What Factors Go into Comparing Car Insurance Quotes?
When your monthly car insurance premium becomes too much for your budget, that means it’s time to compare insurance rates with a new provider. Of course, shopping around with as many carriers as possible is the best way to ensure you’re getting the most affordable rates. Ready to save money on car insurance? Here are the factors that you need to know to get started!
Step 1: Gather Your Information for Personalized Insurance Quotes
There are a few basic first steps you need to take before you can start comparing quotes to help streamline the process.
- Gather your information: Make sure you have all the information that insurance companies will need to generate a custom quote. This includes vehicle details and personal information, such as:
- a. Make
- b. Model
- c. Manufacturing year
- d. Home address
- e. Date of birth
- f. Start date of your current insurance coverage
- Check your driving history. For the most accurate premium, you will also need to provide your driving history. This includes when you first received your driver’s license and how many moving violations you have had within a certain amount of time.
Some of this information should be available off the top of your head, while some may require you to do a bit of research. Fortunately, once you get all this information together, you will have it easily available when taking our questionnaire or answering questions over the phone.
Step 2: Understand Other Factors That Affect Your Insurance Premium
Many drivers believe that their driving behavior is the only thing that insurance companies care about. Risky driving behaviors can indeed raise your premium, and safe driving habits can lower it. However, there are also several other factors affecting your price you may not know.
- Age. This is why teenagers pay so much more for car insurance than most adults.
- Location. As riskier areas or areas with many traffic violations will result in a higher insurance premium. Get an idea of the average car insurance rates in your area by comparing rates from local insurance providers.
- Your previous history of insurance claims. Your premium almost always goes up after you file. And, your credit history can affect your overall premium in many states.
It’s good to know the different factors affecting your insurance before you try to compare car insurance rates from other companies. If you have made recent changes (such as paying credit cards off or moving to a new area), sharing this info with us may get you more favorable quotes as well.
Step 3: Compare Car Insurance Types with Your Driving Habits in Mind
At the click of a button, Freeway Insurance gathers the most affordable coverage options in one place, so you’re not left to do research on your own. But if you’re not careful, you may find yourself comparing apples and oranges.
That’s because the insurance coverage you get will affect your overall premium. For example, a quote that includes collision coverage will always be more expensive than a quote including only liability. And things like the coverage limits and deductibles will further affect your overall price.
Long story short? It’s important to make sure you are getting different quotes for the same kinds of coverage from these different companies. Research different types of coverage to help you determine if you have too much or too little car insurance and if you need special options such as Medical Payments Coverage.
In less than five minutes, Freeway Insurance connects you with all the coverage options available based on your driver profile. With so many options, you’ll want to know how to compare your quotes to ensure you’re getting the best quotes that will keep you safe on the road.
How Much Coverage Is Right for You?
Perhaps the most frequent question we get is, “How much insurance do I actually need?” Unfortunately, each driver must answer that question for themselves. And until you know how much coverage you actually need, you won’t be able to compare rates from different carriers adequately.
What Is the Mandatory Auto Insurance Required?
Before you decide how much insurance you need and start comparing quotes, it’s important to understand the minimum level of coverage. And it is equally essential to get more than that coverage.
You may be tempted to go with the minimum level of coverage to save money on insurance. But what if you cause an accident and the amount of bodily damage or property damage exceeds your minimal coverage?
In that case, you will be left paying a serious amount of money out of pocket and may even end up in extreme debt. Compared to that, it’s always better to play it safe and get more than the minimum!
How to figure Out Your Deductible when you Compare Insurance Quotes
One of the biggest factors concerning your insurance premium is the deductible. Generally speaking, lower deductibles lead to higher premiums, and higher deductibles lead to lower premiums.
When you compare insurance, you’ll need to figure out what kind of deductible you want. To determine the answer, it’s important to take a long, hard look at your current vehicle.
For example, if your car is new and/or expensive, you may want to go with a collision insurance plan that has a low deductible. Otherwise, a wreck could lead to some costly bills, and a high deductible means you’d be paying for most out of it out of pocket.
However, if you have an older vehicle and have sufficient assets in the bank, repairing your vehicle after an accident may be much easier. In that case, you should opt for a higher deductible and enjoy the ongoing benefit of a lower monthly insurance premium.
Now that you know enough about these various factors, let’s dive into how you can compare insurance quotes from different carriers.
Make Sure the Quotes “Match”
We already covered one of the most important items when comparing car insurance quotes earlier. Whenever you compare quotes, you need to make sure they are offering similar types of coverage, limits, and deductibles.
Some carriers will try to catch your eye by quoting very low amounts. But if you check the fine print, you might see that one company isn’t offering nearly as much coverage as similar carriers. But as long as you know how much coverage you want and know how to check that fine print, you’ll be fine.
Speaking of fine print, check to see if the quotes include any special discounts through the insurance company. This information can help you decide and may even lead to an ongoing conversation about other special deals offered by the carrier.
Buying Car Insurance Quotes Online vs. By Phone
When comparing insurance quotes, you may have a pretty big question: What is the best way to actually compare?
Most insurance websites can now provide quotes online. You simply provide certain information, click the button, and get your quote.
However, this process was designed to go fast, and the incomplete information the website asks you for may not consider all of the pertinent factors. Because of that, we often recommend that you get an insurance professional on the phone.
Calling up the different carriers takes more time than simply getting quotes online. But speaking to an actual person at each company is a great way to get a more competitive car insurance premium.
And to save time, you can always use online insurance quotes to narrow things down to your top five companies or so. Then you can call each one and see what kind of prices they have to offer.
How Do I Compare Car Insurance Quotes?
If you’re reading this, then you’re considering comparing insurance rates across different carriers. And with any luck, you’ll find a carrier you can trust. But what if you’re not happy with the new company after a few months?
Keep in mind that car insurance is not like health insurance. You do not have to wait until a special enrollment period or wait for a life-changing event to occur. So long as you pay for your insurance monthly, you can cancel your insurance at any time.
And even if you like the new insurance company, it’s important not to get so comfortable that you overlook some major deals. We generally recommend that you shop for insurance at least once a year. A little bit of research and a few phone calls can end up saving you money every month!
Comparing Insurance Quotes When You Have Poor Credit
We have touched a couple of times on the fact that credit can impact how much you pay for car insurance. If you currently have poor credit, this may leave you wondering how you can save money on your monthly insurance premium.
The good news is that even if your credit is poor, the best thing you can do to get a better right is to shop around to get competitive insurance quotes. And you can start by contacting the nearest Freeway Insurance office.
In the meantime, it’s good to work on improving your credit. After you do so, you can update your insurance carrier and possibly lower your premium even further.
When Is a Good Time to Shop for New Auto Insurance Quotes?
As we noted above, you can change insurance carriers at any time. And it’s good to compare rates at least once a year. Beyond that, though, there are certain times in your life where changing your insurance company or policy will be very beneficial.
For example, if your credit score has improved, you should start comparing rates. A better score may lead to a better premium. And if you’re about to move, a new insurance company may be able to offer a better rate once you have moved.
If your driving history has changed, it’s worth comparing rates. A history of safe driving can lower your premium. And if you aren’t driving as much (perhaps due to work from home), you may be able to get a lower premium.
Finally, it’s always worth shopping around when you are adding a new driver to your policy. Adding teenage drivers, in particular, is certain to drive your rates up, and it’s important to compare rates and find savings where you can.
Compare the Best Car Insurance Rates Today
Now you know everything you need to know about the average cost of car insurance. But do you know who can help provide you with a better rate as early as today?
Here at Freeway Insurance, we understand that you don’t have a ton of free time to research insurance rates. To make things easy for you, Freeway can quickly and easily provide you with an online quote. Or feel free to give us a call at (800) 777-5620. Finally, you can also visit us at an office near you.