Auto Insurance: Reviews & Comparisons
In many areas of the country, a car is not a luxury, it’s a necessity. However, cars also involve significant expenses, including gas, maintenance, licenses, parking and, of course, auto insurance. Increasingly, auto insurance is required by law. But savvy drivers carry insurance above and beyond the minimum requirements. Costs for auto insurance policies vary according a number of factors, including the risk group the policy holder falls into, the type of car to be covered and type of coverage selected. The categories below cover several aspects to consider when choosing auto insurance policy.
Types of Coverage Provided
If you just want to “drive legal,” then any bare bones auto insurance policy will do. But if you have an expensive car – or just one you’re still making payments for, you should consider comprehensive coverage, which covers things like repairs to your car or to other cars damaged in accidents you may be involved with. Other options include coverage for uninsured motorists or medical treatments caused by accidents.
Benefits and Discounts
Does your son or daughter get good grades? Do you have an outstanding driving record? Are you insuring multiple cars or buying auto insurance from the same company that insures your home? You may very well qualify for substantial discounts. Whatever your driving circumstances, it’s worth your while to shop around to determine what benefits you qualify for. Especially if the insured driver falls into a high risk group, obtaining one or more discounts can mean the difference between an affordable premium and having to keep the car in the garage while the would-be driver relies on public transportation.
No one anticipates or hopes for an accident, but accidents do happen. If your budget can afford it, add-ons such as accident forgiveness and new car replacement provide driving peace of mind. Uninsured motorist coverage deals with repairs and medical bills when the other driver is at fault – but does not carry auto insurance. Gap coverage pays off the difference between conventional auto insurance coverage and what you still owe on your car note in your car is totaled. Other desirable extras include roadside assistance, travel accident coverage, roadside assistance and assistance with rental car costs while your car is being repaired. In some cases, add-ons can be bundled with other options to bring down your total costs.
Service and Support
You may have seen the commercials where car owners sing a jingle and summon an insurance agent. Local auto insurance agents can be an advantage – as you develop a relationship with the agent, he or she can suggest possible discounts that you may not have considered. Regardless of whether you have a local agent, 24/7 phone and/or online support is an essential element of auto insurance coverage. Guaranteed repair work is another essential feature.
Keeping the Wheels Turning
There are several factors that affect auto insurance prices that are beyond your control, such age and gender. You may choose not to alter other factors, such as where you live (auto insurance policies are often tied to zip codes) or what type of car you drive. Nonetheless, by shopping around and considering what you want (and what you can do without) you can obtain adequate auto insurance coverage for a price you can afford.
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