I’ve mentioned this before, I think buying auto insurance online is an acceptable way to purchase coverage. I guess I’d look foolish I disagreed since we offer an online auto insurance quote and buy here on our site. 🙂
Of course I like the option to purchase auto insurance online.
The internet has made shopping for auto insurance … heck it’s just made shopping more convenient. So, if you’re a real do-it-yourself type, then why not at least give online auto insurance a try.
As with anything you buy online, however, you need to avoid the temptation to click the buy button too soon. This isn’t a race to be done. You need to think through what you’re purchasing before you buy.
Auto insurance, or any insurance or financial service, is not like buying other consumer goods online, you need to understand the contact and what is covered before you agree to buy. Many of won’t buy a pair of jeans online for fear they won’t fit right, so why would you purchase something as important as your insurance coverage without all the information first?
Mama always told me to look before I leap
So, we’re agreed, we won’t get click-happy when we’re considering buying auto insurance online. But there are other things we need to consider too. First, it’s a good idea to do some research the coverage that makes the most sense for you and your situation.
A good place to start is with your current auto insurance declarations page, this will tell you the current limits of liability, the coverages you presently purchase, and the deductibles as well as the premium. This should provide you with a baseline for comparison which will help you keep the quotes accurate as you compare auto insurance rates.
Don’t break-up with your old company too soon
This may seem obvious, but don’t let your coverage lapse before you’ve purchase new auto insurance. I’ll give you that piece of advice for free. 🙂
Too frequently consumers allow their present auto insurance to lapse while they are shopping for a replacement policy. This can create a gap in insurance protection which can prove costly if you have an accident.
Outside of California, a lapse in coverage can also cause your next policy to increase your premiums too.
So just don’t allow there to be any lapses in coverage, it’s just good policy.
Another good piece of advice, don’t cancel your current auto insurance policy until you have confirmation that the new policy has been issued. It’s pretty easy to cancel a policy, so don’t be too hasty, make sure the new coverage is in place before you cancel.
Don’t be bashful, push all the buttons try all the options
Shop ahead of your current policy expiration, this will give you some time to experiment with coverage combinations and see understand if optional coverages are right for you. Shopping online is nice because you can set you own pace, and you don’t have to feel pressure to buy … but you can still try all the options.
So take full advantage of the quote tools and explore all the different coverages options, limits, and combinations and note how the change the premiums. You may be surprised how much you can really get if you just “tinker” a little bit.
Here is another free tip, investigate all the questions, and complete all that are relevant to you, many may lead to discounts. For instance, with our Mercury Insurance Company online quote one question asks about group membership, if you belong to one of these groups you qualify for an Affinity Group Discount … and those can be pretty significant savings.
Make sure to compare apples-to-apples
When you’re shopping online you are likely going to see many different premiums, but don’t be fooled into thinking you’re saving money just because the premiums are lower. Make sure you are inputting the same coverages you currently have, or that you selected from another insurance companies online quote tool.
Pick-up the phone and call if you have a question
When you’re selecting a new auto insurance provider there is actually a lot to consider. Many times the most important things are not the premium you pay, but in the coverage that’s being offered.
Purchasing insurance is actually an important decision. If you’re confused are uncertain, just pick-up the phone and call the insurance company or an insurance agent. You can get most questions answered by a licensed professional who has spent the time to read and understand the policy language.
Shopping online continues to rise in popularity, and that’s the true for auto insurance too. However, as surprising as it may seem coming from an insurance agency blog, it’s still easier to get a quote from an independent insurance agent.
Independent insurance agents can get you several quotes with a single input, making the shopping extremely easy. And an insurance agent can answer your questions and provide you the understanding you need to make the right decision.
If you like to do-it-yourself, by all means, get an online auto insurance quote, but if you want to save time outsource the busy work of quotes to an insurance agent … you’ll get so much more out of the experience.
Image Source: William Iven