Car insurance is vital in almost every part of the world. It is the best way to protect your vehicles from unforeseen accidents or collision. The insurance company provides financial assistance to the car owners if they are faced with such situation.
The car insurance policy was made compulsory in Massachusetts and Connecticut under ‘financial responsibility policy’. Since then many states in the United States made it mandatory to have insurance for their vehicles.
However, there are some states such as, Virginia, New Hampshire, and Mississippi that don’t require vehicle owners to have insurance but they need to follow certain terms and conditions. To obtain the car insurance, the owners would be charged depending on the insurance scheme they have opted, credit score, and various other factors.
The payment the vehicle owners make is called insurance premium. Now, let’s see some of the reasons as to why car insurance is necessary.
- It saves you and your family from huge expenses. Accidents happen everywhere. Nobody can predict it. If you don’t have suitable insurance to cover the damage, you may occur terrible loss both in terms money and health.
- If a property or other drivers face damage because of your fault, the insurance company can support you through the process to repay for the damages done.
- Having a car insurance can certainly put you at ease.
- Certain insurances can cover your medical expenses that are caused by accident or collision.
That being said, let us look some of the simple steps to get car insurance in the United States.
Easy steps to Get car Insurance
You can follow these 6 easy steps if you are planning to get a car insurance.
Step 1: Get necessary information about the driver and vehicle
It is important to get certain documents ready before you apply for car insurance.
- Name, address, and birth date of the driver
- Your driver’s license
- Occupation and insurance history
- Social security number
- Credit card, debit card, bank statements, and other bank details
- Vehicle Information Number (VIN)
- Date of purchase
- Your car’s mileage details
- Purpose statement of your vehicle (work or leisure)
These details will help the car insurance company to run a background check on the vehicle and registered owner.
If your car is new, the insurance amount will be higher compared to the car that has covered high mileage. It can also be expensive if you use your vehicle to travel long distance every day.
Step 2: Analyze your Coverage Needs
Different insurance companies offer different quotes for your vehicle. It is important to compare the quotes that offer a lot of coverage.
Some states only need minimal requirements for car insurance but it is better to go for the insurance that broadly covers everything.
Types of coverage:
Liability coverage – This policy covers the bodily injury and property damage caused by the driver. The amount payable for the damage varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
Rental coverage – This is part of liability coverage and has rental cars covered in it.
Collision coverage – It covers the accidents caused by collision. Usually, the person who has taken this policy have to pay their money for the damages done before the insurance company can pay for the expenses.
Comprehensive coverage – It covers every damage to the vehicle that collision coverage doesn’t cover.
Uninsured/ Underinsured motor coverage – This policy provides coverage if the person who has done damage doesn’t have insurance or enough insurance.
Medical payments coverage – All the medical expenses are taken care under this coverage.
You can pick the suitable one for your vehicle or choose the one that has most of the above-mentioned coverage.
Step 3: Understanding Different Options to get Insurance
You have different options to get your car insurance. You can get it directly, or through captive agent, or seek the help of the independent broker or agent. All these three have their own pros and cons.
- You can patiently do the research and compare the other quotes.
- Cut the middleman costs.
- Online insurance company has lower overhead costs.
- Time consuming since you have to do the entire research.
- Difficult to get through the filing process.
Step 4: Using Captive Agents
- Guidance throughout the entire process.
- Helps in establishing long-term relationship with the company.
- They may not provide more options on policies which are outside of their responsibilities.
- They are paid from the insurance money you pay, so you could be brainwashed to choose the costlier premium.
- You can’t compare the prices and policies of other companies. Their company’s policy would be portrayed as the best.
Step 5: Using Independent Broker or Agent
- Different policies and coverage options from various insurance companies.
- They can suggest you the best option since they are more experienced.
- Upselling could be the major problem since they get commission from the policy you choose.
- Cannot get quotes from companies that have captive agents.
Step 6: Compare prices
Comparing the quotes from different companies give you some idea about the price each company charges. Usually, online research is the best way to do it although it may be time consuming.
Sometimes insurance companies also offer discount on certain insurance policies to attract new customers. You can choose that to cut premium cost.
Things you need to keep in mind
There are also some additional things that you need to know before getting your insurance.
Know the state laws and choose the best insurance company
It’s important to familiarize yourself with the insurance coverage policy that is required in your state. You should get a policy that makes you stay on the safe side even if you are at the fault.
With the help of online research, or captive agent or independent agents, you can choose the insurance company that offer you the best coverage policy with minimal price.
Get Your Policy
Once you choose the price you can afford and the best company, you can proceed with the finalizing the policy. You can go for deductible policies or premium policies.
There’s also an option to pay the entire insurance in the beginning or as a monthly installment. If you have any further doubts it’s always better to clarify with your insurance company.
Mistakes to Avoid while getting a Car Insurance
Don’t go for minimum coverage policy. It may save you money, but when you get into an accident it can cost you much. Next is, be transparent about your driving history.
Insurance companies will find all about your driving history; there’s no escape. Plan your budget properly to pay in instalments.
Insurance companies don’t like when there’s delay in the monthly payment. Getting an insurance is not a difficult task.
It is a necessity to get one to safeguard you and your loved ones from unexpected expenses and accidents. You can do further research about the insurance and make an informed decision.