The following is a guest post.
Many families are struggling in today’s economy, and your family may very well be one of them. If you are at the end of your rope as you try to shave even more dollars off your family’s budget, take a moment to look at your insurance line item. Were you shocked when you saw the monthly total? Many people are. Insurance coverage is expensive, but it is also necessary. If you have had the same automobile policy for years, it’s time to see about cutting the cost using these seven tips.
1. Shop Around
Even if you are happy with your automobile insurance company and the coverage it provides, shop around. According to the Insurance Information Institute, “prices differ from company to company,” and it may be time to say “Sayonara” to your old carrier. Find out who covers your family, friends, and work colleagues’ automobiles, and contact the companies to see if they can give you better rates.
2. Especially if You’re Purchasing a New Car
If part of shaving money off your family’s budget is so you can buy a new car, you definitely need to shop for automobile insurance. A new vehicle means higher insurance costs, even if you are paying for it in full rather than financing it. Make certain you find the best deal from a reliable insurance company; otherwise, the insurance line item in your budget might just explode beyond your income.
3. Consider the Deductible
If you are a safe driver who also has savings stashed away, many insurance agents recommend raising your deductible to reduce your auto insurance premiums. This only works if you have money to cover the deductible in the event you are involved in an unfortunate accident, however. If you don’t, this option might not work for you no matter how safe a driver you are, as others are reckless on the road.
4. For Those With Older Cars
If you have an older car that is paid off, you don’t need full automobile insurance coverage. Go to Kelley Blue Book or another estimation website and look up the current value of your faithful clunker. Then, take your insurance premium and multiply that by 10. Is your car or truck’s value less than that? Dump the collision and comprehensive coverage. You don’t need it.
5. Bundle Up
Many homeowners have discovered a cost-savings trick that reduces their overall insurance costs and makes their lives easier: bundling. Insurance companies that offer different types of coverage want your business, so shop around for a reliable carrier that will insure your automobiles, home, life, and other needs in one cost-saving bundle. You may reduce your insurance line item more than you realize.
6. Don’t Pay When You Don’t Drive
Your automobile insurance carrier may offer you discounts if you don’t drive too much. If it doesn’t, shop for a company that does. Low mileage discounts help drivers who only put a certain amount of miles on their vehicles annually save money. Some carriers also consider offering low-mileage discounts to drivers who carpool or vanpool to and from work each day. If this is you, check it out.
7. Group Insurance Through Your Employer
Finally, your employer may offer a group insurance plan that includes automobile coverage for your personal vehicles. You might also find a group plan through an association of which you’re member, such as your college alumni association. When you jump on board group discounts, you might find your savings are tremendous and you won’t need to reduce other portions of your family’s budget.
These seven tips help you save money on one of the most expensive line items in your family’s budget: insurance. Nearly everyone needs to reduce his or her expenses these days; there is nothing shameful about that. Make certain you aren’t missing opportunities to save money on your car insurance. Aside from these seven tips, consult an expert for additional savings.