October 16, 2009

The Wrong Questions To Ask When Purchasing Auto Insurance

It's easy to ask the wrong questions when buying auto insurance. The law requires you to buy insurance if you're going to drive, so it's natural to look around for the cheapest option that satisfies the legal requirement. But, if the only questions you ask when you're buying insurance have to do with cost, you're more than likely to purchase auto insurance coverage that won't meet your needs down the line when you really need it. While it's certainly true that different companies offer some of the same services for different rates, it's also the case that comprehensive coverage costs more. When you buy a policy that covers you more fully, you'll pay more in the short term, but you'll be more fully covered in the event of an accident.

When trying to decide how much auto insurance you need, don't ask yourself how much coverage it will take to satisfy the basic legal requirements. Rather ask yourself what it would take to protect you from a situation that could disrupt your life financially, medically or practically. If you think you can't afford decent auto insurance coverage, just imagine what it's going to be like to try to afford all the expenses that can accrue if you're in an accident and don't have sufficient coverage. You might have to buy a new car, miss work or be saddled with expensive medical bills. Compared to these costs, the price of a decent auto insurance policy really doesn't seem so bad.

If you have an unsafe driving record, don't ask yourself whether it makes sense to pay for auto insurance coverage in the first place. Your premiums may be high, but the consequences of driving without insurance can be devastating. It can not only be detrimental to you if you're caught and forced to pay an expensive ticket, but also for the other drivers on the road if you are involved in an accident and unable to meet financial obligations. Court costs, as well, will make the money you would have paid for coverage seem like a real bargain.

It can also be unwise to place too much emphasis on convenience when shopping for a policy. It's all too easy to do the bare minimum research, find a policy that seems sufficient and affordable, buy it and end the process. Purchasing an auto insurance policy online can be the right choice for many people, but if you don't understand what you're buying, it makes more sense to find an agent who will answer your questions.

In general, when buying auto insurance, the wrong questions are the ones that focus on the short-term cost, and the right questions involve looking at the benefits in the bigger picture.