Whether you’re saving up for your child’s college fund or hoping to take your dream vacation, finding small ways to save money on your monthly bills can add up to a hefty chunk of change. Lowering your monthly car insurance payment is a great place to start saving. And with car insurance, there are many ways to save, including shopping around for the best price before opening a policy and receiving discounts you are eligible for once that policy has begun. Let’s explore some of the ways you can save money on your car insurance policy from the start and then delve into common discounts to inquire about.
Basic ways to save
Saving on your insurance policy doesn’t have to be complicated. It starts with finding the right insurance for you. There’s no reason to settle for an expensive policy that offers less than desirable coverage when you could pay less and get more. The first step to savings is to do your research. Taking the time to look around and find the right insurance company for you could save you a bundle in the long run.
Shop around for the best price
Prices vary widely from company to company, so it’s worth it to get at least three price quotes. Some insurance carriers are more affordable than others depending on your specific needs, like if you have a stellar driving record or multiple cars to insure. To get a quote, you can either call the company directly or use the quote journey on their website. They’ll ask you a series of questions about you, your household, and your driving record before telling you what your monthly premium would be should you choose them. Price comparison websites are a great way to compare insurance policies and premiums from multiple companies at once.
Don’t buy just for the price, though. An inexpensive policy that doesn’t fulfill your needs (whether that’s through their offerings, their level of customer service, their claims processing speed, or something else) isn’t worth it. Ask your friends and relatives for their recommendations. Contact your state insurance commission to see if they can provide information about a company’s consumer complaints. You can also look online for customer reviews, but be mindful that people are more likely to write reviews when they’re either exceptionally impressed or disappointed, not just fine with what they have. Choose an agent or company representative who will take the time to answer your questions. And finally, discounts and overall price are important, but so is doing business with a reputable insurance agent who will have your back in case of an accident. You are buying insurance to give you financial safety and security, so it’s important to choose a financially stable company. Check your insurance company’s financial position with rating agencies such as AM Best or Standard & Poor’s.
Ask for a higher deductible
A great way to save is by asking for a higher deductible, which is the amount of money you pay before your insurance coverage kicks in. By applying for a higher deductible amount, you can significantly reduce your monthly costs. For example, increasing your deductible from $200 to $500 can reduce monthly insurance policy costs by 15 to 30 percent. With a $1,000 deductible, you can save over 40 percent. Before choosing a higher deductible amount, make sure you have enough money to pay that deductible in the case of an accident.
Like we mentioned earlier, one major way to reduce your monthly car insurance premium is to get a discount. There are many common car insurance discounts that you may not know you are already eligible for. You may also need to proactively ask your car insurance company for a rebate review to ensure that you have all your eligible savings. Most discounts are not difficult to find if you spend the time to look for them!
How to find discounts
- Surf the web
Most insurance companies have a webpage in which the type of discounts available and their requirements are listed. If you can’t find it for your carrier, type “[car insurance company name] discounts” into your search engine of choice and the page should pop up.
- Review your policy
Some car insurance discounts are mandated by state law. That means, if you qualify, you may already be receiving car insurance at a discounted rate. Review your policy and your state’s laws to be sure that any discounts you are legally owed are being automatically deducted.
- Talk to your agent
It’s always good to check in with your insurance agent or call your insurance provider’s customer service line to check in and make sure that you are not missing out on any potential savings. Typically, an agent can ask a few questions and let you know about any discounts that you may qualify for.
- Drive safely
The best way to find car insurance discounts? Be a safe driver. This lowers your base premium and ensures that your monthly payment won’t go up due to traffic tickets, accidents, or multiple claims. Many companies offer an additional discount if you’re accident-free for a set period of time.
Discounts commonly offered
Car insurance discounts typically fall into the following three categories:
Discounts on policy purchase and payment methods are some of the easiest to qualify for. Many insurers reward their customers by paying the full amount, switching to automatic payments, or receiving an electronic bank statement. Some companies offer ongoing insurance discounts to customers who take out new insurance before the old insurance expires, often between five to seven days before the current period expires.
At Elephant, our policy discounts include an electronic signature discount, an online quote discount, a multi-policy discount, and many more. You can see Elephant Insurance’s list of discounts here.
Have you taken out insurance for more than three years without any accidents? Have you completed a defensive driving course? If the policy has teenagers, did they pass the driver training course? All of these factors will help you to be eligible for a safe driver discount.
Because of the pandemic, many people are working from home and driving less. At Elephant, we think you should pay less for driving less. Our Work From Home Discount™ does just that.
In most cases, you can get a small discount on vehicles with anti-lock brakes, dual airbags, or other safety features. Oftentimes these discounts are only applied to accident or collision insurance coverage. Auto insurance companies can also offer discounts if you’re buying a new car or if you own an electric or hybrid vehicle.
If you don’t mind sharing your data, some companies can save you hundreds of dollars by using programs that track your driving. These programs use telematics technology (a mobile app or device that connects to a car’s diagnostic port to track driving behavior) to offer discounts and premiums, and to create customized insurance plans. A telematics device has access to a number of factors, including the number of miles driven, focused driving, speed and how often there is rapid acceleration, how turns are taken, hard braking, or the time of day when driving. Some telematics devices installed in cars can even tell if the airbag has been deployed. Elephant is launching its telematics app this year!
If you are currently shopping around for a car insurance policy that offers plenty of discounts, look no further than Elephant. We offer discounts for good students, responsible drivers, multi-car discounts, and everything in between. Our agents are knowledgeable and will always do their best to find you any and all discounts you may qualify for. Ready to get started? Get a quote today.