Saturday, July 31, 2010

Frugal ways to cut your auto insurance

When we think about frugal ideas, we often focus on things like reusing plastic bags and not throwing out leftovers. They do save money, but things like auto insurance premiums can often stand a little adjustment that will save you quite a bit more.

How? Go through your auto insurance with a fine toothed comb. Check each item that you're charged for. Is it necessary? Are you paying more than your state requires? Are you paying twice for the same coverage: Hospitalization on your car insurance and hospitalization on your health insurance, for instance, just isn't frugal.

If you've recently paid off your vehicle, make sure full coverage is dropped unless there's a real reason for it. Most people don't need it unless their lending institution requires it.

Make sure you're getting all the discounts you're eligible for. If your agent doesn't offer them, ask. Some discounts to ask about:

Clean driving record
Multiple vehicle
Good student
Low mileage
Driver education
Safety equipment
Armed services

Other than that... it never hurts to look around. Check some online sites that allow you to compare different automobile insurance companies and never let loyalty to your old company stand in the way of saving money.

I was surprised when I checked mine out recently. I thought I had the most frugal insurance possible, but I found another one that saved me around $30 a year. Why not? Now I can do something else with that money.


  1. Great tips, Pat! Agents don't have a lot of incentive to show you how you can save, so you have to ask if you're leaving any discounts on the table.

    One note I can add: most people don't realize that you can get a discount for taking a defensive driving course, even if the reason you took the course was to get a traffic ticket dropped! True thing.

  2. That's true. I didn't think to add it, but a defensive driving course can get you a discount. I got 10% off of my insurance by taking one, thanks for bringing it up!

  3. If you have a bit of extra emergency fund stocked away, you might consider raising your insurance deductible. The premiums will decrease if you can manage to increase the deductible. We raised our collision deductible from $500 to $1000 and saved about $20 each month.

  4. I'm glad you mentioned that, "Anonymous." Having a higher deductible will lower your premiums, but you should have a fund you can afford to not touch, in case you have to pay that out.

  5. This is one of the most useful, in-depth articles that I have seen in a long time.Thanks for the information.

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