Are you burned out from paying out the nose to keep your car insured? You are in the same boat as most other people in Minnesota. Insurance companies such as State Farm, Geico and Farmers Insurance increase brand awareness with fancy advertisements and it is difficult to sift through the bull and find the best price available.
If you are paying for car insurance now, you will most likely be able to lower your premiums substantially using these tips. Choosing the best insurance company for you in Brainerd is not that difficult. Although Minnesota consumers do need to understand the methods companies use to price insurance differently and apply this information to your search.
Lower rates by qualifying for discounts
Car insurance is easily one of your largest bills, but there could be significant discounts that can help lower your rates. Some discounts will apply at the time you complete a quote, but occassionally some discounts must be specially asked for in order for you to get them.
- Theft Deterent System – Vehicles that have factory alarm systems and tracking devices help deter theft and therefore earn up to a 10% discount.
- Home Ownership Discount – Just owning your own home can save a few bucks because maintaining a house means you have a higher level of financial diligence.
- Discount for Passive Restraints – Options like air bags or motorized seat belts can qualify for discounts of more than 20%.
- Multi-policy Discount – If you can combine your auto and home policy with the same company you will save at least 10% off all policies.
- Service Members Pay Less – Having a deployed family member could trigger a small discount.
- Distant Student Discount – Children who live away from home to go to college and do not take a car to college may be insured at a cheaper rate.
- Accident Waiver – but companies like Geico, Allstate and Liberty Mutual may permit one accident before hitting you with a surcharge if you have no claims for a specific time period.
- ABS and Traction Control Discounts – Cars and trucks with ABS braking systems or traction control are much safer to drive and the ABS can save up to 10%.
It’s important to understand that some credits don’t apply to the entire cost. Some only reduce the cost of specific coverages such as medical payments or collision. So even though it sounds like adding up those discounts means a free policy, you won’t be that lucky.
If you would like to view insurers with the best car insurance discounts in Brainerd, click here.
All the larger car insurance companies like Progressive, Geico, Allstate and State Farm give pricing directly from their websites. Getting quotes is possible for anyone as you just type in your personal and coverage information into a form. After the form is submitted, the system obtains your driving record and credit report and returns a price quote based on these and other factors. Quoting online makes comparing rates easy, but having to visit many different websites and enter the same data into a form is monotonous and tiresome. But it is imperative to compare as many rates as possible in order to get better prices.
Compare rates the easy way
The easiest way to find cheaper rates is to use a quote form to get prices from a bunch of companies at once. The form is fast, reduces the work, and makes quoting online much more efficient. Once the form is submitted, your coverage is rated and you can choose any one of the pricing results. If the quotes result in lower rates, you simply finish the application and buy the new coverage. The entire process just takes a couple of minutes and can result in significant savings.
To quickly get comparison pricing now, click here and enter your vehicle and coverage information. If you have a policy now, it’s recommended you input as close as possible to your current policy. Doing this guarantees you will be getting an apples-to-apples comparison for similar coverage.
Informed consumers can cut their rates
Multiple criteria are used in the calculation when you get your auto insurance bill. Some are pretty understandable such as your driving history, although others are less apparent such as whether you are married or how safe your car is.
The following are most of the major factors that factor into your rates.
- Higher physical damage deductibles save money – Physical damage protection, otherwise known as comp (or other than collision) and collision, is used to repair damage to your vehicle. Examples of some claims that would be covered would be colliding with a building, hitting a deer, and burglary. Comp and collision deductibles are the amount of money you are willing to pay before your car insurance pays a claim. The more expense you pay before a claim is paid (deductible), the lower your rates will be.
- Never let your car insurance policy lapse – Allowing your coverage to lapse can be a quick way to drive up your policy premiums. Not only will you pay higher rates, getting caught without coverage will get you fines or a revoked license. You could then be forced to file a SR-22 with the Minnesota department of motor vehicles.
- Less chance of injury means lower premiums – Cars with five star safety ratings can get you lower premiums. Vehicles engineered for safety protect occupants better and fewer serious injuries means less claims paid and more competitive rates for policyholders.
- Extra policy coverages may not be needed – There are many extra coverages that sound like a good idea at the time on your car insurance policy. Add-on coverages like roadside assistance, high-cost glass coverage, and extra life insurance coverage may be costing you every month. The coverages may be enticing when you first buy your policy, but if you’ve never needed them in the past get rid of them and save.
- Low credit rating equals high premiums – Credit rating will be a significant factor in determining your rates. Drivers who have excellent credit tend to file fewer claims and have better driving records than drivers with worse credit. So if your credit rating is not that good, you may save money insuring your vehicle by taking the time to improve your credit score.
- Your location is a factor – Choosing to live in small towns and rural areas has it’s advantages when buying car insurance. Residents of big cities regularly have much more traffic and more time behind the wheel. Fewer people translates into fewer accident claims in addition to fewer liability claims.
- Type of car, truck or SUV determines base costs – The performance level of the vehicle you need to insure makes a significant difference in your premium level. The cheapest rates are usually for smaller low performance passenger models, but your final cost has many other factors.
When to get professional advice
When choosing the right insurance coverage for your personal vehicles, there isn’t really a perfect coverage plan. Each situation is unique so your insurance should reflect that For example, these questions may help you determine if you would benefit from an agent’s advice.
- Is a new car covered when I drive it off the dealer lot?
- Why does it cost so much to insure a teen driver in Brainerd?
- Why am I be forced to buy a membership to get insurance from some companies?
- Is rental equipment covered for theft or damage?
- Do I have coverage for damage caused while driving under the influence?
- Why am I required to get a high-risk car insurance policy?
- Am I covered when pulling a rental trailer?
- Is my business laptop covered if it gets stolen from my vehicle?
- Do I need PIP (personal injury protection) coverage in Minnesota?
If it’s difficult to answer those questions, then you may want to think about talking to an insurance agent. If you don’t have a local agent, take a second and complete this form or go to this page to view a list of companies.
Insurance agents near you
A small number of people would prefer to buy from a licensed agent. One of the best bonuses of comparing rate quotes online is that you can obtain the best rates and still buy from a local agent.
After completing this form (opens in new window), your coverage information is submitted to companies in Brainerd that give free quotes for your coverage. It’s much easier because you don’t need to find an agent since rate quotes are delivered straight to your inbox. You can find lower rates and work with a local agent. If you wish to compare prices for a specific company, you can always jump over to their website and give them your coverage information.
Finding a good insurer needs to be determined by more than just the price. You should also get answers to these questions.
- Do they offer claims assistance after hours?
- How are claims handled?
- Are all drivers listed on the coverage quote?
- If you are a high risk driver, do they have special markets for your coverage?
- Does the company use OEM repair parts?
- Who are their largest clients?
If you need help to select from a list of insurance agencies near you, please visit this directory of Brainerd car insurance providers.
If you feel you receive positive responses to any questions you have and a low price estimate, it’s possible that you found an insurance company that can service your policy.
Will you really save $464 on car insurance?
Popular car insurance providers such as Progressive, Geico, Allstate and State Farm constantly bombard you with ads on TV and radio. All the ads have a common claim about savings if you just switch to them. How do they all offer you a better deal? Just pay attention to how they say it.
Car insurance companies quote their best rates for the type of customer that earns them the most money. A good example of a profitable customer might be described as over the age of 45, carries high limits, and insures a new vehicle. A customer who matches that profile may get the lowest prices in Brainerd as well as save a lot of money.
People who cannot meet this stringent profile must pay higher premiums and this can result in the prospect going elsewhere. If you pay attention, the ads say “drivers who switch” but not “everyone who gets a quote” save money. This is how insurance companies can confidently advertise the way they do. That is why you really should compare rate quotes every year. Because you never know which insurance companies will give you lower premium rates than your current company.
Quote more, save more
The cheapest car insurance is definitely available on the web in addition to many Brainerd insurance agents, so you should compare both so you have a total pricing picture. Some insurance providers may not have price quotes online and these smaller providers only sell coverage through local independent agencies.
We’ve covered some good ideas how you can save on car insurance. The most important thing to understand is the more quotes you get, the more likely it is that you will get a better rate. You may be surprised to find that the best price on car insurance is with a company that doesn’t do a lot of advertising. Some small companies may often insure only within specific states and give getter rates as compared to the big name companies such as State Farm or Progressive.
When you , never buy poor coverage just to save money. There have been many cases where someone sacrificed collision coverage only to regret at claim time that saving that couple of dollars actually costed them tens of thousands. The proper strategy is to buy a smart amount of coverage at the best price while still protecting your assets.
For more information
More tips and info about car insurance can be found at the Minnesota Department of Commerce website. Minnesota drivers can learn about insurance regulations, read industry bulletins, report car insurance fraud, and download brochures.