Most drivers make the assumption that there is nothing they can do to lower their insurance premium except changing their coverage, deductibles or even their insurance carrier. This is not true. There are some very specific things a driver can do to impact the rate they are paying for their auto insurance. Some are easier than others and not all apply to every insurance carrier.
Below is a list of 12 things that you can do to potentially reduce your auto insurance premium. You are encouraged to speak with your insurance agent, to confirm that it may help reduce the amount you are paying for insurance coverage, prior to undertaking.
1. Take defensive driving course and/or driver education. In many cases, new drivers and long time drivers can benefit by enrolling in and successfully completing a driver training course. These courses are available online, at many local community colleges and through community adult education programs. The classes are affordable will help you to become a better driver.
2. Improve credit score. Your credit score can have a direct impact on your monthly insurance premium. The easiest place to start is to get a copy of your credit report and determine if you have any past due balances. If you do have any past due amounts, you should contact the creditor to make payment arrangements. Additionally, you should make a conscious effort to pay all your bills on time. While improving your credit score takes time, with some effort, you will improve it over time and thereby help to reduce the amount you pay for your auto insurance.
3. Get a different car. The rate you pay for insurance can vary depending on the car you drive. If you are in the process of getting a new car, you should contact your insurance company to find out the models that have lower relative rates. You may also want to see if there are any car options you can get that would reduce your premium, such as power steering and anti-lock brakes.
4. Install anti-theft device in car. Many auto insurance companies offer discounts based on the options you have on your car. Things like automatic transmission, airbags, anti-theft systems, power steering, anti-lock brakes and more installed in your car can impact the monthly premium you pay.
5. Reduce your daily commute/drive less. The number of miles you drive everyday can impact your insurance rate. You can move closer to work, take public transportation, carpool or even take a shorter route. There are many things you can do to drive less. Driving less will also save you money on gas and lower the maintenance costs on your vehicle.
6. Bundle with other policies. Many insurance companies offer discounts when you have multiple policies with them. While you may think moving your homeowners policy from one company to another is a hassle, your insurance agent will be more than willing to help you facilitate that process. Keep in mind that many types of insurance may offer discounts when you bundle. Health, life, home, motorcycle, RV, pet, and renter insurance are some of the types of insurance you may want to see if you can bundle with your auto policy. If you own a business, you may even want to bundle your professional and personal insurance together to reduce your premiums.
7. Follow traffic laws/avoid getting tickets. Traffic violations or tickets can have the biggest negative impact on the amount you pay for your auto insurance. In many cases, these tickets can impact your rate for 3 to 5 years, depending on the violation and your insurance company. Obeying traffic laws is the easiest way prevent getting a ticket.
8. Bundle with family member and/or spouse. Many insurance companies offer discounts when you bundle multiple cars on the same policy. If you are married and have two cars, you may be able to save a significant amount, if you insure both vehicles together than if you were to insure them separately.
9. Pay off your car note or loan. If you have a note or loan on your car, your lender will require that you have a minimum level of coverage on your car to protect the value of your vehicle. If you are able to pay off your vehicle, you will have more flexibility with the coverage you select.
10. Prepay your policy. If you are financially able to pay for your insurance 6 or 12 months in advance, you may be eligible for a discount from your insurance provider. This discount will reduce the overall amount you have to pay for your insurance.
11. Move. Where you live can have a direct impact on what you pay for your insurance. Moving a few blocks or even across the street can impact the amount you pay for your insurance. If you are considering a move, you should contact your agent to determine the optimal area to live or how where you plan to move will impact your insurance rate.
12. Sign-up for autopay. Having your insurance company automatically deduct your monthly payment from your bank account may make you eligible for a small discount on your monthly premium. This discount will effectively reduce the amount you have to pay for your insurance.