Utility of Online Auto Insurance Comparisons Touted by Regulators

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In a new consumer alert, the NAIC suggests drivers use online quote services to get car insurance quotes. OnlineAutoInsurance.com provides multi-company quote services to the public at no charge.

A recently issued alert from an association of state regulators reiterates what industry experts have long said: Comparing car insurance quotes online from a range of providers can pay off if you prepare in advance. And rate-comparison services like OnlineAutoInsurance.com can help shoppers evaluate their options in the most efficient manner possible.

Browsing offers from a range of coverage providers may be the most convenient and cost-effective way to shop for a policy, even if getting the best deal can take a little legwork, according to a new consumer alert from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).

NAIC recommends that those looking to renew or buy a new policy start off by figuring out exactly what level of coverage they need.

Nearly every state requires that motorists carry a minimum amount of liability coverage. And purchasing more protection than is required can be a good idea because accidents often exceed those limits, potentially leaving you to pay the difference out of pocket.

The Insurance Information Institute (III) recommends that consumers consider an umbrella or excess liability policy that pays when their underlying protection is exhausted or—if the vehicle is fairly high in value—consider collision and comprehensive coverage that will pay for damages to the policyholder's own car.

Another important consideration is the size of your deductible—the amount of money you pay on a claim before the policy kicks in. Many drivers opt for deductibles as low as $200 or $500, but raising a deductible to $1,000 can mean substantially lower premiums, according to III.

And industry experts invariably advise consumers to consider more than just price when they are shopping for a policy.

NAIC suggests talking with friends and relatives about their experiences with providers. III recommends that consumers also consider a company’s financial stability, their standing with regulators in your state and their quality of customer service.

According to III, it’s a good idea to get a minimum of three price quotes from companies, agents and the Internet before deciding to go with any offer.

The institute also points out that you can find out how much it will cost to insure a vehicle before you buy it. Policy rates can range widely based on a car’s crashworthiness and susceptibility to damage, and new car dealers are required to carry an annual federal report on comparative insurance claims histories.

Source: http://www.nhtsa.gov/staticfiles/administration/program_development/2011_Comparison_Insurance_Costs.pdf

To learn more about this and other coverage issues, readers can go to http://www.onlineautoinsurance.com/ where they will find informative resource pages and a rate-comparison generator that can help them quickly evaluate their policy options.

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Gregor McGavin
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