Each state has it’s own minimum liability limit requirements for Bodily Injury and Property Damage. While many drivers think they are saving by carrying only the state minimum limits (which we highly recommend against), raising your limits could actually help make sure you are getting the best rates!
By carrying higher liability limits, you are not only better protecting yourself against potential losses, but insurance carriers will also view your higher limits as evidence of you being a “more responsible driver” and offer you better rates!
A deductible is the out of pocket cost you are responsible for in the event of a loss. The standard deductible is usually $500. If you are looking to lower your monthly/yearly premium, raising your deductibles could help. We’d be happy to quote the difference so you can decide what is best for your policy.
All carriers view your claims history for the last 3 to 5 years – so this means that claims can have an impact on your rates for that same time period. This is why it’s particularly important to weigh the pros and cons before filing a claim. If the damage seems minor or is just over your deductible, it may be more cost effective to pay for it out of pocket since it can impact your rates for an extended period of time.
Windshield claims will also stay on your claims history for 3 to 5 years. One or two of these is not generally bad, but if there is an excess of windshield claims, it can be seen as negative and impact your rates.
With some carriers, roadside assistance calls may also potentially be listed under your claims history. We have seen this before with other national big name auto insurance carriers. Similar to windshield claims, if roadside assistance is used in excess, it can negatively impact your rates; it may be time to consider other private towing memberships.
Since we are an independent agency, we have the ability to shop with many auto carriers for you. Shopping your auto insurance is a good way to make sure you are still getting the best rate currently available.
Some carriers also offer an annual option versus a 6-month option. If available, we highly recommend taking advantage of this! This will allow you to lock in the lower rate for a year and avoid a potential rate increase at 6 months.
Did you know that most auto insurance carriers give a great discount for Paying in Full? We’ve frequently seen this discount be close to the cost of one month’s payment! We highly recommend paying in full if you are able to.
If paying in full is not an option for you right now, you can still get a discount by setting up your payments on an automatic payment plan by EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer) or RCC (Recurring Credit Card). These are great options to still get a discount and make sure you never miss a payment!
When purchasing a vehicle, an important coverage to consider is GAP Insurance. If a total loss occurs, GAP insurance can help pay towards a possible difference between how much is left on your loan/lease and the depreciated value of your car. This will vary independently on the value of your vehicle and the remaining loan amount.
This can be purchased as part of your loan, but if it was not, you may want to consider adding it to your auto insurance policy if available. With most carriers, this must be added when the vehicle is purchased and added to your policy.
Ridesharing and Deliveries
Ridesharing and Delivery Drivers have become very popular occupations in the last few years. Did you know that you have to have special endorsements and/or policies if you are conducting this type of business?
Ridesharing like Lyft or Uber may be covered under your personal auto policy IF the carrier has an endorsement that you can add for this specific coverage. If your particular carrier does not offer the endorsement, we can research options with our other carriers to make sure you have the coverage needed.
Delivery Driving like food or package delivery is almost never available under a personal auto policy. In most of these scenarios, you will need a commercial auto policy. This is very important to take into consideration.
If you are using your vehicle for ridesharing or delivery purposes, please speak to us urgently to make sure you have the proper coverage needed – or your claim could be denied and/or policy cancelled for misrepresentation.
Let Us Take A Look To See How We Can Help!
Bri and Liz are Mizrahi and Garris Insurance Agency’s in-house auto insurance experts! If you’re interested in us shopping your policy, please feel free to reach out to us by phone, or email: Bri or Liz.
Here’s what we’ll need:
- copy of your current Declarations Page
- Driver’s License Numbers for all drivers
- about 5 to 10 minutes to gather the remaining info insurance carriers require to quote (like occupation, usage, preferred payment plan, etc.)