Should I Use a Car Insurance Agent or Online Company?
There are good reasons for buying your auto insurance from an agent, and there are good reasons for buying your auto insurance from an online company. Choosing between an agent or online company depends on your unique needs.
- You are insuring a delivery vehicle, taxi, or van used to transport paying customers.
- You are insuring a fleet of vehicles for commercial use.
- You have an antique, vintage, or specially modified car worth that is worth more than its Blue Book value.
- You have recently arrived in the United States, or you are a short-term visitor to the United States, and you literally need an agent who “speaks your language” to make sure you are getting the coverage you need.
- Your agent has a special deal with your employer, civic organization, or club has negotiated a discount of at least 10% on your auto insurance—although even then it is a very good idea to shop around. A 10% discount on a policy that costs 50% more is no bargain.
- You are protecting personal assets of $1,000,000 or more and you want to be sure you are protected in unusual situations in which people make seek to sue you.
- You are required to file an SR-22 (certificate of coverage after you have been arrested for not having insurance or after you have been involved as a driver in an accident when you were not insured) and your parole officer requires confirmation from a licensed insurance agent.
- You see your insurance agent in social settings and you don’t want to deal with constantly being sold new insurance coverage. You don’t mind the possibility that your agent will disclose your personal information in those social settings.
- You don’t care about saving time and money. You just want your insurance policy now. Seeing an insurance agent during office hours, can easily take more time than shopping online.
- Your primary concern is getting the auto coverage you need at a price you can afford. You use the vehicle you need to insure for commuting to work, personal transportation, and pleasure.
- You just don’t feel comfortable talking about insurance. When you get auto insurance quotes on line, no sales person will call. You simply take a look at the coverage and the price and decide to buy or not as you like.
- You don’t like buying products over the phone or on a salesperson’s schedule. You can take all the time you want when you shop online.
- You don’t have time during office hours to wait, chat, and negotiate even with the most efficient and prepared insurance agent to buy a new policy. You need 24-hour access to the best insurance quotes.
Online sites find you the coverage you need at lower rates because they have lower overhead. No one has to be paid to key in the data you write out on a form or tell an insurance agent in person. There are no offices to rent or coffee pots to keep full. Part of the savings from lower overhead are passed on to you.
There are so many auto insurance companies that auto insurance really is a buyer’s market. Even so, you may not get certain discounts to which you are entitled if your agent doesn’t ask you about them. An online car insurance site will only make money when you choose to buy the best policy it can offer, so online sites will make sure to collect the answers for questions you need to ask when buying a policy.
- Age, premium reductions offered when drivers pass the ages of 25 and 50,
- Safety features, giving you automatic discounts for safety features included as standard equipment and additional discount for safety features you bought with your vehicle,
- Defensive driver training, for adults, and good grades for students,
- Military service, and, in general,
- Any good driver qualification that is rewarded by any auto insurance company, whether you purchase your policy in person or online.
There are just a few things to keep in mind when you buy online. Any insurance policy you buy online will meet state minimums of required coverage. However, not every state requires you to buy uninsured or underinsured motorist protection.
Choosing this option may save you thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars if you are involved in a crash when an uninsured or underinsured driver is at fault.
Collision coverage pays for damage to your car in an accident, while comprehensive coverage compensates you for losses caused by natural disasters, vandalism, or theft. If your is an old car of minimal damage, you may not need this kind of coverage. If you have a newer car or your vehicle is financed, you need both of these kinds of coverage.
If you have great medical insurance, you may not need a medical coverage rider on your policy—but your passengers might. For just a few dollars a month, you can have peace of mind that anyone who rides with you is protected.
And if you have disability insurance, you don’t need personal injury coverage. But if you don’t have disability insurance, personal injury coverage is a good idea.
Online companies provide you with hassle-free policies at lower cost. Look into the options for saving money and saving time by getting your auto insurance online.