Having a car in this day and age is a necessity. So much of what we do every day is dependent on a vehicle. It does not matter if this is your first car you’ve ever bought or your third, driving it lawfully depends on the best of automobile insurance. But take heed. If you haven’t paid close attention to the insurance policy you purchase, you could find yourself inadequately covered if you get in an accident. In addition, you don’t want to pay more than you have to. However, it is unfortunate that many people do overpay simply because they don’t want to spend time shopping for the right car insurance that fits them. No matter how it looks in commercials, everything you see being sold on TV is not always the best.

First, try doing some comparison shopping. Check all the details of each, looking at all they offer. This could save you hundreds of dollars a year and get you the auto insurance that will fit your needs and your pocketbook. When shoppers used a rate-comparison service, they got basic coverage quotes that ranged from $1,006 to $1,807 — a difference of $801 a year. If you’re paying thousands to your current insurance company because you have a couple tickets or an outdated unfavorable credit rating, shopping your policy comparison shopping might be well worth the effort.

Tip #1

Know how much coverage to getKnow how much coverage to get. Get started on your search by figuring out how much coverage you need. Requirements vary from state to state, so take a moment to find out what coverage is required in Florida. You will find a list of the various types of insurance in an Edmunds’s article entitled “How Much Car Insurance Do You Need?” If you’re a first-time driver and need a comprehensive overview of car insurance before you go on, review this guide from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. Now you’re ready to make a list of the different types of coverage you are considering. Once you know what’s required, you can decide what you need. Your decision will depend on the level of risks you are willing to take. If you have a lot of assets, you should get enough liability coverage to protect them.

Tip# 2

Always review your insurance. Take a look at your current policy and read it well. If there is something there that you do not understand contact your auto insurance company to get clarification. Go through another moment of comparison shopping and see can you find a better deal than what you are currently paying.

Tip # 3

Checking your driving record and tally up your speeding tickets. How many have you had recently? How long have they been on your record? If you don’t know how long they have been there, contact your state’s department of motor vehicles for more information. If a ticket or points you earned are about to disappear, that will improve your driving record. After they disappear, then get your quotes. Nothing can increase the price of insurance like a bad driving record.

Tip #4

Start competitive shopping and set aside enough time to do itStart competitive shopping and set aside enough time to do it. Give yourself at least four to six hours to do this task. Yes, it does take that long to do the task and get the best outcome. Each quote form takes about 15 minutes to complete. It might be well worth your time — for example, if the entire shopping process takes you two hours and you save $800, you’re effectively earning $400 an hour. Make sure you have all your information available when you start your searches like your current insurance policy, your driver’s license number and your vehicle registration. Go to an online comparison site to get multiple quotes for insurance rates. Be aware that not all insurance companies participate in these one-stop shopping sites. If you get a recommendation from friends and family or other research points to a company that you think might be a winner, you can go directly to its website or call its toll-free number to get a quote.

Tip#5

Write down the quotes from the companies that you are searching. Taking notes now will help you decide later so you can easily make price and coverage comparisons. Put the following information on your lists:

auto insurance you can trustGet the annual and monthly rates for the different types of coverage. Make sure to keep the coverage limits the same so you can make all the same comparisons for cost and coverage.

Take note of the insurance company’s 800 telephone number so you can get answers to questions you couldn’t find online.

Take precise notes on the insurance company’s payment policy. When is the payment due? What kinds of payment plans are available? What happens if you’re late making a payment?

Sure, comparison shopping and searching for the best quotes on auto insurance may not be the most desired way to spend your evening or weekend. But in the end, you will be glad you did. You will have money in your pocketbook, affordable payments and auto insurance you can trust.