Buying auto insurance can be confusing especially for new drivers. They have to deal with new terms and terminology. Sometimes a broker can keep on talking in a language that he understands. Unfortunately it does not help the client.
As mind-boggling as the whole process seems to be, there is a way out. The point is to cut the whole process into bite-size pieces, so digestion can be easier. Here it goes:
- What type of coverage do you need
All states require drivers to have insurance; states also set the minimum limits for coverage of damages you may cause to others. However, buying only the minimum may leave you inadequately covered. So, it may be worth increasing the limits set by the state.
Based on your local laws, determine also if you need uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage and personal injury insurance. Apart from these, you should decide whether or not to get optional coverage, such as collision and comprehensive coverage. Owners of newish automobiles should considering insuring it against crashes with Collision Coverage. And for the other damages that may come to it with Comprehensive Coverage. Most motorists would be looking for a package policy that would include these two covers.
- How much to pay
How much you pay depends on the coverage you are expecting: the more extensive the coverage, the higher your auto insurance premiums are. Compare the prevailing prices in your state for your type of coverage in order to see if you are paying the right price.
Take note that car insurance firms also offer discounts for some factors that lessen your risk. Taking advanced driving lessons, installing anti-theft systems, a good credit score, using a car with a high safety rating – all these will contribute to your chances of getting the best auto insurance rates.
- Prepare your personal information
Insurance rates are fixed based on statistical data, which are demographics-based. So when you sign up with a company, the most likely personal information they will ask from you are: marital status, credit score, driving record, how the vehicle will be used, and other information that will be used to establish your driving habits. This is needed by the company to assess your level of risk.
It is best you give the same information to every company you are going to ask a quote. This will make the comparison process a lot easier at a later stage. Otherwise, it can get confusing and becomes tougher to decide which quote was better.
- The search starts it all
A quick search should start your vehicle insurance shopping experience. This is one thing where you really must not indulge in impulse buying. Motorists are well advised to check a few quotes before even considering making a decision.
A search means calling insurance companies directly, or doing an online search. There are many sites that allow users to do comparison-shopping among different companies. One of the best ways to do this is to use comparison website rather than trying to go through all the companies you can find. Why do the leg work when it has already been done for you.
It may seem like it will take hours to go through all the companies. But these concerns have now been addressed by most auto insurers. They came up with much shorter quote questionnaires so that they do not have too many applicants leaving without completing it. A normal online auto insurance quote form should take maximum five minutes to fill. At the end of it you are most likely to receive the quote instantly.
- Making the choice
After getting information about all the available options, it is time to narrow down your choices. As basis for making a choice, try to assess your driving habits as realistically as possible. Also, be very clear about what type of coverage you are getting.
For example, if you have a relatively low mileage per year and if your car is in the garage for long continuous periods, consider a mileage-based policy. Some of the companies that offer this billing mode are State Farm, Allstate, and Progressive. If you have a clean slate and have zero-accident record, you may want to include Accident Forgiveness in your policy. What you leave out or include depends on your circumstances and personal preferences.