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Need to Know: Auto Insurance

DATE
01.20.15

Car-Insurance

Remember the tv show (and I may be showing my Millenial age here) called “Pimp My Ride”.   Well, did you know that adding performance parts, tinted windows, or any major changes to your car can affect your insurance?  You may not have a refrigerator and a 50 inch tv in your car, however,  there are certain things you need to know about car insurance that the advertisements you see on tv don’t tell you.  Below are my top 5 tips on what you need to know about car insurance:

1.  Do NOT buy state minimum liability limits!  Right now, the NC state minimum liability limits are $30,000/$60,000/$25,000.  Think about it like this, even a very minor car accident can mean thousands and thousands of dollars.  Think about a major accident with injuries involved.  These limits just won’t cut it.  The minimum we recommend is $100,000/$300,000/$100,000.   The price won’t be that much difference!

2. Compre-what?!  Comprehensive or “Other than Collision” is physical damage coverage to your vehicle caused by things other than an actual collision or accident.  Examples are a tree limb falling on your car, theft, vandalism, chips in your windshield, etc.  We usually recommend a lower deductible, or out of pocket expense, such as $0 or $50.

3. Collision.  Collision coverage refers to the coverage that would kick in to repair your vehicle in the event of an accident.  It is physical damage to your car caused by a collision.   This is an area where we encourage you to carry higher deductibles, typically $500.  Collision coverage is more expensive and happens less frequently, so this is an area to save on by carrying a higher deductible.

4. Slow Down!  This kind of goes without saying but you will end up paying much lower insurance rates if you have a clean driving record.  I’m talking hundreds, even thousands of dollars in some instances.  So be careful, take your time, don’t speed, and always get a designated driver!

5. Combine and Save  One of the best ways to save money on your auto insurance is to combine it with another type of insurance like a home or renter’s policy.  You may be surprised at how much it will save you on BOTH policies!