In a tough economic environment, we are all looking for innovative ways to save money. In recent months, a large number of not only American families, but also families throughout the developed world have had to make changes in the way they spend and live.
A major expense that most Americans face is the cost of transportation, namely your car. If you own a car, you will need comprehensive auto insurance. Are you paying too much? You probably are. Take the following checklist to your insurance provider to see what kind of savings can come before your next payment.
Take an online driver’s education course
In most states, if you enroll in an online defensive driving course, you may be eligible for a discount of 10% or more. Some states don’t recognize these courses, so before taking one, it’s best to check with your insurance provider to see what kind of discounts they offer with a defensive driving course. For a list of driving schools in your city or state, visit Wannadrive.
Take a low-risk job
Insurance companies keep more statistics than one might imagine. One of them is occupational accidents. If your chosen profession has more accidents than average, then your premiums will reflect this. Engineers tend to pay lower premiums because engineers get in fewer accidents than other professionals. Simply doing some research and adjusting your job title may be enough to lower your monthly premium.
Tell them you’re retired
If you are retired, you may be eligible for an additional discount. We’ve all seen the commercials. This savings is especially true if you have a clean driving record. If you’re retired and your insurance provider doesn’t know, then you could be missing out on significant savings.
Join a professional organization or car club
Selected organizations and car clubs receive discounts at all types of retail outlets including hotels and restaurants. Joining some of these organizations can also help you reduce your insurance costs. If you are a member of an organization or club, it never hurts to ask your provider if members of that organization get a discount.
Combine your insurance
Some insurance companies may lower your premium if you use their company for both your home and auto insurance. If you currently have two different home and car insurance providers, ask both of them what kind of premium reduction you are entitled to if you combine your home and car insurance into one.
Automatic safety features
If you have any additional safety features on your car, your insurance rates can also be lowered. Look for vehicles that have both driver and passenger airbags, traction control, good head restraints, anti-lock braking and all-wheel drive are all features that improve your vehicle’s safety performance. Bring a list of the safety features your vehicle has to your insurance provider and ask specifically how the extra safety features lower your premiums.
Assume more risk
By increasing your deductible from $400 to $800, you likely have to pay more out of pocket in the event of an accident, but you save significantly on your monthly premium. If you’re a careful driver, the savings you make by paying a lower premium will pay for itself throughout the year. The amount of coverage you have will not change by raising your deductible.
Be a good citizen
Simply having a good credit score, or performing well in school can lower your premiums. Insurance companies have found a link between your credit score, academic performance and your likelihood of being involved in an accident. If you have a good credit score and perform well academically, you may be eligible for a discount.
Pay in fewer installments
Insurance companies will charge you a fee to make an installment payment. The more installments, the more fees you will pay. If you’re fiscally responsible enough, ask your insurance provider about different payment options, such as annual, semiannual, or quarterly payments. Be careful using this strategy because it is possible to lose your insurance by missing just one payment.
Ask for better service
Believe it or not, there is still a moral fabric in the business world. If you have been with the same insurance company for years, ask them for a discount as a loyal customer. If they refuse, shop around. Another provider may offer better rates or provide you with better information about your insurance needs.
Hopefully, this article has made you a little wiser when it comes to buying general auto insurance. Use this information and turn it into dollars and cents.