Did a good deal turn out to be overpriced auto insurance? Believe me, many Santa Maria drivers have buyer's remorse.
Inconceivable but true, the vast majority of drivers have stayed with the same insurance company for a minimum of four years, and just short of a majority have never taken the time to shop around. The average driver in America could save themselves as much as $859 a year by just shopping around, but they won't spend time to go online and compare rates.
Lots of insurers contend for your business, so it's not easy to compare every insurance company and uncover the absolute best price available on auto insurance.
If you have a policy now, you will be able to get lower rates using the ideas covered in this article. Choosing the best rates in Santa Maria can initially seem challenging. But California car owners must know how companies price insurance differently and use it to your advantage.
Santa Maria insurance discounts
Insurance is neither fun to buy or cheap, but there could be available discounts to help bring down the price. Some of these discounts will be visible at quote time, but a few need to be specifically requested prior to receiving the credit.
- ABS and Traction Control Discounts - Cars equipped with ABS or steering control can stop better under adverse conditions and qualify for as much as a 10% discount.
- Online Discount - A handful of insurance companies will give a small break for buying your policy online.
- Theft Deterrent - Cars equipped with anti-theft or alarm systems help deter theft and will qualify for a discount on a Santa Maria auto insurance quote.
- Buy New and Save - Putting insurance coverage on a new car can get you a discount because newer models have to meet stringent safety requirements.
- Safe Driver Discount - Drivers who don't get into accidents can get discounts for up to 45% lower rates than their less cautious counterparts.
- Driver Training Discounts - Taking part in a course teaching defensive driver skills can save you 5% or more depending on where you live.
- Low Miles Discount - Driving fewer miles may enable drivers to earn discounted premium rates on garaged vehicles.
Drivers should understand that many deductions do not apply to the overall cost of the policy. Most cut the price of certain insurance coverages like liability and collision coverage. Even though the math looks like having all the discounts means you get insurance for free, it's just not the way it works.
A few companies that may include some of the discounts shown above possibly include:
It's a good idea to ask all the companies to apply every possible discount. Some of the discounts discussed earlier may not be offered in Santa Maria. To see a list of insurance companies who offer free insurance quotes in Santa Maria, click this link.
How to shop insurance online
It's important to know that comparing more prices gives you a better chance of getting the best offered rates.
The companies shown below are our best choices to provide free rate quotes in California. To buy cheap auto insurance in California, we suggest you get rate quotes from several of them to get a more complete price comparison.
|Make, Model, and Trim Level||Annual Policy Premium||6-month Policy Premium||Monthly Premium|
|Chevrolet Silverado LT Regular Cab 2WD||$1,408||$704||$117|
|Dodge Grand Caravan CV||$1,476||$738||$123|
|Dodge Ram Crew Cab TRX 2WD||$1,280||$640||$107|
|Ford Escape XLS 2WD||$1,028||$514||$86|
|Ford F-150 FX4 4WD||$1,256||$628||$105|
|Ford Focus SE 4-Dr Sedan||$1,158||$579||$97|
|GMC Sierra SLT Crew Cab 2WD||$1,490||$745||$124|
|Honda Accord EX 4-Dr Sedan||$1,118||$559||$93|
|Honda CR-V EX-L 2WD||$1,148||$574||$96|
|Honda Civic EX 4-Dr Sedan||$1,550||$775||$129|
|Honda Odyssey Touring||$1,406||$703||$117|
|Mazda 3 I Touring 4-Dr Sedan||$1,552||$776||$129|
|Nissan Altima 2.5 4-Dr Sedan||$1,372||$686||$114|
|Nissan Rogue S 2WD||$1,816||$908||$151|
|Toyota Camry LE||$1,348||$674||$112|
|Toyota Corolla S||$1,230||$615||$103|
|Toyota Tacoma Double Cab 4WD||$1,338||$669||$112|
|Get Your Own Custom Quote Go|
Above prices assume married male driver age 30, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1000 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include multi-policy, homeowner, multi-vehicle, claim-free, and safe-driver. Rate information does not factor in vehicle location which can decrease or increase insurance rates greatly.
Physical damage deductible comparison
The chart below illustrates how your choice of deductibles and can change Ford Focus premium costs for different age groups. The prices are based on a single male driver, full coverage, and no policy discounts are applied.
Ford Focus rates are for example purposes only. To get rates for your specific vehicle, click here.
Learn how to lower your insurance prices
Part of the insurance buying process is learning the rating factors that play a part in calculating the rates you pay for insurance. If you have a feel for what controls the rates you pay, this empowers consumers to make smart changes that can earn you lower rates. Many things are part of the calculation when premium rates are determined. A few of the factors are predictable like a motor vehicle report, but other criteria are less obvious such as whether you are married and annual miles driven.
The following are a few of the "ingredients" companies use to determine premiums.
- More stress means more cost - Did you know your career choice can influence rates? Jobs such as doctors, air traffic controllers, and emergency personnel generally pay the highest average rates attributed to intense work situations and incredibly demanding work hours. On the flip side, jobs such as farmers, engineers and retirees pay lower than average rates.
- Do you really need roadside assistance? - There are quite a few extra coverages that may not really be needed if you don't pay attention. Coverages like roadside assistance, accident forgiveness, and motor club memberships are probably not needed. You may think they are a good idea initially, but your needs may have changed so get rid of them and save.
- Pay less with a high IIHS safety rating - Safe vehicles are cheaper to insure. The safest vehicles help reduce the chance of injuries in an accident and any reduction in injury severity means less money paid by your insurance company which can result in lower premiums.
- Get hitched and get better rates - Getting married can get you a discount when shopping for insurance. Having a significant other means you're more stable financially it has been statistically shown that married couples file fewer claims.
- Insurance rates in urban areas - Residing in areas with lower population has it's advantages when it comes to insurance. Fewer drivers means less chance of accidents and also fewer theft and vandalism claims. Residents of big cities regularly have more auto accidents and longer commutes to work. The longer drive time means more chance of being in an accident.
- Teenage drivers pay higher costs - Beginning drivers in California have been known to be more careless when behind the wheel so they pay higher insurance rates. Parents adding a beginning driver to your policy can be very expensive. More mature drivers are proven to be safer behind the wheel, statistically cause fewer accidents, and usually have better credit.
Neighborhood Santa Maria auto insurance agents
Certain consumers would rather talk to an insurance agent and that can be a great decision A good thing about getting online price quotes is you may find lower rates and still buy from a local agent.
By using this simple form, the quote information is transmitted to local insurance agents who want to provide quotes for your coverage. There is no reason to do any legwork because prices are sent immediately to you. You can find the lowest rates without requiring a lot of work. If you need to compare rates from a particular provider, don't hesitate to visit that company's website to submit a rate quote request.
Choosing an provider should depend on more than just a cheap price quote. Some important questions to ask are:
- Does the agent have a valid license to sell insurance in California?
- Is coverage determined by price?
- Will the agent help in case of a claim?
- Is the coverage adequate for your vehicle?
- Do they get extra compensation for selling add-on coverages?
- Which companies can they place coverage with?
- If your car is totalled, how to they determine the replacement cost?
- What insurance company do they write the most business with?
Compare rates from both independent and exclusive auto insurance agents
If you need to find a reputable insurance agent or broker, it's important to understand the different types of agencies and how they work. Insurance policy providers may be either independent agents or exclusive agents depending on their employer.
Exclusive Insurance Agencies
These agents write business for a single company such as Allstate, State Farm and Farm Bureau. Exclusive agents cannot provide other company's prices so always compare other rates. Exclusive agencies are very knowledgeable on the products they sell and that can be a competitive advantage.
Independent Insurance Agents
Independent agents can sell policies from many different companies and that is an advantage because they can write policies with multiple insurance companies and help determine which has the cheapest rates. If they find a lower price, they can switch companies in-house which is easy for the insured. When comparing insurance rates, you need to compare prices from several independent insurance agents for maximum quote selection.
Upon receiving acceptable answers to these questions as well as a affordable price, most likely you have located an auto insurance agent that can be relied on to adequately provide insurance.
Here's why car insurance is not optional
Despite the high cost, insuring your vehicle is a good idea for several reasons.
- The majority of states have compulsory liability insurance requirements which means it is punishable by state law to not carry a specific minimum amount of liability protection in order to license the vehicle. In California these limits are 15/30/5 which means you must have $15,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $30,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and $5,000 of property damage coverage.
- If you have a loan on your vehicle, almost all lenders will require you to carry insurance to ensure the loan is repaid in case of a total loss. If you let the policy lapse, the bank or lender will purchase a policy for your vehicle at a much higher rate and make you pay the higher price.
- Insurance safeguards your vehicle and your assets. Insurance will also pay for all forms of medical expenses for not only you but also any passengers injured in an accident. One policy coverage, liability insurance, will also pay attorney fees if you are named as a defendant in an auto accident. If damage is caused by hail or an accident, collision and comprehensive coverages will cover the repair costs.
The benefits of having insurance outweigh the cost, especially if you ever need it. Today the average American driver overpays as much as $700 annually so smart consumers compare quotes once a year at a minimum to be sure current rates are still competitive.
Lower rates by being persistent
We just presented a lot of tips how to get a better price on auto insurance in Santa Maria. The key thing to remember is the more times you quote, the better likelihood of getting affordable Santa Maria auto insurance quotes. You may even be surprised to find that the lowest premium rates come from a smaller regional carrier. Some small companies may only write in your state and offer lower prices as compared to the big name companies such as State Farm and Allstate.
As you quote Santa Maria auto insurance, never reduce coverage to reduce premium. Too many times, an accident victim reduced liability coverage limits only to regret that it was a big mistake. The proper strategy is to find the BEST coverage at a price you can afford, but do not sacrifice coverage to save money.
More tips and info about auto insurance can be found at these sites:
- Pickups fall short in headlight tests (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety)
- How Much is Car Insurance for Drivers Over Age 70 in California? (FAQ)
- Who Has the Cheapest California Auto Insurance Quotes for Low Credit Scores? (FAQ)
- How Much is Auto Insurance for Single Moms in California? (FAQ)
- Who Has Affordable California Car Insurance Rates for Hybrid Vehicles? (FAQ)
- What Auto Insurance is Cheapest for Low Mileage Drivers in California? (FAQ)
- What is the Best Cheap Car Insurance in Anaheim, CA? (FAQ)
- Neck Injury FAQ (iihs.org)
- Credit Impacts Car Insurance Rates (State Farm)
- Honda warning system reduces insurance claims (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety)