Factors YOU Control That Impact Your Auto Insurance Costs

Auto insurance rates in California continue to rise due to increasing medical costs. We are the only State with UNLIMITED medical coverage on our auto policies, and as medical costs continue to increase and as hospitals and rehabilitation clinics and doctors continue to be able to charge whatever they want for auto related accidents, costs don’t look to be going down.

I’ve written previously about the ‘schedule of mandated fee’s that would help limit auto accident costs like we have with Medicare, Medicaid and Workers Compensation in California, but for now, auto insurance accidents have no limits to what providers can charge to take care of you after an accident.

So, what can YOU do to help with the cost of auto insurance?

Credit: This is honestly one of the biggest areas where you directly have an impact in your auto insurance costs. For the past 15 or so years, companies in most states have been using credit in their premium computations. Progressive Insurance Company was behind a major study that showed individuals with higher credit scores, turned in fewer claims and had fewer accidents. There are states trying to make this indicator illegal to use in computing insurance rates, but for now, it remains. If you are late on monthly payments for your mortgage, car payments, credit cards, or utilities, that impacts your insurance rates. If you consistently carry large balances on credit cards that are not paid off monthly, that can affect your insurance score as well.

Multi-Policy: You are renting so you choose to ‘not’ carry a renter’s insurance policy. No one is forcing you to do so like a mortgage company does for a home owner borrowing to purchase a house. But did you realize that many times the renter’s insurance policy ends up being less than $20 per year if you place it with the same company that insures your vehicles? In fact, many times, we sell a new client both auto and renter’s insurance policies for less than what they were paying for just the auto protection. It’s like getting ‘free fries with that’!

Your Driving Record: Every speeding ticket, fender bender, and even deer accident that you have now can affect your auto insurance costs. Believe it or not, even accidents that are not your fault can cause you to lose accident and claim free discounts. Frustrating yes, but true.

Deductibles: Are you only carrying a $250 deductible on collision for your vehicles, but have not had a claim in over 5 years? Have you asked your agent about looking at various deductibles for you? Sometimes the premium savings to increase deductibles just make sense based on your claims history.

We hope that some of these factors will help you to lower your auto insurance costs. As always, we have a full staff of licensed agents who can help you with your insurance protection and premiums, and we are just a phone call, visit, or text away.