Buying insurance can be complicated (and sometimes even hostile) but understanding how it works can be a first step towards buying better policies. While you might know some of the significant factors—crashes, claims, and your driving history—that impact your premiums, we’ve found a few that might surprise you!
- Your car make and model. Before you roll your eyes, I’m not talking about how much more expensive it is to insure a Maserati than a Subaru. Most people are aware that certain sports cars or rare vehicles cost an arm and a leg to insure, but finer grained details about your make and model can also have a significant impact. Your particular model of sedan might be more expensive to insure than the one your neighbor owns or even their SUV. Factors specific to your make and model, such as costly repairs, theft frequency, or likelihood of an accident, can all trigger higher insurance rates.
- Your zip code. Like your make and model, car insurance companies analyze your zip code to understand the risk they’re taking on by insuring you. So, even if your home is secure or you’re a great driver, a zip code with a higher incidence of theft, accidents, or uninsured drivers could have a big impact on your premiums. That being said, don’t fall for the myth that lying about your car’s location will save you money; it’s fraud and will leave you with a much bigger mess than buying valid insurance.
- Increased cost of labor and materials. By now, you’re probably used to hearing how much inflation and supply chain issues affect every part of our lives. Well, insurance is no exception. Rising mechanic costs, chip and parts shortages, and higher car prices all impact how much insurance companies have to pay when they get claims, and as their costs rise, so do yours.
- Your marital status. It's odd to consider, but car insurance companies can factor marital status into your risk in all but four states. On average, married drivers have fewer accidents so they get better rates. So, unless you live in Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, or Montana, you could pay more if you’re single or divorced.
- Not understanding what you purchase. We’ve all shopped for insurance without reading the fine print or understanding every term in the contract. Insurance shopping is complicated and often needs to be figured out fast (which is why it’s great that you can change your coverage at any point). If you don’t understand what you’re purchasing, you’re more likely to choose coverage options that leave you underinsured for catastrophes, overinsured for protection you don’t need, and paying higher premiums.
That’s where Coverage Cat can help. We can’t change your zip code or make car parts less expensive, but we can help you understand the car insurance products you’re buying and optimize them for your assets and risk. Try out our free optimization process today and see how much you can save!