In many business situations, companies reward customers who have shown loyalty. However, auto insurance companies are sometimes limited in their ability to provide lower rates for long-time customers. When your life situation changes, insurance rates will change as well. The only way to make sure that you are paying the most affordable rate for your demographic and location is to regularly look into auto insurance quotes from several different companies.
Length of Time with One Company Means Little
Many people carry auto insurance with the same company for decades because it is easier than finding a new agent every year. If you do not experience very many changes, keeping the same insurance coverage for several years can be effective.
Unfortunately, the changes that make a big difference in your insurance rates are not always changes that you have much control over. Simply getting older can affect your rates substantially. As your children age, you rates will change as well. Moving to a new home can sometimes cause insurance rates to double – or if you’re lucky, it can reduce them by half.
The trouble with keeping the same insurance company and not checking your options is that you never know the savings you are missing until you check. Not every insurance company charges the same increases or decreases based on demographics.
You may be a customer of a company that offers excellent rates for someone who lives in your hometown, but that same company may charge exorbitant rates for someone who lives two cities away from you. While there are often discounts for staying with a company for a long time, you could be helping yourself to a deeper discount by switching. The biggest discounts can be found only by checking the rates from different companies as your age and situations change.
Location is More Important to Your Rates
The cost of insurance in different cities can vary greatly. Some cities experience large insurance shifts from one section of the city to another. The reason that insurance costs change based on geography is because driving hazards change from location to location.
Someone who lives in an area that has low traffic volume or a low crime rate will be offered a lower insurance rate. Moving to a new part of town may put you in a riskier environment that influences your vehicle’s safety. Insurance companies will adjust your rates depending on the amount of risk that they perceive based on the research they have done in your new location.
Not all insurance companies raise their rates by the same amount based on geography. Unfortunately, your long-term relationship with an insurance company will not prompt your insurance agent to let you know about the different rates that you can find when you compare companies. It is in the agent’s best interest to keep you with the company that pays them the highest commission.
You need to make sure you do your own research into several car insurance companies before your policy renews or if you expect to move. You may be surprised to discover that some companies base their rates more strongly on other factors than geography, so they can offer you lower rates than other companies.
Driving Record Can Make a Difference
Most insurance companies offer discounts for drivers who have excellent records. Avoiding accidents and traffic tickets is a good way to keep your insurance rates lower. In fact, there are insurance companies that will give you a percentage off your insurance premium if you have done business with them for a specific number of years and you have maintained your excellent driving record.
However, these discounts cannot always offset the cost increases when you have a different shift in your demographics. Moving to a new location, changing cars, or adding other drivers to your policy can cause your rates to increase so much that the good driver discount is no longer an incentive to stay with your current policy.
The truth is, you can find a good driver discount from almost every car insurance company. If you spend some time researching auto insurance quotes, you may find that there are companies that offer the same type of coverage at a lower rate, which includes a good driver discount. A discount on a rate that is lower to begin with can be much more attractive than a discount on a rate that is too high to begin with.
Ages of Drivers in the Home
As your children grow older, they will affect how much you pay for car insurance. It is impossible to avoid the extra expense of insuring multiple drivers. Teenagers and young adults can be some of the most expensive drivers to insure.
As your children reach the driving age, it is important to look into your insurance options with your current company and compare them to the options you find from other companies. The time you invest in researching several insurance companies will pay for itself if you find the right company at the right rate.
Insurance Quotes are Your Best Financial Tool
When something unusual happens, like changing residences, it is especially important to look into all of your options. Since insurance companies show no real loyalty toward you for being a long-time customer, there is no need for you to stay with a single company every year. You should feel free to look into rates from several different companies until you find the insurance that fits your budget and your coverage needs the most.
The best way to make sure you are not paying too much for your car insurance is to check quotes every year. A quick look into quotes from three or more insurance companies will give you a solid understanding of how much you should expect to pay for insurance when you move to a new location, buy a new car, or experience any other life-changing event.
It is easy to enter your new information into a quote request form and then compare the different prices that you receive from each company. You can make a confident and informed decision about which company to choose.