Many people make it their New Years Resolution to save more money. In 2016, ways to cut back on your auto insurance costs are plentiful. If you think you gave away too much money to your insurance company in 2015, let me show you five ways to lower your insurance bill, so you won’t make the same mistake again in 2016.
Check your current coverage
It is a good idea to take inventory of your current auto insurance policy at the beginning of the New Year. This means you should double check your insurance coverage to make sure it is up-to-date and all your needs are being met. Insurance needs change over time, so if you move, get a new job, add features to your car, get a new family member (through marriage, birth, death, adoption, etc.), or have any other major changes in your life, chances are you will need to update your auto policy.
When you call up your insurance agent to see what changes you need to make, ask for discounts. Sometimes your insurance company will give you a cheaper policy simply because you ask for one! Insurance providers also have customer loyalty discounts and discounts available for certain clubs and memberships. When you contact your agent, be sure to inquire about all avenues of getting discounts.
Get daytime running lights
This is something that most people don’t think about, but it’s definitely worth noting. Many insurers will give you a discount on your premium if your car has daytime running lights. These lights, which automatically switch on during daytime hours to make your car even more visible when its light out, are an added safety feature on newer vehicles.
Many insurance companies like Farmers and USAA offer discounts on daytime running light-equipped vehicles due to their added safety benefits. In fact, in Canada and the European Union, this type of lighting is available for all new vehicles because they are proven to increase visibility. In the United States, these lights do not usually come installed in new cars, but if they are offered for your vehicle, you would be wise to get them. Not only are they safer, but they will save you money on your car insurance payments as well!
Add Even More Safety Features
The safer you make your car, the lower your car insurance will be. The reason for this is because lawsuits are expensive. The less injuries, casualties, and bodily damage in an accident, the better. To protect your vehicle even further and to take advantage of these safety feature discounts, consider getting some of these features installed:
- Safety related bells and whistles
- Air bags and anti-lock brakes (These are obvious, but not everyone has these installed!)
- Anti-theft tools (Anything that makes your car less likely to be stolen makes you less risky to insure.)
- Electronic stability and traction control (These features can prevent skidding, sliding, rolling over, and spinning out of control. Insurance companies love them.)
- Collision monitors (These can alert you if you are approaching a dangerous situation and/or have a vehicle in your blind spot. They can help prevent massive losses in the event of an accident.)
It’s no secret that car insurance companies will give you lower premiums if you do not drive as much. If you can cut your commute by walking, biking, or using public transportation, it will definitely be beneficial to do so. It is not only healthier and more cost efficient, it is better for the environment as well.
The reason car insurance companies offer “low mileage discounts” is because they believe every minute you are driving on the road you are at risk. Therefore, the less time you spend behind the wheel, the less risky you are to insure. If you are planning on cutting back on your time in traffic, call up your insurance agent and ask about low-mileage discounts (reduced premiums if your annual mileage falls below a certain level) and/or usage based discounts (savings for good driving habits). These discounts, alone, could save you hundreds annually.
Buy A New Car
Is there a better time to gift yourself a new vehicle than the holiday season? Car dealerships are looking to get rid of inventory for tax purposes so they often times have huge end-of-year sales. If you treat yourself to a new car come the New Year, you might find yourself staring at a lowered car insurance bill.
All things equal, insurance providers will charge less to insure a newer vehicle. Not only do new cars have less miles, less wear and tear, better working brakes, and are more fuel efficient, new cars actually get in less accidents. Researchers have found that drivers tend to be safer behind the wheel of a new car because they are afraid of putting dents and dinging up a shiny, new, clean vehicle.
To ring in the New Year in style, make sure you are not throwing away your hard earned money on car insurance. Adhere to the five tips mentioned above to save some extra bucks on your premiums. If you would like to know even more ways you can save on your auto insurance bill, check out our article titled, The Top 15 Ways To Save Money On Car Insurance. Happy New Years everyone!