Shopping for car insurance can be stressful and confusing. How much insurance do you really need? While many drivers choose to reduce rates by opting for lower coverages or raising deductibles, smart drivers can lower rates by being aware of factors that affect car insurance rates and changing things that are within their control.
Here are 7 factors that can affect your car insurance rates.
Gender And Age Of The Driver
It’s no secret that young men have the highest car insurance rates. The reason is that women are usually better drivers according to statistics. Don’t worry guys – the tables flip as you age. Older men have better rates than older women, as statistically older women are more likely to get in an accident.
If you’ve been putting off popping the question, you may want to think twice. Married people get in less accidents than their single counterparts, so getting hitched is an easy way to reduce your premiums. As a bonus, you can also combine policies and get a multi-driver discount.
You’ve probably heard that most accidents occur close to home, so it’s no surprise that your neighborhood affects your insurance rates. Neighborhoods with large populations means there’s plenty more opportunities for a fender bender, so living in a city or a crowded neighborhood can push up your premiums.
In addition, rough neighborhoods can have higher instances of theft or vandalism which will also drive up rates.
Your Cars’ Safety Rating
Obviously you want a car that’s safe, but your insurance also wants you to have a car that’s safe too. Cars with higher safety ratings are cheaper to insure because the odds of the insurance company having to pay for passengers’ medical bills are lower.
Age Of The Car
Repair costs are similar for old and new vehicles, but older vehicles are more likely to be totaled in an accident. The reason is that the cost of repairs rapidly surpasses the value of the vehicle the older it gets. For the insurance companies, the cost of replacing an old car is much lower than replacing or making significant repairs on a new car, so older cars are cheaper to insure.
SUV’s and minivans may cost more to purchase, but they’re generally safer in an accident, thus larger cars with good safety ratings tend to have lower premiums than smaller cars with similar ratings.
However, if your car has a big engine like a V8, expect to pay a little more for all that extra power.
Not surprisingly, your driving history has a huge impact on your rates. If you’ve had accidents, speeding tickets or previous auto insurance claims you can bet that you’ll be paying more than a good driver. If your record is particularly bad, the insurance company may even deny you coverage.
Do you know of any other factors that can affect your auto insurance rates? Let me know in the comments section so I can update this post.