Never Compare Charleston South Carolina Car Insurance Without Knowing These Money Saving Tips

Confused by the wide range of car insurance options in Charleston? Lot’s of other consumers are too. People have so many options that it can easily become a lot of work to find the perfect company for you.

Finding the best rates in Charleston is not rocket science. If you currently have car insurance, you will be able to reduce your rates substantially using these tips. Although South Carolina car owners should learn the methods companies use to compete online because it can help you find the best coverage.

Compare Quotes for Charleston Car Insurance

Most major insurance companies give insurance quotes on the web. Getting quotes is pretty painless as you just type in as requested by the quote form. When the form is submitted, the system makes automated requests for reports for credit and driving violations and returns a price based on many factors.

Quoting online makes comparing rates easy, but the time required to go to each company’s website and repetitively enter the same data into a form can be a bit repetitive. But it’s absolutely necessary to do this in order to find lower prices.

The smarter way to find better car insurance pricing utilizes a single form to return rates from many companies. It saves time, reduces the work, and makes rate comparisons a little more enjoyable. As soon as the form is sent, it gets priced and you can choose any one of the quotes returned. If one or more price quotes are lower than your current rates, you can simply submit the application and purchase coverage. This process takes less than 15 minutes and you will find out if you’re overpaying now.

To save time and find out how much you can save on car insurance, click here to open in a new tab and begin entering your coverage information. If you have a policy now, it’s recommended you type in coverages and limits identical to your current policy. This ensures you will have rate comparison quotes using the exact same coverages.

Are you getting all your discounts?

Car insurance companies do not advertise all their discounts in an easy-to-find place, so here is a list both well-publicized and the more hidden ways to save on car insurance.

  • Memberships – Affiliation with a qualifying organization is a good way to get lower rates on car insurance.
  • Federal Government Employee – Employees or retirees of the government could cut as much as 10% off with a few car insurance companies.
  • Use Seat Belts – Drivers who require all occupants to wear their seat belts could cut 10% or more off your PIP or medical payments premium.
  • Senior Discount – If you qualify as a senior citizen, you may receive a discount up to 10%.
  • Discounts for Safe Drivers – Safe drivers may receive a discount up to 45% less than their less cautious counterparts.
  • Military Discounts – Being deployed with a military unit could be rewarded with lower premiums.
  • Discount for Good Grades – Getting good grades can get you a discount of up to 25%. Earning this discount can benefit you until age 25.
  • Claim Free – Drivers with accident-free driving histories pay much less when compared with frequent claim filers.
  • Theft Prevention System – Cars that have factory anti-theft systems can help prevent theft and therefore earn up to a 10% discount.
  • Sign Early and Save – Some insurance companies reward drivers for buying a policy before your current policy expires. It can save you around 10%.

It’s important to understand that most discount credits are not given to all coverage premiums. A few only apply to the cost of specific coverages such as comprehensive or collision. So when it seems like you would end up receiving a 100% discount, you’re out of luck.

Lower your Charleston Car Insurance Rates

Consumers need to have an understanding of some of the elements that come into play when calculating the rates you pay for car insurance. When you know what positively or negatively controls the rates you pay enables informed choices that may reward you with better car insurance rates.

The list below includes a partial list of the pieces car insurance companies consider when setting rates.

  • A lapse in coverage is a bad thing – Allowing your car insurance policy to lapse is a sure-fire way to bump up your car insurance costs. And not only will insurance be more expensive, but being ticketed for driving with no insurance can result in a hefty fine and possibly a revoked license.You may need to file a SR-22 with the South Carolina DMV.
  • Rates may be higher depending on your occupation – Careers like doctors, architects and stock brokers tend to pay the highest rates attributed to job stress and long work days. On the other hand, occupations such as actors, students and the unemployed have the lowest average rates.
  • Please use or commuting – The higher the mileage driven in a year the higher your rate. Most insurance companies charge to insure your cars based on how the vehicle is used. Cars used primarily for pleasure use receive lower rates than those used for commuting. Double check that your car insurance declarations sheet shows the correct usage for each vehicle, because improper ratings can cost you money.
  • Women pay lower rates – Statistics show that women are safer drivers than men. However, don’t assume that men are worse drivers. They both are in accidents at about the same rate, but the males cause more damage and cost insurance companies more money. They also get more serious tickets such as reckless driving.
  • Where you live can impact rates – Residing in a small town can save you money when buying car insurance. Lower population translates into fewer accidents and a lower car theft rate. City drivers tend to have traffic congestion and longer commute times. Longer commute distances can result in more accidents.
  • Your spouse saves you money – Getting married can actually save you money on your policy. It means you’re more responsible and it’s proven that being married results in fewer claims.
  • How many coverages with the same company – Most insurance companies give discounts to policyholders who have multiple policies with them such as combining an auto and homeowners policy. Discounts can amount to 10 percent or more. If you currently are using one company, it’s still a good idea to comparison shop to confirm you are receiving the best rates possible.

Neighborhood agents for car insurance

A small number of people just want to sit down with an agent and that is OK! The best thing about price shopping on the web is that you can obtain better rates but also keep your business local.

By using this simple form, the quote information is sent to companies in Charleston who will return price quotes for your business. There is no need to leave your house due to the fact that quote results will go to the email address you provide. How’s that for easy! You can find better rates without the usual hassles of price South Carolina insurance quote

Selecting an insurer requires more thought than just the premium amount. Any agent should be forthright in answering these questions:

  • Do they review policy coverages at every renewal?
  • Do they specialize in personal lines coverage?
  • How are claims handled?
  • Will vehicle repairs be made with aftermarket parts or OEM replacement parts?
  • Do the coverages you’re quoting properly cover your vehicle?
  • Are claims handled at the agent’s location?
  • How long has their agency been open in Charleston?
  • What is the agency’s Better Business Bureau rating?

Best insurance agent in Charleston

When searching for a good insurance agency, there are two types of agencies that you can select. Charleston agents are categorized either captive or independent (non-captive).

Captive Insurance Agents

This type of agents write business for a single company such as Allstate, Farmers Insurance, State Farm and AAA. These agents are not able to provide prices from multiple companies so they have no alternatives for high prices. Captives receive extensive training in insurance sales which helps them sell insurance even at higher premiums. Some consumers prefer to purchase coverage from captives primarily because of the prominence of the brand and the convenience of having a single billing for all their coverages.

Below is a short list of captive agencies in Charleston that are able to give comparison quotes.

  • Allstate Insurance – 1655 Savannah Hwy # B – Charleston, SC 29407 – (843) 766-1221
  • State Farm Insurance – 4000 Ashley Phosphate Rd – Charleston, SC 29418 – (843) 767-2281
  • Farm Bureau Insurance – 60 Markfield Dr # 6a – Charleston, SC 29407 – (843) 766-3794
Independent Agencies or Brokers

These agents are not required to write business for one company but rather can write business with multiple insurance companies depending on which coverage is best. If your agent finds better pricing, they simply move the coverage in-house without you having to go to a different agency. When searching for an agent, you should always contact multiple independent agents to have the most options to choose from.Most can insure with smaller regional carriers which can save you money.

Below is a short list of independent insurance agents in Charleston willing to provide price quotes.

  • Beasley Agency – 525 Folly Rd – Charleston, SC 29412 – (843) 795-0189
  • Sadler and Hamm Insurance – 22 Windermere Blvd # A – Charleston, SC 29407 – (843) 766-0261
  • Direct General Ins Agency – 1300 Savannah Hwy # 7 – Charleston, SC 29407 – (843) 571-5486
  • Direct General Ins Agency – 2080 Northbrook Blvd – Charleston, SC 29406 – (843) 553-9963
  • United American Insurance Co – 672 Marina Dr # 210 – Charleston, SC 29492 – (843) 740-2910

For a full directory of Charleston insurance agents, click here to link.

After receiving acceptable answers for all questions you ask and a low price estimate, you’ve probably found an auto insurance agent that can provide car insurance coverage.

Do I need special coverages?

When buying the best car insurance coverage for your vehicles, there is no best way to insure your cars. Everyone’s situation is a little different.

These are some specific questions could help you determine whether you might need professional guidance.

  • Why am I required to buy high-risk coverage?
  • Is my custom paint covered by insurance?
  • Is my teen driver covered when they drive my company car?
  • Can I get a multi-policy discount for packaging my home and auto coverage?
  • Does my policy pay for OEM or aftermarket parts?
  • Who is covered when they drive my vehicle?
  • What is the minimum liability in South Carolina?
  • Do I need to file an SR-22 for a DUI in South Carolina?
  • Do I need PIP coverage since I have good health insurance?

If you can’t answer these questions but you know they apply to you then you might want to talk to an insurance agent. If you don’t have a local agent, complete this form.

More detailed South Carolina car insurance information can be read at the South Carolina Department of Insurance website. South Carolina drivers can discover disciplinary actions, learn about insurance regulations, and view a list of available companies.

The following information may also be useful.

lower rates in Charleston

Save $452 a year? Really?

Car insurance providers like Progressive, GEICO, Allstate and State Farm continually stream ads on TV and radio. They all make the same claim about savings after switching your policy. How do they all claim to save you money?

Different companies can use profiling for the right customer that earns them a profit. A good example of a preferred risk might be between 30 and 50, insures multiple vehicles, and drives less than 7,500 miles a year. A customer getting a price quote that hits that “sweet spot” will get very good rates and therefore will cut their rates substantially.

Potential customers who don’t meet this ideal profile will have to pay higher rates which usually ends up with the customer not buying. The ad wording is “customers who switch” not “people who quote” save that much. This is how companies can advertise the savings. Because of the profiling, you absolutely need to get quotes from several different companies. It’s not possible to predict which insurance companies will have the lowest rates.

Shop smart and save

Drivers switch companies for many reasons like poor customer service, high rates after DUI convictions, questionable increases in premium or being labeled a high risk driver. Regardless of your reason, finding a great new company is pretty simple and you could end up saving a buck or two.

We just covered a lot of ways to shop for car insurance online. The key concept to understand is the more providers you compare, the better your comparison will be. You may even find the biggest savings come from the least-expected company.

As you restructure your insurance plan, never skimp on coverage in order to save money. There are a lot of situations where consumers will sacrifice liability limits or collision coverage and discovered at claim time that a couple dollars of savings turned into a financial nightmare. The ultimate goal is to buy a smart amount of coverage at a price you can afford while not skimping on critical coverages.