Understanding GAP Insurance

Open RoadIf you owe money on your car – and who doesn’t, these days? – you might want to look into GAP insurance. This insurance covers the ‘gap’ between what the car is worth (what you owe on it) and the value that the insurance company will place on it if they total it out. In other words, if you owe $15,000 on your car and it’s totaled in a wreck, the insurance company might pay you $10,000 as the value of the car. That leaves you owing $5,000 on a car you don’t even have anymore. If you have GAP insurance, though, you don’t have to worry about that, because the GAP insurance will pay the extra $5,000. You won’t have a car, but you won’t owe anybody anything, either. That leaves you free to buy another car.

When the amount you owe on the vehicle is equal to or below the value that the insurance company places on the car, the GAP insurance can be cancelled at your request, since you’d then be paying for something that wouldn’t give you any benefit.

GAP insurance isn’t a requirement, either, so you don’t have to buy it if you don’t want to. It’s usually very inexpensive, though, so a lot of people choose to get it just as an added measure of protection. It will most likely be offered to you when you buy a new car, along with extended warranties and all kinds of other things. Choose carefully.

Do You Really Need Full Coverage?

Person QuestionA lot of people try to shrug off full coverage car insurance and say that you don’t need it. However, if you have a car that’s still financed you’re generally required to have it. The finance company wants to protect its investment. Even if you owe the car outright, it’s a good idea to have full coverage insurance. The reason behind that is that it’s very costly to fix a car if it’s been in a bad accident.

A wreck can cause thousands of dollars worth of damage, and most people don’t have the money to get their car repaired. Keep in mind that full coverage insurance should really depend on the value of the car.

If it’s only valued at a couple thousand dollars because it’s very old and high mileage, you really don’t need full coverage insurance. If, on the other hand, the car is valued at five to ten thousand dollars or more, paying that little bit extra for full coverage insurance ensures that you won’t have to pay much out of pocket if the car is wrecked. If the car is damaged beyond repair your insurance company will consider the car totaled and will give you a check for the value of the car. That’s a big help in being able to afford another car, so be aware of what your car is worth when deciding on full coverage insurance.

What You Need To Know About Auto Insurance For Your Business

a car 4x4If you have a business that requires people to drive – whether it’s a delivery business or whether people need to visit clients, etc. – you need to have good insurance. Some businesses want a person to use his or her own car and own insurance. If you work for a business like that, be sure to be upfront with your insurance company and tell them that you use your car for business. That way, in the event of an accident while you’re on the job, you’ll be sure that you’re covered for any problems that may arise.

A lot of businesses don’t do things that way, though, and instead have cars or other vehicles that belong to the business and that the employees drive when they need to attend to company business.

If you’re the owner of a business like that, make sure that you have your vehicles properly insured. Don’t try to pass them off as personal vehicles if they’re used in business. If you do that and the person driving one of them is involved in an accident your insurance can fight the claim and try not to cover the vehicle. Since you don’t want that to happen and it could be very costly, make sure you’re honest with your insurance company, and that you check the driving records and validity of the drivers licenses of anyone who is driving for your company.

Need Help With Your Collision Claim?

Crash CarIf you’ve been in an auto accident and need to file a collision claim, you might be a little uncertain how to do that, especially if you haven’t had to file one before or if the insurance company is a new one to you and their procedures are different. The first thing you want to do is seek medical attention if it’s an emergency. Most collisions aren’t, though, so you should report the accident to the police, and never, ever admit that you were at fault – even if you clearly were.

Let the police and/or your insurance company come to that conclusion. Also, get the personal information of the other driver, and take pictures of the scene if you have a camera or a camera phone. Try to get the insurance information of the other driver, along with his or her personal information.

Within the next few days you should talk with a lawyer, because he or she can help you establish your rights, see what kind of claim is possible against the other driver and the insurance company, and make sure that your insurance company is fair to you – especially if the collision wasn’t your fault. Some companies will try to pin fault on the other driver because they don’t want to pay a claim, so watch out for the possibility that the other driver’s insurance company will try to do that to you. The police report and any pictures you took at the scene can help.

Tips For Keeping Seniors Rates Low

roadIf you’re a senior citizen you might find that some of the insurance companies want to charge you higher rates. It doesn’t matter that you’ve been driving for 50 or even 60 years without a problem. The insurance companies see you as a high risk because they assume your reflexes won’t be as good and maybe your eyesight isn’t what it used to be. That means you’ll be more likely to get into an accident.

Overall, people are living longer and remaining healthier today. More and more seniors are able to do things like drive well into their seventies, eighties, and beyond. Since that’s the case, it seems unfair for seniors to be targeted as high risk drivers.

For a senior citizen who wants to keep his or her rates low, though, there are insurance companies that cater to seniors. The AARP and other organizations offer rates that are better than a lot of other insurance companies for people who are of advanced age. If you’re older and you find that you don’t like the rates that you’re paying, you can check with one of these companies and see if you can’t get insurance that’s specific to senior citizens and that’s much lower than what you would have otherwise had to pay with a traditional company. That, and keeping your driving record clear, can help you to get the rates you actually deserve for your years of good driving.

No Time For Driving School? No Problem

Keyboard 2In New York State, there’s a new kind of driving school, and it’s geared toward adult drivers who want points removed from their license for past traffic infractions and/or who want to see lower insurance rates. These lower rates generally come along when a person goes to driving school and can prove successful completion of it.

By keeping that in mind, motorists can save a lot of money. However, not everyone has time to go to driving school, and the people who work all day and have families and are busy can now make the choice to go to driving school online, in the comfort of their own home. When they do that, they use a computer program and steer a virtual car around obstacles.

They go through exercises, ‘drive’ a car, answer questions, and have a specific period of time in which to complete the program. When they do, they get proof of that. They can show that proof to their insurance company and to the drivers license bureau, allowing them to improve their driving record if need be, and also allowing them to save more money on their car insurance. In tight economic times that’s a real boost, and the class only costs around $50. By learning how to drive more safely the chance of an accident is reduced, and that’s well worth the price of these kinds of driving schools.

Save Money On Car Insurance- Buy A Hybrid

BatmobileIf you’re looking to save some money on your car insurance, you might want to consider making your next car a hybrid. That’s because insurers argue that hybrid cars are better in a lot of ways and that makes them worth discounts. They don’t pollute as much, and they offer safety and security features. They also protect the environment and are well built. With those things in mind, there are plenty of insurance companies that will give a person a discount if that person buys a hybrid car instead of a standard car.

It used to be that a lot of people didn’t like hybrids, either, because they weren’t stylish or they couldn’t go very fast. A lot of that has changed, and there are some very nice hybrid cars available now.

By keeping that in mind a person can make a more informed choice when buying his or her next car. That doesn’t mean that someone should buy a hybrid car just to try to get an insurance discount, because not everyone likes the hybrid cars that are offered and the discounts often aren’t that much. If you’re considering a hybrid, though, check with your insurance company and find out what kinds of discounts it offers and for which cars. Then you can make a better decision when you go to the car dealer and start your search.

Prepaid Car Insurance?

Old LancerPrepaid car insurance, sometimes called behavior based car insurance, is designed for people who drive a lot less than the normal or average person does. Because they drive fewer miles, they have less of a chance of being involved in an accident. People who have less accident risk shouldn’t have to pay as much as people who have more accident risk, and that’s already often the case with insurance companies.

The idea with prepaid car insurance is that the rate would go down even further for people who don’t drive around as much. Less time on the roads equals more safety. However, the insurance companies would have to come to some kind of consensus about how much people were driving and whether they were actually safer, as well as addressing concerns like people with bad driving records who are claiming they won’t be driving very much.

How to ensure that people aren’t lying about how much they drive is something to address, too, because anyone who knows about the way insurance companies do this can easily say that he or she doesn’t drive much just so the rate will be lower. Unless that person is required to provide mileage information for his or her vehicle, and unless that information can be verified, there’s little that can be done to stop fraud from occurring just to save a little bit of money.

Choosing The Right Deductible For Your Car Insurance Needs

car-insurance-deductibleOnce you have determined the right type of insurance policy for your needs you will need to determine where to set your deductibles. This is important because it will determine the rate of your monthly insurance payment. If you pay a higher deductible in the event of a claim, you will be charged a lower insurance premium. This is because you will present a lower financial risk to the insurance company. If an accident occurs, they will be responsible for less of the financial damage.

A lower monthly payment may be exactly what you are looking for as well, but you should keep in mind that you will have to pay the deductible if an accident occurs. The monthly payment will come routinely while the deductible will have to be paid out only in the event of an accident. When you choose your deductible, therefore, make sure you consider exactly how much of an accident’s costs you can afford to absorb into your own finances. The reason you have insurance after all is to protect you from the largely unforeseen costs of an accident. You should also consider your state’s laws regarding car insurance when making this choice. You probably want more than the minimum amount of coverage required because in a state where they only require liability, like Illinois, you may find your self underinsured in the case of an accident.

You can then raise your deductible to help offset the cost of better coverage. Choosing your deductible is a balancing act. Make sure you plan your expenses so that they are manageable on both the monthly and the deductible fronts.

Where Can I Get My Car Insurance Questions Answered?

car-insurance-questionsThere are several ways to get the information that you need to answer your questions about car insurance. Begin by doing research, there is a great deal of helpful information regarding car insurance available on the internet. There you can find consumers like yourself as well as the opinions of experts. Sometimes you can even find them side-by-side. Most car insurance companies also have some sort of webpage dedicated to answering car insurance questions. It will either be in the form of a frequently asked questions page or a blog on car insurance topics. You should also use the resources available to you at home. Your friends and family members may have knowledge and experience regarding car insurance that you do not. For questions regarding state specific laws, you may want to contact your DMV.

Every state has widely varying rules regarding car insurance, so whether you are in Maryland or Michigan, you should make a point of finding out what they are. Finally, if you have a question that is specific to a policy or claim, you should contact either your insurance company or your insurance agent to receive clarification. These people are the experts on anything to do with the company’s insurance policies. If they cannot help you themselves, they will be able to refer you to someone who can. It is in their best interest to make sure that you are a properly informed consumer.