No sane person looks forward to paying for auto insurance, in particular when they could find better prices if they shop around. With so many auto insurance companies to choose from, it can be hard to find a more affordable insurance company.
It’s important to compare premium rates before your next renewal due to the fact that insurance prices trend upward over time. If you had the best deal on your last policy you may be paying too much now. Forget anything you know (or think you know) about auto insurance because it’s time to teach you the tricks you need to know to properly buy coverages and cut your premium.
Auto insurance policy discounts you can’t miss
Auto insurance is not an enjoyable expense, but there may be some discounts that can drop the cost substantially. A few discounts will be applied when you quote, but some discounts are required to be manually applied in order for you to get them. If you’re not getting every credit available, you are not getting the best rate possible.
- Distant College Student Discount – Older children who live away from home to go to college and do not have a car may be insured at a cheaper rate.
- Defensive Driver – Passing a course in defensive driver can save you 5% or more and make you a better driver.
- Discount for Multiple Policies – If you can combine your home and auto policy with one company you may save approximately 10% to 15%.
- Telematics Data – Insureds that choose to allow driving data collection to scrutinize driving habits by using a telematics device like Allstate’s Drivewise may get a rate reduction as long as they are good drivers.
- Good Student Discount – Excelling in school can save 20 to 25%. Most companies allow this discount up to age 25.
- Discount for Low Mileage – Keeping the miles down could qualify for lower premium rates due to less chance of an accident.
As a sidenote, many deductions do not apply to the entire policy premium. Most only cut the cost of specific coverages such as comp or med pay. Despite the fact that it seems like it’s possible to get free car insurance, it doesn’t quite work that way.
If you would like to see a list of auto insurance companies with discount rates in Ferndale, click here.
How to know if you need help
When buying the right insurance coverage, there is no best way to insure your cars. Every situation is different and your policy should reflect that. Here are some questions about coverages that might help in determining whether your personal situation might need an agent’s assistance.
- Is my business laptop covered if it gets stolen from my vehicle?
- Am I covered when driving on a suspended license?
- What is covered by UM/UIM coverage?
- Do I need higher deductibles?
- Where can I get insurance after a DUI in Washington?
- Am I getting all the discounts available?
- Am I covered if I wreck a rental car?
- When should my teen driver be added to my policy?
- Can I pay claims out-of-pocket if I buy high deductibles?
- Are split liability limits better than a combined single limit?
If you’re not sure about those questions but you think they might apply to your situation, you might consider talking to an agent. If you want to speak to an agent in your area, fill out this quick form or click here for a list of auto insurance companies in your area. It’s fast, doesn’t cost anything and you can get the answers you need.
Do I need a local insurance agent?
Many people just want to buy from a local agent and that is just fine! Experienced insurance agents can help you build your policy and help in the event of a claim. The best thing about comparing rates online is that drivers can save money and get the lowest rates but also keep your business local.
To find an agent, once you fill out this quick form, your information is emailed to companies in Ferndale who will give competitive quotes to get your business. You won’t need to drive around due to the fact that quote results will go to the email address you provide. If you wish to get a comparison quote for a specific company, you can always go to their quote page and fill out their quote form.
Choosing the best provider shouldn’t rely on just a cheap price quote. The questions below may impact your decision as well.
- Are there any discounts for paying up front?
- Do they offer claims assistance after hours?
- Is the agency active in community causes in Ferndale?
- Do you need full coverage on every vehicle?
- What company holds the largest book of business for them?
- Will they make sure you get an adequate claim settlement?
- How long has their agency been in business in Ferndale?
If you prefer to buy auto insurance from a local Ferndale insurance agency, it’s important to understand the different agency structures and how they operate. Insurance agencies in Ferndale are either captive or independent. Both types can sell and service auto insurance coverage, but it’s worth learning the difference in how they write coverage since it could factor into your selection of an agent.
Captive Insurance Agencies
Agents of this type have only one company to place business with and some examples include Allstate, State Farm and Farm Bureau. They are unable to place coverage with different providers so you need to shop around if the rates are high. Captives are usually well trained on sales techniques and that allows them to sell at a higher price point.
Independent Insurance Agents
Agents that elect to be independent are appointed with more than one company and that enables them to quote your coverage with a variety of different insurance companies depending on which coverage is best. If they find a cheaper price, your policy is moved internally and you don’t have to find a new agent.
When shopping rates, you need to get insurance quotes from a couple of independent agencies to have the most options to choose from.
Once you have received answers to your satisfaction to all your questions and an acceptable price quote, you have narrowed it down to an insurance agency that is a good match to properly service your auto insurance policy.
Even more information can be found at the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner website. Visitors are able to report car insurance fraud, find disaster information, read state legal mandates and laws, and find out industry alerts.
When trying to cut insurance costs, you should never buy poor coverage just to save money. There have been many situations where someone sacrificed liability limits or collision coverage only to discover later that the few dollars in savings costed them thousands. The proper strategy is to buy a smart amount of coverage at the best price.
Cost effective auto insurance can be found online and with local Ferndale insurance agents, and you should compare rates from both to have the best rate selection. Some companies may not have online price quotes and usually these smaller providers prefer to sell through independent agents.