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car insurance companies
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Car Insurance Secrets
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Finding good, affordable car insurance can be tricky, and dealing with the insurance company can be even harder. Knowing some car insurance secrets can take some of the mystery and pain out of the process.

Married or Single?

While most people understand that car insurance rates are higher for males between 16 and 25, it’s not so widely known that marital status is often affects the rate you are charged for insurance. Some companies give married people a little bit of a break, based on the statistics that show that if you are married, you are less likely to be in an accident. Not all companies do this, however. So if you are single for any reason, shop around for rates so you won’t be penalized for not being married.

Poor Credit Risk?

Yes, the car insurance companies check your credit score, and if it’s not a good one, they will charge you more. Even if you’ve never been in an accident and never received so much as a parking ticket, a bad credit score will raise your rates. Why? The logic goes like this: people with bad credit are less responsible. People who are less responsible are more likely to have accidents and file claims. They are also more likely to hang out with people who are also irresponsible and encourage risky behavior, leading to more accidents and more claims. You may not agree with that thinking, but there’s nothing you can do about it. Put your energy into improving your credit score. If you’ve got a good one, do what you can to preserve it. Knowing this one of the car insurance secrets can save you some money.

Urban, Suburban, or Rural?

Where you live and work impacts your rates. The more time your car spends in an urban area, the more you’ll pay to insure it. It’s not too hard to understand why the more crowded urban areas with parking issues, lots of traffic and crime rates would have higher insurance costs. You are probably not going to move or change jobs to get cheaper insurance. If you do, however, notify your agent immediately. You might be able to get an adjustment if you moved out of an urban area. You’ll also want to let them know if you move into a city. Not telling them (and not paying the higher rate) could lead to the denial of a claim.

What You Do and How Far You Drive

Another one of the car insurance secrets is that what you do for a living and how much driving you do impact your rates. Having high stress jobs that involve a lot of driving and cell phone use (think sales or lawyers) leads to higher car insurance rates. Or if you have a long commute to work, be prepared to pay a little more for your car insurance. Again, if you change jobs and shorten up your drive to work, make sure your agent knows about it.

Just How Much Will I Get if my Car is Totalled?

Great question. One of the car insurance secrets is that insurers don’t use sources like the Kelley Blue Book to come up with a value for your car. They have their own way of doing this that doesn’t always results in you being able to replace the car you had with one of comparable value. So if you don’t like the amount they offer you, get a few quotes from dealers in your area. And don’t forget to make sure your insurance company also pays the sales tax for the purchase of a new car.

Using what you’ve learned from these car insurance secrets can help you save money and know how to deal with your insurance company.


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