March 20, 2012

4 Ways To Decrease Family Auto Insurance Coverage Costs

As the cost of family auto insurance coverage continues to rise, many families are looking for new ways to reduce their premiums. For many households, this means reducing or canceling coverage outright, waiting an extra year to introduce teen drivers to the road or raising deductibles. There are a number of other ways to keep premiums low without lowering auto insurance coverage drastically, but families need to look online and use specialized insurance tools in order to lock in the best possible rates.

The first step to a lower auto insurance coverage premium is to closely look at the factors that might drive up costs. Families with teen drivers pay more than families with only adult drivers, as teens are a high risk group from an insurance company's perspective. Families can often limit the effect of teen drivers' limited on-the-road experience by enrolling teens in state-sponsored safe driving courses. Safe driving courses are available in most states and most insurance companies offer significant discounts for drivers who complete these brief classes. While policies with teen drivers will benefit the most from safe driving courses, any driver can take a state-approved class to keep rates down. A family might also decide to trade in for a relatively new and safe vehicle, as this will further reduce premiums.

Families should also look at different coverage options to make sure that they are buying appropriate amounts of insurance. Some families overbuy, and while it's never a good idea to restrict coverage to the bare minimums required by law, many drivers can afford to take lower coverage limits. When evaluating coverage, families should look at their driving habits. For instance, if the insured vehicles are only used occasionally, the family might save money by cutting back on collision coverage. If the insured vehicle isn't very valuable, cutting back on comprehensive and collision insurance coverage could yield serious discounts. However, families should never lower their coverage limits in essential areas like liability coverage without a good reason.

Another effective way to keep the cost of auto insurance coverage as low as possible is to compare rates online. Insurance companies' price policies with multiple drivers in very different ways, so many families can see much lower premiums simply by comparing costs between a few major insurance companies. Buyers should check that all coverage limits and deductibles are comparable before choosing a policy; as otherwise, they could end up sacrificing coverage for only a slightly better rate. Comparing policies online is one of the fastest ways to keep a family car insurance policy's rates as low as possible without dramatically altering coverage in a way that could put drivers at risk.