Did you fall for a flashy sales pitch and buy overpriced auto insurance? Believe me, there are lots of people in the same boat. Since consumers have many options when it comes to auto insurance, it can be hard to pick the cheapest insurance company.
Are you getting all your discounts?
Insuring your vehicles can cost a lot, but you may find discounts that you may not know about. Some discounts apply automatically when you quote, but less common discounts must be asked about before being credited. If you aren’t receiving every discount you deserve, you are paying more than you should be.
- Drivers Ed for Students – Have your child enroll in driver’s education if it’s offered in school.
- Own a Home – Owning a home in Gainesville may trigger a auto insurance policy discount because owning a home shows financial diligence.
- Anti-lock Brake Discount – Cars that have steering control and anti-lock brakes prevent accidents and qualify for as much as a 10% discount.
- Resident Student – Kids in college who are attending college and do not have a car may qualify for this discount.
- Bundle and Save – If you have multiple policies with the same company you will save up to 20% off your total premium.
As a disclaimer on discounts, some of the credits will not apply to the entire cost. Most cut the cost of specific coverages such as liability and collision coverage. So when it seems like you would end up receiving a 100% discount, it just doesn’t work that way. Any qualifying discounts will bring down your overall premium however.
To choose insurers with the best auto insurance discounts in Florida, follow this link.
Learn How to Buy Auto Insurance Cheaper
It’s important that you understand the different types of things that go into determining the rates you pay for auto insurance. Having a good understanding of what determines base rates helps enable you to make changes that could result in better auto insurance rates.
- Occupation reflects on rates – Occupations like real estate brokers, business owners and accountants have higher rates than average due to stressful work requirements and lengthy work days. On the flip side, professions such as farmers, athletes and the unemployed get better rates.
- Don’t sacrifice liability coverage – Liability insurance provides coverage if ever a jury decides you are liable for damages caused by your negligence. Liability insurance provides legal defense coverage up to the limits shown on your policy. This coverage is very inexpensive compared to physical damage coverage, so drivers should carry high limits.
- Credit scores impact auto insurance rates – Credit score is a huge factor in your rate calculation. If your credit score is lower than you’d like, you could save money insuring your by spending a little time repairing your credit. People with high credit ratings tend to be more responsible than those with poor credit.
- Too many auto insurance claims drive up costs – Car insurance companies in Florida give better rates to policyholders who file claims infrequently. If you file claims often, you can definitely plan on either higher rates or even cancellation. Your insurance policy is intended to be relied upon for the large, substantial claims.
- A lapse in coverage is a bad thing – Allowing your coverage to lapse is a fast way to trigger a rate increase. Not only will rates go up, getting caught without coverage might get you a hefty fine and possibly a revoked license.
- Mature drivers pay less – Mature drivers are more cautious drivers, tend to cause fewer accidents and receive fewer citations. Teenage drivers tend to be more careless in a vehicle and because of this, their auto insurance rates are much higher.
- High deductibles save money – Coverage for physical damage, also known as collision and other-than-collision, protects your car from damage. Some examples of claims that would be covered would be a windshield shattered by a rock, collision with an animal, and burglary. The deductibles are the amount of money you are willing to pay if you file a covered claim. The more money the insured has to pay upfront, the lower your rates will be.
- Marriage brings a discount – Getting married helps lower the price on your policy. Having a significant other is viewed as being more responsible it has been statistically shown that married drivers get in fewer accidents.
Tailor your coverage to you
When choosing the right insurance coverage for your vehicles, there isn’t really a “best” method to buy coverage. Your needs are not the same as everyone else’s and your policy should reflect that. These are some specific questions might help in determining whether or not you might need professional guidance.
- Do I get a pro-rated refund if I cancel my policy early?
- Should I rate my vehicle as pleasure use or commute?
- Are all vehicle passengers covered by medical payments coverage?
- Do I need to file an SR-22 for a DUI in Florida?
- Who is covered when they drive my vehicle?
- Should I drop comprehensive coverage on older vehicles?
- Is a new car covered when I drive it off the dealer lot?
- Does my insurance cover damage caused when ticketed for reckless driving?
- What happens if I owe more than my vehicle is worth?
- What is covered by UM/UIM coverage?
If you can’t answer these questions, you may need to chat with an insurance agent. To find lower rates from a local agent, take a second and complete this form or go to this page to view a list of companies. It is quick, free and can provide invaluable advice.
Additional resources for Florida consumers
Much more information about auto insurance in Florida is located on the website for the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation found here. Florida drivers can read enforcement actions against agents and companies, learn about insurance regulations, and discover disciplinary actions.
The following information may also be useful.
One last thing
When shopping online for auto insurance, it’s not a good idea to buy less coverage just to save a little money. There have been many cases where someone sacrificed uninsured motorist or liability limits and found out when filing a claim that the savings was not a smart move. Your focus should be to purchase a proper amount of coverage at an affordable rate, not the least amount of coverage.
Lower-priced auto insurance is definitely available online and also from your neighborhood Gainesville agents, and you need to price shop both in order to have the best chance of saving money. A few companies may not provide online quoting and many times these smaller companies only sell through independent insurance agents.
We just showed you a lot of tips how to get a better price on auto insurance. The key thing to remember is the more rate comparisons you have, the better your comparison will be. Drivers may discover the best prices are with a small mutual company. Regional companies may only write in your state and offer lower rates as compared to the big name companies such as Progressive or GEICO.