Consumer Reports analyzed 2.7 billion premiums, the bulk of the premiums in the U.S. auto market, and came up with five steps that you can take right now to save on automobile insurance.
Their first tip is, shop around and shop often. There are plenty of people who stay with the same company for decades and think that their rates are good because they’ve been a long time customer and then later find out that they could have been saving hundreds or dollars per year if they had only shopped around. They say that the “long-term customer discount” is mostly a myth.
Tip #2: Cast a wide net. They recommend shopping for rates on thezebra.com, which uses data supplied by insurers to provide you with 18-35 insurance quotes, depending on your state.
Tip#3: Consider raising your deductibles. The average driver files a comprehensive or collision claim every 5 to 10 years, so why pay for the very lowest deductible year after year? Raising your collision deductible to $1,000, for example, could lower rates by $140 per year.
Tip #4: Protect yourself. Make sure that you do not skimp on coverage. There are plenty of crazies and yahoos out there driving around with terrible insurance or no insurance at all, so make sure that you are covered for uninsured motorists and under-insured motorists.
Tip#5: Check out the insurance companies’ ratings. You can find rating info on the Consumer Reports website for most insurance companies. Their top ten list includes Amica Mutual, USAA, NJM, Auto-owners Insurance, Erie, Auto Club, State Auto, State Farm, The Hartford and Auto Club Group.