Is Your Insurance Company Working For You?
The facts, the fiction, the good and bad of every insurance company is ultimately in the eye of the beholder. You are the one who has to deal with payments, phone calls and trying to get discount pricing. But some insurance carriers just offer more than others. There is a reason why some flourish and others do not. The top contenders every year seem to have something going for them. Whether its’ a great customer service line where you can call in at all hours of the night. Or the price is right for you and your family. No one person can say that a certain insurance carrier is “better” than another. But you sure can sum up why millions of people use them. Hopefully by reading this, you can come up with your own assumptions about how insurance companies work and how they can work for you.
It’s true that insurance is a trillion plus dollar a year industry. This is because in most states having insurance on things like your home and your car are mandatory. If only because the banks need collateral, most people need a few different types of insurance policies to get through life. But if you focus on just cheap car insurance, you will see a trend. This trend is that drivers want coverage that they can count on. And most drivers realize that other people out on the road are a risk. Only about 80% of all drivers even carry the right kind of car insurance if any at all. This seems strange right? But it’s true. This is why insurance companies urge you to carry full coverage.
Check All The Boxes
The insurance companies that tend to rank the highest are the ones that check all the boxes. That means they offer pretty much everything you can think of and then some. What are those boxes? It depends on the person and their needs for the most part. A great insurance company will offer:
- Great customer service. This means a good experience talking on the phone with a customer service representative as well as accessibility. Many carriers offer a 27 hour a day, 7 day a week hotline you can call. This phone number will put you in touch with someone who works solely for this company and understands their motto. Most of the time that motto is: make the client happy. Customer service should be just that, a service to the customer. You should leave the phone conversation feeling better than when you started. You should be more informed as well.
- Rates and Discounts. When it all comes down to the end of your purchasing experience, your rate will be a huge factor in deciding which insurance carrier to choose. Most of the time carriers should quote you similar rates. But there can be large gaps in what companies consider “high-risk”. Choosing the company with the cheapest car insurance might be the way to go. But think about the other factors as well. If insurance carriers really want to compete, they will have some wiggle room in order to keep you as a client. Some insurance carriers even say that they will match what you pay with another company or do better. But look into the details of what you are purchasing first to make sure it’s enough insurance.
- Website and Accessibility. Some of us don’t want to be bothered with talking on the phone or having to go into an office just to get insurance. The easier an insurance carriers website is to navigate, the more chance they have of keeping you as a customer. You want to be able to find out everything you need in writing and get a quote online in minutes. Remember that insurance brokers can do the same thing. The Cheap Insurance website has detailed options to explain insurance and why you need it.
How To Calculate Your Costs
Before ranking insurance companies based on how they can serve you and how much they cost, remember how they calculate costs. Every insurance company has to look at the riskiness of the driver or drivers. If you have multiple drivers on one car and one of them is a teen, your insurance will go up. Here is a list of factors insurance companies use to assess you and your family for insurance rates. These are the questions you should answer yourself first and then think about how any of them could be affecting your car insurance rates.
Questions to ask yourself:
- What is your age and the age of your drivers? Did you know that the younger the driver the more the policy? But if you are older and married, you are more likely to drive safe.
- Teenagers are four times more likely to get into an auto accident. Because of this, insurance policies for younger people can be much more. This could also almost double your car insurance premium. Having a teen driver is expensive. Try to keep this in mind when choosing the type of car they will drive.
- There are insurance policies for risky drivers as well. You may pay more for your insurance policy if you are a “high-risk” driver. A high risk driver might be someone who has had a DUI or a hit and run accident.
- Having multiple tickets, or a DUI, you may be unable to attain the lowest insurance policy. However, Cheap Insurance can make sure you are still covered with the insurance that is required. After a SUI or suspended license you will need an SR22 insurance policy. Cheap Insurance can also help you with this.
- Do you have a salvage title on your car? Insurance policies may be more because of this and some companies will not insure you. Having a salvage title shouldn’t be a reason you are exempt from having insurance. Do your homework and find an insurance company who will insure you.
- Where do you live and is it safe. Theft can be a huge problem and if you are looking for comprehensive car insurance you might want to consider your zip code.
- Are you single or married. Most people who are married statistically are more likely to drive safe and make it home.
- Is there an abundance of traffic in your area? Where you live and where you work matter. Do you sit in heavy traffic everyday? Living in the suburbs will most likely give you a better rate than living in a big city.
- How many miles do you drive in a year. The more you are out on the road, the more likely it is that you could be hit. This makes sense right? You are putting yourself out there with other drivers. And it doesn’t matter who is at fault, no one ever wants to be in an accident.
What State Do You Live In?
What state you live in might not sound like any concern to an insurance company. Yet the state in which you drive says a lot about how much insurance you will need. There are even some carriers who offer insurance in a few states but not all. So don’t go looking at every carrier. Find out which ones are working in your state and how they can best help you. Do you live in Los Angeles and drive in traffic often? Do you live in the suburb of a small town in New Jersey and you commute just ten miles a day? This matters. Looking at large companies who are mostly online such as E-surance could be a nice way to find insurance. One of the best ways to find any quote is by going through a broker. But what if you could have a personal State Farm agent right down the road from you? Your insurance company should be working with you no matter who you choose.
Here is what some insurance companies offer their clients who are looking for cheap auto insurance:
- Bodily Injury Liability which should cover at least $30,000 per accident.
- Property Damage Liability which should cover any property which you are responsible for in an accident.
- Collision coverage is offered to cover your own car in an accident.
- Comprehensive coverage is offered to cover things like theft and smaller damages.
- Medical coverage for you and your passengers- Medical coverage can make a huge difference for your security and safety.
- Towing and roadside assistance- You may not only need this for a crash, but if you break down. Roadside assistance can save you time and money.
- Rental reimbursement- You could be covered or reimbursed for a rental car when you are involved in a crash.
- Uninsured Motorist coverage- this will make sure that you are still covered even if someone without insurance hits you.
- Full glass coverage- this is additional coverage for your car to cover glass windows and doors.
- Loan/lease coverage- when you have a loan or a lease out on a vehicle, your coverage needs to be different. Most of the time a full policy is required.
Giving Feedback, Getting Discounts
One more way yo rate your insurance company is by the discounts they offer. You should be able to always get discounts for safe driving. After the age of 25, if you keep a good driving record, you insurance premium should decline every year. This is the insurance companies way of rewarding safe driving. For them, the risk is less and for you the reward is more. Discounts can be part of your multiple policy program as well. Most insurance companies will offer more than one type of insurance. For instance car insurance and renters insurance could be bundled. Rating an insurance company by how they do this is fair. They should be giving you the most options and the best rate to beat out other competitors. The only way insurance companies flourish is by offering an array of insurance options to their clients. With so many different insurance carriers to choose from, it might seem hard to know which one to choose.
Giving feedback to your insurance company might be a good idea. Rating them online is one way to help others know your experience whether good or bad. Remember that this is subjective because everyone is looking for something a little different. But when it comes down to price, you really can’t argue. Getting the best deals on your cheap car insurance is key to saving.
Claims Affecting Price
Some insurance companies will have better ratings based on claims. Most of the time if you have had a claim taken out on your car your rates will go up significantly. In some cases they can even double. But there are a few companies who offer accident forgiveness. A recent article from thezebra.com has some information about what insurance companies offer. For instance Farmers Insurance might only charge a couple hundred more dollars to your yearly premium when you are at fault in an accident. Others such as AllState could go up as much as much as 50%. For accidents over $2000 in damage you will see your price go up even more. Nationwide could offer you the best deal for any accident over $2000. Not every company will look at your driving profile and change prices in the same way.
Getting a DUI will put you at even more of a disadvantage. Most insurance companies spike rates for any kind of accident while under the influence of alcohol or if you get your license revoked. Not only will your premium go up, but you will need SR22 insurance. Some insurance companies such as GEICO will almost double their premium price for a DUI. Keep this in mind when trying to be safe on the road. Even one drink at a party could send you over the legal limit. Liberty Mutual will have the best deals for a DUI. This means that they will charge you less than their competitors.
Who Ranks Highest?
Ranking truly depends on what you are looking for. And every company provides something different. The only thing you can really be sure about is that going through a reputable broker such as Cheap Insurance will get you the best deal. Finding cheap car insurance doesn’t have to be a drag. Understand the way insurance works and have a broker who is on your side and it’s a win-win. Here are a few of the best car insurance companies to look for in 2019:
- Farmers- for some of the best rates on insurance after a claim
- AllState-For some of the best one on one attention for customers
- GEICO- great customer service that’s 24/7
- Progressive-Best for matching other companies prices or doing even better with theirs
- Nationwide- For the best rates for an accident over $2000
- Travelers- They have a great reputation and solid rates
- Mercury- For some of the most reasonable rates in every category not just auto insurance
A few things to keep in mind: prices always change according to what kind of car you drive or who is driving your car. After a DUI or a revoked license you will always pay more for insurance no matter what insurance company you choose.
Have help with your insurance research by calling a broker.