August 8, 2010

Why How Many Miles You Drive Affects Your Auto Insurance Quote

When a driver spends a lot of time on the road, he or she often sees higher than average auto insurance quotes. On the other hand, when a driver doesn't log very many miles, auto insurance costs can be lower. There's a simple reason for this discrepancy: auto insurance companies try to accurately assess the risks posed by each new driver, and the more time that a driver spends on the road, the better the chances that the driver will be involved in a car insurance claim. Many auto insurance quotes are designed around the number of miles that a driver logs each year or each month, especially commercial car insurance, although consumer-level car insurance quotes can also be affected by a policy holder's mileage.

Some states have begun experimenting with special in-car systems that monitor the number of miles driven, then report that number to car insurance companies. These systems are completely optional, but in states where they're legal, they provide a great way for low-mileage drivers to benefit from their on-the-road habits. Insurance companies in states like California have proposed insurance by the mile systems, in which insurance is billed differently every month depending on the number of miles logged by these in-car systems. Although this would be a great prospect for both insurance providers and drivers who log very few miles, auto insurance law can be tricky, and such "by-the-mile" systems are not currently an option for most drivers.

Auto insurance companies often ask about a driver's mileage when assigning auto insurance quotes. However, unless they have access to a car's maintenance records, they may not check up on mileage. Drivers that are trying to get special low-mileage car insurance discounts are often asked to prove their mileage, which can be done by visiting a mechanic. Since these insurance discounts are a special offering and not part of a standard car insurance policy, mileage checks are completely legal (although the driver must agree to the terms of these checks).

Keeping your mileage low can be a good way to save money, both on gas and on auto insurance quotes. However, not all insurance providers offer discounts for low-mileage drivers, and some don't even monitor their drivers' mileage. Check with your car insurance agent in order to determine whether or not mileage discounts are an option on your policy. It's also a good idea to look online for the best possible insurance quotes before signing up for a new discount–in this way, drivers can control their policies and their coverage in a convenient and efficient way without monitoring their mileage.