Car Insurance Advice

Good car insurance advice includes (1) looking at multiple companies, (2) reading customer service reviews, and (3) comparing quotes annually to lower your car insurance rates.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: May 25, 2020

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident car insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We are not affiliated with any one car insurance company and cannot guarantee quotes from any single company.

Our partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare quotes from top car companies please enter your ZIP code above to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

Here's what you need to know...

  • One of the important things that you have to realize about buying car insurance is that not every car insurance company is the same
  • You may be paying more as an established customer with your current car insurance company than you would if you were a new customer
  • Get an annual car insurance quote from multiple companies to ensure that you are getting the lowest rates for your car insurance
  • Remember that it is also important that you consider the advice of someone that doesn’t benefit financially from the choices you make

If you are looking for car insurance advice, you have come to the right place. We will provide you with the information  you need to make an educated decision about your car insurance.

Get online car insurance quotes with just your ZIP code right now!

Choosing the Best Coverage for Your Car

The needs of each driver on the road varies, which is why it is important that you consider your personal needs when choosing your car insurance.

Each state has a minimum amount of coverage that drivers are required to carry. These minimums are based on the average cost of an accident in the state where you live.

What they don’t take into account is the fact that some areas are more dangerous to drive in than others, meaning that the overall average in your state might be one number but the average cost of an accident in the city you live in could be another.

Your insurance company recognizes this distinction, which is why someone in one area of your state could pay far less or far more than you do.

Plus, car insurance average premiums differ across the nation. This is also why a basic quote starts with your zip code.

You can use the Internet to find the average cost of an accident in the area where you live to help you to determine what type of minimum coverage you should carry. Although you have a required bottom line, there is almost no maximum limit as to how much coverage you can purchase.

There are typically several resources available to help you find the information you need about accident statistics. Some states have very comprehensive annual accident reports while others will offer reports based on counties rather than cities.

Visit your local Department of Insurance website, your local DMV website, and/or your local highway patrol website.

Once you have determined what the average cost of an accident is in your area, you should use that as a basis for determining how much insurance you should purchase for your vehicle.

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A Breakdown of Your Coverage Types

Liability insurance refers to the coverage you need to pay for the damage to any vehicles or people in an accident that you have caused.

Many people get confused and assume that their vehicle is covered by their liability insurance.

However, you need to purchase additional insurance to cover your vehicle.

There are two types of liability insurance, bodily injury liability and property damage liability.

 Bodily injury

This coverage is broken down into a single person and multiple persons and is represented on your insurance policy like this: $10,000/$25,000.

The first number represents the amount of medical coverage you get for a single injured person and the second number represents the amount of medical coverage for multiple people injured in the accident.

Bodily liability can cover the passengers in your vehicle, but not you.

 Property damage liability

This coverage is broken down the same way except for the first number represents damage to a single car, and the second number represents damage to multiple cars.

As mentioned above, this is not coverage for your vehicle or for yourself, this is for others.

Collision

Collision coverage protects the cost of damage to your vehicle in an accident that you cause or if you have a single car accident.

When choosing collision coverage, consider the market value of your vehicle. Don’t purchase coverage with more value than the worth of your vehicle.

Comprehensive

Comprehensive coverage is all for things not associated with an accident such as theft, fire, and flood. Again, this is coverage for your vehicle and you should consider only purchasing enough to cover the cost of your vehicle should it be stolen, vandalized or destroyed.

Personal Injury Protection (PIP)

Some states require you to purchase Personal Injury Protection as well as liability. If you don’t live in a state that requires this protection and you have health insurance, then forgo this option.

Purchasing PIP will raise your insurance premiums, and your health insurance will normally cover any medical issues that arise from an auto accident.

Professionals that offer car insurance advice often recommend you purchase as much coverage as you can afford.

The bottom line, however, is that you don’t need the highest amount of coverage for certain things, such as collision and comprehensive coverage.

Instead, focus that money on liability coverage where it could make the most difference if you are the cause of an accident.

Where to Get the Best Car Insurance Rates

Finding ways to save on car insurance is easy. However, it is difficult to suggest a single company as having the best rates simply because your rates will vary depending on several variables.

The best car insurance advice we could possibly give you is to take the time to use a quote tool to get car insurance quotes.

Keep the following tips in mind:

  • In addition to shopping around, take the time to learn about the different discount options available to you and take advantage of them.
  • Find a defensive driving course in your area and take it. Although it will cost you a little up front money, the discount will last you a lifetime.
  • Don’t carry any extra car insurance if you don’t need to.

Start here first and get car insurance quotes with just your ZIP code!

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Average Monthly Car Insurance Rates by State