10 Guaranteed Methods to Lower Car Insurance Costs in Chattanooga

Having to pay for overpriced car insurance can dwindle your personal savings and force you to make sacrifices. Shopping your coverage around is free, only takes a few minutes, and is a good way to cut your insurance bill.

Big-name insurance companies like Progressive, State Farm and GEICO constantly bombard you with TV and radio ads and it is difficult to separate fact from fiction and do the work needed to find the best deal.

It’s a good habit to compare prices quite often since rates change quite often. Despite the fact that you may have had the lowest rates a few years ago a different company probably has better rates today. Don’t believe everything you read about car insurance online but by reading this article, you’re going to learn some of the best ways to put money back in your pocket.

If you are paying for car insurance now, you will be able to cut costs considerably using these techniques. Finding the best rates in Chattanooga is not that difficult. But Tennessee consumers must learn the way insurance companies price online insurance and apply this information to your search.

Lower rates by qualifying for these ten discounts

Companies that sell car insurance do not list every available discount very well, so the following is a list of some of the best known as well as the least known discounts you could be receiving.

  • Multi-policy Discount – If you have multiple policies with one insurance company you may save at least 10% off all policies.
  • Federal Government Employee – Simply working for the federal government may qualify you for a discount with certain companies.
  • Club Memberships – Participating in a qualifying organization is a good way to get lower rates when buying car insurance.
  • Seat Belts Save – Drivers who require all occupants to use a seat belt can save 10% or more on the medical payments or PIP coverage costs.
  • Save with a New Car – Buying coverage on a new vehicle can be considerably cheaper compared to insuring an older model.
  • Lower Rates for Military – Being deployed with a military unit could be rewarded with lower premiums.
  • Passive Restraints and Air Bags – Vehicles equipped with air bags and/or automatic seat belt systems can receive discounts of 20% or more.
  • Drive Less and Save – Keeping the miles down could qualify for a substantially lower rate.
  • Sign Online – Certain companies will give a small break simply for signing on their website.
  • Good Student – Getting good grades can get you a discount of up to 25%. This discount can apply up until you turn 25.

Keep in mind that some credits don’t apply the the whole policy. A few only apply to individual premiums such as physical damage coverage or medical payments. So even though they make it sound like you can get free auto insurance, car insurance companies aren’t that generous.

Misconceptions in car insurance advertisements

Progressive, GEICO, Allstate and State Farm consistently run ads on television and other media. All the companies say the same thing that you can save if you change your coverage to them. How do they all make almost identical claims? It’s all in the numbers.

Different companies have a preferred profile for the driver that makes them money. For instance, a profitable customer could be between the ages of 30 and 50, has no prior claims, and chooses high deductibles. A driver who meets those qualifications will qualify for the lowest rates and as a result will probably save quite a bit of money when switching.

Potential customers who are not a match for the “perfect” profile will be charged more money which leads to the driver buying from a lower-cost company. The ads say “customers that switch” not “everyone that quotes” save that much. This is how insurance companies can advertise the savings. That is why it’s extremely important to compare as many rates as you can. You cannot predict which insurance companies will give you the biggest savings.

Even more information is available at the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance website. Consumers can learn about insurance regulations, read enforcement actions against agents and companies, read consumer alerts, and read industry bulletins.

Other informative sites include this page for Tennessee car insurance and this resource to find Chattanooga, TN insurance agents.

Car insurance coverage considerations

Understanding the coverages of your car insurance policy can be of help when determining the right coverages and the correct deductibles and limits. The terms used in a policy can be impossible to understand and coverage can change by endorsement. Shown next are the normal coverages available from car insurance companies.

Liability car insurance

Liability coverage can cover damage or injury you incur to other people or property that is your fault. Coverage consists of three different limits, bodily injury per person, bodily injury per accident and property damage. You commonly see policy limits of 25/50/25 which stand for a $25,000 limit per person for injuries, a per accident bodily injury limit of $50,000, and a limit of $25,000 paid for damaged property.

Liability can pay for claims like court costs, medical services, loss of income, funeral expenses and emergency aid. How much liability should you purchase? That is a decision to put some thought into, but consider buying higher limits if possible. Tennessee state law requires minimum liability limits of 25,000/50,000/15,000 but it’s recommended drivers buy higher limits.

Collision coverage protection

This covers damage to your vehicle from colliding with an object or car. A deductible applies then the remaining damage will be paid by your insurance company.

Collision can pay for claims such as hitting a mailbox, sustaining damage from a pot hole and hitting a parking meter. Collision coverage makes up a good portion of your premium, so analyze the benefit of dropping coverage from older vehicles. It’s also possible to increase the deductible in order to get cheaper collision rates.

Medical costs insurance

Medical payments and Personal Injury Protection insurance pay for expenses for things like nursing services, surgery, doctor visits and funeral costs. The coverages can be used in conjunction with a health insurance program or if you do not have health coverage. Medical payments and PIP cover both the driver and occupants and also covers any family member struck as a pedestrian. Personal Injury Protection is not an option in every state but can be used in place of medical payments coverage

Comprehensive or Other Than Collision

Comprehensive insurance coverage covers damage from a wide range of events other than collision. You first must pay your deductible then the remaining damage will be covered by your comprehensive coverage.

Chattanooga car insurance

Comprehensive insurance covers claims such as fire damage, damage from getting keyed, damage from flooding and theft. The maximum payout a car insurance company will pay at claim time is the market value of your vehicle, so if the vehicle is not worth much it’s probably time to drop comprehensive insurance.

UM/UIM Coverage

This gives you protection when other motorists either are underinsured or have no liability coverage at all. Covered losses include hospital bills for your injuries as well as your vehicle’s damage.

Since a lot of drivers only purchase the least amount of liability that is required (25/50/15 in Tennessee), it only takes a small accident to exceed their coverage. This is the reason having UM/UIM coverage is important protection for you and your family.

Smart consumers save more

We just showed you many tips how you can shop for car insurance online. The most important thing to understand is the more price quotes you have, the better likelihood of reducing your rate. You may be surprised to find that the lowest priced car insurance comes from a small local company. Smaller companies often have lower prices on specific markets than their larger competitors like State Farm, GEICO and Nationwide.

Discount car insurance is attainable online as well as from independent agents in Chattanooga, so you should compare both in order to have the best price selection to choose from. There are still a few companies who don’t offer the ability to get a quote online and most of the time these regional insurance providers sell through independent agents.