15 Things To Do About Car Insurance Rate Increases in 2024
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Car insurance rates went up almost 19% going into 2024, even more if you live in certain states that faced severe storms over the past few years. Everyone is asking why car insurance rates have increased and how they can lower their monthly costs. Insurance prices have increased due to some factors that drivers can control and others they cannot. Inflation, war, parts shortages and severe storms are just a few reasons why car insurance costs more than ever.
There are a few things drivers can do to pay the lowest premiums possible without compromising on coverage. Here are the 15 things you can do to pay as little as possible for car insurance in 2024.
1. Talk To Your Insurer
Everyone’s rates went up but some people fared better than others. If you haven’t had an accident in the past three years and have kept your credit score solid, you may not see much of an increase, unless you live in an area that experienced severe storms and theft. It’s not a bad idea to call your current insurer and see how you can lower your rate. See if they offer a loyalty discount and see how low you can get your rate.
2. Shop Around To Get the Best Rate
After you get your existing rate as low as it can go, it’s time to compare car insurance rates for free. The chore doesn’t have to take up hours of your time either. See if other carriers are willing to offer a rate that beats your current one. Make sure you’re comparing comparable coverages though. For instance, if you have collision and comprehensive on top of state minimum-required coverage, make sure you’re comparing the same package.
3. Eliminate Unnecessary Coverage
If your car isn’t worth more than a few thousand dollars, it makes very little sense to have collision and comprehensive coverage. After paying the deductible you’ll have very little left because a claim will never pay out more than the value of the car. You may actually be paying more in premiums than what you’ll receive. It’s important to go over the numbers and check your car’s Kelley Blue Book value before buying car insurance.
4. Increase the Deductible on Collision and Comprehensive
When you increase the deductible, you’ll lower your monthly premiums, but doing so means that you are responsible for more of the loss if your car is damaged, totaled or stolen. The deductible is always subtracted from your claim payout. You choose the deductible amount when you buy coverage. A higher deductible will make your monthly payments drop substantially, and if you’re not the type of person who likes to file claims, this is the best option for you to save money.
5. Get a Car Alarm
On average and depending on the carrier, you can save anywhere from 2 to 10% on comprehensive coverage for having an anti-theft device. Comprehensive coverage is what pays the claim for a stolen car. Since the chances of your car being stolen or vandalized due to an alarm, it makes sense that you’d earn a discount.
6. Ask About All Discounts
Each insurer has a unique list of discounts so it’s important to go over all of them after you receive a quote to see what your true rate is. If you are able to tack on enough discounts, you can save hundreds of dollars a year in car insurance.
7. Improve Your Credit Score
Unless you live in California, Maryland or Massachusetts, your credit score will be used to determine your car insurance rate. If you have a low credit score, make it a point to pay off outstanding debts in collections and trim down your credit card balance and pay your bills on time. After being financially responsible for four to six months, compare car insurance rates to get a better deal.
8. Bundle Home and Auto
In many cases bundling home and auto policies is an easy way to get a big discount. In some cases, however, you may be able to snag a better price if you buy them separately. It’s a good idea to get a quote with and without a bundle to see which is more beneficial to you.
9. Avoid Filing Small Claims
Every claim you file will increase your home insurance rate. It’s a good idea to avoid small claims and only to file one if the repair or rebuilding is quite expensive and out of your budget. Another reason to avoid filing small claims is your insurer may drop you for filing too many claims. Your deductible will also be subtracted from the payout so keep that in mind when trying to decide if it makes sense to file a claim or not.
10. Stay Insured
If you are uninsured, even for a day, your rate will be higher when you do buy car insurance due to a lapse in coverage. Staying insured will ensure that your rate stays as low as possible. Even if you’re struggling to pay the bills, it’s important to prioritize car insurance especially because if you have an accident, you’ll end up paying much more for damages without insurance, especially if the accident is your fault. You’ll also face fines for driving while uninsured, which is illegal in nearly every state.
11. Move to a Neighborhood With Cheaper Insurance Rates
One factor in how you’re rated by an insurance company is where you live. If it’s a high-crime neighborhood, your chances of car theft are much higher. Also, where you live determines the risk of natural disasters that may destroy your car.
12. Try Telematics
If you drive safely without hard breaks and without speeding, you may enjoy lower rates by using a telematics program that tracks your driving habits. Many car insurers offer these types of programs to encourage safer driving. However, your rate may increase if you do not drive safely, and if you drive during peak hours.
13. Drive Less
If you work from home or live close to work and don’t take long car trips, you may be eligible for a low-mileage rate. Most insurance companies give large discounts to those who are considered “pleasure drivers” or who drive less than 5,000 or 6,000 miles a year.
14. Take a Safe Driving or Defensive Driving Course
Most insurers will give you a discount for taking a course that improves your driving and reduces your chances of having an accident. Ask your agent which classes are eligible for a safe driving discount.
15. Drive Better
Drivers who do not have tickets and have had no accidents and DUIs pay the least amount for car insurance. Drive more cautiously to keep your car insurance rate as low as it can go.