How To Get affordable Car Insurance

As soon as you start shopping for a car insurance company, you are flooded with “lowest rates” and “cheapest insurance” offers. Before you take the plunge consider some important factors that actually make car insurance affordable.

In order to have better control over rates, it is necessary to be careful in selecting the appropriate coverages and features that make your car insurance meet all your needs. It’s also important to look for an insurance company that gives you fair, prompt and reliable customer service at good rates. Affordable car insurance needn’t be a far fetched dream if you spend some time understanding your requirements before buying your policy.

State Laws– A good starting point is to know the minimum insurance cover you must have in accordance with your state laws. Car Insurance is mandatory in most US states and each has different requirements for the basic minimum coverage you need to carry in order to take your car on the road. Depending on your state law, you must devise an insurance plan that meets the basic requirements as well as covers other risks, which you may preempt, depending on the model of your car, your driving record, distance traveled, number of people using your car, etc; also take into account your other fellow drivers and what kind of coverages they usually carry. Every place has a different trend and it’s always good to be in the know so that you have an idea about the general claim figures doing the rounds. For example, the minimum state regulated requirements for Texas auto insurance cover $25,000 for bodily injury and property damage each, going up to $50,000 towards an accident. However, be prepared when you buy just this coverage you have only ensured that you are protected incase you are found at fault in an accident and the other driver claims from your car insurance. This gives you a rough idea about the liability amounts you should be purchasing. Always buy adequate coverage over and above the minimum liability to protect yourself too when you buy car insurance.

Know the present value of your car– The other important factor is to know the present value of your car. Your car insurance quotes would vary depending on the model of your car. For example, a Mitsubishi Lancer is going to be costlier in terms of repairs than the Honda Pilot. Similarly, there are cars which are charged higher premiums when it comes to safety features, theft, injury, repairs and collision claims. The simple equation here is; the safer (read lower risk) your car is, the more affordable will be your car insurance.

Some coverages you shouldn’t ignore – Additionally coverages like Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist, Comprehensive, Collision, and PIP should all be considered depending upon the age of your car and your specific requirements. Ideally it makes no sense to keep collision coverage once your car crosses 8 years. Similarly comprehensive coverage should be dropped once it’s over 10 years old. The logic is simple. Any claim you make from your insurance company at this stage will not be a very significant amount once factors like depreciation and deductibles are counted in. However if you feel you might not be able to bear out of pocket expenses to replace/ repair your damaged car, stick with these coverages. PIP is mandatory in some sates but is advisable to keep on your policy if even if it’s not in your state regulation list. The same goes for Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverages. These really come in handy if you get involved in a hit and run accident.

Check the reputation of the insurance company– Make sure you do a background check of the financial reputation of the company that you wish to get insured with; know their complaint index; read some testimonials about them. The last thing you want to do is go with a company that promises affordable car insurance, but finds every reason in the book to shortchange you on your claim.

Consider Additional benefits– Some companies offer plenty of other benefits in place of discounts that actually make for affordable car insurance. Benefits like lifetime car repair guarantee, 24/7 insurance claim hotline, waiver of the deductible for a “Not at Fault” Accident, first accident forgiveness, etc all actually save you more money in the long run.

Remember – It’s never a good idea to over or under insure your car because you end up losing money in the long term in both cases. In a nutshell, buy a car insurance policy that not only meets all your requirements but also offers an edge in terms of customer care. Tailor it to get affordable car insurance that is the best value for money policy for your dollars.

Things That Cover on Car Insurance

Most people look at car insurance as a burden, one that they have to bear because of State insurance laws. They buy the bare minimum state mandated liability coverage to stay legal and carry on driving, assuming they are completely covered in case of a mishap. Yet others start with buying multiple car insurance coverages, and over time decide they need to save money, which can be done by cutting on certain coverages. The rude awakening comes when they get into an accident where they are at fault, or have their car stolen or damaged, and realize their policy did not include the necessary car insurance coverage to cover any of these events. A little bit of planning and foresight can help avoid such situations.

Car insurance isn’t rocket science, and all it takes is some understanding of the basic function of each car insurance coverage and then deciding if it’s really worth investing in or not. This is especially true if you have an old beat up car. Would you rather pay for comprehensive and collision insurance and the deductibles as well (at the time of claiming), or does it make more sense to simply go without, and save the premium and deductible money in an emergency fund for your car? Insurance is a gamble and you pay for the peace of mind from knowing that in case of an eventuality you are covered. You may or may not need to use it.

Liability or third party insurance is another area where you need to consider the particulars of your location, the driving skills of the other drivers using the car, and your financial capability to pay the other driver for any damages you might have caused, in case you are found at fault in an accident. If you drive long hours, on congested roads, or if you have a relatively inexperienced driver also driving this car, you might consider keeping a high liability car insurance coverage. TX car insurance laws for example, ask for a minimum liability of 30/60/25 starting January 2011. One in five people in TX are uninsured, so while you want to be sure you get adequately compensated in case of an accident, you might also want to buy Uninsured Motorist/Underinsured Motorist coverage if you live there.

Umbrella insurance is one of the most under rated car insurance coverages. It’s actually a very smart way to increase your liability coverage and comes in handy incase of potentially bankrupting lawsuits. You don’t want to have to pay out of your pocket in case your car hits a school bus full of kids and hurts somebody seriously or ends up totaling a high-end luxury car. It doesn’t cost too much to get $2 million umbrella insurance, and it kicks in only when the upper limits of your liability coverage have been exhausted.

Gap insurance is a good option to invest in if your car is not fully paid for and you still have to make most of the payments. In case your car is totaled, your full car insurance coverage will only pay for the car’s blue book value which factors in its depreciation amount, whereas you will still need to pay your dealer the balance installments for the car, making you upside down on your payments. Gap insurance fills this gap and helps you pay off the balance amount. However, investing in gap insurance is only recommended if you still owe most of the money on your car.

PIP or no fault coverage is mandatory in some states while it isn’t available in others. However if it is available in yours, it’s a good option to look into, after reviewing your health insurance policy. Personal Injury protection coverage takes care of medical, work loss, funeral, survivor’s loss and other maintenance expenses incurred post an accident regardless of who is found at fault in the accident; a good car insurance coverage to consider as it takes so many factors into consideration while calculating your claim account.

So next time you decide to buy yourself just a minimum liability car insurance, think twice. The liability coverage will only compensate others for injury or property damage caused by your car; it will do nothing for you. Also look at the other car insurance coverages and try to strike a good balance of rates and coverage to give you better protection in case of an unforeseen eventuality.