January 12th, 2015
The key to finding that happy medium between adequate coverage and inexpensive insurance is tricky for many drivers. You may not know of the options available to you and could purchase policies that either overlap or don't provide full coverage. Caught up in the multitude of insurance jargon, you might be uncertain what you're actually paying for.
Paying too much for insurance is a common problem for drivers because there are so many details to be aware of, and not everyone has the wherewithal to sit down with their insurance agents and figure out a workable plan for the future. However, doing so could be a boon for your budget if you're able to save money on your monthly premiums or lower your deductible.
Here are a few ways to know if you're paying too much:
Better rates elsewhere
Insurance companies plaster advertisements everywhere - on television, radio, newspapers and the Internet - and they're all competing for the same group of customers. Companies typically promise the lowest price and the best deals in town, and in some cases it could the truth.
If your rates differ from those of other insurance providers, then you might be overpaying. Though a number of factors go into determining your insurance rate, your provider might not be offering you the full spectrum of options, especially if you're a long-time customer and have a history of sticking with the same policies.
Even if you're a loyal customer, your rates can go up steadily over time because companies will realize you don't make much of an effort to find cheaper insurance. This approach will not only be a burden on your budget but will also affect your relationship with your insurance agent.
Not taking advantage of discounts
If there are discounts available, then you should do everything in your power to benefit from them. Ask your agent if you qualify because, more than likely, there are at least one or two discounts that could work to your advantage.
For instance, if you have a student driver who makes good grades on your plan, then you could be in for a rebate. Further, if you have an impeccable driving record or have taken driving courses in the past, then most insurance providers will reward you with cheaper rates.
As it turns out, your pricey rates could be a result of your inadvertent lack of initiative. Routinely go over your insurance package with your agent to see where you can save.
Paying more than others in your area
A portion of your auto insurance is based on the location in which you live. If you drive in big cities, then it's likely you pay more money for insurance - and rightly so. Because there are more people, there is a higher chance of accidents and traffic violations - both of which will affect your insurance rates.
However, if your rates are relatively higher than other drivers in your region, there may be some flexibility for you to do something about it. Insurance plans are personalized based on driving histories, but if you have a clean record yourself, then you shouldn't be paying more than the average of others.
This could be the time when it may be better to take your business to another company that can offer better rates in relation to your situation. Knowing your value as a customer is an important thing to keep in mind as you contemplate your insurance options.
To save on your car insurance, shop around and be proactive when speaking with agents.
CoverHound provides real-time quotes to drivers in the U.S.