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While auto insurance might not be your biggest expense, it can definitely eat up a significant chunk of your budget. If you’re a 35-year-old driver in the United States, for example, we’ve found that on average you pay over $ 1,650 a year to insure your car. This comes down to almost $ 140 per month.

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However, the price you pay for auto insurance varies widely and can depend on factors such as:

  • Age

  • Place of residence

  • Driving record

  • History of accidents and claims

  • Credit (except in states that prohibit the practice like California and Massachusetts, among others)

  • History of Ongoing Auto Insurance Coverage

These and other factors can represent a swing of hundreds of dollars one way or the other in terms of the premium you pay. For example, having bad credit could drive up your car insurance premiums even more than causing an accident. A driver with bad credit pays about $ 320 more, on average, than a driver who recently caused a crash resulting in injury.

You can control some of the factors that typically affect your auto insurance rates. As the Insurance Information Institute says, “When it comes to reducing your auto premiums, you are in the driver’s seat. One factor is how much you compare the rates before purchasing a policy. Here is an overview of some cheap auto insurance options.

Related: Compare auto insurance rates with EverQuote

Best Cheap Auto Insurance Companies

United States

Strong points: USAA offers very competitive rates and often beats other major insurers in direct comparisons. In addition to great rates for good drivers, USAA has great rates for drivers who have been ticketed for speeding.

Potential drawback: You may not be eligible for USAA insurance. You must be an active member of the military or a veteran, or an immediate family member, such as the child of a military member.

Erie Insurance

Strong points: Erie is another insurer that often offers some of the lowest rates compared to large companies. Erie emerges as one of the cheapest options for a variety of drivers, including drivers with good records, those who have caused an accident, and drivers with a conviction for impaired driving.

Potential drawback: Depending on where you live, you may not be able to purchase Erie insurance. Erie is a regional insurer with operations in Washington, DC and Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Geico

Strong points: Geico is known for its great rates and offers a ton of potential discounts on auto insurance, ranging from discounts for military and good students to awards for being a member of certain organizations such as alumni groups and students. professional organizations.

Drivers with low credit should definitely take a look at Geico, as other insurers will penalize drivers with low credit more.

Potential drawback: Geico may not be competitive if you have a DUI on your record.

State farm

Strong points: State Farm offers great rates for many drivers, including good drivers and people who have been ticketed for speeding.

Potential drawback: Drivers with poor credit might not find a good deal at State Farm.

Related: Compare auto insurance rates with EverQuote

Tips for getting cheap auto insurance

1. Go shopping

Just as you can get great deals on clothes and appliances, you can buy cheap auto insurance. Get several insurance quotes, at least three. Quotes are free and easy to obtain online or from an insurance agent. We found that the difference between the highest and lowest average rate among the companies surveyed for a safe driving policy was approximately $ 1,130.

Compare good prices with reviews from companies, so you don’t inadvertently buy bad customer service. The best auto insurance companies combine good prices and excellent service.

2. Increase your deductible

If you purchase collision and comprehensive coverage, you will be able to choose a deductible amount. This is the amount deducted from an insurance claim check if you are making a collision or property damage insurance claim. For example, if your insurer sends you a claim settlement of $ 5,000 to repair your car after an accident and your deductible is $ 500, you will receive a payment of $ 4,500.

Increasing the deductible from $ 500 to $ 2,000, for example, will lower your auto insurance premium.

3. Explore discounts

Auto insurers often offer a multitude of discounts.

For example, you can get a “bundle” discount if you buy two or more policies from the same insurer, such as home and auto insurance. A bundle discount can range from 5% to 25%, which generally makes it one of the best auto insurance discounts you can claim.

Discounts for having no accidents, being a loyal customer, and using paperless billing are also common.

4. Buy again if you have any changes to your driving record or location

Even if you’ve found a good auto insurance rate with a good driving record, shop again if you have a change in driving record, such as getting a speeding ticket. Cheaper car insurance companies for good drivers may no longer be a cheap option when your circumstances change.

Moving is another good time to change your insurance. You may find drastically different rates when you change locations.

Related: Compare auto insurance rates with EverQuote

Methodology

We averaged rates nationwide for 10 top insurers using data from Quadrant Information Services, an insurance data and analytics provider.

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