Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Benjamin Carr was a licensed insurance agent in Georgia and has two years’ experience in life, health, property and casualty coverage. He has worked with State Farm and other risk management firms. He is also a strategic writer and editor with a background in branding, marketing, and quality assurance. He has been in military newsrooms — literally on the frontline of journalism.

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Reviewed by Benji Carr
Former Licensed Life Insurance Agent Benji Carr

UPDATED: Oct 5, 2017

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Pretty sure you bought an expensive auto insurance policy? It’s quite common and there are many drivers thinking the same thing. Consumers have so many car insurance companies to pick from, and even though it’s nice to have a selection, more options can take longer to find the best rates.

You should make it a habit to shop coverage around as often as possible because auto insurance rates tend to go up over time. Despite the fact that you may have had the best premium rates on 190-Class insurance a year ago you can probably find a better price now. There is a lot of bad information regarding auto insurance online but in just a couple of minutes you can learn a lot of great tips on how to slash your auto insurance rates.

The purpose of this article is to instruct you on how car insurance quotes work and some money-saving tips. If you currently have car insurance, you will most likely be able to save some money using these tips. Drivers just need to know how to get comparison rates over the internet.

Learn how to lower your insurance costs

Lots of things are part of the equation when you get your auto insurance bill. Most are fairly basic such as your driving record, although some other factors are not quite as obvious such as whether you are married or how safe your car is.

  • Uninterrupted coverage saves money – Letting your insurance expire is a guaranteed way to increase your rates. And not only will your rates increase, being ticketed for driving with no insurance could result in a revoked license or a big fine. Then you may be required to prove you have insurance by filing a SR-22 with your state motor vehicle department to get your license reinstated.
  • Prevent your car from being stolen – Purchasing a vehicle with a theft deterrent system can save you a little every year. Systems that thwart theives like OnStar, LoJack tracking, and tamper alarms can thwart your car from being stolen.
  • Rural vs Urban Areas – Choosing to live in less populated areas is a positive aspect when it comes to car insurance. Fewer drivers means less chance of accidents and a lower car theft rate. City drivers have much more traffic and a longer drive to work. The longer drive time statistically corresponds to a higher accident and claim rate.
  • Rates can be impacted by your employer – Do you work in a high-stress field? Careers such as doctors, executives and miners usually pay higher rates than average attributed to stressful work requirements and long work hours. Conversely, occupations like professors, athletes and the unemployed pay the least on 190-Class insurance.
  • Being married can lower rates – Having a significant other may save some money when shopping for car insurance. It generally demonstrates drivers are more mature and insurance companies reward insureds because drivers who are married are more cautious.
  • Bad driving leads to higher premiums – Only having one driving citation can boost insurance rates forty percent or more. Attentive drivers get better rates as compared to those with violations. Drivers who have license-revoking violations like DUI or reckless driving may face state-mandated requirements to prove financial responsibility with their state DMV in order to prevent a license revocation.

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Are you receiving every discount?

Companies that sell car insurance don’t necessarily list all their discounts very well, so the below list has some of the best known and the more hidden credits available to you.

  • Include Life Insurance and Save – Some insurance companies give a discounted price on car insurance if you buy life insurance from them.
  • Active Military Service – Having a family member in the military could mean lower premium rates.
  • Multi-policy Discount – If you insure your home and vehicles with the same company you may save nearly 15% which can help you find low cost car insurance.
  • Driving Data Discount – Drivers that enable driving data submission to scrutinize driving patterns by using a small device installed in their vehicle such as Progressive’s Snapshot might get better premium rates if they have good driving habits.
  • Good Grades Discount – A discount for being a good student can save 20 to 25%. The discount lasts until age 25.
  • Braking Control Discount – Vehicles that have anti-lock braking systems have fewer accidents and therefore earn up to a 10% discount.

A quick disclaimer, some of the credits will not apply to the overall cost of the policy. Most only cut the cost of specific coverages such as physical damage coverage or medical payments. So even though it sounds like you could get a free auto insurance policy, it’s just not the way it works.

A few of the larger companies and some of their more popular discounts are shown below.

  • GEICO offers premium reductions for anti-theft, seat belt use, defensive driver, anti-lock brakes, five-year accident-free, federal employee, and military active duty.
  • SAFECO offers discounts including drive less, homeowner, anti-theft, accident prevention training, teen safety rewards, safe driver, and teen safe driver.
  • State Farm discounts include anti-theft, good driver, driver’s education, good student, student away at school, and multiple autos.
  • MetLife has discounts for defensive driver, good student, accident-free, good driver, and claim-free.
  • 21st Century may offer discounts for anti-lock brakes, theft prevention, 55 and older, automatic seat belts, student driver, and good student.
  • Progressive policyholders can earn discounts including good student, online quote discount, homeowner, multi-vehicle, and multi-policy.

If you want cheap car insurance quotes, ask all companies you are considering the best way to save money. Some discounts may not apply to policies in your area. If you would like to choose from a list of insurers that offer the discounts shown above, click here to view.

When in doubt talk to an agent

When choosing proper insurance coverage, there really is not a cookie cutter policy. Everyone’s situation is unique so this has to be addressed. Here are some questions about coverages that can help discover if your situation might need professional guidance.

  • Is business property covered if stolen from my car?
  • Can my teen drive my company car?
  • Does having multiple vehicles earn me a discount?
  • Can I drive in Mexico and have coverage?
  • Is my custom paint covered by insurance?
  • What should my uninsured motorist coverage limits be in my state?
  • How do I buy GAP insurance?
  • Which is better, split liability limits or combined limits?
  • When does my teenage driver need to be added to my policy?

If it’s difficult to answer those questions but you think they might apply to your situation, you may need to chat with an insurance agent. To find lower rates from a local agent, fill out this quick form or go to this page to view a list of companies. It only takes a few minutes and can help protect your family.

Auto insurance 101

Learning about specific coverages of your auto insurance policy can be of help when determining the best coverages and proper limits and deductibles. The coverage terms in a policy can be difficult to understand and reading a policy is terribly boring. Below you’ll find the usual coverages found on most auto insurance policies.

Auto liability insurance – This coverage provides protection from injuries or damage you cause to people or other property by causing an accident. It protects you against claims from other people. Liability doesn’t cover damage sustained by your vehicle in an accident.

Split limit liability has three limits of coverage: bodily injury for each person, bodily injury for the entire accident, and a limit for property damage. You might see policy limits of 100/300/100 that means you have $100,000 in coverage for each person’s injuries, a total of $300,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and a limit of $100,000 paid for damaged property. Occasionally you may see one limit called combined single limit (CSL) that pays claims from the same limit and claims can be made without the split limit restrictions.

Liability can pay for things such as funeral expenses, attorney fees, court costs and pain and suffering. How much coverage you buy is a decision to put some thought into, but it’s cheap coverage so purchase as large an amount as possible.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) – This provides protection from other drivers when they either have no liability insurance or not enough. Covered losses include medical payments for you and your occupants and also any damage incurred to your 1993 Mercedes-Benz 190-Class.

Since many drivers have only the minimum liability required by law, their limits can quickly be used up. For this reason, having high UM/UIM coverages is a good idea. Usually the UM/UIM limits do not exceed the liability coverage limits.

Collision coverage – Collision coverage covers damage to your 190-Class from colliding with an object or car. You will need to pay your deductible and the rest of the damage will be paid by collision coverage.

Collision insurance covers claims such as sustaining damage from a pot hole, driving through your garage door, colliding with a tree, sideswiping another vehicle and hitting a parking meter. Paying for collision coverage can be pricey, so consider removing coverage from older vehicles. You can also raise the deductible to get cheaper collision coverage.

Comprehensive insurance – Comprehensive insurance coverage pays for damage that is not covered by collision coverage. You first have to pay a deductible then the remaining damage will be covered by your comprehensive coverage.

Comprehensive insurance covers claims such as a broken windshield, damage from getting keyed and falling objects. The maximum payout a auto insurance company will pay at claim time is the market value of your vehicle, so if the vehicle is not worth much it’s not worth carrying full coverage.

Med pay and Personal Injury Protection (PIP) – Medical payments and Personal Injury Protection insurance pay for short-term medical expenses such as hospital visits, chiropractic care and surgery. The coverages can be used in conjunction with a health insurance policy or if you are not covered by health insurance. It covers you and your occupants and also covers being hit by a car walking across the street. PIP is not available in all states but can be used in place of medical payments coverage

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Summing up your car insurance search

Cheaper 1993 Mercedes-Benz 190-Class insurance can be bought on the web in addition to local insurance agencies, and you need to comparison shop both to have the best selection. Some insurance companies do not offer online price quotes and many times these small insurance companies only sell through independent agencies.

While you’re price shopping online, make sure you don’t skimp on critical coverages to save a buck or two. There are many occasions where someone dropped full coverage only to discover later that they should have had better coverage. Your focus should be to buy enough coverage at the best price, but don’t skip important coverages to save money.

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