March 23, 2012

Avoiding High Premiums When Buying Full Auto Insurance Coverage

Many drivers look for full coverage when shopping for auto insurance coverage. Full coverage financially protects the insured driver’s vehicle, so it is a desirable option for drivers with relatively valuable cars, trucks, or commercial vans. Many banks and credit unions require full coverage on financed or leased vehicles, as the full coverage ensures that if the driver cannot make payments, the insurance company will still be able to rely on the value of the vehicle for repayment of the loan or lease. However, there are a few important things for drivers to know before buying full coverage to lock in a cheap car insurance policy.

“Full” auto insurance coverage typically includes collision and comprehensive coverage. These two coverage types pay for all damage claims on a driver’s vehicle other than standard mechanical wear and tear. Collision coverage pays for claims that are the result of an accident, and comprehensive coverage pays for damages that weren’t directly caused by a collision. For instance, if a fallen tree or a natural disaster damages a driver’s vehicle, his or her comprehensive auto insurance coverage would typically pay for the damages. Full coverage is limited by the driver’s deductibles and his or her coverage limits. Drivers typically pick coverage limits that match the value of their vehicles, along with affordable but reasonable deductibles. This helps keep monthly insurance premiums low.

In order to get a cheap car insurance policy with full coverage, drivers might consider changing limits and deductibles for other areas of coverage. Some other types of coverage may not be necessary, depending on the driver’s habits and vehicle. For instance, personal injury protection (PIP) coverage may not be important for a driver that has a good health insurance policy or rarely carries any passengers. Drivers that only travel short distances at relatively short speeds may not need large amounts of liability coverage as well. Reducing coverage limits or raising deductibles for these coverage types, often secure cheap yet protective insurance policies.

Some drivers might not want to change their coverage limits. There are two other ways to get a cheap car insurance policy with full coverage: asking for insurance discounts and comparing automotive insurance quotes online. Some insurance companies do not offer discounts, but most have a variety of specialized programs that reward low-risk drivers. Asking about discount programs is an effective way to keep premium costs low. Before asking about discounts, however, drivers should compare costs for different coverage levels with an online comparison tool. This will make it easier to assess the actual costs of a full coverage policy in order to choose a cost-affordable and lasting policy.