People have a lot of opinions about the challenges of aging, but one of the more positive aspects of getting older can be the impact it has on your car insurance. This is not always the case, but often, getting older can mean that you and your spouse will qualify for age-related discounts or other benefits when you purchase new coverage. Getting older is something to celebrate, and millions more Americans are passing retirement age every year. It is estimated that the number of individuals over the age of 70 will almost double between 2012 and 2030. As you get older, you should consider contacting an independent auto insurance agent in your area. She can help you make sure that elderly drivers policies have the appropriate coverage, and that you are paying a reasonable price for your car insurance.
Getting to Know You
If you have not worked with an independent insurance agent in the past, she will want to know all about your current car insurance during your first meeting. She will probably want to go over your driving history, along with the driving history of your spouse, or any other family member to be covered under your policy. She will specifically ask if a former insurer has ever dropped you for any reason. She will probably ask if you or your spouse has had any accidents in the past few years, and if so, she will want to know about any damaged sustained to your own, or another driver’s vehicle.
An independent insurance agent will also probably ask about the kind of car you drive, and whether it has certain features like an alarm system, automatic locks, air bags, and anti-lock brakes. These and other elements that contribute to a car’s safety can help decrease the cost of your auto insurance policy. A car’s make and model might also impact the cost of coverage, since expensive muscle cars, or rare sports cars tend to require more expansive and expensive coverage than sedans or SUVs with fewer frills. An independent insurance agent will use this and other information to ensure that you can purchase a car insurance policy with sufficient coverage.
Getting the Right Price
Once an independent insurance agent has learned about your existing car insurance coverage and your driving history, and if you would like to explore different policies available for purchase, she can get quotes from different insurance providers. She will probably mention that many insurance companies automatically give a discounted rate to senior drivers in their 50s, 60s, and 70s, depending on the terms of the policy they choose, and other factors. This may be between 5 and 10 percent off your annual premium rate.
Also, she might note that it can be helpful to take a defensive driving or other safety classes through your local DMV, which can sometimes help you further reduce the price of car insurance coverage. Insurers are concerned about your safety. Along with driving courses, may reward you with a discount for owning a low risk vehicle. They ask you various questions about your car in order to determine the likelihood of an accident. Driving a Ford Taurus as opposed to a Ferrari makes a big difference to an insurer.
Did you know that you can also save money on your insurance premium by not using a car to commute to and from work? If you and your spouse are retirees, this is good news. And, if your car is more than a few years old, an independent insurance agent can help assess whether you should decrease certain kinds of coverage. Makes sure your agent shops your insurance to several companies. Some companies charge more for cars driven just a few miles because they assume that a person who rarely drives might have diminished driving skills
There may be other discounts available too. These include:
- Electronic funds transfer
- Concurrent life insurance
- Advance renewal
- Good credit
And many others. When you set up a meeting with your insurance agent, having them review the other possible discounts that may be available to you. This can go a long way toward reducing your annual premium.
Other Ways to Save
As an elderly driver, there are other things you can do to stay safe behind the wheel while also saving money. Insurers are aware of the effect that old age has on a person, including decreased reaction times, decreased joint function, and declining vision and hearing. These factors can influence your ability to drive properly and safely from one point to another. Thankfully, there are ways to counteract the premium costs that elderly drivers sometimes face.
First, consider increasing your deductible in order to decrease your annual premium. If you plan to drive less, either because you no longer have a regular job or because you take fewer trips from your house, then your risk of having an accident decreases. With a lowered probability of a collision or other incident, you can take the chance of having a higher deductible. Of course, this also means that you will have to pay more out of pocket, should something happen. However, you can benefit from a reduced premium in the mean time.
Driving less means that you can also consider reducing your insurance coverage. Every state will require minimum insurance that includes bodily injury and property damage to a third party, and maybe even uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. However, almost no state mandates that you have any collision or comprehensive coverage. Collision insurance provides assistance for losses that damage your covered vehicle, while comprehensive insurance covers other incidents that occurred from something other than a collision, like a fire, water damage, theft, or vandalism. Without these two components, you will surely have a reduced premium. Of course, this also opens you up to a higher out-of-pocket risk, should an incident occur.
If you believe that you are no longer able to drive, but still intend to own a vehicle, you can speak to your independent agent about naming another person as the primary driver. For example, you may have an adult child that frequently uses your car to take you to the grocery store and other locations. Since your child is not an elderly individual, the insurance rates will likely decrease.
Speak to an Agent
Since you have had your driver’s license for decades, you know the ropes when it comes to driving. As you get older, an independent insurance agent is there to help you and your spouse make sure that you are maintaining the auto insurance that is necessary for your lifestyle, while securing any discounts on coverage that are available. This way, you can enjoy a weekend on the coast, a visit at your grandchild’s home, or even a trip to the local market without worrying about your car insurance coverage, or its cost.
An independent car insurance agent has worked with people of all ages to help them find the right coverage, and she will do the same for you. For new drivers, she can assist parents in adding their child onto their policy, and for aging insureds, she can evaluate your coverage and discuss changes that you might want to consider making to your car insurance, or additional options for policies available through other insurance providers. Even if you have been with the same insurance company for many years, an independent insurance agent can explain the benefits of looking at what other insurers have to offer, since it could end up saving you money.
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Enhanced Insurance is not written by attorneys. If you’re looking for legal advice, you need to contact a lawyer. Further, insurance practices and forms change constantly and are varied from state to state. For definitive answers in your area, contact a local agent.
While the majority of people want an agent involved in their purchase of insurance, many people want to see if they can save money by buying direct from the insurance company. Others want to try a direct quote to make sure the premium they’re now paying through their local agent is fair. If you want a quote for your coverage, click on the competitive quote button on the right side of this page.