Posted June 9th, 2017 by Alexa Goyette
We all want to keep our rates as low as possible. You may feel like certain factors that influence your rates are out of your hands. However, you can work to lower your premiums through various measures. Most insurance companies want to reward their customers for safe driving and keeping their vehicles secure. In addition, they reward people of certain occupations and students with a good academic standing, as these people are considered less of a threat on the road.
If you’re interested in lowering your rates, check out the following steps and see if they work for your insurance plan and lifestyle.
Do some research before you buy a car.
Premiums are based on multiple factors such as the car’s price, its cost for repair, and its safety record. More expensive cars tend to have pricier premiums, as they are costly to fix. On the other hand, a car with proven safety will lower this premium.
Be aware of your credit score.
There are so many reasons to maintain a good credit score. Auto insurance is one of them. A lot of car insurance companies use a credit-based insurance score in quoting. Why is that? These companies believe that people with high credit scores are less likely to get into a car accident than those with low credit scores. We talk more about how your credit score can affect your insurance premium in a previous post, Does Credit Score Affect Auto Insurance Rates?
Keep a clean driving record.
This one’s a no-brainer. The more accidents or violations you have, the more you will have to pay in insurance premiums. For some guidance and advice on your driving habits, check out the EverDrive app to help you improve your driving, so accidents and tickets can be a rarity.
Go up with your deductibles.
Deductibles tend to range from about $250 to $1000. In most cases, the higher the deductible, the lower the premium is. Contact your insurance company to see how much your premium would be affected if you pay more in deductibles. Savings may be minimal, but many drivers save a good percentage by making this change.
Take a defensive driving course.
Some insurance companies provide discounts to people that complete a pre-approved defensive driving course. Make sure you ask your insurance company if this applies before enrolling in the course. Certain courses might cost more than the discount is worth, so make sure you do your research before committing.
Use public transportation as much as you can.
The more you drive, the more you will pay in insurance premiums. Specific companies have different mileage thresholds, so check in with this ahead of time to make sure you’re meeting these thresholds (or if it’s worth partaking in this).
Add safety and security features to your vehicle.
Some insurance companies offer discounts on premiums to people driving cars deemed more safe and secure. Adding in anti-lock brakes, alarms, and anti-theft systems will make your vehicle less likely to be in an accident or stolen.
Park your car in a garage.
Going along with the fact that safer, more secure cars are more likely to get discounts, many insurance companies give discounts to individuals who park their cars in a garage, as vehicles in garages are less likely to face theft or damage.
Take advantage of occupational discounts, if you qualify.
Certain professions, such as firefighters, police officers, doctors, and teachers, qualify for a discount, as the people in these careers are considered more cautious on the road.
Opt for paperless statements.
Getting the statements online or through email will save the insurance companies a little bit of money that they would have spent on mailing the envelopes. Opting for a paperless application, using electronic document signatures, and paying by Electronic Funds Transfer can save you a total discount of about 5% on your coverage. It won’t save you a lot of money, but a little bit over time can go a long way.
Utilize your student status.
Students can qualify for a discount if they are currently enrolled in school and have good grades. Insurance companies tend to view students with higher GPAs as lower risk.
Move to the suburbs.
This is a pretty big step, but it makes a substantial difference in your insurance rates. Rates are often based on population statistics. Since fewer people are on the road at once in the suburbs, there are fewer collisions.
The major takeaway is that the best way to lower your premium rates is to be proactive. Do your research and contact your insurance company.
And don’t move to the suburbs or pay a great deal on security features just to lower your rates. Make sure that you’re getting your money’s worth and getting results from taking these steps. Not all steps are ideal for everyone, but hopefully you’ve found a tip to take away with you.
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