People are shy to negotiate for better prices. The worst thing that can happen is that they can say no. But you can save as much as 50% if you know how to negotiate lower automobile insurance rates. Almost every agent you talk to would check for better rates and further discounts before they can tell you that this is their best quote. A few companies may have a no negotiation policy but checking to see if they can offer lower rates is negotiation.
The golden rule of negotiating car insurance is to be ready and prepared to walk out on your current insurer. You need to know your alternatives before you can play this card. You are in a strong negotiating position if you know how much is auto insurance for a driver like you. Getting a few quotes online will quickly reveal how much the other insurers are quoting for the same coverage.
Negotiating Auto Insurance
Once you get several quotes you can start to negotiate terms and prices. No matter how sophisticated the Internet quotes are they may not take everything into account. The fact is there is usually some room for negotiation. And the best way of doing it is to call the companies that have already given you the best quotes for further discounts and start asking the following questions.
- Do You Have Early Renewal or Loyalty Discounts?
Some companies offer discounted car insurance if you renew your policy in advance of your renewal date. Also, it is fair to ask loyalty discount if you have been with a company for some time. They may not include these discounts automatically when they calculate your renewal quote. If the customer doesn’t complain about the price they can get away with charging a bit more. And they leave themselves a little room to negotiate if they appear to be losing a policyholder to another carrier.
- Can You Offer Any More Discount for Switching to You?
Some companies offer around 5% additional discounts for customers who are prepared to switch to them. If you are talking to another carrier you can ask if there is such discount on offer to sweeten the deal.
- Do You Give Discount if I Pay the Full Premium Upfront?
Numbers of insurers use this sales technique of putting the customer on the spot. They offer little discount if you are prepared to take the policy and pay the full premium there and then. Some carriers offer savings for full payment anyway because this eliminates the risk of cancellation due to customer defaulting on installments.
- Do You Have Low Mileage Discount?
You may be able to get lower rates if you drive less than 12,000 miles a year. If you don’t ask for this discount they will assume that you drive about average and calculate your premium accordingly. If you are working from home or retired you may be driving much less than someone who commutes 5 days a week.
- Can I Save More if I Bundle Auto and Home Insurance?
Bundling your home or renters insurance with auto can save you further and it is always worth checking. Generally, insurers and other businesses reward customers who increase the volume of business.
- Do You Offer Discounts for My Profession?
You may not know but you may have a profession that qualifies for automobile insurance discount, like teachers and engineers. You should check which professions they offer discounts to. You may be able to save money if you are a member to some associations like AARP or teachers’ union.
- How Much Do I Save if I Increase the Deductible?
Online quotes come with standard deductibles for collision and comprehensive coverage. However, companies can offer lower premiums if you can increase deductibles. You may need to involve in a little give and take like this to negotiate auto insurance.
- How Much Is to Add Roadside Recovery to a Policy?
You may be able to add roadside recovery at next to nothing prices if you don’t have it already. Getting extras for free is a kind of negotiation as well. It may actually be easier to add coverage at much discounted prices or for free rather than reduced premium. For example, if you have been with a company for 4 – 5 years you can ask for accident forgiveness coverage for free. And if you are already with a recovery service, you should check if independent roadside recovery membership like AAA will qualify you for further discounts with your insurer.
- Is There Any Discounts for Defensive Driving Courses?
If you have already completed a defensive driving course you can probably get better rates. Otherwise, check if there is any way of qualifying for discounts by taking any course.
- Is There Any Discount I Don’t Know?
Companies offer discounts for various reasons. For example, you may get a good discount for parking your car off the road in a private parking space. An experienced agent would be able to check these out quickly if you ask nicely. Calling insurers gives you a chance to take advantage of an agent’s knowledge.
Negotiating vehicle insurance may take a few minutes of your time but finally finding the right insurer with the most discounts can save over $800. You are likely to save more if you are currently paying so high premium because you are likely to be with an expensive insurer and therefore have a high chance of finding cheaper insurers.
As you see above, it is not difficult to figure out how to obtain better deals. It is mainly about keeping up with the new discounts and making sure that you benefit from your improved driving history and financial position. You should make a habit of going through this process at least once a year so that your rates are up to date.
However, you should know that insurance isn’t a commodity and policies vary, just like prices. So, you should think twice before switching from an insurer you are happy with if the premium difference is negligible.