As a companion to my other articles on how to save money on health insurance, how to save money on homeowners insurance, and how to save money on life insurance, I thought I’d tackle car insurance. What follows is a list of six tips for reducing your premiums and saving a ton of money.
Keep your driving record clean
In other words, don’t get nailed for speeding like I did a few months back. I was fortunate in that it was a first offense, and I was able to keep my record clean by pleading nolo contendre (no contest) and paying the fine, but… Next time I won’t be so lucky, as I’ll wind up with points on my license and higher insurance premiums.
Increase your deductible
If you’re willing to bear a greater portion of the risk, you can save a significant amount of money. Simply call your agent and ask them to increase your deductible. Just be sure that you have enough cash on hand to cover your out-of-pocket expenses in the event of an accident.
Drop unnecessary coverage
If you’re driving an older car, you might want to consider dropping your comprehensive and/or collision coverage entirely. After all, what’s the sense in paying a ton of money to insure against damage to a car that might not be worth repairing? Note that I’m not suggesting that you drop your insurance coverage entirely, just the portion that pays for repairs on your own car.
Bundle multiple policy types together
I can’t speak for all insurance companies, but we get a nice “multi-line” discount for carrying multiple policies with a single company. We actually have two car policies, our homeowner’s policy, a personal articles policy (for my wife’s engagement and wedding rings) and an umbrella policy all with the same company.
Ask about other discounts
You might qualify for discounts for being accident-free, renewing your policy, driving relatively few miles each year, taking a defensive driving course, etc. Be sure to talk to your agent and get what you have coming to you.
Assuming that you’re doing everything else right, another great way to save money on car insurance is to comparison shop. You can either call around to local agents, or use the auto insurance comparison tool at FiveCentNickel. Whatever you do, be sure to buy from a reputable company so you won’t run into any problems if/when you file a claim.
So there you have it… Six simple tips for saving money on car insurance. If you have any further suggestions, please be sure share them in the comments.