Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate drivers about...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Licensed Agent for 10 Years

UPDATED: Jul 8, 2021

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Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident auto insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We are not affiliated with any one auto insurance provider and cannot guarantee quotes from any single provider. Our partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare quotes from many different companies please enter your ZIP code on this page to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance-related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

When you are buying auto insurance, it is important to compare premium rates from several different companies before deciding which company to use for your coverage.

Car insurance is a legal requirement in 47 states if you want to register your car and drive legally.

While finding the best premium rate quote as possible is important, it is also equally important to understand the different influences on car insurance rates and how to lower them, if possible.

To easily discover and compare auto insurance rates, simply enter your ZIP code into the free comparison tool now.

Independent Auto Insurance Brokers

Independent auto insurance brokers can be a tremendous source of information and help when you are buying auto insurance. Most independent brokers represent at least 15 to 20 different auto insurance companies and some brokers represent even more companies.

As a result, they can provide you with multiple quotes and help you find the best coverage for your needs.

Independent brokers also can be very helpful in assisting you in understanding what type and level of car insurance you need for your circumstances.

Very often, they will take the time to ask you questions about what you can afford and discuss the different kinds of insurance available. They may also suggest methods to reduce your premium rates to keep your insurance costs down.

Additionally, many independent brokers will review your auto insurance policy each time it comes up for renewal and may be able to help you keep your costs down over time.

Insurance Auto Companies

You can also go directly to auto insurance companies for information and auto insurance premium rate quotes. Almost all car insurance companies have corporate websites which will provide information regarding other products and services they offer.

Additionally, you may be able to find out information about their claims process and customer service.

Usually, you can request an auto insurance rate quote through their website. You can also request rate quotes over the telephone in most cases, or from representatives in person if they have offices.

Insurance Comparison Websites

Insurance comparison websites can also provide you with a large amount of information regarding insurance companies and rate quotes. Often, they have articles regarding car insurance and topic of relevant interest.

Additionally, they may have ratings for the different auto insurance companies and may also have a forum for consumers to comment on their experiences with their insurance companies.

Comparison websites also provide you with the opportunity to request car insurance premium rate quotes from several companies at one time. They may have preferred or recommended auto insurance companies that they highlight and give preference to when you request a quote.

Very often, if this is the case, you may receive an estimated quote directly on their website. They also usually contract with insurance agents and companies for leads to provide quotes to individuals who request rate quotes.

You will be asked to provide an email address and telephone number so they may contact you for additional information and to speak with you about your auto insurance needs.

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Factors Influencing Premium Rates

When you apply for car insurance, you will be provided with an estimated premium rate quote. To start your coverage, you will usually be required to pay a down payment and submit an insurance application. Your down payment is immediately applied and starts your policy in force.

Your application is then forwarded to the underwriting department of the car insurance company. As they process your application, they run a credit report, a motor vehicle report and a report to determine if any claims have been paid to you on any policies under your name.

As a result of these reports, your premium rates may increase.

If this is the case, you will receive a notice by mail and future payments will reflect an adjustment. If you paid your premium in full for the term, you will receive a bill for the remaining balance.

Age Matters

There are also other factors that can influence your auto insurance premium rates. Younger drivers tend to have higher rates than older drivers.

If you are insuring a teen driver, you will probably pay high rates as long as they continue to live with you. If you have multiple people living with you, their driving record may also increase your rates.

Many insurance companies require you to include every licensed driver in your household on your policy.

If you are buying car insurance after a lapse in coverage, your car insurance rates will probably be higher than they would if you have continued coverage over a long period of time.

Additionally, if your insurance coverage report indicates that you have been cancelled for coverage due to accidents or have been reinstated due to lack of payment, your rates will be higher.

Lowering Your Premium Rates

There are many ways to lower your car insurance premium rates. Very often, you can combine methods of lowering your rates and decrease your premiums substantially.

  • Deductible Amounts – If you choose a higher deductible, your rates will go down accordingly. When you compare insurance rate quotes, make sure you compare the same deductible levels for an accurate comparison.
  • Discounts – You may be eligible for several discounts. However, you must usually ask about them in order to learn about them. Common car insurance discounts include older driver, good driver, multiple car, multiple policies, safety equipment, anti-theft equipment and driver improvement courses.
  • Payment Options – Many insurance companies will lower your rates if you pay your entire premium in one lump sum. Additionally, if you set up automatic payment, you may receive a discount.

By comparing auto insurance rate quotes from several different companies, you can find the best rates possible.

Make sure that you compare the same type of coverage, same level of coverage and same deductible amounts for an accurate evaluation of rates.

If you are looking for auto insurance rates for comparison, enter your ZIP code for a FREE comparison tool.

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