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Car Insurance

28 ways to lower your car insurance rates

Different stages of life offer different discounts for auto insurance whether you’re just getting your license or you’ve had your license for decades. Read more to save on your premium.

Because car insurance is required by law throughout the United States, you can easily forget that it’s a product for which you can find deals. Don’t get trapped in the mindset that your premiums are a fixed cost you need to keep up with in order to drive your car. A lot can change in a year, so make sure you check in with your insurance agent on an annual basis to reconfigure your policy and unlock new discounts. Different stages of life offer different discounts for car insurance whether you’re just getting your license or you’ve had your license for decades. Regardless of your age, there are many general ways you can save.

Ways everyone can save on car insurance

  1. Be aware of where your house or workplace is located. When setting your premiums, insurance providers consider the crime and traffic rates of where your car spends most of its time. If your home or workplace is located in an area with high rates of both, you may want to add on comprehensive or collision coverages that will cover you in the event of theft or damages. You can even unlock a discount if you buy an anti-theft or tracking device for your car.

  2. Consider buying higher than your state minimum required liability coverage. You may never recover from being found at fault in an accident. You’ll have to pay out of pocket for other’s medical and property damage bills.

  3. Consider buying a vehicle that has up to date safety features. Cars that include full-front airbags and restraint devices can qualify you for safe driving discounts.

  4. Along with shopping for a car with safety features, remember that reliable vehicles such as family sedans are usually cheaper to insure, especially if they’re used. Luxury cars are cool, but higher premiums aren’t.

  5. If you have access to public transportation, ridesharing, or carpool consider leaving your car at home more often. Keeping your mileage low will qualify you for discounts and you may even be able to buy an occasional driver policy with significantly lower premiums.

  6. Always practice safe driving. Make it a goal to stop speeding, stop driving while distracted, and start following traffic rules. Repeated offensives stain your record. Consistently safe driving will allow you to stay on standard policy and might even unlock a safe driver discount.

  7. Consider setting a higher deductible to lower your monthly premium payments. However, you should only set your deductible to a price that you would be able to pay out of pocket at a moment’s notice if necessary.

  8. If your vehicle is old, unvaluable, and could be easily replaced then consider opting out of or lowering your collision and comprehensive coverage. These coverages will pay you in the event of an accident or theft, but if the cost of repairs would be more than the entire vehicle is worth, you probably don’t need this coverage.

  9. Make your car insurance payments on time or pay in full to keep your credit score clean.
    If you carrier provides more than just auto insurance, consider bundling your auto with home, renters, motorcycle, or boat insurance to become eligible for a multi-policy discount.

Ways for families to save money on car insurance:

Running a household is a balancing act. Just when you think you have your finances figured out, a new expense arises that needs to be squeezed into your budget. Your family is constantly growing and so are your bills. Luckily, marriage and having children and pets has made you a savvy person always looking for deals and ways to save money. However, some deals can’t be found in the weekly newspaper. Deals on car insurance policies have to be carefully researched because savings can be hiding throughout your policy.

  1. You all live under one roof, so keep your cars under one policy. Families that live together and drive together can pay together. Having multiple drivers and cars on the same policy unlocks multi-car and multi-driver discounts.

  2. If you’re married and want to combine policies, but aren’t sure whether to stay with your provider or move to your spouse or partner’s, you should both find the time to sit down and research how rates between your previous companies compare not only to each other, but other providers in your area. Online quote comparison sites, like Insurify.com, allow you to quickly customize, build, and buy a policy online so you can get back to your honeymoon.

  3. Just because you combined policies doesn’t mean the coverage on individual cars has to be the same. Older cars that could be easily replaced may not need collision coverage, but your spouse or partner’s new, expensive car definitely does. Customizing coverage for each car will keep you from paying unnecessary expenses.

  4. If you decide to keep separate policies, your spouse or partner will still be considered in your rates as a licensed driver living in your household. With this there’s still a chance for your rates to increase or decrease depending on your spouse’s driving and financial record.

  5. If your schedules allow it, carpool to and from work with your spouse.

  6. Keep your child on your family’s insurance policy as long as their home address remains your permanent address.

  7. Make sure to provide an educated guess when inputting your average mileage on your policy. If you’ve been driving more because you just had a baby or if your teen joined a new sport consider contacting your agent to increase your coverage based on your new average mileage so you’ll never have to pay outright for uncovered expenses after an accident. Likewise, if you noticed you’ve been driving less.

  8. If your child is leaving their car home to attend a college that is over 100 miles away, they may qualify for a “resident student” discount. You could save as much as 30% off their monthly car insurance bill.

  9. Ask your insurance provider about professional organizations they partner with in order to provide additional discounts. You may be a member of a union, for teachers or nurses, etc., or a club, like AAA or AARP, that can save you money on car insurance.

Ways for teens to save money on car insurance:

As a teen, you’ll find you gain a little more independence with each passing year. Suddenly, getting your driver’s license at sixteen grants you a whole new range of freedom. But just because you feel independent doesn’t mean your insurance policy needs to be. You can stay on your parent or guardian’s car insurance policy as long as their address remains your primary address. As a young driver, you’ll face higher premiums and you most likely don’t have your own income to pay for a separate policy. A family policy will unlock multi-car and multi-driver discounts, saving you and your whole family money.

  1. Make sure you follow your state’s specific rules for newly licensed drivers or drivers below the age of eighteen, such as only driving with immediate family for the first six months of your license. You don’t want points on your driving record that will lead to even higher premiums.

  2. If you just got your license and now plan to drive to your high school or part time job, make sure to make an educated guess on your mileage when purchasing a policy. If your daily commute becomes longer, consider contacting your agent to increase your coverage limits so you’ll never have to pay outright for unforeseen expenses.

  3. If you will be attending a college that’s over 100 miles away and plan to leave your car at home, you may qualify for a “resident student” discount. You could save your family as much as 30% off their monthly car insurance bill.

  4. If you commute to a part time job, consider building your work schedule for a few days a week, at consecutive times. That way you won’t have to travel to and from home or work more often throughout the week. You’ll keep your mileage low which will keep your premium low.

  5. Many insurance carriers offer good student discounts to full time students who maintain a B average or higher. So study hard in high school and college so that you can save money on premiums and put the money towards something like books or spring break.

  6. Even if it’s not required where you live, you should complete a driver’s education course. This shows that you’re serious about being a safe, responsible driver and carriers will reward this behavior with a discount.

Ways for retirees to save on car insurance:

Despite what you may have heard, aging definitely has its benefits, especially when it comes to saving money on your car insurance premium. Insurance providers begin to offer mature driver discounts to their customers usually around the age of 50. This discount is a general percentage taken off of your premium for reaching a certain age set by the provider. Luckily, this discount comes at a time where many drivers are looking to retire or put their children through college. So wherever you are in life at 50 you’ll have the savings to keep your money and spend it how you want.

  1. Additional coverages, such as collision or comprehensive, might not longer make financial sense if you’re driving significantly less than you used to when you worked full time. Decreasing or dropping these coverages all together will lower your premium.

  2. If you’re driving fewer miles, consider raising your deductible so that your monthly premiums become lower. It’s smart to choose the highest possible deductible that you can afford, but it’s important to figure out how much you can actually afford to pay out of pocket if you have to at a moment’s notice.

  3. If you no longer drive yourself very often and have a relative drive for you, consider changing the primary driver on your policy. Having a younger primary driver will lower your premium.

  4. Consider signing up for a defensive driver course through your insurance provider. These courses teach you crash prevention techniques and prove to your carrier that you’re serious about being a safe, responsible driver. Many carriers offer discounts to those who take this course.

It’s also important to remember that you don’t have to stay with the same insurance provider for life if you don’t think they offer the best services or customer support. Policies generally only last six months to a year, so don’t be afraid to shop around for a new policy before your coverage lapses. Use a quote comparison site like Insurify.com to get customized quotes. You can build and buy your policy online that way you can save your time and money.