Where Can I Buy Auto Insurance Online?

August 23rd, 2011 Chad Posted in Savings No Comments »

Shopping for car insurance can be confusing and overwhelming. Fortunately, the Internet has made buying auto insurance much easier than it used to be. By purchasing a policy online, you eliminate the need to drive to your insurance agent’s office to argue over coverage and deductibles. You also reduce the risk of buying a policy that is not right for you.

Buying Insurance Online

Almost all major car insurance companies give shoppers the option to quote and purchase a policy without leaving their homes and most of the questions they ask are similar. However, obtaining a quote online can be risky if you do not fully understand what constitutes a good rate in terms coverage and deductibles, so consider working with an agent if you are not comfortable with the process.

Finding the Right Company

Larger insurance companies can spend more on marketing, so you may be drawn to them first. It is important to do your research before purchasing a policy, and base it off of your needs, not the company’s campaign.

GEICO

Government Employees Insurance Company (GEICO) began with a focus on military personnel and government employees. Currently, they have over 10 million policies and 16 million insured vehicles. If you are interested in purchasing a policy from GEICO, their website allows you to request free price quotes at no obligation on any vehicle you choose. Simply enter your customer contact information, the make, model and year of the car, how the vehicle is primarily used, the estimated mileage you travel each year and whether you own, lease or finance the vehicle. Once you enter vehicle information, safety features that your car has will automatically pop up, indicating that you may be entitled to a discount.

You will then need to answer a few questions regarding driver information for all drivers in your household, such as driver history and whether you have had any accidents, traffic tickets, thefts or vandalisms in the last five years or any DUIs in the last 10 years. If the answer is no, you are entitled to another discount. GEICO requires current insurance information, if applicable, and asks for the bodily injury limit coverage amount.

After you complete your household information, GEICO’s online quote process designates a specific section to ask you about discounts you can receive for things such as safe driving, having safety features on your car or association with certain organizations. Once you have answered these questions, GEICO will provide a policy and comparison quotes for you to choose from and purchase.

Allstate

Allstate, one of the leading insurance companies in the country, sells more than 13 major types of insurance. Similar to GEICO, they offer customers the opportunity to purchase a policy online. First, enter your ZIP code and the type of insurance you want. You must then fill out a “Driver’s Profile” for each individual driver and enter your household information such as whether you own or rent your home.

Allstate then asks you for your employment status and occupation, as well as the make, model and year of your vehicle. The website will provide you with quotes to compare and will finally give you the option to purchase a policy. You can have an electronic copy of your policy emailed directly to your inbox.

Progressive

Before you even begin to request a quote from Progressive’s website, they ask you if you would like to bundle car insurance with another insurance policy such as homeowners or renters insurance for even bigger savings. You must enter your name, address and date of birth before you can begin to add vehicles to your quote. Start by selecting the type, year, make and model of your car. Then enter the body type, what the car is primarily used for, business or personal, how many miles you drive to work or school one way, your estimated annual mileage, the ZIP code where the car is kept, whether you own or lease the vehicle and whether or not it is equipped with a tracking device.

The next page asks you to provide details about yourself and your license including your employment status and occupation, the highest level of education you have completed, your age at the time of your first driver’s license issuance, if the license has been suspended, your primary residence and your marital status. Progressive will also ask if you have had any DWIs in the last 10 years, accidents that were your fault in the last 5 years, or any not-at-fault accidents, claims or violations in the last three years.

Finally, note last minute details such as if you already have a different policy with Progressive, if your family is currently covered by health insurance and your previous car insurance history. After all the information is completed, Progressive will give you a quote in a matter of seconds.




5 Ways to Save Money on Your Auto Insurance Today

August 19th, 2011 Chad Posted in Savings No Comments »

The cost of auto insurance is something that concerns almost all drivers. As the years go by, the price of replacing and repairing vehicles seems to increase, placing a premium on quality affordable auto coverage. If you are concerned about your rates and are looking for ways to save, there are some simple things you can do today to get more for your auto insurance premium dollar.

Shop Around and Compare Insurers

First and foremost, it is crucial to understand the potential savings that can be had simply by shopping around among multiple carriers. According to J.D. Power, this is actually the single most effective way to save on auto insurance. Many major auto insurance online providers such as Esurance advise their customers to shop around and make it easy for them to do it.

These days, there is no excuse not to shop around and compare auto insurance costs and coverage. Take a look at a good number of companies and see how much money you might save. For many of us, the tendency through the years has been to stay with one company for fear of losing out on loyalty discounts, for example.

But many insurers today will actually credit their customers for time spent with their previous company and match those discounts, anyway, so it is always a good idea to look around.

Increase Deductibles (with Caution)

When you take the time to compare prices from several auto insurance companies, it is also a good idea to think about looking at the potential impact of adjusting coverage. One simple example is to increase deductibles, which in simple terms are just the out of pocket cost insured drivers have to pay in the event of an accident or other claim. Increasing the deductible on a policy will help lower prices, especially in full coverage plans.

But any increase in deductible should be done with caution. Nationwide recommends that customers set any net savings aside when they make this type of coverage decision, so they have the cash available in the event of a claim to cover their costs. Nationwide also offers a Vanishing Deductible that has more to do with good driving than cut-rate coverage. Under the terms of this program, drivers can save $100 off their deductible for every year of safe driving.

Save More by Driving Safely

In fact, safe driving is a common thread throughout many of the best and most effective practices for saving on auto insurance. It’s true that you can’t go out today and instantly create a long history of safe driving, but it is still something to work toward as a driver, and having financial incentive to do so makes it all the more appealing.

Many companies help safe driving a more attractive goal to reach toward by offering direct incentives on their policies. Met Life Auto & Home, for example, provides its drivers with safe driver credits that help them rack up rewards for avoiding tickets, accidents and claims.

There are also plenty of companies featuring discounts for defensive driving courses. In some cases taking a course like this and completing it successfully can even wipe a previous accident off your insurance record, helping you instantly save on your auto insurance.

First Accident Forgiveness

Of course, there’s no question that regardless of how safely we try to operate our automobiles, the risk will always be there for an accident to occur. That’s why some companies have devised a method called accident forgiveness (or first accident forgiveness) to extend an olive branch to those who have an at-fault claim on their record following a good run of safety over an extended stretch of time.

GEICO, for example, features first accident forgiveness for drivers who have completed five years of demonstrated safe driving as continuously insured loyal customers. In some ways the best chances to save depend on a combination of things, such as safety and loyalty.

Take Advantage of Discounts

These are just a few of the discounts that are available for drivers these days. Many companies offer a tremendous range of discounts. Allstate, for instance, offers over a dozen discounts for its policyholders. Take a look at all the ways you can save and be sure to claim all the savings you have coming when you purchase a policy, and save big today!