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UPDATED: Jul 17, 2017
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If you own two vehicles, you’ll save a lot of time by taking out one insurance policy that covers both of them. You only have to keep up with one payment each month, and you’ll renew coverage for both vehicles simultaneously.
If you’re ever in an accident, you don’t have to remember which vehicle is covered by which policy. Combining your policies will also reduce your risk of forgetting a payment, and it could save you money.
Combined policies are typically cheaper than maintaining separate policies for multiple vehicles, and many insurance companies now offer discounts for multi-vehicle policies.
Single and Married Drivers with Multiple Vehicles
As long as every vehicle you want to list on the policy is registered to the same address and is in either your name or your spouse’s name, you shouldn’t have trouble securing a combined auto insurance policy.
If you were recently married and want to add your spouse to your existing policy, then you may need to provide proof of marriage.
Insurance companies will look at your driving record and the type of cars that you want to cover in order to determine whether you’re a good risk or bad risk.
There are many other factors that they may consider while making this decision, including the crime rate at the residence to which your vehicles are registered. Some insurance companies also consider your credit rating.
If you’re listing a spouse as a driver on your policy, their driving history may impact your premium as well. Even if your spouse has a flawed driving record, you are likely to save when you list your vehicles on one combined policy, but that isn’t guaranteed.
Comparing quotes online is the best way to ensure that you pay as little as possible for your policy.
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Questions to Ask Prior to Securing a Multi-Car, Multi-Driver Policy
There are some situations where you may want to share a policy with drivers other than your spouse.
Insurance companies will look at the nature of your relationship and other factors to determine whether this is acceptable or not.
Ask yourself the following questions to determine whether a combined policy may work for you.
— What is your relationship with the other drivers?
Insurance companies aren’t likely to authorize a combined policy if you have only an affiliation with other drivers on the policy.
For instance, most insurance companies are prepared to work with customers sharing policies with their significant others to whom they aren’t married, but they may question why you want to share a policy with a colleague from work.
It’s also commonplace for parents to add teenagers to their policies once they secure their driver’s license, but they may not allow you to cover a young adult unrelated to you.
If you’re interested in sharing a policy with a driver that isn’t related to you and doesn’t live in your home, you may have to explain your relationship to determine if it’s acceptable.
Different companies have different policies, and you may need to provide documentation of certain relationships.
— Are all vehicles registered to the same address?
Many insurance companies will only allow combined policies for vehicles registered to a shared address.
This may open the door for you to share a policy with a roommate with whom you aren’t romantically connected in order to take advantage of discounts, but make sure that you can trust the person sharing your policy.
If they start getting traffic tickets or are at fault in an accident, their problems could impact your insurance premium.
— Will each included driver help or harm your policy?
If your chosen insurance company checks credit ratings, you may want to make sure every person covered by your policy has good credit.
You definitely want to make sure they have clean driving records because one driver’s spotty past could increase the insurance premium for everyone on the policy.
— Are you adding a dependent child?
Each insurance company sets their own rules when it comes to adding dependents to your policy, but most will only cover your child up to a certain age. In many cases, that age is 26.
Some companies also stipulate that a dependent over 18 must remain enrolled in school while they’re on your policy. The expectation is that you’ll cover your child on your policy only while they’re a dependent.
Once your child graduates college and move out on their own, they should obtain their own insurance policy as adults.
Young drivers can increase your car insurance premium significantly, especially if they drive a vehicle that the insurance company considers high risk.
Even if you’ve had the same insurance company for years and don’t want to move to a different company, it’s in your best interest to do a price comparison online before you add a young driver to your policy.
Some companies will increase your rate significantly when you make that addition while others are more lenient.
Can you easily share the monthly payments?
This only applies if someone else is responsible for paying part of the monthly bill for your shared policy.
If you’re sharing with a roommate or significant other, how will you arrange payment so that the policy doesn’t lapse?
Protect yourself by only entering policies with people you know well and thoroughly trust.
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Life circumstances change with time, and each change impacts your auto insurance.
Whether you just got married and want to combine policies with your new spouse or your teenager just got his license and can’t afford his own policy, your current life situation could have a positive impact on your insurance rate.
It could also lead to an increase in your rate if you don’t compare all of your options and carefully weigh the benefits of each one before making a final decision.