With rising gas prices, maintenance, repairs and all the expenses car ownership comes with it is great to find ways to save some money anywhere possible. A lot of these costs are beyond our control but insurance luckily is not one of them. There are many ways you can keep your car insurance cost down so it is more manageable and affordable.
According to the spokesman for the Insurance Information Institute, Michael Barry, competition among insurers has led to new discounts. “Insurers are trying to differentiate themselves in the marketplace.”.
While some information on available discounts is readily available, most you have to search for or inquire about. There are several ways you can cut your costs that you may be completely unaware of. Are you missing out on any?
- Safe driver or accident free record. If you have a clean record you most likely qualify for discounts. Some companies will pick up on this and automatically give you the discount while others you need to alert yourself. Always do the best you can to keep track of your record and make your insurance company aware of your clean record.
- Multivehicle discounts. If you have more than one car on the same policy, you are most likely eligible for discounts.
- Bundling. If you bundle your homeowners insurance, car insurance and other policies you have you will be eligible for significant discounts. This saves you money and time.
- Automatic payment/paperless billing. By doing all of your bill pay online you are able to save the insurance company(s) time and money. Some companies offer you discounts for opting to use online in lieu of mail.
- Defensive driver course: If have had tickets or accidents you can take a defensive driving course to get your rates back to where they were and lose points on your insurance and depending on your state, possibly your license. If you have no offenses and still take this course you may be able to reduce your premium by up to 15%.
- Good student discounts: If you are a college student and maintain a certain GPA you will qualify for discounts.
- Environmentally friendly “green” cars: Vehicles with lower emissions, electric cars or other features that are good for the environment generally help reduce your rates.
- Low mileage: Keeping your mileage down is a great way to save on your car insurance. Some companies may require the use of a telematic device to monitor the mileage you put on your car over a certain time period.
- Anti-lock breaks: Antilock brakes keep your wheels from locking up, so your car maintains directional control around hazards if you can’t make a complete stop in time. By having this feature most insurance companies will reduce your rates.
- Military and affinity/occupational (non-military): Being in the military, working for certain companies and being members of certain groups can often qualify you for auto insurance savings.
- Anti-theft device: Car alarm systems, window etching and LoJack will qualify you for insurance savings.
- Daytime running lights: Some companies will offer you lower rates because of this safety feature.
- Payment in full: Many companies will give you a reduced rate for paying your premium all at one time.
- Passive restraint: Airbags and motorized seat belts can help lower your car insurance rates.
- Loyalty discounts: By staying with the same company for an extended period of time you will be able to reduce your rates. Most car insurance companies offer discounts for long-term customers.
- Early signing bonus: If you shop around before a certain number of days and sign with a new carrier before your old policy expired many companies offer you a discount or bonus.