Car Insurance Discounts for Drivers
The costs of having a car are going up. Gas prices keep rising and you may be paying too much money for your car insurance. If you have not looked at your car insurance choices, there may be some discounts that you do not know about. To get a more accurate description of the discounts that may apply to you and your family, it is best to talk to your insurance agent, especially after a big life event such as buying a house, getting married/divorced, or having children. Here are 11 things that may lower your insurance rates.
If you can afford to do it, some insurance companies will give you a discount for paying your premium all at once. While most choose to break their payments up throughout the year, ask your agent if you are eligible for a full payment discount.
Car insurance companies tend to put this one front and center on their advertisements and websites. They want to insure drivers that present a low risk, making it less likely that they will need to cover an accident. If you have not had an accident in at least 3 years, ask your agent if you qualify for a safe driving discount.
If you are a member of the military, active duty or retired, some companies offer up to 15% off of your insurance rates. You may also receive more discounts if you are deployed to “imminent danger pay areas.”
Not only do hybrid cars offer some relief at the gas station, you might be able to save money from your insurance just for driving one. Some car insurance companies, such as Travelers Insurance, have dedicated insurance divisions just for hybrid cars. They can offer you a discount of up to 10% simply for driving a hybrid car.
Features such as airbags, anti-lock brakes, headlights that automatically run during the day, and motorized seat belts don’t just help keep you safer in the car: insurance companies almost always offer you a discount for choosing a vehicle with added safety options.
Technology in the car doesn’t just help you find where you are going. Car insurance companies are using technologies to their advantage as well. Some of them are offering optional features that can track how far the driver is traveling, the speed – even how often hard braking occurs. If you are already a safe driver this can give you another discount of up to 15%, especially if you have a teen driver who is using such devices.
Insurance policies will usually give you a break on your car insurance if you already have other policies with them. If you already have home, life, health coverage or even another car covered through one company, it might be beneficial to ask them if they offer a discount on your car coverage. You might be able to save money by using a company you already do business with.
This may be one of the least-talked-about discounts, but it may have the biggest impact. If you work from home, or just rarely drive, ask your insurance representative about the low mileage discounts the company offers. Not all companies offer this but you may be able to save over 40 percent! That is a huge amount of money off of your bill.
If you have a teen driving your family car, there may be another incentive to get good grades. Some car insurance companies will give big discounts to students who have a B average or higher. Depending on your company you might be able to save up to 35% on your rate!
Defensive Driving Classes
Many people don’t wait until they get a ticket – they’ll voluntarily take a defensive driving course to lower their insurance rates. This discount may only be available to those under 25 and seniors. Check with your provider about school they recommend or classes that they offer. Taking classes that are approved by your insurance provider may get you a discount of up to 15%.
If you have a child who is attending school more than 100 miles away from your home, you may qualify for an extra discount. The idea is that with a young driver so far from home, he or she will not be driving a family car that often, so your insurance will be lower than if he or she was living nearby.
Surprising Things That Can Affect Your Rate
Some of the things listed already are well-known. But there are some things that can affect your car insurance costs that you might not have considered. If you are a new parent or homeowner you may be able to get a discount. Did you opt in for paperless billing with your insurance company? That may result in a discount.
The one thing that may have the biggest effect on your premium is your credit score. This can be a bigger influence on the price you pay than any of the other discounts. Be sure to keep an eye on your credit if you want to keep that premium in a lower range.
Now that you have some of these discounts in mind, call or visit your insurance agent and see what you can get for your own coverage. You might be surprised by how much you can save just by asking. It is important to remember that not all discounts are available in every state.