Rumors and hearsay: you can’t escape them, but it’s essential to get the facts when it affects your pocket. Misinformation is rampant in the car insurance industry due to the complex nature of the product. However, separating fact from fiction when you’re purchasing a new policy or changing insurers will help you to make sound decisions and keep more money in your pocket.
Get the truth behind these eight common car insurance myths.
Myth 1: Older cars always cost less to insure
The truth: Not always. Your vehicle’s age will determine your rate in some cases. However, insurers take other aspects of your car into consideration as well. So while your car might attract a lower rate if it’s popular among thieves or difficult to source parts, the insurer will charge premium rates for your coverage.
Myth 2: Red cars cost more to insure
The truth: If you want to make a statement with a red car, go ahead and purchase it because the color of your car makes no difference to your insurer. Most insurers only care about the model, make, and mileage on your vehicle – the hue doesn’t matter. So, whether you paint your car firehouse red or bright orange, your insurance rate won’t budge.
Myth 3: Your credit won’t affect your car insurance rates
The truth: Insurance companies use a credit-based insurance score among themselves to make out your quote for car insurance. They refer to the scores whenever you buy, renew, or modify your policy. It’s easy to understand why your scores matter; they directly reflect your fiscal responsibility. So, expect to pay more if you don’t have decent credit.
Myth 4: Seniors always pay more
The truth: Age is a key factor when it comes to determining insurance premiums. However, being older doesn’t always mean paying more. For instance, seniors will qualify for discounts if they take a defensive driving course. Seniors can also use their membership in certain motorists clubs to take advantage of member discounts for car insurance. The bottom line is that seniors don’t always pay more for car insurance.
Myth 5: A rental car is always provided after an accident
The truth: You backed out of the driveway the wrong way and your car sustained some damage; no problem, you can use an insurance funded rental car while the damage is repaired, right? Don’t count on it. While some insurers will include rental cars as an added perk, the norm is that you must purchase additional coverage for a rental car.
Furthermore, if you’re at fault, the coverage won’t provide a rental while the car is being repaired. If you rely on your only vehicle to get to and from work, you should check with your insurer to find out about additional coverage for rentals.
Myth 6: You’ll get back what you owe
If your car becomes a total write-off after a serious accident, there’s no guarantee your insurance will write a check to pay off the bank. Instead, you’ll receive the book price based on the current value of the car. If you’re overwhelmed by the thought of repaying the bank after a write-off, you should ask your agent about additional coverage to waive the financial consequences of depreciation on your car. This will ensure that your insurer will pick up the check for the amount owed on your bank loan.
Myth 7: Male drivers pay higher premiums than female drivers
Insurance companies are not gender biased. They calculate rates based on claims made, the drivers profile and record – your sex doesn’t matter. A woman might have a lower rate if she’s a conscientious driver, but a woman with a terrible record will definitely pay more than a male driver.
Myth 8: My insurance agent got me the best deal on car insurance
Insurance agents are obligated to the company they work for, so they’ll work to get you the best deal within that company. However, you can find a similar coverage for less with another company.
When you’re comparison shopping, make sure to compare apples to apples. Even though you’re on a budget, your goal should always be to get sufficient coverage to keep your family safe on the road.