Shopping for cheap Sanford car insurance on the web can seem to be somewhat difficult for people who are new to online price comaprisons. Since there are so many insurers available, how can you effectively compare them all to find the lowest rates?
If you have car insurance now, you should be able to cut costs considerably using this strategy. This article will let you in on the best way to quote coverages and some tips to save money. But Maine car owners should learn how big insurance companies sell online and apply this information to your search.
Factors that affect insurance rates
It’s important that you understand the rating factors that help determine car insurance rates. Understanding what impacts premium levels empowers consumers to make smart changes that will entitle you to much lower annual insurance costs.
The following are a few of the “ingredients” used by your company to calculate prices.
- Being married is a good thing – Having a wife or husband actually saves money on your policy. Marriage means you’re more mature than a single person and it’s statistically proven that being married results in fewer claims.
- Extra coverages can waste money – There are many add-on coverages that you can get tricked into buying if you aren’t careful. Things like vanishing deductibles, accidental death and membership fees are examples of these. They may seem like a good idea when you first buy your policy, but your needs may have changed so remove them from your policy.
- Your location affects your rates – Residing in less populated areas is a positive aspect when talking about car insurance. Drivers in populated areas regularly have more traffic problems and a longer drive to work. Less people living in that area translates into fewer accidents as well as less vandalism and auto theft.
- Drive a safer car and pay less – Vehicles with good safety scores can get you lower premiums. Safer cars have better occupant injury protection and fewer injuries means less money paid by your insurance company and more competitive rates for policyholders.
Vehicle Insurance Comparison
When shopping for car insurance there are multiple ways of comparing rates from different in Sanfordinsurance companies. The recommended way to find the cheapest insurance rates is to get quotes online. This can be done in just a few minutes using one of these methods.
- The most efficient way to get quotes is an all-inclusive rate comparison (click to open form in new window). This method eliminates the need for multiple quote forms for each company you want a rate for. Filling out one form will get you rate comparisons from many national carriers.It’s the quickest way to get rates.
- A harder way to obtain and compare quotes online is going to each individual company website to request a price quote. For examples sake, we’ll pretend you want comparison quotes from Progressive, State Farm and Farmers. To find out each rate you need to spend time on each company’s site and enter your policy data, which is why most consumers use the first method. To view a list of companies in Sanford, click here.
- The most time-consuming way of comparing rate quotes is driving to different agent offices. The ability to buy insurance online has reduced the need for local agents unless you require the personal advice only provided by licensed agents. However, consumers can price shop online and still use a local agent.
It doesn’t matter which method you choose, just double check that you are using identical information for every quote you compare. If your comparisons have different limits and deductibles on each one it will be next to impossible to find the best deal in Sanford. Slightly different coverages may result in large price differences. And when price shopping your coverage, quoting more will improve the odds of getting the best offered rates.
The fine print in car insurance ads
Companies like State Farm and Allstate consistently run television and radio advertisements. All the ads make the same claim about savings if you change to their company. How can each company say the same thing?
All companies have a certain “appetite” for the driver they prefer to insure. For example, a desirable insured could be over the age of 50, has no prior claims, and has excellent credit. Any driver that hits that “sweet spot” gets the lowest rates and as a result will probably save when they switch companies.
Potential customers who don’t measure up to the “perfect” profile will be quoted a higher premium which leads to business not being written. Company advertisements say “customers who switch” not “everybody who quotes” save that much money. This is how companies can truthfully advertise the way they do.
This emphasizes why you need to get quotes from several different companies. It’s not possible to predict which car insurance company will have the lowest rates.
Don’t pay full price with these discounts
The price of auto insurance can be rather high, but there could be available discounts to help offset the cost. A few discounts will automatically apply when you get a quote, but a few must be manually applied prior to receiving the credit.
- Federal Government Employee – Employees or retirees of the government may qualify you for a discount with a few car insurance companies.
- Multiple Vehicles – Buying coverage for multiple vehicles on one policy can get a discount on all vehicles.
- Accident Waiver – A handful of insurance companies allow you one accident before hitting you with a surcharge as long as you don’t have any claims for a particular time prior to the accident.
- Payment Method – If you pay your bill all at once instead of making monthly payments you can actually save on your bill.
- Air Bag Discount – Vehicles equipped with air bags may earn rate discounts up to 30%.
- Discount for Life Insurance – Companies who offer life insurance give a discount if you purchase auto and life insurance together.
It’s important to note that many deductions do not apply to your bottom line cost. Some only reduce specific coverage prices like comprehensive or collision. So even though it sounds like you could get a free car insurance policy, you won’t be that lucky. Any qualifying discounts will help reduce your premiums.
To choose companies with the best car insurance discounts in Maine, click here.
Quote online but work with a neighborhood agent
A small number of people would prefer to talk to a local agent. The biggest benefit of getting online price quotes is you can get lower rates but also keep your business local. And providing support for small agencies is especially important in Sanford.
Upon completion of this form (opens in new window), the coverage information is submitted to participating agents in Sanford who will battle to get your business. There is no reason to even leave your home since price quotes are sent to the email address you provide. How cool is that?! You can find better rates without the usual hassles of price shopping.
Types of insurance agents
When searching for a reliable agent, there are a couple of different types of agents that you can select. Agents can either be captive or independent (non-captive).
These agents are not locked into one company so they have the ability to put coverage with lots of companies depending on which coverage is best. If your agent finds better pricing, the business is moved internally without you having to go to a different agency.
When comparison shopping, it’s recommended you include several independent insurance agents for maximum quote selection.Many can place coverage with smaller companies which can be an advantage.
Below are Sanford independent insurance agencies that can give you price quote information.
- Garnsey Brothers Insurance – 909 Main St # C – Sanford, ME 04073 – (207) 324-5000
- Batal Agency – 985 Main St – Sanford, ME 04073 – (207) 324-8326
- Batchelder Brothers Insurance – 851 Main St – Sanford, ME 04073 – (207) 324-2060
Captive Insurance Agents
Captive insurance agents can only place business with one company and examples are AAA, Allstate, State Farm, Farmers Insurance or Liberty Mutual. These agents are not able to compare other company’s rates so they have to upsell other benefits. These agents are trained well on their products and sales techniques and that can be a competitive advantage. Consumers frequently buy insurance from these agents primarily because of the prominence of the brand and solid financial strength.
Deciding on an auto insurance agent shouldn’t rely on just a low price. Some important questions to ask are:
- What insurance company do they write the most business with?
- Do they carry Errors and Omissions coverage?
- Which members of your family are coverage by the policy?
- Do they make recommendations based only on price?
- Does the agency support the community they serve?
After getting satisfactory answers to any questions you have in addition to an acceptable price estimate, it’s possible that you found an auto insurance agent that meets your needs to adequately provide car insurance.
Different people need different coverages
When it comes to buying coverage for your vehicles, there really is not a “best” method to buy coverage. Each situation is unique.
These are some specific questions may help you determine whether or not you might need professional guidance.
- Does coverage extend to a rental car in a foreign country?
- Does liability extend to a camper or trailer?
- When should I drop full coverage on my vehicle?
- Am I covered when driving someone else’s vehicle?
- Are my tools covered if they get stolen from my vehicle?
- Does medical payments coverage apply to all occupants?
If you’re not sure about those questions but one or more may apply to you, you might consider talking to an agent. If you want to speak to an agent in your area, fill out this quick form.
Additional information can be read on the Maine Bureau of Insurance website located here. Consumers can read enforcement actions against agents and companies, download brochures, and discover disciplinary actions.
Keep this in mind
Cheap car insurance is available both online in addition to many Sanford insurance agents, so you should be comparing quotes from both so you have a total pricing picture. A few companies do not provide online price quotes and usually these small insurance companies provide coverage only through local independent agents.
As you prepare to switch companies, you should never sacrifice coverage to reduce premiums. There have been many cases where an insured dropped uninsured motorist or liability limits only to discover later that they should have had better coverage. Your aim should be to get the best coverage possible at the best price, not the least amount of coverage.
We covered quite a bit of information on how to shop for car insurance online. It’s most important to understand that the more rate quotes you have, the better your comparison will be. You may be surprised to find that the lowest priced car insurance comes from a small local company.