Are you tired of robbing Peter to pay Paul to pay car insurance each month? You are in the same boat as most other vehicle owners in Alabama. Insurance companies such as Allstate, Liberty Mutual and State Farm continually bombard you with advertising and consumers find it hard to avoid their marketing magic and take the time to shop coverage around.
Learn how to buy car insurance for less
Many different elements are used in the calculation when you get a price on insurance. Some are obvious such as traffic violations, but other criteria are not as apparent like your continuous coverage or how financially stable you are.
The following are a partial list of the pieces used by insurance companies to determine rates.
- Single vs. married – Being married may cut your premiums on car insurance. Having a significant other means you’re less irresponsible and it’s proven that married drivers tend to have fewer serious accidents.
- How your age affects prices – Mature drivers have been proven to be more responsible, tend to file fewer claims , and usually have better credit.Young drivers have been known to be less responsible when driving so car insurance rates are higher.
- Save money by raising physical damage deductibles – Comp and collision deductibles define the amount you are required to spend if you file a covered claim. Physical damage protection, commonly called comprehensive (or other-than-collision) and collision coverage, protects your car from damage. Examples of covered claims would be a windshield broken by a bird, animal collisions, and having a roll-over accident. The more money you have to pay, the less money you will pay for car insurance.
- Pay more by driving carelessly – Whether or not you get tickets has a huge affect on how much you pay. Attentive drivers have lower premiums compared to drivers with tickets. Just one speeding ticket or other violation can boost insurance rates forty percent or more. People who have dangerous citations such as DWI, reckless driving or hit and run convictions might be required by their state to submit a SR-22 form to the state department of motor vehicles in order to prevent a license revocation.
- Additional coverages that may be costing you – Policies have extra bells and whistles that you can buy when buying car insurance. Add-on coverages like roadside assistance, towing coverage, and extra life insurance coverage are probably not needed. The coverages may be enticing when you first buy your policy, but if you’ve never needed them in the past remove them from your policy.
- Vehicles with better crash test results lower car insurance rates – Cars with high safety ratings cost less to insure. Vehicles engineered for safety reduce the chance of injuries and any reduction in injury severity means your insurance company pays less and more competitive rates for policyholders. If your car, truck, or SUV has at least an “acceptable” rating on the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety website you may be receiving a better rate.
- Higher premiums for specific occupations – Did you know your career choice can influence rates? Careers like military personnelair traffic controllers and emergency personnel tend to have higher premium rates in part from intense work situations and lots of time spent away from family. Conversely, jobs like professors, engineers and retirees pay the least.
How to lower your car insurance cost in Sheffield
Finding a lower price on insurance is actually easier than you may think. Just spend a few minutes on the computer to compare online with multiple companies. Price comparisons can be done in just a few minutes using one of these methods.
- The easiest and least time consuming way to get quotes for comparison is an all-inclusive rate comparison click to view form in new window. This form keeps you from doing a different quote for each price estimate. Completing one form compares rates direct from many companies.
- Another way to get comparison quotes is going to the website for each individual company to complete their respective quote request forms. For example, let’s say you want rates from USAA, Farmers and Progressive. You would be required to visit each site and punch in your information repeatedly, which is why the first method is quicker.
For a list of links to companies insuring cars in Sheffield, click here.
How you compare quotes is your choice, just make darn sure you compare exactly the same deductibles and coverage limits for every company. If your comparisons have mixed coverages it’s impossible to decipher which rate is best in Sheffield.
Car insurance companies offer money-saving discounts
Buying car insurance is not cheap, but you can get discounts that many people don’t even know exist. Certain discounts will be triggered automatically at the time of purchase, but some must be specifically requested before you will receive the discount. If you do not check that you are getting every discount available, you may be paying too high a price.
- Student Discounts – Excelling in school can earn a discount of 20% or more. Most companies allow this discount up to age 25.
- Driver’s Education for Students – Require your teen driver to sucessfully take a driver\s education course in high school.
- Accident Free – Insureds who avoid accidents and claims can save substantially compared to policyholders that have many claims.
- Discount for Swiching Early – Some larger companies give discounts for renewing your policy before your current expiration date. It could save around 10% when you .
- Payment Method – By making one initial payment as opposed to paying monthly you could save up to 5%.
- Senior Citizens – Drivers over the age of 55 may qualify for a slight reduction on a .
- Use Seat Belts – Drivers who require all occupants to fasten their seat belts can save up to 10 percent (depending on the company) on the medical payments or PIP coverage costs.
You should keep in mind that most discounts do not apply to the overall cost of the policy. A few only apply to individual premiums such as comprehensive or collision. Despite the appearance that you can get free auto insurance, companies wouldn’t make money that way. But all discounts will bring down your policy premiums.
Companies that may include some of the above discounts possibly include:
When comparing rates, check with each insurance company which discounts you qualify for. Some discounts may not be available in Sheffield. For a list of insurance companies who offer online car insurance quotes in Alabama, click this link.
Do I just need basic coverages?
When it comes to choosing coverage, there really is not a cookie cutter policy. Every situation is different so this has to be addressed. Here are some questions about coverages that might point out if your insurance needs might need professional guidance.
- Does coverage extend to a rental car in a foreign country?
- Will my vehicle be repaired with OEM or aftermarket parts?
- Do I need added coverage for expensive stereo equipment?
- Should I rate my vehicle as pleasure use or commute?
- What are the best liability limits?
- Do I pay less if my vehicle is kept in my garage?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions then you might want to talk to an insurance agent. To find lower rates from a local agent, complete this form or go to this page to view a list of companies. It’s fast, free and can provide invaluable advice.
More detailed Alabama car insurance information is located at the Alabama Department of Insurance website. Visitors are able to download brochures, find out which companies have the most complaints, and view agent and company licensing information.
Cheaper coverage is out there
In this article, we covered a lot of ways to get a better price on car insurance. The key concept to understand is the more price quotes you have, the higher the chance of saving money. Consumers could even find that the lowest prices come from an unexpected company. Some small companies often have lower rates on specific markets than the large multi-state companies such as Geico and State Farm.
Lower-priced car insurance can be sourced from both online companies as well as from insurance agents, and you should be comparing both to have the best selection. A few companies may not provide internet price quotes and these regional insurance providers prefer to sell through independent insurance agencies.
As you restructure your insurance plan, it’s not a good idea to sacrifice coverage to reduce premiums. In many instances, someone dropped liability coverage limits and found out when filing a claim that it was a big error on their part. The aim is to get the best coverage possible for the lowest cost while not skimping on critical coverages.