Every week in my agency we talk to a lot of prospects that are searching for auto insurance. I’m amazed at how often these people sabotage their auto insurance and subsequently themselves, causing them to pay more for their auto insurance over time.
I’ve identified Ten stupid ways people mess up their auto insurance and pay more over my 23 years of experience. My goal in our agency is to educate potential clients of these stupid ways and guide them to make smarter auto insurance decisions which will save them money over time, not just for today.
I’m sure I could’ve come up with a few more ways but hey, ten is enough stupidity for one blog post.
If you find yourself doing any of these 10, please seek the counsel of a professional... an insurance professional.
- Don’t pay your insurance premium on time. Lapses cost you more over time. Insurance companies price policies higher because of lapses. Sign up for auto-draft to pay your premium to avoid any lapse.
- Buy Arizona state minimum auto insurance. If you want to pay more buy a policy with the state minimum requirements. If you’re in a serious accident chances are good the insurance company will pay out the max and guess what, you’ll be on the hook for the amount beyond your limits. Judgments stalk you and wreck your credit which causes you to pay more for your auto insurance.
- Don’t have the right deductible. I see people with deductibles that are too low which increases the premium. Sometimes, I see really high deductibles which really don’t offer a lot of savings compared to the potential out of pocket loss. My recommendation is to choose a deductible you can comfortably pay on short notice.
- Let other people drive your car. If you let others drive your car know that if they have an accident you will be responsible. Your auto policy will be primary and your rates could be impacted. Read more about Who’s Driving Your Car.
- Waive Medical Payments Coverage. Too many people waive this valuable coverage. In light of the changing health insurance landscape you should highly consider selecting this coverage at a minimum of $2,000.
- Waive Uninsured and Underinsured Motorists Coverage. People who waive this coverage or choose low limits truly are making a STUPID decision. This is YOUR protection against the idiots who don’t have insurance or carry low limits (see #2). There are a lot of these idiots out there so protect yourself from the financial burden of paying out of pocket for your bodily injuries from an auto accident.
- Choose your policy solely on price. With all the advertising out there, these companies want you to believe that the ONLY difference is the price. But, that’s not true. Not all policy contracts are the same so you need to ask questions and know what you’re buying.
- Get too many tickets/submit a lot of small claims. This stupid way costs people lots of dough for years. Insurance companies consider every claim you make, especially when you’re shopping for new insurance. If you’re filing a couple glass claims each year and getting a ticket or two you’ll never be able to get the best rates possible. Slow down, follow the rules of the road, and discuss any potential claim with your agent before filing a claim.
- Change insurance companies frequently. Insurance companies give lower rates over time for loyalty. If you’re considering changing carriers many have better pricing tiers if you’ve been with your current company for 5 or more years.
- Don’t hire a Professional, Independent Insurance Specialist like me. This is the worst mistake of all! Independent agents aren’t beholden to any one insurance company like captive agents and employees that work for the direct 800# companies. Independent agents look out for YOUR needs not the needs of the insurance company. Read Why Choose an Independent Agent for more about us insurance super heroes.
Avoid these 10 Stupid Ways to Mess-Up Your Auto Insurance and you’ll save money over time and have superior insurance coverage too.
Oh, and if you have trouble with any of these then just make sure you avoid #10 and call my agency.
I’ll help you steer clear of the other 9 mistakes.
Author Richard Morris
Richard Morris, an independent insurance agent in Chandler, Arizona, has been serving and helping Arizona families with all their insurance needs for over 23 years. Visit his website at http://www.southwestpremierinsuranceagency.com to see all the ways he can help you with your insurance needs or call the office at (480) 336-2707 or toll free at (888) 907-9349. Connect with Rich on Google+ and Twitter.