June 4, 2010

How Additional Coverage Can Save Money

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.