The Complete Car Insurance Buying Guide

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Buying insurance for your car can be an intimidating task. It might be hard to start if you don’t know where to start. Add the fact that when looking for an insurance company online, it’s hard to determine how capable their agents can deliver your needs.

This is especially true if you’re the kind of customer who is wary about being matched with an agent who’s only about the hard sell but isn’t really interested in taking your needs into account. You might find yourself being turned off easily by such company representatives. The good thing is, it’s not something you have to subject yourself to.

Although there are a lot of sales agents out there who come on too strong or who don’t even know their products well, you can always make the effort to find and pick someone you can rely on to have your back.

Learning more about the quoting process of different insurance companies will give you a good idea of what kind of business you are dealing with.

Thankfully, I’ve undertaken the same process myself which allowed me to meet a very capable insurance agent.

From offering me a quote to walking me through my entire insurance policy, the experience was simple and satisfying. My experience just goes to show you don’t have to settle for less as long as you’re willing to make the right call.

You can find out more about the process I undertook in this car insurance buying guide!

What You Should Know About Car Insurance

To start with, despite owning a car for the better part of a decade, I never put much thought into what goes with my insurance policy. I figured that leaving it all up to a dealer or agent who would give me a considerably sensible package was enough.

However, I realized that I could probably get something cheaper or more appropriate for my car usage.

Since I only use my car for city driving, I figured I wouldn’t need something as big as a comprehensive coverage package for my car. Moreover, since my car isn’t very high-end or high mileage, I wouldn’t need to pay much of a premium either.

As I went ahead and did my research, I learned that companies offer discounts for things like a safe driving record and having car safety features, which is great for owners.

Agreeing to pay higher deductibles when your car incurs damage will also mean lower premium payments for your coverage. Still, I haven’t thought much about what I will include in my policy. I was considering whether I should include personal injury, medical payments, or roadside assistance in my coverage.

I decided to weigh these options once I get in contact with the agent who will set me up with a quote and see how I can adjust it according to my budget.

Car Insurance Buying Guide

Why It Pays to Assess All Your Available Options

As I’ve previously mentioned, there are numerous factors that go into determining your car’s insurance premium and this varies for each insurance provider.

That’s why it’s important to shop around so you’ll get to assess what the best deal for you is. Instead of worrying ahead of your monthly car insurance payments, it’s worth finding savings opportunities now so you can offset high premium costs that may be caused by factors outside of your control.

With that in mind, I began looking for companies that offer easy auto insurance sign-ups. I also searched for websites that can match customers who are intent on buying car insurance policies with agents who can write up a quote for them.

Even if you can afford to pay a high monthly premium, it doesn’t mean that you have to do so just to get all the coverage you need.

No future is certain and it always helps to veer on the conservative side when making financial decisions and investments. Remember, your car insurance premium doesn’t have to take a big chunk of your monthly budget if you can find a policy that will allow you to get more while saving money in the process.

The key to this is to know all your available options. It’s natural that insurance providers will have varying premium rates as they have their own criteria that they base on.

Factors That Can Affect Your Insurance Premium Quote

If one of your foremost concerns is how high or low your insurance premium quote will be, then it’s worth getting to know the factors it’s based on. Although these factors can change, many remain as a steadfast basis for most insurance companies.

Here are some factors you might want to keep in mind:

  • Increasing Market Costs – Before buying insurance for your car, you might want to look at the overall trend of the market first. For instance, in August 2017, premiums have increased to as much as 8%. Knowing such market changes can clue you in on when to hold off or buy a car insurance.
  • Your Credit Score – There are also a good number of insurance companies who will take into account your current credit score. If you have a bad one, they’ll likely assign a higher premium quote to you. Avoid this by improving your credit score first before availing of an insurance policy for your vehicle.
  • Your Car’s Age and Quality – The quality and age of your car play a big part in the underwriting of your policy’s quote. The older your car is, the higher the chance of a slightly expensive premium than usual. Aside from your car’s age, its quality in terms of its safety and reliability features are also typically considered as well.

 Checking Out Different Insurance Providers

Having decided to check out what my options are, I was eager to find out who the leading insurance providers are in the market.

I was interested to find out how they can set me up with agents who can offer quotes that were tailored to fit the coverage I want, who can keep my budget in mind and can inform me fully about the terms included in the insurance policy.

I’ve always been apprehensive about getting cold calls, as you can’t be too sure about the vetting process for agents in companies like theirs.

For the purpose of this car insurance buying guide, let me say that live calls are only the beginning of your relationship with your agent, so right off the bat, you must feel confidence and trust in them. If you aren’t too sure about the rapport you will build with your agent, maybe you can try and look elsewhere.

The Process

Signing up for different sites was simple. I just indicated some basic information about myself and my car—the vehicle year, model, make, car ownership, primary use, annual mileage, night parking, and most importantly, the coverage I desired for my car.

Each insurance provider has options for multiple car policies as well. That should be easy for the insurance agent to see what they can offer me.

Some information they required regarding the car owner, included license details, like whether mine has been suspended or revoked, or if I had any claim or violation from the last three years. I was also asked if I needed an SR-22 form, and if I already have an existing car insurance policy.

I found these to be pertinent information that could really help an agent give me a great quote, so I took the time in filling it out.

As for user experience, I would say that my experience went smoothly for the most part. I found that it would be easy for insurance providers to validate my intention of buying an insurance policy, which would be good for the agents in return since they won’t waste their time on unqualified leads. This saves both of us time and makes for an easier deal.

Car Insurance Buying Guide

The Quoting Process

Next up on this car insurance buying guide is the quoting process itself. To start, many of the insurance providers have their own platform for leads for their agents, and I assume that it was also a breeze for a local agent to find me as well.

I was excited to get started on building a car insurance policy that will match my needs. Given all the information I provided upon signing up, I presumed the agent can easily work on a quote that takes into account what I need and can handle monthly.

It didn’t take long for me to be matched with a local insurance agent. A few days later, I received a call from one of their authorized agents.

Despite my apprehension, the call kicked off smoothly and I felt at ease as soon as pleasantries were exchanged. After expressing my clear intent on purchasing an insurance policy for my car, we immediately went down to business. He clarified some information with me and I simply verified everything.

Now that it was out of the way, he went on to detail the insurance policy he was able to quote for me.

Deciding on an Insurance Provider

As I mentioned at the beginning of this car insurance buying guide, I wasn’t sure about some coverage inclusions that I wanted to add to my policy. I asked him more about it and he went on to enumerate the pros and cons of including the coverage deals in my package.

After hashing out all the information regarding the coverage of the insurance policy, I was happy to learn that given my willingness to shoulder other damage costs, I could afford to include other additions to my policy.

We were able to work out something that matched all of my requirements, at a rate that was well within my budget.

It was great to have an agent talk to me despite including all the information I needed in their website sign-up form. Response time varied but for the most part, it was relatively quick.

I wasn’t expecting much, so I armed myself with the necessary information prior to the call. I was happy to learn that my agent was completely on top of things. Nothing beats getting a tailored insurance policy and talking to a knowledgeable agent about things that would really suit my car usage as well as my needs.

After we had decided, my agent said he will get back to me after putting together my final car insurance policy. I was more than happy to let him take his time.

I wanted to be sure that he will write up something as comprehensive as we discussed. The call was a great and convenient way to touch base with the agent about what I wanted and needed, and I thanked him for graciously answering all my questions and concerns.

Choosing the Right Agent

Choosing the right agent is as crucial as choosing the right insurance provider. You should make it a point to work with someone who takes your best interests into account and is transparent to you about the insurance policy’s details.

Given the impression my agent left on me upon the first call, I would say they vetted their insurance agents well so you can count on the expertise of anyone you’ll be matched with.

The quote my agent gave me was perfectly tailored to my requirements. Dealing with him was also a breeze, which was made easier by what he already knows about my needs from my sign-up profile.

He was also able to clarify my concerns regarding coverage, which made me confident in his expertise in the car insurance field. It also didn’t feel like he was pushing more inclusions to my policy despite my inquiries, and it made me feel at ease. He simply noted what I would get out of them and didn’t try to sell me anything more than I needed.

Overall, getting my car insurance policy definitely made my life easier. With a little research and a qualified agent, I was able to get something that was suited for me.

I would recommend the same process I went through to car owners out there who aren’t sure about the policy they want for their car and who don’t have time to seek out any insurance agents in their area.

Investing enough time and effort will ensure that you’ll someone who can give you exactly what you need without you having to stand up from your desk. You can find a reliable and comprehensive policy for your car just by asking the right details and being upfront on what you need and what your requirements are.

My Overall Insurance Shopping Experience

To wrap up this car insurance buying guide, I would like to say that I was completely satisfied with my experience of looking at different insurance options.

From visiting a number of websites for the first time to getting my policy from my agent, the entire process made for an excellent learning experience. Sign-ups were simple and required the right information without being too long and time-consuming.

Most of the websites were very easy to navigate as well, so anyone can go in and access the same information I reviewed with ease.

All in all, I arrived at a decision I’m confident and comfortable with so I definitely recommend the same buying process for diligent car owners who want to ensure they’re getting the best deal in the market!

Car Insurance Buying Guide