With the many car insurance comparison sites out there, it may seem that finding the best policy for your needs is a breeze. While it definitely isn’t rocket science, there are a few perks you should keep in mind, and this article will outline some of them. Price is the first thing that most unadvised buyers consider when they are shopping around for car insurance online. Next to the quote you get – which, of course, should be as budget-friendly as possible – here are some more tips you should factor in when making a decision.
Do a bit of research on the provider you are considering. Companies like GEICO, for instance, have a proven track of stability and hassle-free claims. Monitor third party rating and review services like A.M. Best, Forrester’s, Consumer Reports or J.D. Power. If you are afraid that these ratings may be biased, check independent forums where regular people discuss their experiences with various carriers. Do pay close attention to comments about claims service.
The customer support
Make sure you inquire about the availability of their customer support department. Is it on 24/7 or only on certain days and between certain hours? There is nothing worse than getting a towing insurance and have nobody to talk to if you have an accident at 2AM. When you have a claim, you will want the whole process to be as smooth and hassle-free as possible, so make sure they have claims representatives in your area rather than conducting most claims over the phone.
The Payment Options
A lot of insurance companies offer a discount when you pay the policy in full at the beginning of the year. Others, on the other hand, don’t accept monthly payments. Depending on your current budget, you will want to go with either one or the other, so make sure you read and understand what your payment options are. You will also want to know what forms of payment they accept – such as ACH, electronic check or credit/debit cards. The more options they have, the better – you never know when you may need an alternative form.
When comparing the quotes you got from various online sites, make sure you do it head-to-head. Check that each policy you are considering will get you the exact same amount of coverage. Pay particular attention to rental and towing insurances, as prices and privileges may vary.
If you qualify for a discount – club or organization membership, good student, veteran and so on – make sure each company you are considering offers you the exact same rebate. A few dollars here and there can make a huge difference over the life span of a policy.
All in all, you shouldn’t jump on to the first cheap offer you lay your eyes on. A bargain isn’t a bargain if you end up with the wrong company. Do your homework, read and understand the above tips and only then start shopping around.