The average American home uses at least two vehicles, according to the latest study completed by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute. The increased cost of maintenance, fuel, and insurance are acceptable trade-offs to conveniently and effectively suit the needs of the family. Maintenance costs can be lowered when a member of the family takes care of the basic maintenance such as oil changes, filters, fluids and the vehicles are washed and vacuumed by hand. Other savings can be gained in fuel costs with trips that are planned efficiently instead of taking separate trips to run to different destinations or running one errand at a time. But how can we save money on our insurance premium?
Car insurance costs can be lowered by getting a multi-car insurance policy rather than individual policies for each vehicle. The savings in money, time, and paperwork may be as high as twenty percent off the total premiums paid for having more than one single car policy. There is only one bill to pay, one form to fill out, and one company to contact in the event of an accident. It’s a wise choice to compare insurance company deals on family car insurance to get the best pricing, coverage amounts and discounts.
States pass laws that dictate what the minimum coverage amounts are for both bodily injury and property damage for each accident. Policyholders must meet those requirements in order to legally drive vehicles in the state in which they live. Ohio car insurance, for example, must have a minimum of $25,000 for injury/death of one person, $50,000 if more than one person injured and $25,000 for property damage. The family can select policies with higher coverage and add-on other protection clauses to avoid costly out-of-pocket expenses. Premiums will be higher but it may be worth the cost if the accident you cause has major damage or injury.
Factors in Calculating Premiums
The amount of coverage desired is only one factor considered in determining insurance premiums. Other factors include the make and year of the vehicles, the location of residency, and the average distance driven on a regular basis. Vehicles that are driven only around town may incur lower premiums than those that are driven on highways for an hour round-trip daily for work purposes. Other factors are based on the drivers of the vehicles.
The age, gender, and driving history of every driver that will be placed on the car insurance policy can be considered when premiums are determined. This will likely make a significant difference in the total cost. Teenagers between the ages of sixteen and nineteen, elderly drivers, and drivers with moving violations or accidents against them can spike premiums and cancel out savings even with discounts. Sometimes it may be possible to spin off a family member on to their own policy if they are causing a substantial increase in the family policy by being included.
Determining the Best Course of Action
Have questions? When in doubt, it is recommended to consult your independent insurance agent who will compare a few different companies for you to suggest the best company, costs, and coverage. Families can save time here if they find an independent insurance agent. That agent has the freedom to compare several carriers instead of just one company. Ask who should be listed as possible drivers for each vehicle as well to avoid the denial of a claim because the driver was not identified. This applies to spouses, parents, teens, caregivers, and friends who borrow the car often.