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Archive for June, 2010

What The Most Common Type Of Auto Insurance Is

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

There are many different types of auto insurance policies that a person can choose from, depending on the type of vehicle that they drive. Some coverage is mandatory and some is optional.

The most common insurance coverage that is purchased is liability. This is because it is mandatory in most states. Liability provides you financial protection against lawsuits if you are found to be at fault for an accident that causes injuries or property damage. Without this insurance, you would be responsible for paying medical expenses and vehicle repairs. Bodily injury covers any costs associated with an injury such as x-rays, medical procedures, physiotherapy, or chiropractic care. In more serious cases, it may pay for rehabilitation and recovery programs. Property damage pays for repairs to another person’s vehicle or other personal property, which could be a fence, a home, or other structure on a person’s property.

There is other coverage that is commonly added on to an auto insurance policy. These insurance products cover physical damages to your vehicle. Collision pays for damages sustained in a collision or upset and comprehensive covers damages incurred from a fire, theft, vandalism, or animal collision. This coverage requires you to pay a set deductible before the insurance company will start to pay for the remaining amount. This is a common insurance that people add on if they have a relatively new vehicle. If the vehicle is leased or financed, this physical coverage is mandatory. This is because the financial institution that has extended the loan has a financial interest in the vehicle. If your vehicle is deemed a total loss and you will be receiving a payout from the insurance company, the lien holder is entitled to their share of the check.

Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage is mandatory in some states and is a commonly used coverage. There are many people who drive the streets without insurance or they do not have an adequate amount to cover for damages if they cause an accident. This insurance will protect you financially if you are involved in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver. Without this coverage, you cannot make a claim against the other party’s insurance company. You could sue them for the damages and medical expenses but it will be difficult to recover any costs from that person.

No matter what make and model of vehicle you drive, you will need to purchase auto insurance. The coverage you choose will depend on many factors. Your insurance agent will help explain the benefits of each level of coverage so that you can make an informed decision and choose the insurance that is the best fit for you and your vehicle.

What Teenage Drivers Need To Know About Auto Insurance Quotes

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

One of the most stressful times of a parent’s life is the first few months after a child gets a car. Driving is very liberating for a teen, but also very dangerous–not to mention expensive. Auto insurance quotes are usually much higher for teenage drivers, with teen boys paying the most, and premiums will skyrocket for teens that receive speeding tickets or get involved in traffic accidents. It’s important to teach teenage drivers how to keep auto insurance rates low early on, as it will help them drive responsibly and avoid potential insurance increases. Take a moment to gather a few auto insurance quotes and discuss them with your teenage driver.

Point out and explain important parts of different quotes, particularly coverage amounts. Explain to your teen that while states have minimum requirements for car insurance, it’s usually better to buy more than the bare minimum, especially early in a driving career. Explain each type of coverage, too, and what different coverage types provide for a driver, from medical liability coverage to special add-ons like roadside assistance. Make sure that they realize the potential costs of being involved in an accident without an appropriate amount of insurance. If the teen has a job, you can make these costs seem more realistic by putting them into terms they’ll understand–figure out how many hours they’d have to work to pay for even a minor fender bender without appropriate insurance coverage. Ask your teen if he or she has any questions, and if you don’t know an answer, ask an insurance agent.

Teenage drivers should always be told about the different factors that affect and change their auto insurance quotes. Call an insurance agent or two and ask how the cost of insurance would change for your teen if a traffic citation suddenly popped up on his or her record. While teens usually hear endless lectures in driver’s education courses about safely driving under the speed limit, you may have a much bigger effect on their habits by telling them that they’re responsible for all of the costs of a traffic ticket or accident, including auto insurance premium increases.

It’s never too early or too late to teach a teen about auto insurance quotes, and your insurance company will often be glad to provide additional assistance in the form of pamphlets, free quotes, and other valuable sources of information. Make sure that your teen understands how auto insurance works, and what they’ll need to do to keep their driving privileges. You’ll end up with a much safer teenage driver, good peace of mind, and lower auto insurance quotes for the entire family.

The Difference Between Maximum and Minimum Auto Insurance Coverage Policies

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

When shopping for auto insurance, it is important to know the difference between minimum and maximum auto insurance coverage. Most states that require drivers to carry car insurance, have laws that will outline what minimum coverage you must buy.

It is also important to know that the minimum limits your state requires may not necessarily be adequate. Car accidents can often cost much more than these minimum limits mandate. It is recommended that you carry at least $100,000 in bodily injury protection and $300,000 per accident. This is known as 100/300 auto insurance coverage.

Furthermore, if you live in a “no-fault” state, your policy must pay cover medical for both yourself and your passengers.

Therefore, you need to consider several things. First, does the state require liability, and if so, how much money in liability do they require. Some, such as Florida and New Hampshire, do not require this. Second, does the state require personal injury protection, or PIP. Also, you need to see if your state is a no-fault state, for the reasons stated above, and whether or not they require uninsured motorist coverage.

Clearly, maximum coverage encompasses more than minimum coverage. Maximum coverage would include liability coverage, medical payment coverage, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, and collision and comprehensive coverage.

Collision and comprehensive coverage compensates you for the damages to your car regardless of whether this accident is your fault or if the other motorist’s fault.??Collision and comprehensive coverage involves a deductible. The lower you would like to pay out of pocket after an accident, the higher your monthly insurance bill will be. Comprehensive insurance covers everything not regarding accidents, such as theft, fire, and vandalism.

In order to decide which type of coverage is right for you, several factors need to be considered. The value of the vehicle is the first. If you are driving a fairly inexpensive car, it may make more sense to pay for the minimum coverage available. This insures that if you are in an accident that is your fault, the other car will be covered but yours won’t. If you have a car that you would be unable to replace or repair out of pocket, it would be wise to go with at least collision insurance. Often times, you can save money by not paying for PIP by being covered under medical insurance.

When shopping, it is important to consider what kind of insurance coverage is best for you. Be familiar with your state requirements, the value of your car, and what you can afford to pay out of pocket.

How Handicapped Drivers Can Still Qualify For Auto Insurance

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

Insurance companies are required by law to follow rules and regulations set up by state and local governments, and many laws regulate how (and whether) insurance companies can decide to deny coverage to individuals. One of the most popular misconceptions about insurance companies is that they’re unfair or biased against handicapped individuals. However, federal law prevents insurance companies from denying coverage (or changing premiums) on the basis of a handicap. In fact, auto insurance companies cannot even ask about the handicapped status of a driver. The law surrounding handicapped drivers may vary from one state to the next, but federal anti-discrimination guidelines prevent insurance companies from making a discriminatory decision.

This does not mean that handicapped drivers cannot be denied coverage, however. If an auto insurance company can show that it would be unreasonably risky to insure a certain driver independent of that driver’s handicap, it could be legally acceptable to deny coverage to that individual. The handicap, however, cannot have anything to do with this decision. Car insurance companies must treat handicapped drivers and non-handicapped drivers exactly the same. Any form of discrimination, one way or the other, could be a violation of the law. Insurance companies cannot even offer lower premiums to handicapped drivers due to their handicaps–and, as handicapped drivers are statistically less likely to be involved in an accident compared to non-handicapped drivers; this is a significant limitation for insurers’ actuarial tables. Auto insurance premiums can still be based on a driver’s gender, age, and driving record, as well as the vehicle that the driver owns and any other typical factors (whether or not an alarm is installed, where the driver lives and parks, etc.).

Therefore, handicapped drivers do not need to look for special types of auto insurance and can use the same cost comparison websites and online quotes as any other driver. If you are able to drive legally, and you’ve got a driver’s license in your state of residence, you cannot be denied coverage due to a physical handicap. Reputable insurance companies will not even ask whether you have a handicap, as asking this question can be a violation.

If you feel that your auto insurance company is unfairly denying coverage or changing your premiums due to your handicap, make a complaint to your state’s insurance commission. They’ll look into the company’s practices, and if necessary, they can launch an investigation, assess fines, and take other steps to prevent discriminatory practices. No handicap should prevent you from following the law and driving with a proper amount of car insurance coverage, regardless of an insurance company’s intentions.

How An Agent Can Help You Find The Best Auto Insurance Quotes

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

Although we recommend shopping for auto insurance online, not everyone wants to use the Internet. For those people that do not feel comfortable using the web to get car insurance quotes, we put together the following information about insurance agents and how they can help. Finding affordable auto insurance on your own can be quite a challenge. When it comes to getting the best auto insurance quotes for adequate coverage on your vehicle, consider consulting an agent. When you choose to seek the professional services of an agent, you can rest assured you will be getting a great deal.

Applying with numerous insurance companies and providing the same information repeatedly can be a hassle. You don’t have to search endlessly for the lowest auto insurance quotes. Let an insurance agent assist you and leave your worries behind. Agents make it easier to get the right insurance policy at the right price rather than trying to compare quotes on your own. With an agent, you get the coverage you need and find affordable quotes efficiently. They can provide peace of mind for insuring your vehicle.

It’s key that you have the right agent for what you are looking for in your auto insurance. When choosing an agent, consider what you want most from an insurance company. This will ensure you find an agent who will choose the right company to cover your vehicle. When you find an agent who is right for you, you’re in good hands.

Having a reliable insurance agent can assist you by answering any questions you may have regarding your policy. She can guide you in the right direction towards getting a policy that suits your specific needs and explain your coverage options. You can receive better clarification on what you are getting out of your auto insurance policy.

The personal touch you receive with an insurance agent on your side will make you feel more at ease about finding the right auto insurance. This comes from professional agents having your best interests at heart. They are there for you to see that you are getting sufficient coverage at the best possible quotes available.

Consulting in an agent saves you valuable time and money. Why continually fill out form after form, when an agent can do the work for you? Simply provide the required information to your agent. From there, they will apply to various insurance providers for you. They can then point out the best auto insurance policies based on your situation with quotes that fit your budget.

Trusting in an insurance agent has helped countless car owners save money on their insurance policies. Insuring your vehicle couldn’t be easier! Let an agent help you to obtain the right policy for your vehicle with reasonable quotes. Even if you already have insurance, an agent could save you from overpaying by comparing quotes. Seeking an agent could literally save you hundreds of dollars a year on auto insurance!

Why Collision Coverage Is Recommended

Friday, June 4th, 2010

Driving a car is a huge responsibility. Yes, the everyday-ness of driving to and from work, the grocery store, school and daycare dilutes the heavy responsibility driving weighs on us, but it doesn’t make us, as drivers, any less accountable for our actions. And unfortunately, for every careful and safe driver on the road, there is a careless and precarious driver to match, which is why collision auto insurance is highly recommended. Accidents happen, no matter how hard we try to avoid them, and that’s when collision insurance comes in.

When shopping around for auto insurance quotes, I’m sure you’re representative inquired about the type of coverage you wanted—liability, collision and/or comprehensive. Collision coverage does exactly what it says—it “covers” the damage to your vehicle when you’re in a collision, including the damage caused by an accident with another vehicle, an object or a vehicle rollover. It does not matter if you or another driver is at fault; collision coverage is in place to pay for repairs or replacement, minus your deductible, which is the other side of the collision insurance coin.

Collision insurance and premiums are both affected by your deductible—the higher your deductible, the lower your premiums and the more out-of-pocket you have to pay when there’s damage to your vehicle. You need to be realistic when choosing your deductible. Don’t choose a high deductible just to lower your premium, if you can’t afford to pay that amount on the spot. Also, think of it this way: if the damage to your vehicle is $1,500 and your deductible is $1,000, the insurance company is only paying $500 and you’re paying $1,000. You need to choose what is financially feasible for you.

If you are financing or leasing a vehicle, you may (mostly likely) be required to have collision insurance, even though it is not a state-required bracket of insurance. Lien holders don’t want to finance a vehicle that’s not covered under an insurance plan when it gets into an accident. Once the car is paid off, you do have the option of dropping your collision coverage, which would lower your premium; but as discussed above, it is not advisable. If this is something you are considering, think of this: Will the savings be substantial enough to counterbalance the cost to repair, and possibly replace the damaged vehicle?

Collision coverage avoids you having to pay more than your deductible to repair or replace your vehicle.?As with most brackets of insurance, collision coverage can be difficult to decide on when shopping for an auto insurance quote; however, think of your out-of-pocket costs and how much money is readily available to spend on vehicle repairs and replacement.

Steer Clear Of These 3 Auto Insurance Scams

Friday, June 4th, 2010

Scam artists operate in every industry and insurance is no exception. Preying on well-intentioned, uninformed people is how they make a fast buck and move on to their next mark. The best way to protect yourself from auto insurance scams is to know what to watch out for. The following three swindles all involve using cheap insurance rates as the draw.

Scam 1

Incredibly cheap insurance is advertised and it is hard to resist getting an auto insurance quote. The quote seems legitimate and the first low-cost premium is paid. Within a month or two, a letter is received stating that you owe more money. Due to a “company rate error,” you now owe hundreds more for your car insurance. Large, reputable insurance companies do not perpetrate this type of double-cross. To avoid being taken in, contact the Better Business Bureau about companies before taking advantage of offers that sound too good to be true.

Scam 2

An individual posing as an insurance agent or broker offers to arrange low-rate insurance for a fee. You provide your driving history, as you would when applying for any auto insurance quote. The “agent” then impersonates you but lies to the insurance company to get a lower rate. You pay the premium and are none the wiser. The problem is that the insurance is not valid since fraud was committed to secure the policy. Insurance agents and brokers do not charge fees to provide insurance quotes. Steer clear of those who do.

Scam 3

The gimmick with the third rip off is free insurance. This free insurance is offered for a specific period of time. Getting something for nothing is hard to turn down and this is no exception. You apply for an auto insurance quote. The quote is reasonable and looks like a good deal. You are then asked to wire or transfer funds to pay for the insurance. There may be a request that you deliver cash to someone. Beware of this auto insurance scam. There is no insurance involved. It is not an insurance industry practice to ask for payment by wire, transfer or cash. Being asked to pay in this manner is a red flag. Investigate the company further.

There will always be underhanded individuals looking for a way to make a fast buck. Do not be duped by these nefarious crooks. When shopping for insurance, check the A.M. Best rating for the companies you like. This rating reflects the financial strength of insurance companies. Strong companies do not resort to deception to sell insurance. Doing business with financially robust, reputable companies will guarantee that you don’t fall victim to auto insurance scams.

How Additional Coverage Can Save Money

Friday, June 4th, 2010

You have to spend money to make money, or so goes the old saying. When it comes to insurance, many drivers want to spend as little as possible, while still ensuring that their vehicle has the maximum amount of coverage. While this is understandable, there is a limit to what basic auto insurance coverage can do for an owner. Typical auto insurance will include amounts for bodily injury as well as property damage, and the upper limits of this coverage will be determined by a combination of state requirements and what an insurance company is willing to offer. Higher limits can be obtained, but are done at the request of the policy holder and are typically not advertised in a basic auto insurance quote. While it often goes against the instinct to save money on what is undoubtedly an expensive proposition over the course of a driver’s lifetime, adding extra coverage to a car insurance policy can sometimes have the effect of saving, rather than costing, money.

Make no mistake, adding extra coverage will cost more money. Your monthly premiums will increase, and this increase can be substantial, depending on the type of coverage chosen. If coverage limits are simply raised, this can add a small amount to your insurance bill each month. If an add-on such as uninsured or under-insured motorist coverage is purchased, or even gap insurance to cover the difference between a new car’s purchase price and its depreciation, this can result in a much more substantial monthly payment. The advantage of this extra auto insurance coverage, however, can often more than outweigh the cost, especially if a driver is involved in a serious accident resulting in major damage or severe injury.

Take the case of a new car, just driven off of the lot. Without gap insurance, if this vehicle is totaled, it could cost the new owner five or even ten thousand dollars to make up the difference between the Blue Book value as paid by the insurance company, and the amount owing to the financing company for the term of the vehicle. In a similar vein, imagine an accident in which a driver is struck by a car driven by someone with no insurance. Without uninsured motorist coverage, the law-abiding driver may be left with medical bills that are far beyond the capacity of their basic collision coverage to pay, and may be unable to recover those costs directly from the uninsured party.

In short, extra coverage costs extra money, but can be a life and finance saver should the need ever arise to use it. Adding coverage to a basic auto insurance quote can help protect both a driver and their vehicle.

Common Misconceptions About Auto Insurance

Friday, June 4th, 2010

Auto insurance is one of the most common types of insurance products purchased in the United States, and comes with a host of features that can be customized to the client’s liking. Anything from coverage type to deductible cost can be negotiated, and no two auto insurance policies ever end up being quite the same. But despite the prevalence of not only online auto insurance quotes but cars on the road, many consumers have a startling number of misconceptions about not only auto insurance but how it works for them in case of an accident. Here are a few of the most common misconceptions clients have about the car insurance industry.

First, many people assume that if their car is damaged in an accident, the insurance company will fully fix it. This is not true. An insurance policy will pay for repairs to a car up to the coverage limits laid out in the policy. Should a policy have $15,000 in property damage coverage but the cost of the repairs after an accident end up being $20,000, the $5,000 difference will be borne entirely by the policy holder. What’s more, should the cost of fixing the vehicle be more expensive than writing it off and paying the client the amount the car is listed for in the Blue Book, the car will be declared a total loss. This can happen even if the damage to the car does not reach the maximum coverage – it is the choice of the insurance company.

Consumers also often believe that a phone call to their insurance company, simply to inquire about a policy, a claim, or just for general information will result in rates being raised. This is no longer the case, as almost all states have laws which prevent them from changing rates without a specific reason. A simple inquiry does not constitute use of an auto insurance policy, and therefore no rate increases are reasonable. Some consumers are also confused by the nature of estimates after an accident. An insurance company will typically require estimates from two or three body shops before they will approve payment for work done to a car after an accident. Some drivers deliberately go to auto body shops with higher rates, receive their insurance payout, and then take the car somewhere else for a cheaper fix, pocketing the difference. This is not a clever idea, but insurance fraud. Some companies pay auto body shops directly, but all will want a copy of a paid invoice.

While an auto insurance quote can seem confusing, as can the execution of a policy, both doing research online and speaking with a company representative can help make the product less daunting.

3 Questions To Ask Your Auto Insurance Company

Friday, June 4th, 2010

Finding a good auto insurance policy for a decent price may seem like a daunting task, but it is possible. If you acquire an auto insurance quote online, you will find coverage that suits your desires and budget. Auto insurance companies work with insurance quote websites, and you can obtain an auto insurance quote from the comfort of your own home. After you obtain a quote, you will be provided with accurate prices from the leading auto insurance providers in your area. Read this guide and find out what questions you should ask when you find an auto insurance provider.

When you find an insurance provider, you should contact the company to learn about the details of your policy and what it covers. You should never assume that your insurance company will replace your vehicle if you have a terrible accident. Some insurance providers quote liability-only insurance policies, just so they can provide you with the lowest auto insurance rate possible. You should also find out if any exclusions apply to your policy. You do not want to get stuck with an insurance provider that does not cover your expenses if you get into an automobile accident. In addition, you should check to see what the effects are for canceling coverage with your insurance company. It is also important to note that each state has different requirements when it comes to auto insurance, so make sure you have sufficient coverage.

Secondly, you should find out how the claims process works. Some insurers make it very difficult for policyholders to file claims. Find out who you will have to contact if you need to file a claim. Find out how long the claims process will take and what will be required of you. Also, keep in mind that you should always file claims promptly because some insurers do not pay out when their customers file claims after a specific period of time.

Auto insurance expenses can be costly, but you can contact your insurance provider to find out if they offer discounts to their customers. Many different kinds of discounts are available to drivers. For instance, discounts are available for retirees, great students, and people who have safety devices installed in their vehicles. Discounts are also available for people who have multiple policies with one insurance company. If you take advantage of the discounts that are available to you, you will drop your premiums and save a significant amount of money. These questions can save you a significant amount of time, stress, and money, and they will help you avoid purchasing a policy that does not meet your needs and expectations.

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