a multibillion-dollar business may feel they are at a bit of a disadvantage,
but the insurance business is highly competitive and there are plenty of ways
for individual consumers to exercise some control over their costs. Most of the
strategies for keeping your costs down in either home insurance or auto
insurance are pretty much common sense but they do require that the insurance
purchaser pays attention.
Whether it is
your Washington home insurance or auto insurance, talking in detail to your
agent is a good idea. You need to ask about the discounts available to you and
the sorts of discounts the different carriers may offer. Seniors, for example,
may qualify for a discount on their auto insurance if they have taken a
defensive driving course; homeowners who have installed safety or security
devices may qualify for discounts. A conversation with your agent may help
identify things you had not thought of.
is good advice, but you may not want to take that advice too often. Many
insurers offer discounts for longevity – that is the longer you keep your
policy the lower the premium goes. On balance, you may want to shop once and
stay long if you have a policy and coverage that suits you.
Deductibles areanother important area to consider for controlling your insurance costs. Both
home insurance and auto insurance have deductibles that may affect your rates.
If you have a relatively high tolerance for risk, or sufficient cash reserves,
you can increase your deductible and expect to see your insurance premiums
If you are in the
market for new car, consider your insurance needs while you’re making your purchase. You could find out that the hours you spent negotiating with the car
salesman to get a slightly reduced payment is eaten up by the higher cost of
insuring the vehicle. Some cars have notoriously higher insurance costs than
others either because of the risk of theft or because their driving
characteristics more frequently put them in the hands of risk takers. Right
now, some of the more are the Cadillac Escalade, the Subaru WR X and the
Hyundai Tiburon; the least expensive cars to insure include the Ford Taurus,
several cars in the Buick family and the Honda Odyssey. A quick call to your
agent while you are a car shopping can save you some money.
Bundling your insurance is another great way to save. Companies that offer both home
insurance and auto insurance often offer substantial discounts when you take
both together. Instead of asking your agent to quote on a single insurance
need, it can pay off big time to let them know all of your insurance needs. If
you have a lot of toys – a home, a car, a boat, a motorcycle and an RV – you
might be surprised at how much you can save if you place all of those under one