Car Insurance Shopping Must Knows

It’s a known fact that shopping for car insurance is a pain in the rear.  It’s a state law, and you hate it, but you have to pay it.  Or maybe you want that big policy because you just bought a new car, and nothing would be worse than totalling the new car and not being able to replace it.  But before you pick up the telephone or go online to find car insurance quotes, be sure you know what you need.  Here is a quick list of things to think about before contacting a company about car insurance:

  • Know what the minimum coverages are for your state.Most of the time liability insurance is all that is required.  In Texas, where I live, the minimum car insurance coverage provide by the Texas Department of Insurance reads as follows:  “The minimum liability insurance required by law is $20,000 bodily injury per person, $40,000 bodily injury per accident, and $15,000 for property damage per accident. This is commonly called “20/40/15″ coverage.”

  • Only buy what you need. If you have a 10 year old clunker like me (I drive a 1993 Acura Integra) don’t buy full car insurance coverage.  It might cost you $50-$100 more per month, which would pay for the value of the car in just a couple of years.
  • Get uninsured motorist coverage. We never think that it will be our fault for the accident, but how upset will you be if a drunk driver hits you, totals your car , and your car insurance company says “Tough luck!”.  This additional car insurance coverage usually is less than $10 additional dollars per month.
  • Consider using an independent agent. I know companies like Progressive can show you different car insurance rates, but they are still working in their own best interest.  I went with an independent agent through Extraco (yeah the bank, weird huh?) and he was able to shop some 20 different reputable car insurance companies to provide me with the car insurance coverage I needed at the lowest possible price.

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