Posts Tagged ‘auto insurance policy’

New Auto Insurance Study Reveals Buyer Preferences

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

The Insurance Buyer Insight Study found that price is the #1 concern for buyers of auto insurance, with 65.8 percent of the 878 people polled saying that price was the main factor driving their decision-making. The Consumer Price Index found that auto insurance costs have increased 33.3 percent from 2002 to 2011.

How Much Have Auto Insurance Costs Gone Up?

Last year alone, insurance costs rose 3.6 percent, driving consumers to hit the internet in search of better deals. This rate was faster than medical costs (3 percent) and housing (1.3 percent), and almost on par with escalating food prices (up 3.7 percent). Worse yet, the average auto insurance buyer can end up with a raw deal if he or she does not shop around. The study looked at auto insurance quotes from 17 different carriers over a three-year period and found that the average difference between the lowest and the highest auto quotes is $1,437!

What Else Do People Want In Auto Insurance?

Prices aside, the study also revealed that consumers care about…

  • Finding trustworthy information about a provider,
  • Having confidence they are getting the coverage they need,
  • Being able to design a suitable insurance package, and
  • Accessing great customer service.

Where Can I Get Help Buying Auto Insurance?

Unlike most other shopping choices, consumers said that recommendations from family and friends DID NOT influence their purchase decisions. They also said that “knowing the company from advertisements” did not sway them one way or the other. Instead, it seemed most buyers were using the Internet to arrive at an unbiased solution.

  • 70.4 percent said they would like to use a site that compares quotes and offers reviews before buying coverage.
  • 26 percent said they used an insurance agent or perused auto insurance provider websites before buying last.

For your convenience, we offer free online auto insurance quotes right here, right now.

auto insurance

Auto Insurance Tips: Mechanical Breakdown Coverage

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

Failing to plan for mechanical breakdowns is one of the quickest ways to find yourself in dire financial straits. While most of us purchase auto insurance to protect ourselves from a calamity, you will still want to consider mechanical breakdown insurance through your car insurer, dealer, bank or credit union. A standard auto insurance policy does not cover wear-and-tear maintenance should you need new major repair work.

What Does Mechanical Breakdown Insurance Cover?

You will need to save money on the side to cover wear-and-tear repairs like:

  • Transmission
  • Brakes & Rotors
  • Engine Parts (Oil Pump, Pistons, Timing Gears, Flywheel, Valves)
  • Drive Axles & Joints
  • Electrical Components
  • Cooling / Air Conditioning
  • Fuel System
  • Steering

If your vehicle should need towing or if you needed a rental car in the meantime, you will be glad to know this type of auto insurance would have you covered. You often will see roadside assistance and lock-out service added on as well.

How Much Does Mechanical Breakdown Auto Insurance Cost?

Unlike traditional auto insurance, your rate does not fluctuate if you make a claim. Instead, service contracts are based on the type of vehicle you own, the length of coverage, the number of miles driven, and the level of protection you desire.

Levels of Insurance

For instance, Mercury offers four levels of insurance all the way up to Platinum, which covers things like brakes, tires, shocks and windshield wiper blades. Like regular auto insurance, choosing a higher deductible (if possible) will lower your cost. It is important to know that this insurance is fully transferable should you decide to sell your car. If you do not want to transfer the policy, you will get a check back for the prorated amount of unused insurance.

auto insurance breakdown

Does your auto insurance policy cover normal wear and tear? You might want to consider adding this on. Until then, why not shop for a better auto insurance quote?

Auto Insurance Claims Adjuster Advice

Monday, June 25th, 2012

You may feel as though the auto insurance claims adjuster has arrived on the scene to act as your own personal lawyer. “Here is someone who has my best interests at heart because I’m the client,” you may think. It’s not that a claims adjuster is a crook, but keep in mind that this person’s job is to settle the case as quickly and affordably as possible. It’s up to you to ensure you get a fair deal.

Rule #1: Say As Little As Possible.

Talking too much is the biggest mistake people make. Drivers who’ve just been involved in an accident are often blabbing emotionally — which may not be the best recourse. Claims adjusters love to hear admissions of guilt and apologies, details that contradict what bystanders say, complaints about whiplash or what a “piece of junk” your car is, or background information about what a horrible day you’ve been having. Anything you say can and will be used against you!

Rule #2: When In Doubt, Hire Counsel.

You don’t have to answer questions that seem loaded. For instance, an auto insurance adjuster might ask:

  • How could you have avoided the accident?
  • How much do you think you are responsible?
  • Do you think the weather affected you?
  • Did you have any previous injuries or pain before the wreck?

Ask that all questions be directed through your legal representative first.

Rule #3: Take Your Time.

If you settle too fast, you may be forfeiting some of your consumer protections. An auto insurance claims adjuster might offer you a $1,000 check on-the-spot to fix your vehicle, plus another $500 for the inconvenience. But what if you have a soft tissue injury that hits you three days later like a ton of bricks? Once you take the money and settle, you are no longer entitled to compensation. Keep in mind you may be entitled to rental car reimbursement, which could buy you more time.

Auto Insurance Claims Adjuster Advice 1

Get a fair shake by surfing auto insurance quotes today.

Theft Drives Up Auto Insurance Rates in Washington State

Friday, June 15th, 2012

Washington state is a hotbed for auto thefts, according to National Insurance Crime Bureau statistics. Even though there has been a 1.6 percent decline in auto thefts since last year, Spokane is still fourth-highest in the nation for auto theft rates again. Yakima jumped five places from the 10th spot to the 5th. The Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue area is responsible for 54 percent of all stolen vehicles in the nation — up 18 percent since 2009. This is bad news for Washington consumers    who are looking for affordable auto insurance rates.

How Many Vehicles Are Stolen In Washington?

Last year, 28,833 vehicles were reported as stolen. That’s 79 vehicles stolen every day or more than 3 per hour! NW Insurance Council President Karl Newman says, “American consumers continue to pay billions of dollars each year for auto theft.” He explains that the cost of replacing stolen vehicles and repair the recovered vehicles gets reflected in our auto insurance rates. It costs Washington auto insurance providers more than $170 million per year, in fact, with most reimbursements costing around $6,500.

How Can Consumers Protect Themselves?

When buying a new vehicle, consumers should elect for anti-theft technology. The NICB recommends four layers of protection:

1. Common Sense – Which means removing keys from the ignition, locking your doors, closing your windows and keeping valuables out-of-sight.

2. Warning Device – Which means choosing a steering column collar, audible alarm, brake lock, VIN etching, or decaling.

3.  Immobilization Device – Which means smart keys, fuse cut-offs, kill switches or wireless ignition authentication.

4. Tracking Device – Which means enabling the vehicle to be tracked via monitoring station.

Sick of Overpaying on your Auto Insurance?

You may be able to save thousands off your current auto insurance rate by switching providers. It is a very competitive market out there. It will only take you a few moments to enter your information into the search engine to get the best possible deal.

WA auto insurance

Protect yourself by adding anti-theft protection to your vehicle and shopping for the best auto insurance rates!

5 Reasons To Shop Around For Auto Insurance

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

Everyone is looking to save money these days. Taking just a few moments can save you hundreds — if not thousands — on your auto insurance policy. Here are five situations where shopping around for the best rates online is wise.

You Just Got Married.

In all your excitement about the Big Day and your Honeymoon, you may have forgotten that marriage opens up an opportunity to potentially save money on your auto insurance policy. Most companies offer multiple car discounts. If you get your homeowner’s insurance or life insurance through the same company, you will be eligible for a multiple line discount as well.

You Just Moved.

If you are moving to the suburbs or a more favorable part of town, you can save money on your auto insurance rate. National studies in big cities find that the discrepancies can vary by the hundreds of dollars!

You Just Retired.

Statistically speaking, retirees drive far less than their commuting peers. You may be eligible for special discounts if you are 55 and older or recently retired. Furthermore, your decades of driving experience and years of clean records can stack up in your favor too.

You Got A New Job.

Engineers, scientists, mathematicians, educators and military members statistically get in fewer accidents and are rewarded with lower rates at some auto insurance companies.

You Got A New Car.

New cars can sometimes increase your rate if you were driving your old junker around with collision insurance. However, increased safety features and the willingness to pay a higher deductible can offset those increases and actually end up saving you money.

5 Reasons To Shop Around For Auto Insurance 2

Retire recently? You could be saving on your auto insurance rate!


Do I Need to List my Stepchild on My Auto Insurance Policy?

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

In a blended household, the question, “Do I need to list my stepchild on my auto insurance policy?,” is one which comes up often. Having a young person in the home who is old enough to drive is a major change for a family, and the insurance coverage which is in place needs to be updated when a teen obtains his or her license. The situation becomes more complicated when the teen is living with a parent and a step-parent.

The auto insurance provider will need to be informed when the number of licensed drivers in the household changes. The teen should be added to a parent and step-parent’s policy as an occasional driver. The insurance company assumes that all licensed drivers have access to the vehicles in the household. Even though adding a teen driver to a step-parent’s policy will mean paying higher premiums, it’s worth it if the young person is involved in an accident. Without this coverage in place, the vehicle owner would be responsible for paying for damages caused in the accident.

Auto Insurance for Teens with Divorced Parents

If a parent has full custody of his or her teen, the young person should be added to the auto insurance policy. In a situation where the parents share custody of the teen, he or she should be added to both parents’ auto insurance policies.

A parent who does not list a teen driver living in his or her household on the insurance policy may be penalized by the company for misrepresentation. Even if the teen only drives the car occasionally, he or she should be listed on the policy. Failing to do so may mean the insurance company will cancel or refuse to renew the parent’s policy.

Auto Insurance Rates for Teen Drivers

Auto insurance rates for teen drivers are higher than for people who have been licensed for several years,since they are in the high-risk category. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the risk of being in a car crash is highest during the first 12 months that teens are eligible to drive. People in this age group also have the lowest rate of seat belt use, with over 10 percent of high school students admitting that they “rarely or never” using them when riding in a vehicle with another person.

Find the Best Rates for Auto Insurance for Teens

Parents and step-parents who are looking for the best rates on auto insurance for teen drivers should get quotes from several companies before choosing an auto insurance provider. It’s important to make sure that all the drivers in the household have the protection they need, without paying more than they have to.

The quickest way to compare rates from different providers is to go online. Most insurance companies have a website, and buyers can request a quote for coverage by filling out an online form.

What Does Uninsured/Underinsured Auto Insurance Mean?

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

When drivers are looking for coverage, they need to understand what all their options are. The question, “What does uninsured/underinsured auto insurance mean?” is an important one. This type of coverage is not required in all states, but all drivers should consider adding it to their auto insurance coverage.

Uninsured/underinsured auto insurance is a type of coverage which protects the policyholder and his or her own passengers if an accident occurs. It pays for personal injury claims as well as the cost of repairs to the policyholder’s own vehicle in certain circumstances.

Tort States and Auto Insurance

In a tort state, the driver who was responsible for causing an accident is also responsible for compensating the occupants of the other vehicle for their injuries and damaged property. Under this type of system, the at-fault driver (through his or her insurance company) pays for the medical bills and lost wages incurred by the other driver and his or her passengers following the accident.

What happens if the at-fault driver doesn’t have insurance or left the scene of the accident before his or her identity could be ascertained? How can an injured person get the compensation here she is entitled to if the at fault driver doesn’t have enough insurance in place to fully pay for the damages? In these types of situations, the uninsured/underinsured auto insurance coverage would come into play.

Uninsured/Underinsured Auto Insurance Explained

Uninsured auto insurance coverage pays for injuries and damages sustained by the policyholder, his or her family members and passengers riding his or her vehicle when the driver responsible for causing the accident does not have auto insurance coverage. It is also used when the accident was a hit-and-run, and the at-fault driver cannot be identified.

Underinsured auto insurance is a little different. It is used when the driver responsible for causing the accident has some coverage but his or her policy limit is not high enough to pay for the damages caused. While most parts of the United States have a minimum level of coverage which must be kept in place, these limits are usually relatively low and may not be sufficient if the accident caused permanent injuries and a high level of economic loss. In this situation, the at-fault driver’s auto insurance coverage will pay out up to the policy limit which is in place and the underinsured auto insurance is used to make up the difference (up to its policy limit).

There is no set rule about how much uninsured/underinsured auto insurance coverage a driver needs, but it is a good idea to match the level of bodily injury and property damage liability insurance coverage which is on the policy. The uninsured/underinsured coverage can be added to an existing policy very easily, and is an excellent investment in case an accident occurs. When looking for new coverage, make sure that the quote includes uninsured/underinsured auto insurance.

How Can I Find Cheap Auto Insurance for a Teen Driver

Saturday, March 17th, 2012

Many parents are wondering how they can find cheap auto insurance for a teen driver when the younger members of the household are old enough to get their license. Coverage for new drivers cannot readily be described as “cheap,” but there are ways to get insurance in place for all the drivers in the household without spending more than is necessary.

 

Auto Insurance for Teens

Teen drivers are considered to be a high risk for auto insurance coverage purposes. People in this age group lack the maturity and experience of someone who has been licensed for a number of years and are more likely to be involved in accidents. Insurance companies evaluate a young driver’s level of risk and charge more for premiums accordingly. (The good news for recently-licensed drivers is that by the time they reach their mid-twenties, their coverage costs should start to come down.)

Find Cheap Auto Insurance for a Teen Driver

If the goal is to keep coverage costs down, a parent should not be looking at buying a separate auto insurance policy for a teen driver. Adding a young person to an existing policy as an occasional driver is a much better way to go, since the cost of coverage will not be as high as if the teen was made the primary driver on his or her own policy. The teen can be added to an existing policy held by a parent, grandparent, guardian or older sibling.

Auto insurance is something which should be reviewed regularly so that the policyholder has the right type and level of protection in place. Ideally, all drivers will make a point of doing this at least once a year or when there is a change in circumstances (such as when a teen gets his or her learner’s permit or driver’s license).

The parent or the main policyholder will want to find out whether his or her existing auto insurance policy is able to provide the best prices for a policy which includes all the licensed drivers in the household by getting quotes for coverage from a number of auto insurance providers. Each one sets its own prices for coverage, and the cost can vary significantly between companies.

Consumers who go online to look for auto insurance coverage can learn about the different companies which write these types of policies to make sure that they are getting pricing information from ones which have been in business for some time and have the means to pay out on policyholders’ claims. Once a driver finds a company which looks as if it may be a good fit, he or she can get an online quote for coverage by filling out an online form.

It may take a bit of time to find cheap auto insurance for a teen driver, but the effort will be worthwhile if a parent is able to find affordable protection for all drivers in the household.