Could you be driving around with fake auto insurance? It's possible. According to the Toronto City News, a 73-year-old man was recently charged by police with selling fake motor vehicle policies to unsuspecting victims. The case is an important reminder of why you should do your due diligence before purchasing auto insurance. You want the best deal, but not if it means you are going to have a meaningless policy. Here are a few steps you should take to ensure that you get the best deal possible on a legitimate policy for your vehicle.
Question that Bargain
If you are offered a price on an auto insurance that is significantly lower than your current policy, then you should:
- Check that you are comparing apples to oranges. Perhaps, the better priced policy has a much higher deductible, which would mean a less expensive premium.
- Investigate to make sure that the person offering you the policy is a legitimate auto insurance agent. For example, you can start by calling the insurance company that the agent claims to be representing.
- Do not respond to advertisements that offer low-price insurance in newspapers. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, scam artists have been placing ads in newspapers offering great deals on policies. Victims are asked to wire money to pay their premiums. Unfortunately, once the money is sent, the victim discovers that they don't have a policy and are out their premium money.
Finding Legitimate Bargains
Fortunately, there are ways to either lower the premium you already pay or to find a less expensive policy. Here are a few steps you can take to save money on your auto insurance:
- Check your policy to see if any circumstances have changed since you first purchased coverage for your vehicles. Perhaps, for example, you had another job that was 50 miles from your home, but today you only drive 5 miles to get to work. If so, let your insurance company know that you are driving fewer miles, which can lower your premium.
- Shop around. There may be a lower priced insurance policy available from another company, but only use legitimate insurance websites or agents when looking for quotes.
- Raise your deductibles. Take the time to consider your vehicles and their deductibles. If, for instance, you have a driver in your family with a poor driving record, you may not want to pay for a low deductible on their vehicle. Chances are that if this individual gets involved in a minor fender bender, you will not want to make a claim with your insurance company as it could raise your premiums or even cause your policy to be canceled. So there is really no point in paying for a low deductible for this individual.
Finding Reductions on Your Children's Policies
Adding new teen drivers to your auto insurance policy can raise your premiums significantly. There are a few things you can do, however, that can reduce these costs, including:
- Consider enrolling your teen driver in a telematics program. Some auto insurance companies today are offering lower rates to teen drivers who install monitoring devices in their vehicles and then demonstrate good driving behavior.
- Ask for good student discounts. Right or wrong, some insurance companies believe that students who do well in high school and college also make better drivers.
- Advise your current insurance agent if your children are away at college and will not be using their vehicles.
While it's always great to get a bargain on your insurance premiums, you also want to make sure that you have sufficient and legitimate coverage in the event of an accident. So take the time to ensure that the party you are dealing with is actually a legitimate representative of an insurance company before paying any money.