How To Buy a Car Insurance Policy Online
Get a fast and free car insurance rate comparison
Looking for the best auto insurance policy online? Shopping online is the best way to open a policy since it is quick, affordable, and easy to do. OnlineAutoInsurance.com lets visitors compare instant free car insurance quotes online from a variety of companies so you can save money on your premiums. Go with the “green” way of shopping and buy car insurance online!
Processing a car insurance policy the green way
A green auto insurance policy is one that can be processed and purchased online the “paperless” way, with an electronic signature. But we like to think of this as the low-pressure, hassle-free way that lets you compare all your options.
You could talk to an independent agent to get advice and compare car insurance quotes from several companies, but you will also have to pay for their service. Buying car insurance online allows you to compare all the information effortlessly without the added cost.
The first step in learning “how-to” is to shop around to see which company would offer the best price for you. Since everyone is different and has unique policy needs. Drivers may include men or women, young operators, students, teenage drivers who just got a license, those under 25, and even problems with their driving records such as DUIs or DWIs.
Make sure you have all your questions answered, so you have all the information you need before you make a choice. For example, many ask, “Should teens have their own policy?” The answer is only found by comparing the difference in premiums and determining your choice. After choosing the company with the best prices, you can buy a policy online. Once you print proof of insurance, you can be legal to drive without having to leave your house.
What is the policy period?
Your policy period defines the start and end date of your coverage—unless you choose to renew. You can specify the start date of your policy period when you sign up. If you don’t need coverage for another week or two, you don’t have to waste money. At the end of your policy, there is the possibility that your insurance company will opt for non-renewal. This is usually only if you’ve turned out to be a much higher risk than expected.
Your policy period start date will also determine the due date, so the total premium will be due before you are covered. Most car insurance companies offer six-month policy periods. That means if your car insurance premium is $500 for six months, you have to pay that amount upfront unless you’ve worked out a month-to-month payment agreement. Make sure you are aware of the company’s cancellation policies before you sign up.
Most car insurance companies will let you split up the cost of monthly payments, but it usually costs extra. It works the same as a loan, and you will be paying extra fees and interests, so you don’t have to fork over a lump sum. Usually, you can save money by paying it all upfront, and you’ll have plenty of time between payments to prepare.
Your policy period will often be six months, although some companies offer annual periods as well as three month or monthly policy periods. Knowing the policy period is vital for price comparison. Otherwise, a six month policy period that’s $600 might seem like a better deal than an annual policy that’s $1,000.
What does an auto insurance policy look like?
A sample policy would indicate the vehicle and drivers included and would also specify the coverage and maximum payout limits. Each declaration page looks different since there are many types of coverage and options such as:
Liability: Also known as third-party insurance, this combines your bodily injury protection and property damage liability policies. Bodily injury liability pays for medical costs associated with injuries in an accident you cause. Property damage covers damages to the other driver’s vehicle and any structures damaged during the accident. Almost without exception, you will be required to carry these policies to be legal to drive. Different states set the minimums differently, but car insurers won’t offer you a liability policy below the minimums set by law.
Full coverage (comprehensive and collision): Full coverage is a bit of a misnomer here, but these two policies are designed to help pay for damages to your vehicle. Comprehensive is meant to help you pay for the costs of repair from falling limbs, hail damage, or vandalism. It also can help replace your vehicle in the event it is stolen. Collision insurance will help you cover the cost of repairing your vehicle in an accident you are at fault for. If you’re still paying off your car, your lienholder will require you to keep full coverage until the payoff date.
There are plenty of other types of insurance coverage that might appear on your policy. Learn about all of them and decide what you need before you make any decisions.
What will affect your premiums?
Once your policy begins, your premiums are not set in stone. You’ll usually see a hike in premiums if you have any traffic violations or need to make an insurance claim, even mid-policy. But if you buy a house or get married, most companies will give you a discount. You can bundle your homeowner’s insurance for an additional discount, depending on the insurance company you choose.
As other personal factors change, your insurance premiums will also change. If your credit score improves, you can usually get a better price on your car insurance. Younger drivers will also see a dip in their rates when they turn 25, so long as they’ve kept their driving record clean. If you move to a different neighborhood, or from the city to the suburbs, this can affect your premiums a lot more than you’d expect.
Making changes or endorsements to current policies, such as adding another vehicle, may also have an unexpected impact on the premium. Some cars may not be “car insurance friendly” and will cause a significant up-rate. A vehicle may not be eligible for your policy because the registrations are different or in another name. Most carriers’ standard underwriting requirements need the policyholder’s name to match the car’s registration.
The Bottom Line
Car insurers offer very different rates to different types of people, and none of them have uniform policy prices. So even if you know someone who gets a great deal from one company, it doesn’t mean you’ll be eligible for that same deal. You simply have to shop around to get the best price on a policy that helps you feel secure when you’re driving.
So start shopping around today! Even if you already have a policy, you can save a big chunk of change by switching carriers.