We’re constantly bombarded with messages on the importance of continually checking rates to ensure we’re not paying too much for car insurance. There’s a lot of truth in that too. If you just stay with the same insuranceprovider for years and years, you’ll never know what else is out there, and you may end up paying far too much for far too long. Switching providers can be smart, but do keep in mind that there’s a right and a wrong way to switch. If you do it the wrong way, you could end up with a lapse in coverage, which, depending on where you live, can carry with it serious fines, fees, and consequences. To make sure a lapse doesn’t happen to you and that you end up getting a good deal when you switch , follow a few simple tips.
Don’t Switch Just to Switch
First things first, don’t switch insurance providers just because you think it’s the thing to do. Switch only if you’re sure that you can get a much better deal elsewhere. You can find out what the going rate is via other providers by requesting free rate quotes. Many providers will even allow you to do this online.
Just make sure that the quote you receive isn’t just some generic quote. It needs to be tailored to your driving record, the make and model of your vehicle, your age, and other factors. When you get a realistic quote that factors in who you are, you’ll be able to make an informed decision about whether or not it’s really in your best interest to change providers.
One of the easiest ways to save big on your insurance premium is by taking advantage of discounts offered by your insurance provider. Some common discounts include:
· Safety device discounts
· Anti-theft device discounts
· Multiple policy discounts
· Good driver discounts
· Good student discounts
· Low mileage discounts
Unfortunately, some insurance providers are stingy about offering up the discounts. If your provider doesn’t offer discounts for which you are eligible, you’re likely missing out on big savings and would benefit from finding a provider who is a little more generous.
Ensure You Have Adequate Coverage
Being under-insured is a terrible thing. After all, the whole reason to have auto insurance is so that it can protect you financially in the event of an accident, regardless of whose fault the accident is. As such, even if you get an awesome policy price, it doesn’t really matter if your policy isn’t going to help you in the event of an accident.
So, always consider how great that “great deal” really is. Everyone likes to pay a low premium, but it’s not worth it if you aren’t adequately protected.
Keep Everyone in the Loop
Finally, to avoid the dreaded lapse penalties in your state, make sure you notify everyone involved when you switch your insurance. Start by letting your current provider know that you wish to end your policy once the policy term is completed, or, if desired, before the scheduled termination date.
Do not stop paying until you have received notification in writing that the policy has been terminated. You’ll also want to speak with your new provider to ensure that you can start being covered the same day your old coverage is dropped.
As long as you are keeping everyone informed of the situation, there shouldn’t be ugly surprises along the way, and you should be able to enjoy your new policy.