Having car insurance is required by law in just about every state, but you don’t want to end up paying too much for it either. How can you find the right balance between the cost of your policy and the coverage it provides? This guide will walk you through the essentials of getting the right car insurance for your needs.
Your car insurance quote starts out with talking about what type of policy you’re interested in. The minimum that’s required by most states is called liability insurance, but you have several other options as well. Whichever insurance you choose, it’s important to pick a policy that definitely covers your state mandated minimums.
• Liability Insurance covers damages to other vehicles or to any property in the case of an accident for which you are found at fault. Most liability policies will also cover any medical expenses for injuries sustained in those accidents. However, liability policies don’t usually pay for damages to your own vehicle, or for medical expenses to the driver or passengers within your own car. The other party’s insurance may cover that, but many people purchase additional coverage instead.
• Collision Insurance does pay for damages sustained to your own vehicle in an accident, even if the damages are entirely your fault and not that of the other driver. This is a nice add-on to basic liability insurance, because it adds another layer of protection w ithout going too much over your budget. Collision insurance can pay for damages to your vehicle even when there aren’t any other cars involved, as in the case of slipping on ice and crashing your own car into a telephone pole.
• Comprehensive Insurance is a policy that covers everything under liability and collision protection, as well as some other possibilities like theft or vandalism. Comprehensive insurance will often cover vehicle damage due to storms (like hail, or a tree falling over on your car), floods or fire. Sometimes comprehensive policies even pay for your rental car while yours is in the shop for repairs. Roadside assistance may be offered under a comprehensive policy as well.
So does this mean the only way to get affordable car insurance is by sticking with liability policies? Not at all. Even if you choose a comprehensive policy, there are still lots of ways to save. Nearly every insurance provider will offer drivers with a clean driving record cheap car insurance compared to someone with lots of tickets or who has a history of driving recklessly.
The car you drive can also get you discounts on your car insurance. Older cars often cost less to insure, because they would cost less to replace compared to a car that’s new off the lot. Also, if you buy a used car outright with cash instead of taking out an auto loan, you won’t be required to keep full insurance coverage on the vehicle, which will lower your rates. However, newer cars do have a lot of safety features that can contribute to cheap car insurance, like passenger side airbags or anti-lock braking systems.
Resource: Car Insurance | Kevin Gardner