Car insurance can be complicated — but it doesn’t have to be. Here are a few questions to discuss with your rep to ensure you’re getting the best coverage at the best rate.
When it comes time to choose a car insurance policy, most folks let the premium price drive the decision. But, cutting corners (and costs) could leave you underinsured — and therefore overexposed to risks. Thankfully, it can be easy to find the perfect sweet spot of affordability and coverage when you ask the right questions and have access to reputable information from your insurance representative.
Always remember that your insurance rep is a valuable resource here to help you. With the help of Travelers Insurance, we’re going to walk you through some questions to consider asking your rep before you purchase a policy to ensure you’re getting the most bang for your buck.
1. Do I Have All the Coverage I Need?
The answer to this question will depend on the state where you live. At a minimum, most states require liability insurance, which covers the cost of accident-related injury, death, vehicle damage, property damage, and legal fees.
Once the minimum requirements are met, ask your insurance rep to explain and recommend additional coverage options best suited for your individual needs. These commonly include collision, comprehensive, uninsured, and underinsurance motorist protection (UM/UIM). Your rep should also explain how each will affect your premium and “out-of-pocket” expenses after an accident.
If you have a lot of personal assets to protect, you may also want to discuss excess liability insurance with your insurance rep. This is a separate, personal liability policy that can kick in to cover costs where your car (or homeowners) insurance leaves off.
2. Am I Getting All the Discounts and Savings I Can?
The cost of insurance partly depends on the coverages, deductibles and policy limits you choose. It is also based on your “risk rating” — a calculation used to determine the likelihood that you will be making a claim in the future. Factors such as the age, gender, driving record, insurance score, and garaging location of the vehicles on your policy will largely determine the price of your premium.
While there is not much wiggle room to affect your risk rating and its effect on the price of your policy premium, there are many discounts designed to help lower premiums.
Savings are commonly found in safe driver, continuous insurance, multi-policy, multi-car, and good student discounts for those who qualify. Additional discounts may be available if you are insuring a new or hybrid/electric car, or own a home. How and when you pay can affect your premium, too. Your insurance company may offer discounts if you pay in full, by electronic funds transfer (EFT) or by payroll deduction, as well as if you pay on time.
Ask your insurance rep to ensure you are getting all the discounts for which you are eligible.
3. What Is Covered if My Car Gets Damaged?
It is a popular misconception that car insurance will automatically cover the replacement or repair of your car, as well as towing or rental car fees after there has been damage to your car in the event of an accident. The reality is, without the right coverages, you may not have these benefits.
To cover repair and replacement of your own car, you will need collision coverage for accident-related damage and comprehensive coverage for non-accident incidents, such as theft, vandalism, hitting an animal, or storm damage.
We hope that these car insurance questions make it easy for you to start a conversation with your rep to ensure you’re getting exactly what you need at a price you’ll love. If you’re in the greater Rochester, NY area, reach out to The Feltner Group to set up a consultation to discuss car insurance or any other type of insurance you may need. As independent brokers, we work for our clients, not the insurance carriers, and we’re dedicated to helping you get the coverage you need at the best rates possible.