For many people, car insurance is a major expense category in the household budget. And because itâs against the law to drive without car insurance, itâs not a budget item that can be eliminated unless youâre willing to go car-free. That doesnât mean, though, that youâre stuck paying sky-high rates. Hereâs how to get cheap car insurance.
Learn about personal loan rates.
How Insurance Companies Set Car Insurance Rates
Like health insurance, car insurance comes with both premiums and deductibles. The premiums are what you pay the insurance company every month to maintain your coverage. The deductible is what youâll pay when you start making claims, up to a certain annual cap of, say, $1,000.
Itâs worth noting that most people who say they want cheap car insurance mean that they want car insurance with low monthly premiums. But, as with health insurance, thereâs a risk to having a policy with low premiums and a high deductible. In the event of a serious accident, youâll have to meet that deductible. So, one way to get lower premiums is to opt for a higher deductible, but this is only a safe strategy if you have enough liquidity to cover your deductible in the event of an accident.
When car insurance companies set insurance premium rates they take several factors into account. These include applicantsâ age, gender and driving history, as well as the type of car the applicant drives and the driverâs state of residence. While you canât change your age, there are other steps you can take to get favorable rates from car insurance companies.
Types of Coverage
Insurance companies charge more for comprehensive car insurance than they do for basic coverage. In most states youâre required to have liability insurance to cover any damage you do to another car or driver. The extent of that coverage requirement varies by state. In most states, youâre not required to have insurance to cover damage to your own car, or injuries you might suffer in an accident.
If you choose to add insurance coverage for yourself, you can opt for comprehensive coverage or collision coverage. Collision coverage, as the name indicates, covers damage from an accident with another car or an object, and in the event that your car flips. Comprehensive coverage covers things like theft, vandalism and natural disasters, too.
So, while youâll almost definitely need to buy liability coverage to cover other driversâ damages, you might not need to buy physical damage coverage for your own vehicle. It will depend on the terms of your lease if youâre leasing a car, and on your own assessment of the risks you face.
If youâre buying a valuable new car, youâll probably want comprehensive coverage. If youâre paying cash for an older, used vehicle, you can probably get away with a more basic level of coverage. Whatever insurance option you choose for yourself, be sure to comply with state laws relating to liability insurance for any damage you might do to another driver. Once you have a car insurance policy, carry proof of insurance with you in your vehicle at all times.
How to Get Cheap Car Insurance Rates
In the long term, one of the best ways to get cheap car insurance is to be a safe, responsible driver. The worst drivers have high rates because the insurance company needs financial compensation for the high likelihood that it will have to pay out in the event these drivers get in an accident. If you have a spotless driving record, keep it up. If you have some accidents or tickets in your past, they shouldnât drive your rates up forever. If itâs been a few years since your last incident, you can try calling your insurance company and asking for a lower rate, using your recent, safe driving record as a bargaining chip.
Another way to get cheap car insurance is to use the same insurance company for more than one type of insurance and get a discount for your loyalty. For example, you can contact the insurance company that provides your homeowners insurance, life insurance or motorcycle insurance and ask if the company can give you a good deal on car insurance. If you have more than one car, you can bundle the insurance coverage on both vehicles.
Your credit score will also affect your car insurance rates, just like it affects the rates youâre offered when shopping for a mortgage. If your credit has improved since you last bought car insurance, you may be able to negotiate your way to cheaper car insurance. And if you pay your car insurance premiums and bills on time and in full, youâll build up goodwill with your insurer and might qualify for promotional rates.
If you donât drive very much during the year, you might get cheaper car insurance from a usage-based plan than you would from regular car insurance. Track your mileage before you start shopping for car insurance and see if your low mileage makes you eligible for a better deal.
If youâre under 25, youâll pay higher premiums, all things being equal. Thatâs because insurance companies judge young drivers to be riskier drivers. You can get lower rates by joining your parentsâ plan, or by using your good grades to get a discount on rates, if your insurance company offers that option. Once you reach your mid-20s thereâs no reason to keep paying the high rates that insurance companies levy on young drivers. You can ask your insurance company to lower your rate, or shop around for insurance from another provider.
Finally, the type of car you drive can affect your car insurance rates. Big, powerful and flashy cars are more likely to trigger high car insurance rates because the insurance company assumes youâll be more likely to speed in that kind of vehicle, and that the vehicle will be a target for theft. Vehicles with high repair costs (such as foreign-made cars) may be more expensive to cover, too. In some states, having a used car will mean lower rates because rates are affected by your carâs replacement value. But in other states, rates are based on vehiclesâ safety features, so having an older car wonât necessarily help you get cheap car insurance. If your car has special safety and/or anti-theft features, you may qualify for cheaper car insurance on that basis.
If you donât have a vehicle or youâre thinking about getting a new (or used) car, it may be worth doing some research to find out which kinds of cars will get you the lowest car insurance rates. And if youâre paying a lot for car insurance now, you may be able to get cheaper coverage by negotiating your premiums or switching providers.
Photo credit: Â©iStock.com/andresr, Â©iStock.com/ipopba, Â©iStock.com/kate_sept2004
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Hi friends. So sorry to go completely MIA on you. Between attempting online school with a five-year-old, much of California burning to the ground, and the general state total chaos in which we find ourselves, getting to the computer for any length of time has been a bit of challenge, to put it mildly. And then I blinked and summer is officially over.
But I had to finally get on here as I have big news for you!
They say you shouldn’t make major life decisions during times of extreme stress, right? Well, we decided to throw all caution to the wind and instead have purchased a coastal cottage in Washington State! Apparently a global pandemic, homeschooling a kindergartner and the most consequential presidential election of our lifetime wasn’t enough to keep me busy.
In all seriousness, if the past seven months of Covid have taught us anything, it’s the importance of friends and family and so we decided to create a gathering place that can bring together those we love most for years to come. Nestled within the myriad of inlets and islands that dot the Puget Sound north of Seattle, the cottage enjoys sweeping views of the Olympic mountains and Hood Canal. I consider it my official respite from the impending doom. Sadly it looks nothing like the inspiration images I’ve collected here.
Instead, it is going to take a LOT of work to get our little coastal cottage visitor ready – and in a very short period of time. Over the coming weeks, I plan to take you along on the entire design journey. I will be sharing everything with you – from the cottage’s current state, to all of my design inspiration and through the remodel process. If all goes according to plan, I’ll share a major before and after reveal in time to spend the holiday season with our family rather than more than 800 miles away.
Trust me, we’re going to have plenty to discuss, as I have to pick an entire household’s worth of things – from paint colors and kitchen cabinets down to dishware, bedding and everything in between. No design decision will be left unturned. It’s both exhilarating and incredibly daunting. These mood boards are just part my first ideation session for my dream vibe.
I’m hopeful sharing this process with you will offer you some fresh design ideas and positive inspiration as we all hunker down to weather what will undoubtedly be a stormy fall – be it literally or just politically. It’s been a rather dark year and I feel like this might be a way to share a little bit of light. I know I am very happy for the creative distraction. I hope you are too.
I can’t wait to share more very soon!
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Hello friends! Praise be, the election is over and I just marked my birthday over the weekend – my official holiday season milestone. Whenever the calendar passes November 8, I feel like I can finally turn 100% of my attention to all things holiday. Obviously, the holidays are going to look and feel very different than years past. Perhaps instead of the holiday season, we should start referring to the next few months as the hunker down season. Because that’s what holidays in the time of Covid are going to require of us. But I’m not entirely mad about the idea of holing up at home. I’ll take a very valid excuse to look for ways to make my home as cozy, comforting, and beautiful as possible.
Enter the new rug collection from Beni Rugs, designed by my style soul twin, Colin King.
Called the Shape of Color, this new rug collection offers eleven Moroccan style rugs. Each rug features shocks of color inspired by Tangier and Marrakech. The hues are deeply saturated in simple geometric shapes or big bold stripes.
While I typically eschew color, rugs are a wonderful spot to inject something fresh into a room. I used a bold colored rug in my own living room. The particularly nice thing about a rug – it’s an easy way to reenergize a space without really having to change anything else.
There are a few secrets to picking out a rug. First, you want to think about size. A common mistake is getting a rug that is too small. You want all (or nearly all) your furniture in a space to sit on your rug. That helps a room feel anchored and like everything is working together. A too-small rug will actually make a small space feel even smaller!
Next, you want to think about foot traffic. If you’re looking to put a rug in a high foot traffic area, you’ll want to ensure any rug you select will withstand an onslaught of dirt and use.
Finally, when adding a colorful rug to your space you don’t need to “match your decor. You just want to keep everything in the same design family. Do you decorate with mostly warm colors or cooler tones? That will help you pick your colors.
If you’re looking to upgrade the coziness of your home before the holidays hit, I definitely think one of these rugs would be a great way to do it. I’m already debating which one I might add to our house. I do have a home office refresh in the works! If I pick out one of these rugs – I’ll be sure to share.
How are you planning on sprucing up your spaces for the holidays?
images c/o beni rugs
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