When it comes to finding the best car insurance, there is no one-size-fits-all plan; what is best for you might not be best for someone else. With so many options and types of coverage to choose from, it’s easy to feel like an amateur when shopping for insurance. However, that doesn’t mean you have to settle for higher rates or sub-par coverage. Continue reading to learn three simple steps that will help you shop like a pro.
Step 1: Know Your Risk
Every driver is at risk of becoming liable for another person’s injuries or property damages. In Wisconsin, liability insurance is a requirement, although the minimum limits are probably not enough to cover your risk exposure. You are ultimately responsible for the losses you cause others on the road. If your liability limits are not high enough to cover another person’s medical bills or vehicle repairs, you could find yourself paying for damages out of your own pocket. Worse yet, you may be forced to sell your assets or make payments from your future wages until you have met your liability. The best car insurance will always be the policy that mitigates your risk and reduces your exposure to financial losses.
When it comes to your own vehicle, your risks are limited to the value of your car and accessories. For most people, it makes sense to carry collision and comprehensive protection that covers a personal vehicle in an accident or after a covered event, such as theft, vandalism, or storm damage. In fact, lenders generally require borrowers to purchase collision protection for vehicles that are not paid for in full. If your vehicle is paid for, talk with your agent about the benefits of collision and comprehensive protection. Unless you drive a very old, low-value vehicle, chances are this type of coverage could save you thousands after an accident.
Finally, consider what would happen if you were hit by an uninsured or underinsured motorist. Would you be able to pay for your medical bills or vehicle repairs out of your own pocket? Wisconsin requires a minimum amount of uninsured motorist bodily injury protection. However, you may wish to speak with your agent about additional coverage that could better protect your assets.
Step 2: Ask the Right Questions
Once you know the type of car insurance coverage you need, the next step is asking the right questions that pertain to your specific circumstances. Start by understanding the factors that affect your rates. Perhaps you have a young driver on your policy, or maybe you quit your job to be a stay-at-home parent. Make sure your agent understands your unique situation and the various scenarios that could affect the amount of coverage you need.
For example, you may not need the same level of insurance protection for a teenage driver who goes away to college and leaves his or her vehicle at home for the semester. Since the vehicle is not in use, your insurer may include provisions that work to your benefit and ultimately reduce the amount you pay for coverage. Similarly, certain milestones, such as retiring or choosing to work from home could eliminate your daily commute. Lower mileage means lower risk, which translates into lower premiums. Be sure to keep your insurance agent in the loop with regard to any changes in driving habits that occur within your home.
Step 3: Ask for Discounts
Finally, make sure you are getting the best deal you can find on the coverage you need. Be sure to talk with your agent about any potential discounts you may qualify for. Perhaps you have a safe driving record or are interested in bundling your auto insurance with homeowners coverage. Let your agent know if you are interested in pre-paying your premiums or raising your deductible to further lower your rates.
Let Us Help
Keep in mind that an independent agency like Stauffer-Klug Insurance will work on your behalf rather than for the benefit of the insurer. An independent agent shops for the coverage you need from multiple insurance companies so that you can compare rates from several of the state’s leading carriers in one easy step. If you are looking for the best car insurance for your needs, contact our office to request your free quotes today. We look forward to serving you soon.