All car insurance is not created equal. You might assume that it’s in your best interest to purchase the cheapest available car insurance to satisfy your state’s minimum coverage law, but there are a number of reasons why you should shop around for more than just price before selecting the car insurance that will help cover the costs of an accident when you’re behind the wheel. Checking out the riders that are available on your car insurance plan–for example, roadside assistance and uninsured motorist–is also important.

 

Finding the most car insurance for the least premium cost is not for the lazy shopper. You must look past even so-called price guarantees (which are often based on a narrow set of ideal customer parameters) to the brass tacks of how each company’s insurance policy works to get at the truth. In this post, learn specific tactics to start using today to get better car insurance coverage for less money.

Tip #1: Don’t set yourself up for failure.

If you have already bought a new car and are only now finding out the cost of insuring it is higher than you anticipated, know you are not alone. Each year, many car buyers find out the hard way that they’ve bought more car than they can comfortably insure. While there is no magic cure for this issue, the following tips can help ease some of your cash crunch.

TO DO: If you haven’t bought a new car yet, compare insurance rates BEFORE you buy! Look at considerations such as horsepower, safety features, crash test ratings, parts and labor costs, your own driving record, passenger age and gender and other factors that may drive your insurance costs up based on particular makes and models.

Tip #2: Make a list of every possible discount you might qualify for.

No two insurers are exactly alike when it comes to the discounts they offer. This is part of an insurer’s marketing strategy in an industry where state regulations govern minimum insurance levels. You can learn about different discounts as you browse through insurer websites. Discounts can also vary by age and gender.

TO DO: Here are some very common discounts to get your list started and you can add to this list as you do your research.

  • High vehicle mileage.
  • Perfect driver record.
  • Extra safety features (air bags, alarm system, garaging, et al).
  • Memberships in complementary associations (such as AAA).
  • Stellar grades (for student drivers).
  • Loyalty (for multi-year memberships with a single insurer).
  • Restricted driving hours or days (sometimes called a low mileage discount).
  • Senior citizen.
  • Multi-policy discount.
  • Excellent credit score.
  • Auto-pay (paperless).
  • Lump sum annual payment.
  • Defensive driving course.
  • Low-risk occupations.
  • Renewal discount.