There are numerous ways to lower your car insurance premiums. From raising your deductibles and shopping around each year to letting certain coverages drop when you no longer need them, the same “secrets” can keep your rates manageable. One of the most reliable methods for reducing your premiums is to qualify for discounts. All insurance companies offer them as a way to encourage loyalty among their policyholders. The problem is, millions of consumers neglect to ask their insurers to apply these discounts to their policies.
Below, we’ll provide an overview of the reasons for which insurance companies offer to reduce their policyholders’ rates. Realize that all insurers are different. If you find that the following discounts are unavailable from your insurance provider, take the opportunity to shop around.
Add Cars To Your Auto Insurance Policy
Insurers want to gain as much of your business as possible. To do so, they offer a financial incentive; if you agree to add vehicles to your policy, you’ll pay less in premiums for each vehicle. Spouses often combine policies for this reason. By consolidating their auto coverages under a single insurer, they enjoy a slight discount.
Review your rates and those of other members of your household. Then, ask your insurance company whether you’ll save money by adding those members’ vehicles to your policy.
Consolidate Multiple Insurance Products
In the same way combining auto insurance policies can result in a discount, so too can consolidating different insurance products. For example, suppose you have your car insurance with Company A and your property insurance with Company B. Both companies will likely agree to lower your combined premiums if you bring both policies under their roof.
As explained earlier, they do so as an incentive. To that end, consolidating your coverages in this way can result in an immediate 10 percent rate reduction. It is one of the easiest discounts to obtain.
Make Your Car Less Attractive To Thieves
The leading crime in Canada is auto theft. It carries a cost that exceeds $1 billion a year, and thereby represents a substantial risk to insurers. If a policyholder’s vehicle is stolen, and the policyholder has comprehensive coverage, the insurer must cover the cost of the loss. For this reason, if you take steps to minimize the likelihood your vehicle will be stolen, your provider may give you a discount.
Install an anti-theft device, such as an alarm system. Or, if your car lacks an immobilizer – Canada has required them since 2007 in all new vehicles – ask a mechanic to install one. Then, call your insurer to inform them.
Get Good Grades In School
A lot of insurers offer to reduce the rates of students who receive good grades in school. Those with good grades are considered to be more likely to make better decisions with regard to driving. This in turn lowers the risk for insurers.
If you are currently attending high school or university, focus on your studies. Not only will doing so help you ace your exams, but you may also enjoy lower premiums on your coverages.
Improve Your Vehicle’s Safety
Your rates are based, in part, on the likelihood you’ll cause an accident. This remains one of the most worrisome risks for insurance companies. A single accident can cause property damage and injuries that cost tens of thousands of dollars. Thus, taking steps to reduce the chances you’ll cause an accident can result in immediate savings.
For example, have anti-lock brakes installed on your wheels. Have side air bags installed for better protection. During the winter months, when the weather is foul and the roads are wet, replace your all-purpose tires with winter tires. Let your insurer know you’ve taken these steps to make your vehicle safer.
Find Ways To Drive Fewer Miles
The less you drive, the less risk you represent to your insurance company. Every kilometer driven increases the chances you’ll be involved in an accident. This is the reason many insurers lower the premiums of policyholders who drive fewer miles than normal.
If you have the option, carpool to the office each day or take public transportation. Limit your driving to necessary trips. These two steps alone can shave a significant amount from your rates.
There is a good chance your insurer offers discounts about which you are unaware. Call your broker or representative and inquire about them. Ask that any discounts for which you qualify are added immediately to your policy.
The most important thing to remember is to shop around and compare quotes once a year. You can do so online within minutes. Shopping around on a regular basis helps to ensure you’re paying the lowest rates available.
Daniel Watson is a retired high school teacher who spends quite a bit of time working in his garage fixing-up classic cars and turning them into vintage masterpieces. Daniel is combining his passion for cars with his love of teaching by writing informative articles on all things automotive. Even though he spends his time working on classic cars, he still interested in what’s new on the road.
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