Are Auto Insurance Quotes Accurate?

Whether you are shopping for your first car insurance policy or switching from one provider to another for a better price, a rate comparison is a wise thing to do. But far too often that some consumers end up with whole different auto insurance quotes to what they have expected, which raises the question if the quotes they found online accurate. Here we will share some tips on why misquotes happen and how to avoid them:

Why misquotes happen

Misquotes can be broken down to three main reasons:
  • Agents’ effort to get a sale: the auto insurance market is notoriously competitive and it puts a pressure on agents to talk the potential customers into a policy with them. For this reason, some agents might engage in misleading acts to provide customers with false quotes to gain their business. Intentional misquotes like this if they are 20% lower than others can be considered a fraud and reported.
  • Customers fail to put in accurate information: this happens when the party who is requesting quotes provides inaccurate information that does not match the files provided by the company’s underwriter.
  • Agents put in the wrong information: It is possible that a quote comes back higher because the agents have put in wrong VIN number or input data incorrectly.

How to avoid misquotes

You can prevent the above unpleasant events by taking the following steps for more accurate auto insurance quotes:
Be clear about what you need

Come up with a list of your state’s minimum requirements. If you are interested in something else like collision or comprehensive coverage, feel free to add them to the list. Consider other members of your family or other cars, a combined policy can save you a lot.

Know how much you can spend on car insurance

Types of insurance you can afford depend largely on your budget and knowing exactly how much you can spend will save you and your agents a lot of time. Here is a brief list of car insurance coverage:

Auto insurance coverage basics: 

Liability insurance:
+ Bodily injury and Property Damage Liability Coverage.
+ Umbrella Insurance.

Vehicle Coverage:

+ Comprehensive and Collision Insurance.
+ Emergency Road Service Coverage.
+ Gap Insurance.
+ Rental Reimbursement Coverage.
+ Modified Car Insurance Coverage.

Medical Coverage:
+ PIP insurance.
+ Medical payment coverage.

Miscellaneous Coverages:
+ Full Coverage Auto Insurance
+ SR 22 Insurance
+ Uninsured Motorist Coverage
+ Underinsured Motorist Coverage
+ Other Car Insurance Coverages
+ Accident Forgiveness.

Consider your driving history

Since one of the factors insurers care about the most is how likely you will get into a road traffic accident, so your driving record can have an effect on your rates. Bear in minds that if you have been involved in an accident or had moving violations, do not expect a cheap premium. When you submit your information online, if you are not truthful about your driving history, you will probably get a low quote at first, but every insurance company has their own underwriters who will request your record to check, so it is best to disclose the accurate information right away.

If you cannot remember exactly your driving record, check with DMV.org to know what to expect. Insurers are not interested in anything that is older than 5 years and so you should not pay attention to them too.

Here is what you should know about how your driving history affects your premium:
  • DMV points: Many states keep a point system. The points are calculated based on your number of violations and how serious they are. They will stay on your record for a period of time. The more points you get the more chances you lose your driver’s license and see your insurance premium skyrocket. Even if you do not live in a state that uses a point system, the violations are still on your record.
  • Driving under the influence: DUI is a serious violation and can result in your being classified as an extremely high-risk policyholder. In many cases, you might be unable to renew your policy or have your policy canceled. 
  • Speeding: this is a common yet serious violation. A single speeding ticket in a decent driving history might not have much of an effect on your rates, but if you have a not-so-clean record, that ticket might cause your premium to increase. 

Make a list of your recent big life changes

Some of your life changes can have an effect on your premium. For example, if you have a new baby, expect your insurance rates to dive since insurers believe that parents make more responsible drivers.

When you get auto insurance quotes online, make sure that it accounts for the following:
  • Moving: This can either lower or raise your rates. If you move to a safer neighborhood, your premium is likely to drop; but if you move far away from your workplace, the rate will increase, since you will have to spend more time on the road, hence increase your chances of getting into an accident.
  • Getting married: to have a cheap car insurance rate is not a good reason to marry someone, but this event will have an impact on your rate. Married driver tends to have a lower premium, so make sure that you include this.
  • Having a new job: your profession can affect your rate so it is pay off to see if your new occupation can help lower your rates. 

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