.

If you are insured now or need new coverage, you can use these techniques to shop for the lowest rates while maximizing coverage. Choosing the best insurance company for you in Sterling Heights is not rocket science. Michigan vehicle owners just need to understand the proper way to find the lowest price online.

Compare Quotes for Sterling Heights Car Insurance

Lowering your car insurance rates doesn’t have to be difficult. All you need to do is invest a few minutes comparing rates online from several insurance companies. It is quite easy and can be accomplished using a couple different methods.

  1. The recommended way to find the lowest comparison rates would be an industry-wide quote request form (click to open form in new window). This method keeps you from doing multiple quote forms for each company. One form will get you price quotes from all major companies.
  2. A more time consuming way to shop for car insurance online consists of visiting each company website and complete a new quote form. For examples sake, we’ll pretend you want to compare rates from Nationwide, 21st Century and GMAC. To get each rate you have to go to every website and enter your policy data, which is why most consumers use the first method. For a list of links to companies insuring cars in Sterling Heights, click here.
  3. The most time-consuming way of comparing rate quotes is driving around to and from local Sterling Heights insurance agencies. The internet can eliminate the need for a local agent unless you have a need for the personal advice only provided by licensed Sterling Heights agents. It is possible to obtain prices from the web and still use a local agent and we’ll cover that in a bit.

However you get your quotes, compare exactly the same coverages and limits with each company. If your comparisons have different limits and deductibles on each one you will not be able to decipher which rate is best in Sterling Heights.

Discounts can save BIG

Insurance can be prohibitively expensive, buy you may qualify for discounts to cut the cost considerably. Larger premium reductions will be automatically applied at the time you complete a quote, but a few must be specifically requested prior to getting the savings. If you’re not getting every credit you deserve, you’re paying more than you need to.

  • Multiple Policy Discount – If you have multiple policies with one company you may earn at least 10% off all policies.
  • No Charge for an Accident – Some insurance companies will forgive one accident before hitting you with a surcharge if you are claim-free prior to the accident.
  • Organization Discounts – Being a member of a professional or civic organization could qualify you for a break on your policy.
  • Lower Rates for Military – Being deployed with a military unit can result in better rates.
  • Accident Free – Drivers who don’t have accidents can earn big discounts as compared to accident-prone drivers.

A little note about advertised discounts, many deductions do not apply to your bottom line cost. The majority will only reduce individual premiums such as comprehensive or collision. So when it seems like having all the discounts means you get insurance for free, car insurance companies aren’t that generous. Any amount of discount will cut the cost of coverage.

But don’t I need an insurance agent?

A small number of people would prefer to buy from a licensed agent and there is nothing wrong with that. Educated insurance agents can answer important questions and give you peace of mind. The best thing about price shopping on the web is you can get the lowest rates and still have an agent to talk to. Supporting small agencies is important particularly in Sterling Heights.

To make it easy to find an agent, after completing this simple form, your insurance coverage information is sent to companies in Sterling Heights who will return price quotes to get your business. There is no reason to leave your computer since price quotes are sent straight to your inbox. How cool is that?!

How to choose the best car insurance agent in Sterling Heights

When researching a good insurance agency, there are two types of agencies that differ in how they can insure your vehicles. Agents are either independent (non-captive) or captive. Either one can properly insure your vehicles, but it’s important to know how they are different because it can influence buying decisions.

Independent Agents (or Brokers)

These agents are not required to write business for one company but instead can place your coverage amongst many companies enabling the ability to shop coverage around. To move your coverage to a new company, they simply move the coverage in-house and that require little work on your part.

When shopping rates, we recommend you contact multiple independent agents to ensure the widest selection of prices.

The following is a list of independent agencies in Sterling Heights who can help you get price quotes.Car insurance in Sterling Heights MI

Nationwide Insurance – 5580 Gatewood Dr # 112 – Sterling Heights, MI 48310 – (586) 978-2959
John Ivkov Agency – 42770 Van Dyke Ave # 1 – Sterling Heights, MI 48314 – (586) 731-4460
Standard Insurance Co – 2167 15 Mile Rd # 101 – Sterling Heights, MI 48310 – (734) 981-7790
Jane Walsh Agency – 38916 Dequindre Rd – Sterling Heights, MI 48310 – (586) 977-9250
Terrien Agency – 4147 Metropolitan Pkwy # 104 – Sterling Heights, MI 48310 – (586) 978-2810

Captive Insurance Agents

Captive agents are contracted to one company such as State Farm, AAA and Liberty Mutual. These agents are not able to shop your coverage around so they have no alternatives for high prices. These agents receive extensive training in insurance sales which helps them compete with independent agents.

Shown below is a short list of captive insurance agencies in Sterling Heights that are able to give price quotes.

State Farm Insurance – 8617 15 Mile Rd # 1 – Sterling Heights, MI 48312 – (586) 979-1100
Allstate Insurance – 3719 15 Mile Rd – Sterling Heights, MI 48310 – (586) 977-2000
Liberty Mutual Insurance – 14460 Lakeside Cir # 110 – Sterling Heights, MI 48313 – (586) 532-7298
Farmers Insurance Group – 1999 15 Mile Rd – Sterling Heights, MI 48310 – (586) 977-7003

For a complete listing of captive agencies in Sterling Heights, click here to link.

Choosing a car insurance agent should depend on more than just a cheap price. Some important questions to ask are:

  • Do they carry Errors and Omissions coverage?
  • How are they compensated?
  • What will you get paid if your car is a total loss? How is that amount determined?
  • Is vehicle mileage a factor when determining depreciation for repairs?
  • Is working in the agency their full-time job?
  • Does the company allow you to choose your own collision repair facility?

After receiving acceptable answers to your questions and a good coverage price, you have narrowed it down to an insurance agency that can adequately provide car insurance.

Car insurance coverage considerations

Knowing the specifics of your car insurance policy can help you determine appropriate coverage at the best deductibles and correct limits. Policy terminology can be difficult to understand and even agents have difficulty translating policy wording. These are typical coverages available from car insurance companies.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) – This coverage gives you protection from other motorists when they are uninsured or don’t have enough coverage. Covered claims include medical payments for you and your occupants and damage to your vehicle.

Due to the fact that many Michigan drivers only purchase the least amount of liability that is required (Michigan limits are 20/40/10), their limits can quickly be used up. So UM/UIM coverage is important protection for you and your family. Normally these coverages are similar to your liability insurance amounts.

Collision – This will pay to fix damage to your vehicle caused by collision with another vehicle or an object, but not an animal. You will need to pay your deductible then your collision coverage will kick in.

Collision coverage protects against claims such as backing into a parked car, damaging your car on a curb and rolling your car. Collision coverage makes up a good portion of your premium, so consider removing coverage from lower value vehicles. Drivers also have the option to bump up the deductible to save money on collision insurance.

Med pay and Personal Injury Protection (PIP) – Medical payments and Personal Injury Protection insurance kick in for immediate expenses such as chiropractic care, hospital visits and ambulance fees. The coverages can be used to fill the gap from your health insurance policy or if you do not have health coverage. It covers both the driver and occupants and will also cover any family member struck as a pedestrian. PIP coverage is not universally available but can be used in place of medical payments coverage

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Liability – This provides protection from damage or injury you incur to other’s property or people by causing an accident. This coverage protects you from legal claims by others. It does not cover your injuries or vehicle damage.

Split limit liability has three limits of coverage: bodily injury for each person, bodily injury for the entire accident, and a limit for property damage. As an example, you may have liability limits of 25/50/25 which means $25,000 bodily injury coverage, a limit of $50,000 in injury protection per accident, and a total limit of $25,000 for damage to vehicles and property. Occasionally you may see a combined single limit or CSL that pays claims from the same limit without having the split limit caps.

Liability insurance covers claims like loss of income, legal defense fees and emergency aid. How much liability should you purchase? That is your choice, but it’s cheap coverage so purchase as much as you can afford. Michigan requires drivers to carry at least 20,000/40,000/10,000 but you should think about purchasing better liability coverage.

Comprehensive insurance – Comprehensive insurance pays for damage caused by mother nature, theft, vandalism and other events. You first must pay your deductible and then insurance will cover the rest of the damage.

Comprehensive insurance covers claims like damage from getting keyed, a tree branch falling on your vehicle and fire damage. The maximum amount a car insurance company will pay at claim time is the actual cash value, so if the vehicle’s value is low consider dropping full coverage.

More information can be found on the website for the Michigan Office of Financial and Insurance Regulation located here. Michigan drivers can read consumer alerts, read enforcement actions against agents and companies, and find a variety of consumer forms.

More comparisons equals lower rates

Low-cost car insurance can be purchased both online as well as from independent agents in Sterling Heights, and you need to price shop both to have the best chance of lowering rates. Some car insurance companies don’t offer you the ability to get quotes online and most of the time these small insurance companies sell through independent agents.

We covered a lot of ways to compare car insurance prices online. The most important thing to understand is the more providers you compare, the more likely it is that you will get a better rate. You may even find the biggest savings come from a lesser-known regional company. Regional companies may often insure only within specific states and give getter rates compared to the large companies like State Farm or Progressive.