The Ultimate Guide To Insuring Your Car
After an entire day of searching, you’ve found a brand new car. We know that you’re excited to take it out on the road, but before you do, there’s something that you’ll need to do. You’ve got to get some kind of driver’s insurance.
You don’t want to get caught up in an accident without it if you want to get reimbursed for your medical bills and car damages. Besides that, having it is required in most states.
Insuring your car and finding a rate you can afford isn’t as straightforward as you may think. Check out this guide to learn how you can find the best policy for your needs and wallet.
Types of Coverage
Before you start shopping around for auto insurance, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the different types of coverage you have to choose from. Keep in mind that most of these policies are not for business use of your vehicle. We’ll start with the tried and true. Liability insurance.
Having liability car insurance is required in most states. It doesn’t protect you when you get into an accident. You won’t be able to use it to get reimbursement for your medical bills or car damages.
What it does do is cover the other driver who was caught up in the accident. If you’re found at fault for the crash, your insurance company will step in and take care of things. This way, you don’t have to pay for the other driver’s medical bills out of your own pocket.
Uninsured motorist coverage is the opposite of liability insurance. It will cover you if you get into a crash and the other party is found to be at fault.
For example, let’s say that you’re sitting at a light minding your own business when you’re clipped by another driver. They keep going like nothing happened and are never found.
Your uninsured motorist coverage will kick in to pay for the damages dealt to you and the body of your vehicle.
Personal Injury Protection
When it comes to personal injury protection, you’ve got two policy choices. You can go with personal injury coverage or medical payment coverage. We’ll tell you that the former is more flexible.
Personal injury coverage will do more than handle the medical bills for you and all your passengers. You can also use it to get reimbursement for lost wages and other costs that aren’t necessarily medical.
Medical payment coverage will only pay for your hospital bills. It’s important not to get medical payment coverage confused with regular old medical insurance. It will only cover your hospital stay if it’s related to an auto accident.
A comprehensive policy will give you the coverage you need to pay for almost any damages to your car as long as it wasn’t caused by a collision of any kind.
If a hail storm blows through your area and dents your car, your comprehensive policy will kick in. It also covers theft, fire, vandalism, hitting a deer, tornados, and flooding.
Collision insurance will help cover damages if you’re proven at fault for an accident. It’s not the same as liability insurance because it takes care of collisions of any kind.
If you hit a mailbox, guardrail, or inanimate object, your coverage will swoop in to save the day.
Your state isn’t going to bust you if you don’t have roadside assistance. It’s not required, but that doesn’t mean it’s not helpful.
It comes in during an emergency. For example, if your car decides to stop in the middle of the road, you can use your roadside assistance to have it towed to safety.
It comes in handy when you run out of gas in the middle of a road trip or you lock your keys out of your car.
Gap insurance will kick in if you ever owe more on repairs than your vehicle is worth. It will pay the difference between what you owe and the value of the car.
You can go to an insurance company to get this type of insurance or get it through the dealership where you got your car. The price will vary depending on what option you choose.
A lot of times, when it’s going to take a few days to repair your car, dealerships will give you a rental to use. If you have reimbursement coverage, you’ll be able to get your money back for it.
How Much Does Insurance Cost?
It’s no secret that paying for all this coverage can come at a hefty cost. The quote your local auto insurance company gives you can vary based on a few factors.
If you’re trying to keep your insurance costs down, don’t go out and purchase a sports car. The more a vehicle is worth, the more buying car insurance is going to cost you.
Stick to a simple sedan or minivan. Your wallet will thank you.
Do you have a history of speeding tickets and car collisions? You’re going to spend more money to insure a vehicle if you do. Companies reward clean driving records.
New drivers are going to pay more for their insurance coverage than others. It’s just the nature of the beast.
Since they don’t have a lot of experience yet, companies view them as high risk to insure. As these younger drivers get older, their premiums will begin to go down.
Your Credit Score
In most states, insurance companies are allowed to take a person’s credit score into account when giving them a quote.
If you’ve spent years polishing your score and barely have a blemish on it, you’ll be able to get a better price.
Your location has a large role to play when it comes to the price of your insurance policy. If you live somewhere that sees a high number of accidents and collisions, you can expect to pay more.
Do the insurance quotes you’re getting have you heavily considering selling your vehicle and taking public transportation wherever you go? You’ll be happy to know that there are ways for you to save money on your policy.
If you’ve got multiple cars, you might as well put them all under the same policy. Not only is it a pain to take out separate policies, but if you lump them all in together, you’ll get the chance to cash in a multi-car discount.
Insurance companies like your business. If you can bring them more of it, that makes them very happy. They’ll be willing to cut you a deal if you qualify for the discount.
To take advantage of the deal, every driver on the policy has to live under the same roof and be related. If you want to share coverage with your roommate, that’s fine but you both have to own the vehicle you’re insuring.
Be a Safer Driver
Again, if you have a driving record that’s muddled with speeding tickets and traffic accidents, insurance companies are going to charge you more.
To this end, practice road safety. Put your phone away while you’re driving. If you need to call someone back or send a text, find a place to pull over first.
Pay attention to your surroundings. Use your turn signals every time, and always come to a complete stop. When the weather outside is bad, you’ll want to be even more mindful.
Take a Driver’s Course
If you take a defensive driving course, your insurance company might give you a discount.
Most companies have certain approved courses that count toward the program. You’ll have to contact your insurance agent for a list of classes that you can sign up for.
When it comes to buying anything, you should never go with the first option. It’s good to shop around a little.
Get a few different insurance quotes, so you can get the best bang for your buck. Remember that getting an estimate doesn’t lock you into anything.
Follow These Essential Tips for Insuring Your Car
Insuring your car can be expensive, but it’s necessary. Without it, you’ll be in serious trouble if you get into a crash. You won’t be able to get reimbursed for the money you spend to repair your vehicle if you don’t have a policy.
Not to mention, having insurance is required in most states. Don’t get caught without it.
For more tips on the legal and financial world of car insurance, feel free to explore the rest of our blog.