With an increase in costs of such expenses as gas, food, home heating oil, and for other daily necessities, recent studies have indicated that car insurance rates may be starting to rise.
Rising Insurance Rates
A study by Insurance.com found that in 2008 the States that saw the largest car insurance increases included Indiana, up 6.7%; Arkansas, 6.1%; Texas, 4.3%; Nevada, 4.1%; and Illinois, 3.8%. Pennsylvania saw an increase of 3.6%. Sam Belden, consumer director of Insurance.com, said “higher medical costs and repair expenses are driving the increase.” He added that he believes the price jumps mark the beginning of a trend that could last through 2009, but could be reversed if higher oil prices lead to a long-term change in driving habits. Robert Hartwig, president of the Insurance Information Institute, said “based on federal statistics, auto-insurance prices rose at a 2.6% year-over-year pace in May and June.” He also said that “the increase for all of 2007 was 0.4%.”
The results from the recent reports may seem to be bad news for consumers. However, there are steps that can be taken to reduce auto insurance costs. The following is a number of helpful tips compiled to help reduce auto insurance costs:
Compare Auto Insurance Rates
Shop around for an insurance company. The Internet has caused an increase in competition among auto insurance companies. It has become much easier and quicker for consumers to search for low insurance rates, compare premiums, and scrutinize coverage.
- Make sure you that receive all qualifying discounts.
- Keep your driving record spotless. Premiums increase for drivers with a poor driving record.
- Modify your coverage to assume more risk
- Equip your car with safety features such as a theft alarm.
- Make use of the discounts that fall into a number of categories that include: low-risk occupations, Professional organizations, combined coverage, and discounts for senior citizens
- Maintain your credit rating. Protect your credit standing by paying your bills on time, don’t obtain more credit than you need and keep your credit balances as low as possible. Check your credit record on a regular basis and have any errors fixed.
- Ask for a higher deductible.
- Don’t modify your car: Making changes to your car will affect your premium.
- You can reduce your premium by agreeing to a voluntary excess. This is the amount that you have agreed to pay in the event of an accident.
- Pay in full each year: Many insurers have a high rate of interest when you pay on a monthly basis.
- Shop for a low-profile car: New and high performance cars have higher premiums
- Low mileage discounts: If you have low annual mileage, tell your insurer because it may reduce car insurance costs
Because costs are increasing in every aspect of out lives, it is important to understand that there are many steps one can take to reduce their auto insurance costs.