How to lower the cost of auto insurance

While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to cut auto insurance premiums, drivers can try various strategies to save money on their policies. Metro News Service photo

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While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to cut auto insurance premiums, drivers can try various strategies to save money on their policies. Metro News Service photo

Auto insurance is a must-have for drivers. While it might seem hard to believe, as of 2019 there are still some places in the United States where auto insurance is not mandatory. Auto insurance is mandatory in Canada, though each province has its own requirements in terms of the minimum amount of coverage allowable by law.

Many people, even those in places where auto insurance is not mandatory, recognize the importance of being insured before they get behind the wheel. However, that doesn’t mean those same drivers would not like to cut the cost of their auto insurance policies. A 2019 analysis from the online financial resource NerdWallet found that the average cost of car insurance in the United States is $1,621 per year. Average insurance costs vary significantly in Canada, where data from the General Insurance Statistical Agency found that, in 2019, the average annual insurance premium in British Columbia exceeded $1,800, while drivers in Quebec paid slightly more than $700 annually.

No matter where drivers live, chances are they would love to lower their auto insurance costs. While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to cut auto insurance premiums, drivers can try various strategies to save money on their policies.

Raise your policy's deductibles. Higher deductibles may sound scary to drivers, but raising the deductibles is a great way to lower the cost of auto insurance. The auto insurance provider Progressive notes that deductibles typically range from $100 to $2,000. A driver whose policy has a $100 deductible will pay considerably more on his policy per month than a driver with a higher deductible. In fact, the Insurance Information Institute notes that drivers who increase their deductibles from $200 to $1,000 can save 40 percent or more on their coverage costs. Drivers who choose this option should always be sure they have enough money in the bank to cover the cost of their deductibles.

Bundle your policies. Some drivers save money on their auto insurance policies by buying two or more types of insurance from the same provider. For example, homeowners may save money by buying homeowners insurance from their auto insurance providers or vice versa.

Research potential discounts. The III notes that many companies offer discounts to policyholders, even if those discounts are not necessarily promoted. Drivers can contact their insurance companies, or shop around with other providers, to ask about various discounts that can save them money on their policies. Anti-theft devices, defensive driving courses, low annual mileage, and a strong credit record are just a handful of the many potential discounts drivers may be eligible for.

Drivers can reduce the cost of their auto insurance policies in various ways, potentially saving themselves hundreds of dollars each year as a result.


Did you know?

When shopping for auto insurance, drivers may be most concerned by the bottom lines on estimates they receive from potential providers. However, the Insurance Information Institute recommends that drivers also investigate a company’s reputation and stability before purchasing an auto insurance policy.

Rating companies like AM Best (www.ambest.com) and Standard & Poor’s (www.standardandpoors.com/ratings) vet insurance companies in terms of their financial stability.

In addition, government organizations may be able to provide potential policyholders with information regarding the history of consumer complaints filed against certain insurance providers.

That history, coupled with information regarding a given firm’s financial stability, can give drivers an accurate picture of insurance providers and whether they’re trustworthy or simply the most affordable option on the market.

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