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Stretch Your Monthly Budget with Tips for Auto Insurance Discounts
No one wants to overpay on car insurance or buy unnecessary insurance. For just this reason, you went to the trouble of comparing quotes and discussing the particulars of different policies with a slew of insurance agents. Truth is, you could save even more by fine-tuning the existing policy. The following tips apply to most insurers.
Change the Deductible
Every insurance policy is a trade-off between the deductible limit and premium. A higher deductible means more out-of-pocket expense for you during the annual cycle, but it also means lower premiums. For instance, a $200 deductible requires you to pay the first $200 of any claims during any particular year. Raising this to $500 reduces your premium payments by anywhere between 15 to 30 percent. If your emergency fund can handle a higher deductible, by all means raise it and start saving immediately.
Medical Coverage Overlap
If you already have decent medical insurance, including life and disability, most auto policies are redundant. Look over the policy and see what can be dropped as unnecessary. This unnecessary expense can be reduced to the state minimum for personal injury.
Excess Auto Coverage
Collision coverage is a lender requirement for auto financing. Once the loan is repaid, this insurance can be legally dropped. If you have opted for a high deductible, assess the car’s value to determine the maximum claim for the totalled vehicle. There’s no need to pay for coverage that cannot be of use.
Safety Gear Discounts
Insurance providers offer discounts for vehicles with certain safety devices installed, including approved anti-theft devices, anti-lock brakes, air bags, and automatic seat belts. Some insurers have already adopted the next wave of safety discounts in the form of driving feedback monitors. They may even provide the approved devices to customers.
Driver Education courses are another path to lower premiums. The state-approved classes charge tuition, but you’ll make this back in premium savings over the years to come. Teens earn discounts for good grades. A status change, such as getting married or purchasing a first home, should be reported to your agent for potential discounts.
Downsizing the Vehicle
Newer cars are almost a mandatory status symbol in some professions, but otherwise you can save a lot of money on insurance simply by driving an older model car. Choose a reliable family vehicle with all the safety features for the most savings. Ease of repair is a major consideration here. A standard shift station wagon or hatchback pays for itself in premium savings.
An auto quote does not take into account the other types of insurance out there. If the insurer also provides home and/or life policies, you can combine these for a significant discount.
Access to free towing, gas delivery, and other roadside perks sounds like a great idea. Using these perks through the insurer results in higher premiums. You should seek roadside assistance elsewhere.
Insurers offer a large number of discounts to reduce the initial premiums. Some cost you money upfront but will provide long-term reductions. Check with the insurer for a complete list of available discounts.
Jill Wing lives and writes in London. She writes for www.carinsurance.org.uk where you can find more information on car insurance, trips, and tips for saving money when you drive.
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