Young drivers — aged between 16 and 25 — pay very high car insurance rates, with those aged 16-19 paying the most expensive premiums of all. Because of the risk presented by inexperienced drivers, teen drivers pay more than three times the national average for car insurance. In Texas, teen drivers pay especially high rates: $7,096 per year — more than $2,000 more than the nationwide average and almost four times as much as a typical Texas driver.
Car insurance extras are coverage options that usually do not come with a standard policy. Examples include roadside assistance and accident forgiveness. These coverages can be added to a policy for an extra cost. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide if they are worth it. By carefully assessing your coverage needs, you can come to a conclusion whether the extras are worth the cost or not.
Know when to cut coverage. Don’t strip away coverage just for the sake of a lower price. You’ll need full coverage car insurance to satisfy the terms of an auto loan, and you’ll want it as long as your car would be a financial burden to replace. But for older cars, you can drop comprehensive and collision coverage, which only pay out up to your car’s current value, minus the deductible.
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It is one of the three highest-rated automotive insurers in the country. The only downside is its limited availability: USAA only services the immediate families of active and former members of the military. Given those restrictions, the quote process is a bit more intense compared to its competitors, but that’s a small price to pay for its exemplary service.
The Hartford is only the nation’s 11th largest insurer, but it still packs a punch. In fact, it had the highest score in my 12-category feature evaluation (92 out of 100). It also offers a wide range of policy options and benefits (including rates based on how much you actually drive your car and a new car replacement program for cars totaled shortly after purchase) and was the only insurer to score a perfect 100 in our vehicle-discount evaluation.
With a good driving record — devoid of at-fault accidents, speeding tickets, DUIs, or other recent citations — you'll probably enjoy relatively cheap car insurance rates. On the other hand, a bad driving record will cause your costs to skyrocket: car insurance premiums typically increase by 28% after a DUI, 33% after an at-fault accident, and 4% after a speeding ticket in Texas. The post-violation penalties assessed by car insurance companies in Texas are substantially lower than nationwide averages — especially for speeding tickets. If you have a clean driving history, be sure to inquire about your insurance company's safe driver discount.
To figure out how much car insurance you need, start by looking at what’s required in your state. Most states require some basic car insurance coverage to cover your liability in an accident. Your liability is the amount of money you must pay as a result of damages you caused to someone’s property, or injuries you caused. Even in the few states that have no car insurance requirement, liability insurance is a good idea, as medical bills from a car accident can run into the tens of thousands of dollars, and you’re not likely to have that kind of money on hand. If you don’t have the money to pay and you don’t have liability insurance, you can be forced to sell your assets, including your house, retirement funds, or collection of “Full House” memorabilia, to pay for those expenses.
USAA Insurance Agency means USAA Insurance Agency, Inc., or USAA of Texas Insurance Agency. CA Lic. #0D78305, TX Lic. #7096. 9800 Fredericksburg Road, San Antonio, TX 78288. The agency represents third-party insurers that are not affiliated with USAA and provides services to you on their behalf. Third party products are not underwritten by USAA or its affiliates. The agency receives a commission on the sale or renewal of third-party insurance products and may receive other performance-based compensation from them. Product availability may vary in some locations.
Besides being legally required in almost every state, auto insurance is an incredibly important part of your financial safety net. The average car insurance claim in 2013 was over $15,000 for bodily injury and over $3,200 for property damage. Car insurance is there to cover medical bills, vehicle repair or replacement, and keeps you off the hook for injury and damage liability for others. Your premiums will go up if you cause an accident, but that’s better than the alternative.
Nationwide's insurance professionals can quickly design a car insurance quote that meets your precise needs, even for those on a budget. Rather than going with the cheapest car insurance quote, make sure the company you choose provides flexible coverage and billing options. For instance, Nationwide allows members to pay monthly, quarterly or semi-annually online, through the mail or over the phone. It’s important to keep long-term flexibility in mind when deciding on an insurance carrier, not just go with the cheapest car insurance option.