Recently, I had a traumatic experience wherein I witnessed a car accident involving a collision between two cars. It appeared that the driver of the first car had some engine trouble, causing him to lose control of the vehicle. The two drivers were in deep conversation, along with a police officer. They were probably discussing details on how the damages would be covered.
In times like this, I am thankful for car insurance coverage. In the US, you will never find a car owner who does not have car insurance. One reason is that law mandates it. So, if you can’t afford insurance, don’t buy a vehicle. Most motorists also have insurance, even if they don’t own the vehicle. Insurance is a very handy and helpful emergency fund.
Your car is the next most expensive asset apart from your home. Like your home, you also need to maintain your vehicle, keep it clean, and purchase insurance. There are also other expenses such as fuel, car wash, and servicing. All these help to keep your vehicle well maintained.
Since your car is a necessity when it comes to traveling, it is proper that you take care of it. Another factor that you should be mindful of is car insurance. Car insurance can be an added expense but come to think of it; it helps save you from legal liabilities and unforeseen expenses.
To get the most out of car insurance, here are best ways to save money on car insurance, so it’s easy in the pocket:
Bundle your insurance – Most insurance companies offer discounts if you have your home insurance bundled with your auto insurance. Plus, it is easier to communicate with the insurance company if they are in one place. Insurance companies also take better care of loyal and long-time customers.
Don’t let your insurance coverage lapse – It is easy to forget about these things. Be responsible enough and maintain your insurance. Rates usually drop after a year, and most companies offer a discount for continuous coverage. Also, the higher the amount of your liability is, the better the insurance discount.
Purchase ahead – If your policy is almost up for renewal or you would like to switch to another company, buy the policy at least ten days ahead. This action allows you to get a better rate.
Full payment or installment – You save more if you pay your policy in full. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the monthly or quarterly payments. If you have the budget, go for it. You end up saving more money if you pay upfront.
Shop for a new policy when moving – Some US states have more expensive insurance policies. Check out the rates of the new location you are moving into.
Increase your credit score – Higher credit scores mean lower premiums. The logic is that people with higher credit scores are less likely to file claims. Insurance companies look into your credit scores and pattern the premiums accordingly. So, if you are a “risk” customer, you’ll end up getting higher premiums.
Provide your VIN – When getting insurance quotes, provide you Vehicle Identification Number. You may be eligible for an anti-theft discount.
Research and compare – Get at least five options for insurance. Compare the costs, coverage, and the factors that are specific to your state. You may scout for a new insurance provider every six months until you find one that is suitable for your needs and most affordable on the budget.
Go paperless – Most insurance companies offer discounts if you opt for paperless billing and an electronic policy. They are more than willing to accept your email address so that they can add you to their mailing list. In this way, you also get notifications for updates on the policy and other benefits.
Usage-based insurance – If you rarely drive, consider a telematics device. In this way, you share your driving habits with your insurance company and saves you money. Therefore, if you are a good driver, chances are you’ll get better discounts.
Understand the language – Read up on insurance jargon. Insurance agents will use jargon so you can’t do anything but nod in agreement. Knowing what the fine print actually means will save you from purchasing a policy that doesn’t suit your needs.
Sign up for EFT – Most insurance companies offer discounts for auto pay options. Which company will not love receiving payments without even sending you a bill?
Drive safely – Seems self-explanatory, right? Another way that you save on insurance when you are a safe driver is because you don’t need to make claims. When you are a reckless driver, all the insurance company does is spending for you. Therefore, expect your premiums to go higher.
Buy a car that’s worth the insurance – Avoid flashy cars and high maintenance vehicles. Make sure that it can also withstand long distance driving and a variety of extreme conditions. The more high maintenance and flashy your car, the higher the premiums.
Avail of roadside assistance – Roadside assistance not only helps you in times of emergency, but it also offers you discounts that help you save on insurance cost.
Install useful accessories – Install anti-theft devices, car alarms, dash cams, or anti-braking system instead of spoilers and flashy chrome rims. These devices help prevent your vehicle from theft. Be careful where you park your car as well and avoid dark, secluded places. Your insurance company will thank you if your car doesn’t get lost or stolen.
Types of Coverage
If you want to make sure you’re getting what you pay for, it is important to know what kind of coverage you need. Here are the different types of insurance:
Liability Coverage – helps protect you from the legal consequences when you are involved in an accident. If other people, property, or vehicles are involved Liability Coverage helps you pay the damages.
Collision Coverage – covers damages in case of collisions, for example, hit-and-run incidents.
Comprehensive Coverage – covers accidents outside of collision. Examples are theft, fire,
flood, and accidents brought about by extreme weather conditions.
Benefits of Having Car Insurance
The law requires all car owners to have car insurance. Why? Car insurance does not only protect you but protects other people who may be involved in an accident. It also helps you shoulder the additional costs in case of mishaps. It’s like having an “emergency fund” in case you get involved in an accident or when your car gets stolen.
Another benefit is when you are engaged in an accident, and other people are affected, and you aren’t entirely at fault. For example, due to inclement weather, the roads are slippery causing your car to slide. You accidentally hit another car when you skidded off. Of course, you or the other driver weren’t at fault, so it will hurt to pay for the damages.
Some people live in areas where flash floods typically occur. Choosing an insurance policy that covers losses in case your car gets damaged by flash floods will save you a headache. Having a good insurance policy that suits your needs will save you from unforeseen expenses.
Having car insurance saves you from legal liabilities, unexpected costs, and protects other victims involved. It is stressful enough that you got involved in an accident, and even more when you don’t have the budget to pay for the damages. Certain unavoidable incidents such as flash floods, theft, and natural disasters can also cause you to lose your car.
In the case of BMW car owners, they are lucky to have the BMW Driver Assistance Plus included. It helps them avoid untoward incidents due to the safety features. But then again, car insurance is still a must.
Therefore, it is important that you not only have the best insurance but that you are getting your money’s worth. You don’t need to pay a huge sum; you just need to know how to manage your finance, so your budget doesn’t suffer.
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