According to ValuePenguin.com, the average cost of auto insurance in Michigan is $213 a month. That sucks. Good thing I figured out a way to pay just $46. 😉
“Alright, Derek. You’re telling me that you pay less than 1/4 of the average on your car insurance??”
Yup, that’s exactly what I’m telling you.
“Well how in the heck do you do that???!!”
I’m glad you asked… 🙂
10 Ways to Get the Cheapest Rates on Car Insurance
In many ways, Michigan is a great place to live.
- Houses are cheap,
- Summers are gorgeous, and
- One can make a pretty decent income
But….car insurance is fricken expensive, and it’s caused me to be uber sensitive to how the whole operation works (and how to ultimately get the cheapest rates on car insurance).
If you want to pay wayyyy less in car insurance, then I suggest you do the following.
1) Buy a Car with Notoriously Low Insurance Rates
All the car insurance companies have an algorithm that tells them what they should charge you for insurance premiums. It might be a surprise to you, but one of the major factors of this formula isn’t your clean driving record or even where you live…it’s actually the physical make and model of your vehicle!
According to Cars.com in their article, “10 Cheapest (and most expensive) Cars to Insure”, the absolute cheapest vehicle to insure is the Honda Odyssey. Makes sense right? I mean, the Odyssey has some of the best safety ratings of any vehicle. Plus…since you’re probably carting kids around all day in that sweet minivan, chances are that you’re going to drive pretty carefully and get into fewer accidents than those that are driving Mercedes AMG’s and Dodge Vipers (which by the way, have the worst car insurance rates).
If you want cheap insurance, buy a super safe vehicle that starts with the word, “Honda”, “Jeep”, or “Subaru”. 😉
2) Bundle Your Insurance
Well this isn’t news to too many of us, but it’s surprising how few people actually take the action to bundle all of their property under one insurance umbrella. Yes, it’s an extra hassle that might take up a couple hours of your time, but this simple step could save you 25% on your insurance premiums, which likely means hundreds of dollars a year! Sounds like it’s definitely worth the effort to me!
3) Keep a Clean Driving Record
If you’ve never received a ticket or been in an accident, then you’re probably doing well here.
If, however, you’re looking to get the cheapest rates on car insurance and you’ve:
- Gotten a DUI,
- Received a traffic ticket, or
- Let your car insurance lapse…
…then you’re probably in trouble.
According to the Balance, here’s how long you have to wait before most car insurance companies will stop recording these incidents and hindering your insurance rates:
- 5 years for the DUI (and other major violations),
- 3 years for the traffic tickets, and
- 6 months for the missed car insurance
When you do the crime, you’ll do the time. Fortunately, once the time is up, you’re typically 100% in the clear.
4) Maintain a Great Credit Score
There are quite a few Dave Ramsey followers that blindly cut up their credit cards and work toward getting a zero credit score (technically, they have no score because they don’t use credit). While I applaud people for not using debt, it just doesn’t make sense to me for more than one reason: and one of those reasons is insurance.
When you’ve got a crappy credit score (or no credit score), you’re going to pay more in insurance premiums.
Because the insurance industry has decided that a good credit score means good character, and good character means better driving and fewer claims. Therefore your crappy (or non-existent) score “naturally” means that your character is in question and you’ll probably cost the insurance company more money.
It’s definitely not the perfect system, but the fact of the matter is, your credit score matters. So do what you can to raise it, and you’ll likely start getting better quotes on your car insurance.
5) Buy a Less Expensive Car
If you get into an accident, your car insurance company is on the hook to fix or replace your vehicle. So…do you think they’ll charge you higher premiums if you own a more expensive vehicle?
Of course they will! It’s a matter of business. The more money their in jeopardy of losing, the more they’ll charge you to protect themselves against it.
Naturally then, if you want to get the cheapest rates on car insurance, you may want to rethink that dream car of yours… or at least get all the car insurance quotes before you buy it.
6) Raise Your Deductible
According to a recent read in USAA, the most common deductible amount for car insurance is $250. While this seems intelligent when you get side-swiped in the parking lot and insurance covers nearly all of the repair, you’re typically paying far more into insurance than you’re actually receiving on your rare driving mishaps.
If you want to save loads of money on your car insurance, save up a healthy emergency fund and then raise your deductible to $1,000. Your premiums will go down and your cash flow will never be healthier.
7) Ask For All Possible Discounts
Most of the time, insurance companies are pretty good about identifying the discounts you’ve earned, but occasionally they miss some. Don’t shy away from this one – just ask. “Can you please tell me all the possible discount options? I want to be sure I’m not missing any.”
Discounts are often given for:
- low annual mileage
- farm insurance (you only use your vehicle on or around the farm)
- advanced renewal
- customer loyalty
- home ownership
- short commutes to/from work
- having a college degree
8) Get Car Insurance Through Work
Do you work at a medium-to-large corporation? Chances are that they’ve partnered with an insurance company that can offer you group rates through your employer! Don’t just assume they’ve got the cheapest rates though – you should still do your due-diligence and check out other insurance companies for their rates.
9) Check in With Your Local Insurance Companies
Want to get the cheapest rates on car insurance? Don’t just look at the big insurance companies (Progressive, State Farm, Geico, Nationwide, etc.), take a look at the more local insurance companies in your area.
When I searched for the cheapest car insurance companies in Michigan, there was a great article provided by ValuePenguin with cheap providers that I’ve never even heard of! Do a quick check like I did, (I chose MetLife and they’ve been awesome! 🙂 ) and it could save you hundreds of dollars a year!
10) Sign Up to Let Them Track Your Driving
Sure, everyone thinks they’re a great driver and should get the cheapest rates on car insurance out there, but how can the car insurance companies know for sure?
They just send you a device that goes in your car to track your driving for a while. If you really do drive as safely as you say you do, they’ll give you a discount. If not, then no savings (and supposedly, they don’t jack up your insurance either).
By the way…if the device beeps at you constantly…that’s bad, and you’re probably NOT going to get a discount. 😉
Will You Get the Cheapest Rates on Car Insurance?
If you go through all of the 10 steps above, I can guarantee you that you’ll save money on car insurance – probably hundreds, if not thousands of dollars a year. I went through the process and you already saw the results I got! Instead of paying the state average, I pay less than a quarter of that each month.
Wouldn’t you rather save money on your car insurance so you can use it on what you want?
Have you done all the comparisons, but still think you’re overpaying for your insurance? Sign up with BillCutterz. If they don’t save you money on your bills, you owe nothing. If they do save you money, you just pay them half of it. Talk about a zero-risk proposition!!
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.