Buying Car Insurance is arguably one of the most important decisions you’ll make as far as your money and investments are concerned. For some people, it’s also a tough decision as many people, especially in this part of the world, perceive buying insurance as a waste of money, reason being the popular notion of ‘why insure against something I don’t plan to happen?’. Amazingly, this is exactly why you should insure! You wouldn’t have to ensure if you had plans of having your car stop on the road, or having your car crash – all you would have to do would be to save up money for the impending bad incident. Buying insurance is simply saying, ‘I don’t plan for my car to stop on the road, but just in case it does, I have an insurer waiting on me to help!’.If you’d like to buy insurance for your car, these tips would greatly help you make the most of it.
1. Shop Around To Compare Prices
The primary way to save on car insurance is to compare prices. Different insurance companies have different prices for their policies and different coverage levels. Only in shopping around for the best price will you get what suits your pocket best. However, you have to exercise some caution here. You might get a cheaper deal, only to find out that it does not provide as much coverage as the seemingly more expensive one. So calm down in your shopping. Visit a couple of insurers and find out what’s involved in their policies, and how much. This will give you a better idea of which options to go for. This is not to say that the costlier, the better. It simply means you should know the details of each policy you check out, so you can be in the right position to choose what’s best for you. You can look for online comparison services that could do the hard job for you, all you have to do is put in your details and a quote comes up.
2. Check To Know How Many discounts You Can Get
If you don’t try to find out, you’d probably not be told about the discounts your insurer has available. Make inquiries about what discounts you’re entitled to. There are a number of ways to lower your premium, such as adding your car insurance to your home or business coverage. Also, insurers usually give discounts when you insure more than one vehicle, or when you insure your car together with a group. For example, if your company policy mandates you to ensure your car with other staff as a group, you get a really significant discount. The same thing happens if members of a family insure with the same insurance company.
3. Choose The Vehicle You’d Like To Insure, Wisely
It goes without saying that the costlier your vehicle, the more you’d have to pay to insure. So technically, cheaper cars attract lower premiums, and more expensive cars attract higher premiums.
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4. Keep A Good Driving Record
A good way to lower your insurance premiums is to maintain a clean driving record. It’s easier to convince an insurer to lower your premium if you have a clean driving record than if you’re known for drinking and driving. You’d pay less for car insurance if you’re an accident-free driver than if you have a bad history of accidents, and especially if they’re caused by you. This does not mean that you’re doomed to ‘no discounts’ if you’ve had an accident in the past. If it’s been a while since you last had a crash, and you have maintained a good driving record since then, you’re in a good position to ask for a discount. Always take the initiative to ask; if you don’t ask, you’d probably not be told.
5. Pay Premiums On Time
Insurance companies can decide to drop your coverage if you fall behind in premium payments. Applying for a new policy down the road might turn out to be more expensive. One good thing, however, is that insurance companies are not allowed to ‘judge you’ based on your salary level, or even bankruptcy level. So as long as you meet up payments, you’re good.
6. Don’t Be Reluctant To Try Out Smaller Companies
There’s the notion that the well-known insurance companies are the best places to insure. That is not always true. As a matter of fact, some smaller or regional insurance companies do better than their bigger counterparts in terms of settling claims, coverage, and even discounts. So before you conclude, consider smaller companies and do some real shopping around.
7. Know How Demographics Affect Policy Prices
A number of statistics such as age, gender, and marital status affect the way insurance companies view the insured. For instance, older drivers are generally perceived to be a lower risk than younger drivers. Some insurance companies perceive female drivers to be lower risks because they are assumed to be more careful drivers than men. Although you cannot change certain factors about yourself, you can make yourself less of a perceived risk to insurance companies. This does not mean you should up and get married just to reduce your premium, but it’s important to let your insurer know when you reach certain milestones in your life. If you recently had a baby, recently got married, or recently turned 25, it could make you less of a perceived risk and reduce the premium you’d have to pay.
8. Use Your Garage
If your garage is packed with trash, clean it out and put your car in. Insurance companies like it better when your car is kept in the garage, since the more it is out on the road, the greater the risk involved. Every time you’re not using your car, make sure it’s kept safely and covered in the garage.
9. Be Honest About Your Declarations On The Proposal Form
Be truthful in your declarations in the proposal form. This will make it easier for your insurer to settle your claims, knowing that they are genuine.
10. Sign Up To A Blackbox
Blackbox policies involve an insurer installing a system in your car to monitor your driving. This will be rewarding to you if you drive carefully. These systems are called telematics, and they check your speed, the way you accelerate and brake, and if you drive at odd hours of the day. This method can be greatly rewarding, as insurance companies will usually greatly reduce your premium if you do well. Some companies even offer an upfront discount if you agree to sign up to their Blackbox policy.
There are a number of other details of car insurance that exist, but these are basic and will go a long way in helping you maximize your insurance experience.