Shopping for a new car is an exciting experience. But amid all the anticipation, it’s all too easy to forget to estimate the cost of car insurance before signing on the dotted line. Before this, you may want to know how to predict your car insurance.
The type of car you drive is just one of the many factors that determine how much you’ll pay for auto insurance each month. Depending on the vehicle type and your insurance company, your coverage costs can vary by hundreds of dollars.
This is why it’s crucial to get car insurance quotes for the models you’re considering buying. The cost of insurance for a sports car or sedan will be much different than the figure on a pickup truck insurance quote.
Car insurance costs, along with maintenance and gas mileage, should all be included when calculating the total cost of your next car. On average, drivers pay around $1,592 each year for full coverage insurance. But actual rates vary widely. Remember, insurance rates differ based on the type of car, your age, and other factors.
Why Some Cars Cost More to Insure
It should come as no surprise that a pickup truck insurance quote is likely less than a quote for a sports car. This is because insurers look at all types of statistics, including theft and crash numbers, to set rates for each model.
So, if the car you’re buying is commonly involved in car accidents or is at a higher risk of theft, you’ll likely pay more to insure it.
One of the best examples is a sports car. These are some of the most expensive cars to insure as they’re more likely to be involved in an accident due to driving over the speed limit.
Here are some specific vehicle factors that impact how much you’ll pay for auto insurance:
- Retail price. Typically, the more expensive the car, the pricier it will be to insure. This is because if you buy comprehensive and collision coverage, the insurance company is responsible for paying out the car’s market value if the vehicle is stolen or wrecked beyond repair.
- Safety. Cars that have a track record of protecting drivers and passengers cost less to insure. Fewer injuries mean fewer claims for personal injury protection and medical payments.
- Cost of parts. High-end cars, especially foreign vehicles, use parts made from specialized materials such as ceramic and carbon fiber. These parts are expensive to repair, which increases the cost of damage claims.
How to Get Car Insurance Estimates
Before buying a car, spend a few hours getting car insurance estimates. That way, you can ensure that you will still be comfortably within your monthly budget once this additional cost is considered.
Here’s what you need to do to get an accurate auto insurance estimate:
1. Narrow down your top three vehicle choices.
2. Determine how much coverage you need. For example, if you’re buying a new car, you want collision and comprehensive coverage. If you finance a used car, most lenders require collision and comprehensive coverage.
3. Unsure about the type of coverage that you need? Contact the insurer or use a car insurance calculator.
4. Get quotes for the same amount of coverage for each of the three vehicles you’re considering. Compare the numbers and make a note of which car costs the least to insure.
Once you have car insurance estimates, you can factor in these costs to help you decide which car to buy.
Factors That Affect a Car Insurance Quote
The car’s make and model aren’t the only variables that are considered when getting auto insurance quotes. Other factors that insurers consider include:
- The type of coverage you choose. The more coverage you have, the more you’ll pay for insurance.
- The insured (you). Age, gender, and marital status all impact auto insurance costs. Young drivers, especially teenagers, have higher insurance quotes than any other age group.
- Your driving record. Certain infractions, such as a recent speeding ticket, at-fault accident, or DUI, are likely to increase your rates.
- Your car insurance history. Insurers will consider many factors, including how many insurance claims you’ve filed, whether your insurance has lapsed, and how long you’ve been with your current insurer. Be aware that if your coverage has lapsed, backdated car insurance is not an option as it is illegal.
- Your credit score. Some states allow insurers to base coverage costs on a driver’s credit score. Poor credit typically means higher car insurance rates. Insurers calculate a credit-based insurance score, which determines the probability of you filing a claim.
- Where you live. Each state has different car insurance minimums. Your neighborhood also impacts insurance costs. If you live in a place with high crime rates or a dense population, your insurance price will be affected.
How Much Car Insurance Do You Need?
The majority of states have required insurance minimums. But most drivers want more than just the minimum coverage. Many drivers choose full coverage to provide all-around protection. Full coverage typically includes:
- Bodily injury liability
- Property damage liability
- Uninsured motorist bodily injury liability
- Uninsured motorist property damage coverage
- Collision coverage
- Comprehensive coverage
There are other features that can be added to your auto insurance policy, including gap coverage, roadside assistance, and rental cars.
How to Save on Car Insurance
The best way to save money on car insurance is to shop around. Get car insurance quotes from several insurers, from big names like Progressive and Geico to smaller options such as Erie Insurance and Coverhound car insurance. Ideally, you want an insurance company that has a good reputation and solid customer service.
When shopping around for car insurance, be sure you compare quotes for the same amount of coverage. You’ll also want to ask about any discounts that you may qualify for to reduce your total cost.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Insure a New Driver on My Car?
If your teen has recently obtained their learner’s permit, now is a good time to add them to your car insurance policy. This way, they’re covered if they’re involved in an accident.
Insuring learner drivers on your car is as simple as contacting your provider and disclosing the required information.
Do You Need Insurance if Your Car Is SORN?
Legally, you don’t have to insure your car if it’s SORN—that is, if you’ve declared to the government that you’ve taken your car off the road. However, you may not want to leave it uninsured. Some insurance can cover you in case anything happens to it while it’s in storage, such as theft, vandalism, or a fire.
We recommend laid-up car insurance, also known as SORN insurance.
Who Offers the Cheapest Car Insurance?
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