Auto insurance is required to legally operate a motor vehicle in just about every single state. Regardless, if you get caught driving without insurance, or if you get involved in an accident, you can be fined and sued, respectively.
Insurance policies come in a variety of forms, and the fine print included in some of these policies can be difficult for the average person to comprehend.
Before you shop around and compare quotes for car insurance, it’s wise to familiarize yourself with a few particulars that you don’t want to be left without. And because anything can happen while on the road, you’ll want to ensure that you’re covered under a wide range of circumstances.
The good news is that purchasing insurance is often a cinch, and with the following information, you’ll be able to make a sound decision.
Do you take a lot of cross-country trips? Or do you make long commutes to and from work? If the answer is yes to either question, you’ll want to be sure to include some form of roadside assistance on your insurance policy.
Accidents happen both near and far from home. In addition, a breakdown can occur anywhere, and the last thing you’ll want to experience (especially when far from home) is to break down and have no assistance.
Most insurance companies offer a towing package of some sort that’s included in your policy, but you need to pay attention to the fine print. Some towing packages only cover the cost of towing for up to 5 miles, where others might have a 50 to 100-mile policy which might cost more.
Regardless, you’ll need to consider what type of roadside assistance is right for you to ensure that you’re not stranded along the roadside and having to fork over hundreds of dollars for towing service.
Unless you plan on never allowing another human being to get behind the wheel of your car, you need not worry about adding an occasional driver to your policy. But, keep in mind that some situations may arise where someone else might need to drive your car.
For those who have teens who’ve reached driving age, for couples, or anyone who intends to share a vehicle, adding an occasional driver to your insurance policy is something that you need to look into, just to make sure you’re completely covered in the event of an accident.
It’s also good to note that all insurance companies differ when it comes to who is covered in the car while driving. Some policies state specifically that anyone who drives the vehicle will be covered, while others will only specify a single driver unless others are added.
Believe it or not, many people don’t even know what their deductible is, or what it means. So just for a refresher, your deductible is the amount you typically have to pay when you file a claim.
For example, if you have to put your car in the shop and the cost for parts and labor is around $7,000, and your deductible is $1,000, then your insurance company will cover everything beyond 1,000 dollars. But, you’ll have to pay your deductible first in order to get your insurance company to pay the remainder, and to get your car out of the shop.
A lower deductible usually means a higher-priced insurance policy. This means that your monthly insurance payment will be much higher if you have a low deductible, especially if the deductible is priced under $1,000.
Most often, a deductible will be between $500 and $1,000 for a modest monthly payment. But keep in mind that you could reduce repair costs by at least 40 percent with some insurance companies by setting a higher deductible.
No matter, you should heavily weigh the amount of your deductible as something feasible for you (or not) in the event of an accident. In other words, make sure you can afford your deductible.
Insurance is often an afterthought when you purchase a vehicle, and because of this, many drivers don’t pay too much attention to the fine print. Ensure that you know exactly what your coverage is before purchasing any insurance policy.