How to Choose the Best Car Insurance

Car insurance is one of the most important tools at your disposal when operating a vehicle. It not only protects you from being responsible for the cost of repairing your vehicle in the event of an accident, but it can also save you from having to cover medical expenses.

How Do I Know I am Getting a Good Deal?

Many factors affect auto insurance price. Things like age, gender and even your credit score can cause the cost of your premiums to vary depending on what insurance provider you choose. The type of car you drive and safety features also influence price. If you can’t afford a hefty insurance bill, it is a good idea to avoid driving a sports car.

The best way to get a good deal is to shop around and talk to your chosen provider about discounts. Many offer discounts for students that get good grades in school and safety features already installed in your vehicle.

How Much Coverage Do I Need?

When choosing your auto insurance, the first step is to decide how much coverage you really need. You may be tempted to get the highest coverage amounts across the board, but is that necessary? How much coverage you need depends on a variety of factors, such as how much you drive your car and how much it is worth. You must remember that your insurance will cover more than just the cost of your car, but also legal fees and medical bills.

A good policy should include at least $50,000 bodily injury coverage for individuals, $100,000 for all of people injured in the accident, and $25,000 in property damage coverage. Even if your car is not worth $25,000, this should be the minimum amount of liability coverage you carry. Remember, your insurance is not only covering you, but anyone else that is involved in the accident if you are at fault. You may be held liable for the remainder if you exceed these limits in an accident.

The most important thing to consider when deciding how much coverage you need is collision insurance. Most people consider it a must, but if your car is only worth a few hundred dollars, it might not be worth spending the money. If you can go a few years without a major accident you will spend less money in the end.

What Should My Deductible Be?

Your deductible really depends on what you can afford to pay out of pocket should you get into an accident. What you can afford to pay monthly is also a consideration when it comes to your deductible. The higher the deductible, the lower your monthly payment will be. Generally, a $500 deductible is a good balance of affordable monthly cost and a manageable deductible for the average driver.

Should I Take Optional Coverage?

There are many types of optional coverage to choose from. Medical coverage can help you pay medical bills if you do not have health insurance, but it generally is not necessary. Comprehensive coverage will pay for damage that is not caused by a collision, such as flood damage or a fire. If you already carry homeowner’s insurance, comprehensive coverage is often not needed, but always check with your provider before making a choice. Another consideration is rental insurance. If you rent cars often, it might be worth having rental insurance as well.

Are There Insurance Laws?

Local insurance laws vary. It is important to be aware of these laws and have the proper insurance coverage required in your area.