Car insurance is essential for all of us that choose to drive a car. Not having it can be devastating if you have an accident. I worked in an insurance agency early in my career and it made a believer out of me. Here are some steps that I would suggest you take before signing on the dotted line.
- Talk to friends, co-workers and neighbors and find out the names of insurance agents that are trustworthy. Surprisingly enough, the same name or names may come up in the conversation. Once an agent gets a reputation, good or bad; word of mouth travels.
- Don’t just go to the agent who has the largest ad in the telephone book or the most advertisements on television. This may be a sign that he or she needs more business. And it makes you wonder why.
- Be cautious about auto dealer provided insurance as this insurance tends to be over priced with less coverage. When a person will get quote for your car, all the answers should be provided for the queries. Proper information should be available about the quotes of the policies to deliver the correct results. Be careful, while offering the advantage of the owner. The information should be available is correct and valid for protecting the vehicle.
- Call and make a personal visit with the top three agents that have been recommended to you. It is important that you feel comfortable with this person. The relationship you build can be extremely important should you ever have a claim.
- Discuss in detail the coverage. If you do not understand the terminology, ask questions until you are satisfied with the answer.
- Ask about any discount for a good driving record.
- Find out if you need “full coverage” or just liability based on the age of your car and the state in which you live.
An old car that may have lost its value may cost you more than insurance than it is worth should you have an accident.
- As about the coverage should you have a claim. Do you have towing service? Will the insurance company provide you with a rental car? How do you file a claim and how long does it typically take to have a claim paid.
- What is the dollar amount that you can turn in for a claim. For instance, if a rock hits your car and causes a small crack in the windshield, can you claim this?
- What happens if your car is stolen? Will you get it back once it is recovered? What if it is damaged or has high mileage? Must you accept your car back that way.
- If you have teen age drivers, discuss this completely with your agent.
- If you have a poor driving record, such as accidents and/or speeding tickets; discuss that upfront. Your policy can be cancelled if you do not tell the truth. On the other hand, there are insurance policies to cover you.
- Always read before you sign the contract.
These few steps will be well worth the time and effort. You may save money, but just as important; you will be know the facts and be able to discuss a subject that many times seems over our heads.