If you ever had a discussion with anyone in Ontario about car insurance, you will know that the rates are very high. Add in a ticket or an accident, and the rates could become completely unaffordable to the average income earner. So how can you get the lowest car insurance rate? Let’s find out!
The first thing we need to do is find out what exactly causes a high car insurance rate and if there is anything we can do about it. Secondly, we will discuss how to find insurance quotes. Finally, we will talk about maintaining a low car insurance rate as well as securing your rate from potential accidents and tickets. Lets start off with some factors that affect your car insurance rate.
- Your Address. This is one of the main factors insurance companies use when determining your car insurance rate. If you live in Ontario, you will know that cities such as Brampton and Mississauga have much higher car insurance premiums when compared to cities like Oakville or Milton. This is unfortunately very difficult to change, but if you are looking at moving to a new address, it definitely helps knowing which cities offer the best auto insurance prices. Generally, the further away you are from the Greater Toronto Areas, the lower your auto insurance rate will be.
- Your Driving Record. When an insurance broker wants to review your driving record, they are referring to your auto insurance history as well as your driving abstract. These two documents will show how many tickets you have, how many accidents and your overall car insurance history. Any insurance lapses or cancellations will also be shown on these documents. Maintaining a clean driving record is one of the most important ways in keeping a low car insurance rate. Ensure you don’t get into any at-fault accidents, don’t get any tickets and ensure you have no insurance cancellations.
- Your Vehicle. This is one of the factors that are a little easier to control. Each vehicle will have a different insurance rate. It is always a good idea to speak to an insurance broker to get several different insurance quotes when selecting what car you would like to buy. Hondas and Toyotas generally have higher insurance rates compared to many German brands.
- Policy Discounts and Endorsements. It is very important to ensure you are receiving all eligible discounts in order to get the lowest car insurance rate. Discounts include the bundle discount, winter tire discount, loyalty discount and many more. Speak to your insurance broker to learn which ones you qualify for. If you are on a very tight budget, you can review the current endorsements and coverages your insurance policy has and see if there are any that can be removed. Increasing your deductibles are another great way to reduce your car insurance rate.
Once you have a firm understanding of the factors that affect your car insurance rate, you need to figure out which insurance company offers the best rates for you. There are several ways to get insurance quotes including online calculators, insurance agencies and insurance brokers.
- Online Insurance Calculators. This is a great place to start as its simple and quick to get a quote. Finding insurance calculators online is very simple and can start with a google search. Simply fill in all the required questions and in the end you will be shown a price. Please note that these are great to start with, however you should always speak to a licensed insurance professional prior to binding coverage.
- Insurance Agent. Another option to get a general idea of what your car insurance rate will be is to call a local insurance agency. You will likely speak to an insurance agent and he/she will help you get a quote. Usually agencies only offer a quote from one insurance company.
- Insurance Broker. Insurance brokers are licensed insurance professionals who are contracted with many insurance companies. They work for the client and not for a specific insurance company. The benefit of a broker is that they will place you with the best insurance company for you as they are not working for a single company. You also will maintain contact with one representative who can handle all your insurance policies (auto, home, commercial or life) regardless of what insurance carrier you are placed with.
Once you discover the right insurance company for you and you have a very good understanding of what factors are used to create your car insurance rate, you need to know how to keep your rate low. This is done by rechecking the market every few years and securing yourself from future accidents or tickets.
- Insurance companies do look at how long you have been with your current carrier for. Many companies offer a loyalty discount to new clients who have been with their prior insurance company for many years. If your insurance company has not had any significant rate increases, it may help you to stay with that company for an additional year or so. Once you decide to shop around again, you will be able to show that you stayed several years with your last insurance company and likely will again. Companies prefer those clients. Please note, if you have noticed a significant increase in your auto insurance rate, shop around and see if there are better options at that time.
- Secure yourself from possible accidents or tickets. Many insurance companies offer an accident forgiveness endorsement which prevents increases to your auto insurance rates as a result of your at fault accident. You need to qualify for this coverage, but if you do, its a very important one. You can also purchase a minor ticket forgiveness coverage as well from certain insurance companies which will forgive your first minor ticket such as speeding.
Now that you understand how to get low auto insurance rates and how to continue having cheap rates, you can begin your rate shopping journey! If you have any questions or would like to speak to a licensed insurance broker, feel free to contact me at 416 803 2113 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.