Having a vehicle and a license to drive comes with many responsibilities. From driving safely and following traffic laws to maintaining your vehicle's condition and function, the various responsibilities of owning and operating a vehicle can be overwhelming. One responsibility you may find financially challenging is the purchase of car insurance. Whether it is time to renew or find a new policy holder or you are buying insurance for the first time, proper understanding of automobile insurance costs and coverage is key. Here are a few common questions you may have when purchasing auto insurance.
Is Car Insurance Mandatory?
One of the first questions you may have is whether or not car insurance is mandatory. While surprising to learn, auto insurance is required by law in most states. Therefore, if you have a driver's license, you must have an insurance policy.
You do have options in certain states, though. For example, if you live in New Hampshire or Virginia, an insurance policy is not technically mandatory. However, you will still be responsible for damages if you are involved in an accident.
Also, some states allow you to purchase bonds instead of an actual insurance policy. Each state allows you to purchase a bond by paying a certain price. The bond covers the cost of damage if you are involved in an accident. Currently, there are 30 states that offer the bond option instead of a mandatory insurance policy.
How Much Does Insurance Cost?
Another common question most people have when shopping for auto insurance is how much it will cost. Unfortunately, determining each person's actual cost is difficult without providing the insurance company specific information.
The cost of your policy will depend on a few factors, including the type of coverage you want/need and your driving history. If you have speeding tickets or have caused multiple accidents in the past, your insurance will be more expensive than for someone with a clean driving record.
Other factors that influence the price of your insurance include the following:
- Your age
- Marital status
- Home location
- Credit score
- Vehicle size
- Vehicle safety rating
- Vehicle's age
For a more exact price on a car insurance policy, contact your local agent for a detailed quote.
Are Discounts Available?
Many companies will provide you with quotes on how much an insurance policy will cost, but they may not offer you discounts immediately. Therefore, you should ask for specific discounts if you want to save money without sacrificing the amount of coverage you have.
If you bundle your services with one insurance company, you may be eligible for discounts. For example, purchasing your homeowner's/renter's, life, and auto insurance from one company may help you save money.
One surprising discount that may be available is a mileage discount. If you drive a maximum of 7,000, 10,000, or 12,500 miles per year, you may quality for a more affordable insurance premium.
Autopay features, which pay your premiums automatically out of your bank account each month, can also qualify you for a discount.
Finally, consider asking for a safe-driving discount if you have not had any accidents or traffic violations in a few years.
What Does Insurance Cover?
Last, but certainly not least, you may wonder what your insurance policy actually covers. Your coverage will depend on your specific type of policy.
Collision and comprehensive coverage will cover any damage to your vehicle that occurred in an accident or non-accident, such as a fire or vandalism.
Personal injury coverage protection will cover medical expenses related to the accident.
Property damage and bodily damage coverage covers damage to other vehicles and medical expenses for others involved in an accident.
You may also want to include uninsured motorist coverage. This addition to your policy covers any damage or medical expenses caused by a vehicle driver who was not insured.
By answering these common questions, you will be more prepared for the purchase of car insurance. Contact a company that offers auto insurance services to learn more.Share