The litigious nature of the current society and the continuous rise in cost of vehicles means that car insurance premiums continue skyrocketing. Unfortunately, insurance rates aren’t likely to drop any time soon. However, the good news is that there several low income car insurance Texas options that can be leveraged to minimize or reduce this burden.
Nobody wants to spend more on car insurance. However, it isn’t obvious that motor vehicle owners will get low rates. Despite the presence of dozen of insurance companies, both large and small, all are in the industry for business. Most have an eye-glazing range of policy options that make it difficult to find cheap full coverage auto insurance companies.
Regardless of their expensive nature, automobile insurance is a legal requirement, which makes it an expensive necessity for families with low income. It certainly makes a big impact on the finances of individuals who are already experiencing trouble making their ends meet.
7 Tips on How to Minimize Car Insurance Cost
Well, some states may help with car insurance payments for low-income earners. However, if you don’t qualify, you can opt for the following methods of cutting your car insurance costs.
1. Shop Around
Shopping around for various insurance options is the number one method of saving on car insurance. Some insurance companies advertise big on their commercials, aiming to convince automobile owners that they offer the cheapest rates in the market. However, there isn’t a single low-price leader. An insurance company that is cheap for one motorist can be an expensive option for another.
That said, the only way of ensuring that you are enjoying the lowest rates is shopping around. Carefully gather and make Texas auto insurance quotes comparison to find relatively low income car insurance Texas. By asking around, you will be collecting multiple quotes from different companies.
It is beneficial to periodically check back on competing for insurance firms if they provide better rates than your current insurer. Most insurance companies keep adjusting their rates and premiums with time-based on several factors. If you aren’t happy you’re your insurance company renewal quote, notify them of the best offer you are getting from their rival company.
This can prompt them to reduce their rates in a bid to match competition. Therefore, checking back is a good option as you can identify an eligible offer depending on your income.
2. Multiple Drivers Save Money
If you ask for a quote from auto insurance companies to ensure your single vehicle, you will likely get a higher quote per vehicle compared to inquiring about insuring multiple vehicles/drivers with the company. Insurance firms offer a bulk rate since they want business and willing to give a deal if you bring more business to them.
You should consult with your insurance agent to see if you can qualify. For sure, multiple drivers could be living in residence, related by blood or through marriage. Non-related people can also get a discount is they jointly own a vehicle. Using such a hack can help you land on a low income car insurance Texas.
If you have a teen among your drivers, expect to pay more for the company to insure them. If your teen’s grades are above B, you may get some discount on the total coverage. Insurance companies may offer discounts ranging from 6% to 20%. Ensure that you carry along with proof to the insurance agent that your kid is a good student to get the discounts.
3. Reduce Your Coverage
The other option of cutting on your car insurance rates is by decreasing the optional coverages or increasing the number of deductibles in your policy. A common option for motor vehicle owners is following the 10 percent rule. In this option, eliminate collision and comprehension coverage on a car if the total annual cost of coverage exceeds 10% of the total payout you will receive is your motor vehicle gets totaled.
For instance, if you have insured a car worth approximately $2000 with a $500 deductible, the maximum your insurance company will pay up is $1500. Bearing this in mind, you shouldn’t subscribe to any comprehensive and collision cover that exceeds $150 annually.
4. Pay Bills On Time
Several factors determine your insurance firm quote. Well, an individual credit score is among the essential determining factors. Most companies claim that the customer’s credit score hugely correlates with the chances of filing claims. A study by Nerdwallet concluded that a poor credit score increases the chances of having increased car insurance rates. The best way of improving your credit score is by paying bills on time and reducing debts.
5. Opt for Mass Transit
During the process of signing up for the insurance contract, most insurance companies will generally require you to approximate the number of miles you can drive your vehicle annually. If you commute your vehicle three miles daily, you will generally pay more premiums that one who drives one mile per day.
Therefore, to cut on your monthly or annual premiums, try incorporating mass transit to reduce the miles covered by your motor vehicle. That aside, most companies offer discounts for decreased mileage. Inquire from your insurance agent about their company’s mileage thresholds and make a point of meeting them.
6. Big Cars Cost More
Driving a big car is uncertainly fascinating, but ensuring such top-of-the-line motor vehicle can be very expensive compared to small commuter cars. Some insurance companies offer discounts for hybrid models and alternative fuel vehicles. This enables users to protect the environment whilst saving their insurance money. Consult on the exact rates that companies charge for premiums before making a purchase decision.
Similarly, you should always be on the lookout for insurance trap cars. If you want to change your car, confirm with your insurer if your new car of choice has a significant effect on the initially agreed premiums. Just to mention, sports models attract high premiums compared to small engine vehicles. Also, watch out for administration fees that come due to the change in vehicle models in between the policy.
7. Check for Car Insurance Discounts
A good number of car insurance companies offer extra discounts aimed at promoting safety and the responsibility of the person behind the wheel. Different insurance companies offer various discounts though some may be similar. Therefore, before signing a contract, you should inquire from your insurance agent on the discounts available.
Some of the common car insurance discounts include
Good Driver insurance discount
This is a common and most substantial discount given for being a safe driver. Most insurance companies offer a discount for drivers who have gone several years without causing an accident or getting a traffic ticket. To verify this, insurance firms may need to use telematics that tracks your driving habits, which are relayed to a smartphone app.
Defensive driving discount
This is given to drivers who have taken defensive driving lessons. The lessons should be taken in a recognized driving school and qualify a driver for a 10% to 15% discount on liability for the collision, personal injury, and medical payment. Defensive classes equip drivers on how to asses roads, weather conditions, and traffic to avoid or minimize accidents.
Safe Driver discounts
As the name suggests, these discounts are given to drivers who practice safe traffic laws such as low driving speeds, encouraging passengers to wear safety belts or less aggressive braking. Whereas some insurance firms combine safe driver and good driver insurance discounts, others separate them with the aim of encouraging safe driving on the roads.
Senior driver discount
This category is for drivers aged 55 years and above. Such drivers qualify for more premium reductions. Most companies offer a 10% discount for basic liability and physical damage. Some firms also reward drivers of this age if they have a Mature Driver Improvement certification. Doing this course provide similar training to the defensive driving course and brushes the senior’s knowledge about recent driving tips.
Several insurance firms give as much as 25 percent discounts for multi-car policies. For instance, if you have a Toyota Camry and a Nissan Versa, insuring both cars within the same policy can save as much as $200 annually. However, most insurance companies will require that related persons should own all the vehicles by either blood or marriage. Only a few insurance companies will agree to insure unrelated roommates on this bracket.
As mentioned, there are hundreds of insurance companies all offering competitive services. With such stiff competition, each company should work on keeping their customers, perhaps the brains behind loyalty discounts. Different companies provide varying packages as their loyalty discounts. However, the best form is where insurance firm rewards customers who have stayed with their company for a considerable time.
If you once served in the US military or federal government, some companies may honor such an immense contribution to the state by providing discounts. GEICO insurance company, for instance, offers up to 15% discounts to both active and retired military and federal personnel. Other firms opt for exclusive auto insurance packages for military and defense employees with extended benefits to family members.
Homeowner Car insurance discount
This is another common insurance discount aimed at encouraging motor vehicle owners to purchase additional coverage policies from the insurance company. In this case, insurers will provide homeownership discounts to a policyholder who takes homeowners insurance coverage with them. Discounts are applied to physical damage, liability, and personal injury protection.
Vehicle car insurance discounts
A special discount is given to customers whose vehicles come with certain specific attributes. Special features that warrant discounts include the presence of an anti theft device, anti lock brakes, and VIN stitching. Such add-ons provide an additional level of comfort to the insurance company since they will avoid damages prevented by these additional features.
3 Good Reasons As to Why You Shouldn’t Let Your Insurance Cover Lapse
Most people who eventually find trouble making ends meet often get tempted to cancel their plan or let their insurance coverage lapse temporarily. This is straightforward, a bad idea. Why?
- There are penalties according to Texas law for driving a vehicle without insurance. Insurance proof is mandatory for anyone to drive in every state legally.
- Driving without insurance can result in some fines. However, repeated offenses can dramatically escalate the severity of your punishments.
- If you get involved in a car accident driving an uninsured car, you will be liable for the damage to the other person’s vehicle and medical bills incurring from the accident.
Penalties for Driving without Insurance
Driving without a license and inability to prove that you have insurance are separate violations in Texas that can result in different penalties. However, failure to provide proof while you are insured has less severe punishment compared to driving an uninsured car. Penalties often vary depending on the infractions committed and damage caused as follows:
- Causing an accident with an uninsured car in Texas attracts fines of up to $350 with an annual surcharge of $250 for up to three years. This may also call for automatic suspension of the vehicle’s license and registration for two years. In severe cases, the vehicle can be impounded for three months.
- Prison sentence is also a possible consequence of ignoring the importance of having car insurance. Like in most states, Texas considers driving an uninsured vehicle a misdemeanor offense and potentially leads to a prison sentence.
- However, jail terms are not imposed for first-time offenders unless they cause serious accidents. Nonetheless, repeated offenses attract hefty fines and stiffer punishments, which possibly include a jail term.
The Bottom Line
It is overly possible to afford car insurance premiums despite surviving on a low income. All you need to do is work on a way of avoiding various factors that increase annual premium rates. The outline above is just a synopsis on how you can cut down your annual premiums for your car insurance in Texas.
Note that temporarily canceling your insurance or keeping your car parked during the difficult periods is not a good idea. Besides being against the law or saves you money in the short run, it raises a big red flag to insurers. There are high chances that insurers will quote high rates once you want to reactivate the policy. Always find ways of minimizing your coverage costs.