You should switch your car insurance to a different company when you can find a cheaper rate for the same amount of coverage without sacrificing in terms of things like customer service. It’s actually best to compare quotes and consider switching insurance companies every 6-12 months in order to minimize costs. It’s also worth checking prices anytime you have a change in circumstance that will affect your rate, such as insuring a new car or adding a new driver.
When to Consider Switching Car Insurance Companies
When You Add a New Driver
Adding a teenager to your insurance policy costs 140% to 160% extra, on average. On the other hand, adding an experienced driver could increase or decrease your premium, depending on the exact scenario. As a result, it’s well worth shopping around before simply accepting a new rate from your current insurer.
When You Reach a Threshold for Age or Experience
Car insurance rates vary dramatically by age, with particularly sharp drops when a driver turns 19 and 21 years old. Similarly, when a driver has been on the road for at least five years, they will usually be able to get a lower rate.
When You Add or Replace a Car
The cheapest insurer for an older car might not be the cheapest for a brand new car or a specialty vehicle, since each insurer calculates rates differently. If you’re adding a vehicle, you should also factor in any multi-car discounts that are available from different companies.
When Your Driving Record Changes
If you were recently cited for a moving violation, each insurer will adjust your rates by a different amount, so switching could make sense. Similarly, some insurance companies will look back at only three years of your driving history, while others will evaluate a longer period. As a result, it’s a good time to shop around for a better price when violations or claims reach the three-year milestone. Getting a copy of your driving record and your CLUE Report can help you time things right.
When Your Credit Score Improves
Your credit score can be a major factor in car-insurance pricing. If it has improved, let your current insurer know and then see if other companies can beat your insurance company’s price.
When Your Insurance Needs Change
Financing a new car or paying off a loan may change the coverage types you need to carry. You may also want to reevaluate your policy limits and deductible.
When Your Marital Status Changes
Married drivers usually pay less for car insurance than single drivers, so make sure to notify your insurance provider about your nuptials. You should also take the opportunity to see if another insurer will offer a lower premium.
When You Become a Homeowner
Your status as a homeowner rather than a renter can affect your premiums. Insurers often charge lower premiums to homeowners, and you can also get a multi-policy discount if you insure your home and car with the same company.
When Your Education Level or Employment Changes
Earning a college degree will lower your rates with some insurers more than others. Some companies also offer a low-mileage discount, which could benefit you if you get a new job with a shorter commute.
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