There’s no getting around it, if you have a car here in Fort Myers, Cape Coral or Naples Florida and plan on driving it – you must have insurance. Fortunately there are ways you can protect yourself and save money on car insurance without ending up with a useless policy. Auto insurance premiums are based on many factors – a few of which you have little to no control over such as your age, marital status, sex or your geographic location. The good news is that there are still some variables that factor into receiving a great auto insurance quote that you do have control over, here are a few:
- Shop around – This should go without saying but many people are inclined to just renew and not deal with the perceived “hassle” of making a phone call to their agent. Premiums from different company’s can very drastically, many agents are captive to to one company and aren’t allowed to offer or shop on your behalf – speak with an independent agent who represents many different carriers and can look at the whole market instead of just one. Most agents should be able to tell you over the phone whether they can be competitive with your current policy.[space height=”20″]
- Consider Dropping Collision – Removing collision insurance coverage on older vehicles can save a significant amount on annual premiums. Payment on wrecked vehicles more than seven or eight years old may be less than you think since most insurance company’s limit collision coverage to the book value of the auto. Some people use the rule of thumb that when the auto’s book value gets down to 10% of the premium – it’s time to consider dropping collision coverage.[space height=”20″]
- Increasing the Deductibles – Raising deductibles on the comprehensive and collision portions of your auto insurance policy from $100 to $1,000 may save you up to 30% annually. While you’ll still be covered for significant accidents, you’d need to be ready to pay out-of-pocket for fender benders. Raising deductibles also carries the added benefit of not being tempted to file small claims and risking premium increases later on.[space height=”20″]
- Ask for Discounts – Many insurance company’s offer discounts and other incentives that you may not be aware of unless you ask. Make sure than when you shop for insurance you let the agent know about alarm systems, airbags, anti-lock brakes or defensive driving classes. Some company’s even offer discounts for teens who make honor roll or have participated in driver’s education courses.[space height=”20″]
- Know Your Credit Score – Research suggests that people who are not responsible with their finances also tend to be less attentive in other aspects of their lives, including driving habits. While there is a bit of controversy about the correlation between the two, a growing number of insurers are factoring in credit ratings as a rating tool.
These are just a few auto insurance savings tips for you to consider, some or none of them may make sense for your particular situation. Call and speak with a qualified agent that has experience in matching auto insurance needs with insurance company’s that will offer the best coverage at the most affordable price. At the end of the day, Florida auto insurance company’s are highly regulated which means that for the most part, the coverage you buy from one company is going to be very, very similar to that of others. Also keep in mind that agency service and claims handling are intangibles that you should factor in to your decision-making process.