Unfortunately, rate increases are an inevitable part of having auto insurance. Insurance rates go up for a variety of reasons. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to control or prevent most of them.
Factors You Can’t Control
Insurance Company Decisions
Some scenarios that lead to higher insurance rates are simply out of the policyholder’s hands. For example, a carrier may find that they need more funds to ensure they have enough to pay out claims in a state where expenses are higher.
Age and Location
Drivers who put newly licensed teenagers on their insurance policies will see their auto insurance rates increase, since teenagers are typically involved in more crashes than any other age group.
Where you call home could also have an impact on your auto insurance rates, as certain cities are more prone to crashes or have a higher rate of vehicle thefts. Some will even require drivers to have glass coverage for their windshield, which could lead to a more expensive premium.
Insurance rates go up for all drivers due to the fraudulent practices of a few. Examples include drivers who moved but didn’t report it, parents who don’t add teenage drivers to their insurance plans to prevent increases, staged accidents and drivers who ask for higher estimates at body shops. Unfortunately, these actions affect what others pay for auto insurance rates.
How to Curb Insurance Rate Increases
Avoid Crashes and Violations
Being a safe driver is one surefire way to keep your rates down.
Drivers who get into a lot of crashes or accrue too many speeding tickets will likely see a surcharge or have their insurance tier adjusted. The tier system is a relatively new way of doing things in the insurance industry, in which those with the least number of occurrences pay the lowest rate.
Insurance providers use tiers to rank customers based on their risk of being involved in another vehicle mishap. While not many people like to be ranked, the industry uses the system to get a more precise evaluation of your driving habits and it sometimes helps prevent rates from skyrocketing for a driver just because of one accident.
If your car insurance rates have recently gone up, ask your insurance agent if you have had any discounts recently expire. While you’re at it, ask if you or your family members qualify for any additional discounts like a good driver, auto club or good student discount. Some providers also offer rate reductions for safety features on your car, paid-in-full discounts, multi-vehicle discounts and bundling home and auto insurance policies together. Make sure you’re not missing out on these savings!
Depending on the state where you live, drivers can also receive an auto insurance discount for completing a defensive driving course. The fee to take the class is nominal and the discount usually lasts for several years. Visit AAA.com/DriverImprovement for information on AAA defensive driving classes.
AAA Insurance offers much more than auto coverage. Contact an insurance agent or get a quote. AAA.com/Insurance.