Shopping for auto insurance shouldn’t be difficult and neither should finding the best rate for you. Before you sign up with a carrier, be sure to shop around.
Before you start, you'll need the following:
- Date of birth
- Home address
- Social Security number
- Drivers license number
- Driving history
- Make and model of vehicle
- VIN number
- Average weekly driving distance
- ...and other financial information.
Once you gather everything together, take these steps to find best quotes for your needs
Determine Coverage Needs
What kind of coverage do you need, and how much?
Liability: Protects a person if you hit them in an accident
This type is typically seen together in a set of three: Bodily injury single person / Bodily injury multiple people / Property damage. For example: 20/40/10 would be $20,000 bodily injury for one person hurt, $40,000 for everyone in vehicle you hit, and $10,000 in property damage
How Much Do I Need?
The higher your coverage, the less amount of risk you have, but the more you’ll pay. In other words, it’s up to you. Please note: Minimum amounts are determined by the state that you live in.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
This amount protects you and your family if you are in an accident.
Savings Tip: Have health insurance? It can be your primary coverage with PIP used as secondary coverage. In other words, your health insurance pays the maximum amount available for the claim and the PIP pays the rest (depending on your coverage level).
How Much Do I Need?
Check your health insurance (if any) and determine your need based on what you already have. Minimum required amounts (if any) are determined by the state that you live in.
Comprehensive and Collision
This covers damage that is NOT caused by an accident, from storm damage (flood, hail, fallen branches, etc.,) to fire and flying objects on the highway.
It is often required if you are financing a new or newish vehicle, or leasing a vehicle.
Savings Tip: Consider dropping if you own the vehicle and the yearly coverage cost is higher than 10% of the current value of your car.
Additional Coverage and Add On’s
You can usually add other protections to your policy - the following are just a few of them.
Covers amounts above PIP coverage
Covers you when uninsured or underinsured driver causes the accident.
Savings Tip: Drivers in Detroit should consider this as a must.
This is usually inexpensive and covers you when you rent a vehicle.If you don't have an alternative means of transportation, this is an option that could save you a lot of frustration and money.
Savings Tip: If you're renting a car and you have this on your insurance, you don’t need to purchase additional coverage. This could potentially save you hundreds of dollars!
You may save enough every month to buy a small coffee by skipping this coverage, but if you need a tow, paying for the truck and driver will cost you more that adding this to your policy.
What About? Additional Insurance Questions
Not much good news here. Shop around for the best rates, but understand that young and inexperienced drivers will pay a lot more for coverage.
Leadfoot drivers will pay more, even without points on their license. The best advice is to slow down. After a few years without moving violations, ask your carrier if they will lower their rates. If not, shop around!
Several companies will drop your coverage or not offer quotes if you have a DUI, however, you do have options. Depending on your history, you can still get competitive quotes from many major insurance carriers.