It can seem nearly impossible to lower our monthly expenses. If you’re careful and don’t drive too much, you can save money on insurance.
A newer way to buy car insurance is to pay per mile. Estimate your annual miles, include your information and get a quote. When I tried it, based on my information and 1,200 estimated ANNUAL miles, my monthly premium is $30. Before you pick-up the phone, additional miles are .07 cents per mile. If your job changes, you take a road-trip, etc., your extremely affordable car insurance may not stay that way.
If you are retired or a college student living near school, this may work. However, the average driver puts 9,000 miles on their car annually.
Young drivers cost more to insure. Even if your dasughter is in the national honor society, volunteers for meals on wheels, etc. consider that her rate will partially be based on her peers. The ones who get in fender-benders as soon as they they become licensed, drive last year’s BMW, etc. For high school and college students with a B average, a good student discount may apply. Have your child drive the older vehicle; not the Corvette. Vehicles with anti-theft devices, anti-lock brakes and complete air bags are less expensive to insure. Although young drivers may want ‘their freedom,’ it makes sense to keep them on the family policy until they’ve moved.
Car insurance rates start to decrease for young adults around age 25-26. Being a careful driver is always important. Regardless of your age, multiple claims and/or tickets will only add to your premium. Staying with your carrier can enable you to be eligible for a longevity (loyalty) discount. However, it still may pay to shop around as this discount may not make your premium low enough compared to other carriers.
Many young adults rent an apartment or own their first home. Having car and home or renters coverage with the same carrier can lead to significant
Later on, some carriers offer discounts for college or graduate school degrees, being in certain occupations, or owning a business. An independent broker representing multiple carriers can help you shop as well as to determine how much risk you are willing to handle in exchange for a lower premium.
For example, many families used to expect either $0 or $250 deductibles. The deductible is the amount you will be responsible for if your car is damaged. Raising those deductibles to $500 or $750 can significantly lower your premium. Also, if you have AAA or a new car (with roadside assistance) you can don’t need towing coverage. Also, if you have 2 or more cars, you may not need rental reimbursement coverage. Finally, if you have good health insurance, you may not need medical payment coverage.
An often overlooked discount for seniors is to take a defensive driving course. AARP offers one online and most community colleges offer them. Ask your agent first, to ensure you are taking the right course to get the discount. Being retired, a member of a retirement association or similar can also lead to discounts.
You may not have to leave your current carrier or standard car insurance to save money. While, pay-per-mile coverage is an option, a variety of discounts are available. It pays to use a broker you trust and/or do a little homework.