While raising your deductible or taking a driver’s education class are the standard approaches to lowering your auto insurance premiums, there are far more substantial avenues cost-conscious drivers can pursue. Have you considered discount diving using any of these four strategies?
Think Bulk for Coverage and Payments
Let one company write all your coverage (home, health, auto, and life) and you will likely qualify for a volume policy holder discount. Make your payments on all policies in bulk at six-month intervals. This saves on processing fees and similar charges that average $60 or more a year per policy.
Pay Attention to the Details
Premiums should fall from 5-10 percent ever five years over the life of the car. Are you getting those discounts? Can you eliminate benefits you don’t need? Towing benefits add $30 a year to an automotive policy; rental coverage tacks on another $40. You can rent a car for $20 a day. Do you actually need conventional automotive coverage? If you routinely take mass transit, could you get by with a “pay as you drive” policy? Your premiums will automatically be cut in half.
Be Rewarded for Who You Are
Active duty and retired military personnel qualify for service appreciation discounts ranging from 2 to 15 percent. Senior citizens with clean driving records can use their AARP membership to gain cuts of as much as 45 percent. If you hold a degree in science, math, or engineering, you have a lower risk file and can seek discounts of 10 to 30 percent. The same is true for farmers and teachers, who fall into the lowest of all risk categories by occupation.
Use Technology to Your Benefit
Teenage drivers are among the most expensive of all drivers to insure. A number of companies, however, have lower rate packages for first-time drivers if their cars are equipped with GPS or other tracking devices that allow for greater parental supervision. Also, capitalize on all the safety features included on your car and go after discounts for onboard security systems and other anti-theft devices.
While some of the more unusual discounts may require a willingness to research your case and to negotiate vigorously, no one ever received a discount by not asking. Consumers who go into the insurance office well-informed, who are willing to walk away when they don’t get a good rate, and who will comparison shop will always get lower prices for solid, comprehensive coverage.