Top 10 Ways to Pay Less on Auto Insurance in Des Moines

If price shopping auto insurance online is new to you, you can be overwhelmed by the sheer number of online auto insurance companies and websites competing for business in Des Moines.

More discounts equal less premium

Companies offering auto insurance don’t always publicize all their discounts very well, so we took the time to find some of the more common and also the lesser-known savings tricks you should be using. If you don’t get every credit you deserve, you’re paying more than you need to.

  • Service Members Pay Less – Being deployed with a military unit could be rewarded with lower premiums.
  • No Accidents – Drivers with accident-free driving histories can save substantially when compared to drivers who are more careless.
  • Clubs and Organizations – Being a member of a civic or occupational organization could qualify you for a break when shopping for auto insurance.
  • Theft Prevention Discount – Vehicles equipped with anti-theft or alarm systems prevent vehicle theft and will save you 10% or more.
  • Accident Waiver – Certain 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.
  • Senior Citizens – Mature drivers can possibly qualify for reduced rates.
  • Homeowners Savings – Owning a house in Des Moines can save you money due to the fact that maintaining a home demonstrates responsibility.
  • Federal Government Employee – Active or retired federal employment can save as much as 8% with a few auto insurance companies.
  • Drivers Education – Cut your cost by having your teen driver successfully complete driver’s ed class in school.
  • College Student – Children who attend school more than 100 miles from home and do not have access to a covered vehicle may be able to be covered for less.

Consumers should know that some credits don’t apply the the whole policy. Most only apply to specific coverage prices like liability, collision or medical payments. Just because you may think all those discounts means the company will pay you, companies don’t profit that way.

To choose insurance companies with discount auto insurance rates in Des Moines, click here.

Auto insurance myths debunked

Iowa drivers constantly see and hear ads for car insurance savings from companies such as Progressive, GEICO, Allstate and State Farm. All the ads have a common claim of big savings after switching your policy.

But how can every company say the same thing? This is how they do it.

All the different companies can use profiling for the type of driver that makes them money. An example of a preferred risk might be between 30 and 50, a clean driving record, and drives less than 10,000 miles a year. A propective insured who meets those qualifications will get very good rates and is almost guaranteed to save when switching.

Potential insureds who don’t qualify for this ideal profile will be quoted a higher premium and ends up with the customer not buying. The ads state “drivers who switch” not “everyone that quotes” save that kind of money. That’s why insurance companies can claim big savings. This emphasizes why you need to compare as many rates as you can. It is impossible to predict the company that will provide you with the cheapest rates.

It’s not one size fits all

When it comes to buying adequate coverage for your vehicles, there really is not a “best” method to buy coverage. Every situation is different.

These are some specific questions may help you determine if your insurance needs might need an agent’s assistance.auto insurance image

  • Am I getting all the discounts available?
  • Is pleasure use cheaper than using my vehicle to commute?
  • Am I covered when driving someone else’s vehicle?
  • Do I need medical payments coverage since I have good health insurance?
  • Is business property covered if stolen from my car?
  • Does my vehicle qualify for pleasure use?
  • What vehicles should carry emergency assistance coverage?
  • Do I need added coverage for expensive stereo equipment?
  • Is my business laptop covered if it gets stolen from my vehicle?
  • Do I need PIP coverage since I have good health insurance?

If you can’t answer these questions, you might consider talking to a licensed agent. If you don’t have a local agent, simply complete this short form. It’s fast, doesn’t cost anything and may give you better protection.

Coverages available on your policy

Understanding the coverages of your policy aids in choosing the best coverages at the best deductibles and correct limits. The coverage terms in a policy can be difficult to understand and reading a policy is terribly boring.

Comprehensive coverage – This will pay to fix damage that is not covered by collision coverage. You first must pay your deductible then your comprehensive coverage will pay.

Comprehensive coverage protects against claims like a broken windshield, rock chips in glass and fire damage. The most you’ll receive from a claim is the actual cash value, so if the vehicle’s value is low consider removing comprehensive coverage.

Liability auto insurance – This provides protection from damage that occurs to other people or property in an accident. It consists of three limits, bodily injury per person, bodily injury per accident and property damage. Your policy might show liability limits of 100/300/100 which stand for a limit of $100,000 per injured person, a limit of $300,000 in injury protection per accident, and a total limit of $100,000 for damage to vehicles and property.

Liability insurance covers things like pain and suffering, funeral expenses, attorney fees and legal defense fees. How much coverage you buy is a decision to put some thought into, but you should buy as large an amount as possible. Iowa state law requires minimum liability limits of 20,000/40,000/15,000 but it’s recommended drivers buy higher limits.

Collision – This covers damage to your vehicle from colliding with an object or car. You will need to pay your deductible then the remaining damage will be paid by your insurance company.

Collision coverage pays for things like hitting a mailbox, sideswiping another vehicle, rolling your car and damaging your car on a curb. Collision is rather expensive coverage, so analyze the benefit of dropping coverage from vehicles that are 8 years or older. Another option is to bump up the deductible in order to get cheaper collision rates.

Medical payments coverage and PIP – Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and medical payments coverage reimburse you for bills such as X-ray expenses, rehabilitation expenses, nursing services, dental work and hospital visits. They can be utilized in addition to your health insurance program or if you do not have health coverage. It covers you and your occupants in addition to being hit by a car walking across the street. Personal injury protection coverage is only offered in select states and may carry a deductible

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage – This coverage protects you and your vehicle from other motorists when they do not carry enough liability coverage. Covered losses include medical payments for you and your occupants as well as damage to your vehicle.

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Because many people have only the minimum liability required by law (Iowa limits are 20/40/15), it only takes a small accident to exceed their coverage. So UM/UIM coverage is a good idea.

To learn more about auto insurance in Iowa

More tips and info about auto insurance is located at the Iowa Insurance Division website. Consumers can find a variety of consumer forms, report car insurance fraud, and learn about insurance regulations.

Final thoughts

Insureds switch companies for a number of reasons such as being labeled a high risk driver, an unsatisfactory settlement offer, not issuing a premium refund and even lack of trust in their agent. Regardless of your reason for switching companies, switching companies can be easier than you think.

While you’re price shopping online, it’s a bad idea to buy lower coverage limits just to save a few bucks. There have been many situations where consumers will sacrifice physical damage coverage only to regret at claim time they didn’t have enough coverage. Your aim should be to purchase plenty of coverage at the best price.

Discount auto insurance is definitely available on the web as well as from independent agents in Des Moines, and you should compare price quotes from both to have the best chance of lowering rates. Some companies don’t offer you the ability to get quotes online and these small insurance companies work with independent agents.