Are you looking for a better way to compare lower-priced auto insurance rates in Portsmouth, VA? Having to pay for pricey auto insurance in Portsmouth can take a big chunk out of your bank account and force you to tighten up your finances. Doing a price comparison is an excellent way to slash your bill and have more diposable income.
Amazingly, most auto insurance buyers have purchased from the same company for four years or more, and about 40% of consumers have never even compared quotes to find cheap rates. Portsmouth consumers could save an average of $548 each year by just comparing rate quotes, but most undervalue how much savings they would realize if they switched to a more affordable policy. Consumers have many auto insurance companies to buy insurance from, and although it's nice to have a choice, it makes it harder to find the best rates.
Comparison shopping for more affordable insurance coverage in Portsmouth is easy if you know what you're doing. If you have coverage now or just want cheaper coverage, take advantage of these tips to get lower rates while maintaining coverages. Comparison shoppers just have to learn the most efficient way to compare rate quotes over the internet.
The quickest method we recommend to get rate comparisons is to understand auto insurance companies allow for online access to compare their rates. All consumers are required to do is provide details including if it has an alarm system, if you lease or own, whether or not you need a SR-22, and how your vehicles are used. The data is instantly sent to all major companies and you will receive price estimates instantly to find the best rate.
If you wish to get multiple quotes for your car now, click here and enter your coverage details.
The following companies provide free quotes in Virginia. If several companies are displayed, it's highly recommended you visit several of them to get the cheapest price.
Car insurance just makes sense
Even though it can be expensive, car insurance serves several important purposes.
- The majority of states have minimum liability requirements which means state laws require specific limits of liability protection in order to drive the car legally. In Virginia these limits are 25/50/20 which means you must have $25,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $50,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and $20,000 of property damage coverage.
- If you have a loan on your vehicle, almost all lenders will make it a condition of the loan that you buy full coverage to guarantee loan repayment. If you default on your policy, the lender may have to buy a policy to insure your vehicle for a much higher rate and force you to pay for the expensive policy.
- Insurance protects both your assets and your vehicle. Insurance will pay for medical transport and hospital expenses incurred in an accident. Liability insurance, one of your policy coverages, will also pay to defend you if you are named as a defendent in an auto accident. If your vehicle suffers damage from an accident or hail, collision and comprehensive coverages will cover the damage repairs after a deductible is paid.
The benefits of having car insurance are definitely more than the cost, specifically if you ever have a liability claim. Today the average American driver overpays more than $855 a year so we recommend shopping around at every renewal to ensure rates are competitive.
How to lower your auto insurance rates
The best way to find cheaper auto insurance is to take a look at the different types of things that come into play when calculating the level of your policy premiums. When you know what positively or negatively controls the rates you pay, this allows you to make educated decisions that may result in lower premium levels.
The following are some of the most common factors utilized by car insurance companies to help set rates.
Safer cars save money - Vehicles that have high safety ratings cost less to insure. Vehicles engineered for safety reduce injuries and any reduction in injury severity means less claims paid which can result in lower premiums.
Vocation and insurance rates - Did you know your job can affect your rates? Jobs like doctors, architects and dentists tend to have higher rates than average attributed to intense work situations and incredibly demanding work hours. Other jobs such as professors, historians and the unemployed have lower than average premiums.
Low mileage costs less - The higher the mileage driven each year the more you will pay for auto insurance. A lot of companies price each vehicle's coverage based on how the vehicle is used. Autos not used for work or commuting cost less to insure than cars that get driven a lot. It's a good idea to make sure your policy properly reflects the correct usage, because it can save money.
Premiums are affected by your credit score - A driver's credit score is a big factor in calculating your auto insurance rates. Therefore, if your credit rating is lower than you'd like, you could save money insuring your vehicle if you improve your credit rating. Consumers who have high credit scores tend to be less risk to insure than drivers who have lower ratings.
Don't abuse policy claims - If you frequently file small claims, you can definitely plan on either a policy non-renewal or much higher rates. Companies in Virginia give discounts to drivers who file claims infrequently. Auto insurance is intended to be relied upon for major claims that would cause financial hardship.
More performance means higher rates - The make and model of the vehicle you are trying to find cheaper insurance for makes a huge difference in your car insurance bill. The lowest premiums are for low performance passenger cars, but your final cost has many other factors.
You may qualify for discounts
Not too many consumers would say auto insurance is affordable, but there's a good chance there are discounts that you may not know about. Some of these disounts will be visible when you complete an application, but some must be manually applied prior to getting the savings.
- Low Mileage Discounts - Low mileage vehicles may enable drivers to earn discounted auto insurancerates on garaged vehicles.
- Passive Restraint Discount - Vehicles with factory air bags and/or automatic seat belt systems may earn rate discounts of 20 to 30 percent.
- Employee of Federal Government - Federal government employees may reduce rates when you quote Portsmouth auto insurance with select insurance companies.
- Discount for New Cars - Insuring a vehicle that is new can get you a discount since newer vehicles have better safety ratings.
- No Charge for an Accident - This isn't a discount exactly, but some companies like Progressive, Allstate, and Liberty Mutual allow you one accident before your rates go up if you have no claims prior to being involved in the accident.
- Life Insurance - Not all auto insurance companies offer life insurance, but some may give you a discounted auto insurance rate on car insurance if you buy some life insurance too.
- Save over 55 - Older drivers are able to get lower premium rates.
- Cautious Driver Discount - Drivers who don't get into accidents can pay as much as 50% less than drivers with accidents.
- Good Grades Discount - Getting good grades could provide a savings of up to 20% or more. Most companies allow this discount up to age 25.
A little disclaimer on discounts, most discount credits are not given to the overall cost of the policy. A few only apply to specific coverage prices like comprehensive or collision. Even though the math looks like you could get a free auto insurance policy, that's just not realistic.
Companies and some of the discounts are outlined below.
- 21st Century has discounts for early bird, anti-lock brakes, driver training, teen driver, automatic seat belts, student driver, and good student.
- Progressive offers discounts for continuous coverage, good student, multi-vehicle, homeowner, online signing, and multi-policy.
- State Farm offers discounts including anti-theft, good driver, driver's education, passive restraint, and Steer Clear safe driver discount.
- Nationwide may include discounts for multi-policy, accident-free, family plan, defensive driving, easy pay, and business or organization.
- Esurance discounts include claim free, Switch & Save, anti-lock brakes, online shopper, and renters.
- The Hartford includes discounts for air bag, anti-theft, bundle, driver training, defensive driver, good student, and vehicle fuel type.
Check with all companies you are considering how you can save money. Depending on the company, some discounts may not apply to policyholders in your area. To view auto insurance companies with the best auto insurance discounts in Portsmouth, follow this link.
When to talk to an insurance agency
A small number of people prefer to sit down with an agent and doing so can bring peace of mind Professional agents can answer important questions and give you someone to call. A good thing about comparing insurance prices online is the fact that you can find better rates and still choose a local agent. Putting coverage with small agencies is important especially in Portsmouth.
Upon completion of this simple form, your insurance data gets sent to local insurance agents in Portsmouth who will give you quotes for your business. It makes it easy because there is no need to find an agent as quotes are delivered directly to you. If for some reason you want to get a rate quote from one company in particular, you just need to visit that company's website and fill out the quote form the provide.
How to choose the best car insurance agent in Portsmouth
If you want a local Portsmouth insurance agent, you need to know there are two different agency structures and how they can service your needs differently. Portsmouth agents are classified as either exclusive or independent. Either one can sell and service car insurance coverage, but it's a good idea to understand the difference between them since it can impact the type of agent you choose.
Independent Insurance Agents
Independent agents can sell policies from many different companies so they can insure your vehicles with lots of companies and get the cheapest rates. If you want to switch companies, they simply move the coverage in-house which makes it simple for you. If you need lower rates, you will definitely want to include at a minimum one independent agency for maximum quote selection.
Exclusive Car Insurance Agents
Agents that elect to be exclusive can only place business with one company and some examples include Allstate, Farmers Insurance or State Farm. Exclusive agencies are unable to provide other company's prices so always compare other rates. They are trained well on what they offer and that allows them to sell at a higher price point.
Picking the best insurance agent requires more thought than just the quoted price. You should also get answers to these questions.
- Are they able to provide referrals?
- Do you work with a CSR or direct with the agent?
- Will the agent help in case of a claim?
- Which insurance company do they prefer to write with?
- How is replacement cost determined on your vehicle?
- Does their agency support local causes in Portsmouth?
- Does the quote include credit and driving reports?
Be persistent and save
As you shop your coverage around, make sure you don't reduce coverage to reduce premium. In many instances, someone dropped collision coverage to discover at claim time that their decision to reduce coverage ended up costing them more. Your objective should be to purchase a proper amount of coverage for the lowest price, not the least amount of coverage.
We just showed you some good ideas how you can lower your car insurance rates in Portsmouth. The key concept to understand is the more price quotes you have, the better chance you'll have of finding inexpensive Portsmouth auto insurance quotes. Consumers may even find the most savings is with the least-expected company. They can often insure niche markets at a lower cost than their larger competitors like Allstate, GEICO and Progressive.
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