Hidden Ways to Cut Car Insurance

Consumers are countering rising gasoline prices and other vehicle operating costs by capitalizing on lower auto insurance rates, according to leading insurers.

Auto policy costs and regulations vary significantly from state to state, but there are a number of areas that consumers are able to control and adjust to optimize prices and quality. Answer Financial (www.answerfinancial.com) has 10 tips for keeping your rates down:

Check Credit Rating. In all states except California and Georgia, an individual's credit rating is a key factor that affects auto insurances rates. Good credit will be interpreted by insurers as less risky. Thus, it's important for consumers to order copies of their credit report from all major credit agencies to ensure accuracy and to correct any inaccurate derogatory points, such as late or missed payments, maxed-out credit lines, bankruptcy, foreclosure, etc.

Check Motor Vehicle Report. Like credit reports, state driving records may include inaccurate data on personal driving records, which are strongly considered when issuing respective individual and family auto rates. In addition, tickets, traffic school credit, and accident fault are sometimes not accurately reflected in state data, costing consumers hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Drivers should report errors to both their state motor vehicle department as well as their insurance carrier.

Double-Check Accident Reports. Local law enforcement and insurance accident reports occasionally include mistakes that will result in a higher rate. Accident reports are separate from motor vehicle records. Accident reports affect insurers' decisions and rates on a cumulative basis particularly if the driver has tickets or accidents down the road.

Never Let Coverage Lapse and Review Deductibles. Maintaining coverage without lapse makes a significant difference in rates. Separately, while deductible amounts initially save drivers in the event of a quick claim, they cost consumers more in the long run due to higher premiums. Drivers almost always save on premiums with higher deductibles of $500 or $1,000.

Look for Package Rates. In addition to multiple-vehicle discounts, consumers often save substantially by packaging all their insurance policies including auto, home, and personal liability together with one company.

Don't Miss Good-Student and Mature-Driver Discounts. Most consumers know that safe drivers are rewarded by insurers, but it's important to make sure your policy gives you a good driver discount. Most insurers lower rates for mature drivers (55 years and over) and for students who carry a 3.0 grade point average or better. Some carriers give more credit for these points than others, so shop around.

Take a Driving Safety Course. Many insurers will cut rates for drivers who take an approved driving safety course. Make sure that you've registered for a course recognized by your carrier, which will not only cut your rates but likely save in ticket fines and reduce your risk of bodily injury on the road.

Don't Forget Car Pool Credit. Many auto carriers drop premiums if you car pool to the office, especially if you drive more than 10 miles roundtrip. In addition, you'll save considerably on the rising prices at the pump and lend a hand to Mother Nature.

Check Rates Before Buying a New Car. Insurance rates vary considerably from car to car. Often expensive vehicles can add $50 - $100 per month in premiums. The type of vehicle, engine size (you'll pay for that turbo), parts costs and safety tests are all factored into insurance premiums. Sport cars and SUVs generally are more expensive to insure. Buyers often do not realize the big rate differences until after they drive off the lot.

Take Credit for Safety/Security Features. Drivers should make sure they are receiving lower rates for safety features such as air bags and anti-lock brakes. Devices that deter theft, such as alarm systems or devices that disable or track vehicles (such as LoJack), may also qualify for discounts. Some companies even waive deductibles if the car has been damaged when it was stolen but is recovered using a tracking device.

For more information, go to www.answerfinancial.com.

Steve Kroll is senior vice president of marketing at Answer Financial, Inc. (http://www.answerfinancial.com). An acknowledged expert in consumer marketing, he has more than 17 years of experience as an executive in the financial services industry including six as president of his own consulting firm, The Kroll Group, Inc., which specialized in retail financial products and payment systems. Its client base included affinity groups, Fortune 500 companies, management consulting firms and advertising agencies. Kroll's marketing accomplishments include developing insurance and investment product offerings for Charles Schwab, Citibank, Household International and The Signature Group. He also has created multiple-useage incentive and retention programs for some of the nation's leading credit card issuers and developed new lifestyle-and affinity-related credit cards that delivered an above-average response and usage rate. Kroll has also assisted in the development and marketing of Internet-based financial services for Wells Fargo, NYCE and American Skandia.

In The News:


pen paper and inkwell


cat break through


High Deductible Health Insurance Plans For Individuals and Families

Do you pay more attention to your car than your... Read More

Discover the Fortune Hiding in Your Insurance Premiums!

Ever thought about how to save money? Sure you have,... Read More

How Much Can My Auto Rate Increase After One Accident?

Accidents almost always make your insurance rates increase. Whether or... Read More

Do Insurance Premiums Increase Every Year?

Many people ask, "If I am supposed to get a... Read More

Online Insurance: The End of the High Street Broker?

When I was a lad, some 25 years ago, the... Read More

Health Savings Account (HSA): How Do I Invest It?

The Health Savings Account (HSA) is an amazing tool that... Read More

How to Reduce Home Insurance Premiums

Here are some useful tips on how to reduce Home... Read More

Health Insurance Plans and their Differences

Health insurance plans have changed dramatically over the past ten... Read More

Can I Get Affordable Dental Care?

In the United States most companies offer their employees dental... Read More

Useful Tips on Reducing Insurance Costs

Most people want lower insurance costs but are often too... Read More

Reducing Soaring Insurance Claim Costs

With the soaring rise in claims to insurers from their... Read More

Terrorism Insurance - What it Costs Small Business

The Terrorism Insurance Act of Nov. 26, 2002. This helps... Read More

Long Term Care Insurance How Much Should I Buy?

Long-term care insurance policies have a variety of features and... Read More

Student Health Insurance - Is It Necessary?

As a young, healthy college student, it might be tempting... Read More

Health Savings Accounts (HSA): Do They Vary From State to State?

The Health Savings Account (HSA) is an amazing tool that... Read More

Dont Just Accept Your Car Insurance Renewal Quote

UK car insurance companies make substantial profits every year because... Read More

Why Does Health Insurance Cost So Much?

Why does health insurance cost so much? Year after year,... Read More

Long-Term Care Insurance: Eldercare Solution

When I suddenly had to become a fulltime caregiver to... Read More

Global Warming: Why Consumers and Insurers Are Getting Hot Under the Collar Over Life Insurance.

Global warming may have been lurking on our horizon for... Read More

What Are The Differences Between A Cancellation Notice And Non-renewal Notice?

OK, you take that stroll down to the mailbox excitedly... Read More

Japanese Overseas Travel Insurance

If you are an expatriate planning on long-term residence in... Read More

Insurance For All Your Gadgets

Personalisation, Digitalisation, Mobilisation, these 3 words represent your life today.... Read More

Auto Owners Insurance ? Do You Really Need It?

If you think you don't have any need for auto... Read More

Tips for Buying a New Home

My wife and I recently purchased a new home in... Read More

The Life Insurance Policy and What You Need to Know Before You Buy

Are you looking to buy a life insurance policy? Well,... Read More

Are You Running the Risk of an Uninsured Business? Beware & Get Business Insurance

Human life is precarious and so are the activities they... Read More

Car Insurance Rates ? Can You Lower Them?

Car insurance rates are prohibitive nowadays. Many families really struggle... Read More

Factors That Affect Your Car Insurance Premium

Many factors affect the premium you will pay for auto... Read More

Are You Overpaying On Your Home Insurance Policy?

For many consumers the cost of daily living is becoming... Read More

5 Strategies To Reduce Your Car Insurance Premiums

Your latest car insurance bill has arrived and it is... Read More

Guide to Life Insurance Terms

Listed below is a useful guide to life insurance terms.... Read More

Why Dont Insurance Companies Reward Us for Being Healthy?

Insurance is always a gamble, a bet actually.You are betting... Read More

Insure Your House

When we talk about insurance the thing you have to... Read More