October 12, 2009

Perks To Keeping Your Auto Insurance Coverage

Auto insurance companies have begun battle for your patronage. Everyday, carriers are beaming their slogans and mascots directly into your homes attempting to convince you that their coverage or service is superior to that of all others. While conventional wisdom may imply that the best auto insurance benefits are to be reaped by switching insurance companies, this is not always the case. By staying with your current auto insurance carrier, you can incur a number of slightly more hidden – but equally valuable -benefits, such as greater familiarity and fiscal savings.

Though absence may make the heart grow fonder, it is familiarity that breeds stability and consistency. Staying with your same auto insurance carrier means that your company will have records of their past interactions with you. All too often, claims will fall through the cracks – or at the very least, take a much longer time than is necessary – due to insufficient policyholder contact information. If you stay with your company, they'll have records of all past phone numbers, addresses and e-mail addresses they've contacted you at. On top of all that, insurance companies see fraud all the time, so they thoroughly investigate claims being reported by new policyholders. These investigations can hold up claims for days, weeks or even months at a time. As a loyal customer at a company, you can avoid prolonged fraud investigation and the auto insurance company will push your claim right through.

You may be missing out on some hidden financial benefits if you're hopping from company to company with your auto insurance coverage. Almost every major insurance company offers some type of "long-time customer" discount on their plans. These may not come after your first or even your second renewal, but they will come eventually. Think of the time and effort it takes to shop around for auto insurance coverage; you call independent agents, captive agents, do some poking around online. All this can take hours, or even days. So how much is your time worth? If you value your time more than the relatively minor annual savings you might find shopping around, then skip it and stick with the auto insurance policy and company you've already got. In most cases, insurance companies require a "deductible" to be paid for any first party damages. With some companies, you'll be rewarded for going a number of years without any accidents; they could waive your deductible. Other companies offer deductible savings plans or disappearing deductibles.

All these auto insurance options however, are not available everywhere and are often only available to long time customers. Finding the best provider for you can often be difficult but once you do, the benefits of keeping said insurer are plenty.