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Car insurance is likely one of those monthly bills that makes you cringe every time you pay it. No one likes to fork up the extra money each month, and it can seem like a big burden, especially when you don’t end up needing it that often. Although it’s necessary to have car insurance, you don’t have to spend a fortune on your plan, if you take the proper steps to help lower your monthly costs.
Here are seven ways to help you save money on car insurance.
1. Pick The Right Insurer
The first step is to make sure you’re working with the right insurance company. Some insurers may have lower premiums, but they can end up costing you more because they lowball cost estimates or force you to to pay extra for original-equipment replacement parts, according to Consumer Reports. In a survey from the company, they found that USAA, Amica and NJM were among the highest rated groups for satisfaction.
2.Inquire About Discounts
Car insurers offer a number of discounts for people who they deem to have low-risk lifestyles. These discounts apply to people such as students with good grades, older drivers who have taken a refresher course, any driver who takes a defensive-driving course, and members of affinity groups, such as college alumni and certain occupations and professions.
3. Adjust Your Deductible
Setting a higher deductible can reduce your monthly payments, as you just end up paying more when you have a claim. If you have a history of safe driving, this option is a good bet for you. Hiking your deductible from $200 to $500 can cut your premium on collision by 15 to 30 percent, according to Consumer Reports. Set a little money aside each month in your savings so that you’re covered should anything happen.
4. Cut Down On Driving
Whenever possible, carpool with others, take public transportation or walk. Most insurance companies track mileage, and you get the lowest rates when you drive fewer miles. If your routine has changed and you’ve cut down on your driving, let your insurance company know.
5. Combine Your Policies
Insurers offer discounts on car insurance when you also buy other types of insurance from them as well, including homeowners insurance, renters insurance and life insurance. By combining policies, you lower some of the insurance company’s risk, which is what allows them to give you bigger discounts.
6. Improve Your Credit
Car insurance companies pay attention to your credit score, so it’s important to pay your bills on time and regularly check and correct credit-reporting errors. If you have good credit, check with your insurance company to see if you can get a discount.
7. Choose Your Car Wisely
Vehicle damage is the biggest cost for insurers, so premiums vary by car model, as some end up costing more to fix than others. If you’re shopping for a new car, inquire with your insurer to get premium quotes for the different models you are considering. Cars that are bigger in size, have a larger engine or are more high-end tend to come with higher insurance costs.