Shopping for affordable Westfield auto insurance online may be impossible for people who are new to shopping for insurance online. Because there are so many companies in the marketplace, how can consumers have a chance to compare them all to find the best price?
You need to shop coverage around periodically because rates fluctuate regularly. Even if you got the lowest price last year a different company probably has better rates today. So block out anything you think you know about auto insurance because you’re about to learn the fastest way to reduce your cost while increasing coverage.
Discounts are available to cut your rates
Auto insurance companies do not advertise all available discounts in an easy-to-find place, so the following is a list of some of the more common and the harder-to-find discounts you could be receiving. If they aren’t giving you every credit you deserve, you are throwing money away.
- Resident Student – Children who live away from home without a vehicle on campus can be insured at a reduced rate.
- Paperwork-free – Certain companies will give a small break for buying your policy online.
- Safety Course Discount – Completing a course in driver safety could save 5% or more depending on where you live.
- Own a Home – Simply owning a home may earn you a small savings due to the fact that maintaining a home shows financial diligence.
- Bundle and Save – If you insure your home and vehicles with the same company you will save at least 10% off all policies.
- Memberships – Participating in a professional or civic organization could qualify you for a break on auto insurance.
- Life Insurance – Some companies give a discount if you purchase a life insurance policy as well.
- Military Discounts – Being on active duty in the military can result in better rates.
It’s important to understand that most discount credits are not given to the entire policy premium. Most only cut specific coverage prices like collision or personal injury protection. So despite the fact that it appears having all the discounts means you get insurance for free, you won’t be that lucky.
To see a list of insurers offering auto insurance discounts in Westfield, click here.
Comprehensive Westfield Auto Insurance Comparison
There are multiple methods to compare auto insurance prices and some are more efficient than others. You can waste a lot of time driving to agents in Westfield, or you could use the web to maximize your effort.
All the larger companies participate in an industry program that allows shoppers to send in one quote, and each participating company then returns a price quote based on the submitted data. This eliminates the need for quote requests for each company. To find out how much you can save on auto insurance click to open in new window.
The single downside to using this type of form is you are unable to specify the insurers you will receive quotes from. So if you prefer to pick specific providers for rate comparison, we put together a list of low cost auto insurance companies in Massachusetts. Click here for list of insurance companies in Massachusetts.
It doesn’t matter which method you choose, just double check that you are using exactly the same coverage information for every company. If you enter unequal deductibles or liability limits it’s not possible to decipher which rate is best in Westfield.
How your Westfield rates are determined
An important part of buying insurance is that you know the factors that go into determining auto insurance rates. Understanding what impacts premium levels empowers consumers to make smart changes that could result in big savings.
Listed below are some of the factors used by your company to calculate premiums.
- Your job and insurance rates – Occupations such as real estate brokers, executives and stock brokers tend to have the highest rates in part from high stress and lots of time spent at work. On the other hand, jobs such as scientists, students and retirees receive lower rates.
- High deductibles save money – Deductibles for physical damage represent how much money you are willing to pay out-of-pocket before your auto insurance pays a claim. Insurance for physical damage to your car, also known as collision and other-than-collision, protects your car from damage. Examples of covered claims could be colliding with a building, damage from fire, and burglary. The more expense you’re willing to pay, the lower your rates will be.
- Do you have enough liability coverage? – The liability section of your policy provides coverage when you are found to be at fault for damages caused by your negligence. It provides legal defense coverage starting from day one. Liability insurance is quite affordable compared to insuring for physical damage coverage, so do not cut corners here.
- Better crash test results mean better rates – Safer cars are cheaper to insure. Safe vehicles have better occupant injury protection and better occupant protection translates into fewer and smaller insurance claims and lower rates for you.
- The more you drive the more you pay – The more you drive in a year the higher your rates will be. The majority of insurers rate vehicles based on their usage. Vehicles that are left in the garage qualify for better rates as compared to vehicles used primarily for driving to work. Verify your auto insurance policy shows the correct driver usage.
- Do you qualify for a multi-policy discount? – Many auto insurance companies will give a discount to customers who consolidate policies with them. It’s known as a multi-policy discount. Discounts can add up to ten or even up to twenty percent in some cases. Even if you’re getting this discount you may still want to comparison shop to ensure the best deal.
But I prefer to buy car insurance from an agent
Certain consumers would rather visit with an insurance agent and that is a personal choice. Good agents can answer important questions and help file insurance claims. The biggest benefit of comparing insurance prices online is the fact that you can find better rates but still work with a licensed agent.
After completing this simple form, your insurance data gets sent to insurance agents in Westfield who will return price quotes to get your business. There is no reason to leave your computer as quotes are delivered straight to your inbox. Now that’s easy!
Picking an insurance company shouldn’t rely on just a low price. Agents should be asked these questions:
- Is vehicle mileage a factor when determining depreciation for repairs?
- Do they make recommendations based only on price?
- Will vehicle repairs be made with aftermarket parts or OEM replacement parts?
- If you have an accident, are you able to get your vehicle repaired at the shop of your choice?
- Will you be dealing directly with the agent or with a Custom Service Representative (CSR)?
- Are claim adjusters local or do you have to take your car somewhere else?
- How are they compensated?
- Do the coverages you’re quoting properly cover your vehicle?
What types of car insurance agents are in Westfield?
When finding a good insurance agency, there are a couple of types of insurance agents that differ in how they can insure your vehicles. Agents are either captive or independent (non-captive). Both write coverage properly, but it’s important to know the difference between them since it can impact buying decisions.
Captive Insurance Agents
Captive agents can only write with one company like State Farm, AAA, Farmers Insurance or Allstate. They usually cannot provide prices from multiple companies so keep that in mind. These agents are trained well in insurance sales and that can be a competitive advantage. Consumers sometimes purchase coverage from captives mostly because of the prominence of the brand and the convenience of having all coverages with one company.
Independent Agents (or Brokers)
Independent insurance agents are not employed by any specific company so they have the ability to put coverage amongst many companies depending on which coverage is best. To transfer your coverage to a different company, an independent agent can move your coverage without you having to go to a different agency. When searching for an agent, you should always contact multiple independent agents to get the best comparison.Most can insure with lesser-known insurance companies which may provide better rates.
Below are independent agents in Westfield willing to provide comparison quotes.
- Roger Butler Agency – 5 Court St – Westfield, MA 01085 – (413) 562-2304
- Colton Agency Inc – 136 Elm St – Westfield, MA 01085 – (413) 562-3618
- Woronoco Insurance Group – 136 Elm St – Westfield, MA 01085 – (413) 562-3659
- Caplin Insurance – 5 Court St – Westfield, MA 01085 – (413) 562-0310
For a full directory of Westfield insurance agents, visit this site.
Once you have acceptable answers to any questions you have and locked in a price quote, it’s possible that you found a car insurance agent that meets your needs to adequately provide auto insurance.
Slick advertising tricks that work
Consumers get pounded daily by advertisements for cheaper car insurance by companies like 21st Century, Allstate and State Farm. They all make the same claim that you can save if you move to them.
How does each company make the same claim?
Insurance companies have a certain “appetite” for the right customer that earns them a profit. For example, a preferred risk might be over the age of 40, has no driving citations, and has a short commute. Any new insured who meets those qualifications will get the preferred rates and therefore will save a lot of money.
Potential insureds who don’t meet the “perfect” profile must pay higher prices and this can result in business not being written. The ads say “customers that switch” but not “drivers who get quotes” save that much money. That’s why companies can truthfully advertise the way they do. This illustrates why you absolutely need to get quotes from several different companies. You cannot predict which auto insurance company will give you the biggest savings.
More quotes mean more savings
In this article, we covered some good ideas how you can shop for auto insurance online. The key concept to understand is the more you quote, the higher the chance of saving money. Consumers could even find that the lowest premiums are with a smaller regional carrier.
Drivers who switch companies do it for a number of reasons such as unfair underwriting practices, policy cancellation, lack of trust in their agent or even denial of a claim. No matter why you want to switch, switching auto insurance companies is actually quite simple.
As you go through the steps to switch your coverage, it’s not a good idea to buy poor coverage just to save money. There are too many instances where someone sacrificed liability limits or collision coverage only to regret that it was a big mistake. The proper strategy is to purchase a proper amount of coverage at the best price while not skimping on critical coverages.
Additional detailed information is located at the Massachusetts Division of Insurance website. Massachusetts consumers can discover disciplinary actions, read consumer alerts, and find out which companies have the most complaints.