In case you ever wondered if the rumors were really true, it really is illegal to take a car on a public road without at least liability insurance. The only thing that the states disagree on is how to penalize it when someone irresponsibly drives without insurance. For those who wonder about why anyone would even be tempted to break the law and go about without insurance, one needs to remind oneself that on average, it can cost close to $1000 a year to get a car insured; and we live in a time of rampant unemployment. It certainly is possible to obtain proper coverage for less; but sniffing out cheaper car insurance requires a certain amount of knowledge of how the market operates.
There are nearly 500 insurers of cars in this country. Only a few are considered nationally recognized; all the rest of them are regional. With that kind of competition, the car insurers do offer you all kinds of ways in which to drive down the price of your coverage.
Car insurers offer you six kinds of coverage: for bodily injury, for medical payments, for property damage, for collisions, against uninsured motorists and more. The thing is, if it’s an old car that you have, you really need to get coverage for everything. You can move towards cheaper car insurance by being selective about what kind of coverage you choose. Typically, you’re supposed to pay no more than 10% of the value of your car in insurance premiums. If you have an old car that’s only worth $4000, paying more than $400 is just not worth it. You could skip on collision coverage for instance and save some money. You could also increase the deductible considerably and save up to a third.
Basically, you need to get quotes from at least three different insurers (while making sure that the prices you hear are for the same kind of coverage). While you may envy the kind of leverage volume buyers have in the prices they get to negotiate, you need to realize that you have a certain amount of leverage when you go to the insurer who covers your home, and your person. When you buy more than one product from a provider, you can set yourself up as volume buyer and take advantage of the discounts offered.
But apart from that, you need to take a look at the quotes you get from all the major insurers in your area and check the prices out with your state insurance department. Once you do, you’ll get to hear about which insurers are actually worth the trouble rices notwithstanding. Some insurers are in too shaky a financial situation to actually be reliable. They get ratings like D or F. These mean the same thing that they do in school. You also want advice from your state insurance department about how well each company does processing claims and disputes fairly.
You can always get cheaper car insurance if you don’t drive your car that much. Low-mileage drivers can easily negotiate discounts that save a third off. And if you sign up to have payments go out of your bank in an automatic way, that’s an extra 5% discount for you.