The way car insurance companies calculate car insurance premium leaves you with very little room to influence the premium rate. But even with that little scope, you can do a lot to avail some good discount that lowers your car insurance premium. Car insurance companies evaluate the overall risk of covering car insurance and calculate the premium accordingly. To arrive at the risks, they consider a number of factors that take into account the extent of vehicle exposure on the road, its usage pattern, and the driving history and driving habits. In addition, there are some other factors like geographical location, safety features of the vehicle that insurance companies consider which has a relation to the model and make and your credit score.
Driving history matters
If you are a safe and reliable driver with a clean driving record, then you can surely expect a better premium than someone else who’s driving history is not as clean as yours. Since this factor is very much within your control, you must ensure that you derive maximum benefit from it not only for lowering premium but also by making your life safe. Being a safe driver demonstrates your responsibility towards your family and others who are on the road, including pedestrians. Also, it shows how much you care about your car.
Vehicle safety is paramount
Safe driving does not always depend on the habits and practices of drivers but to a major extent on the safety features of vehicles too. The vehicle you drive must not only have good safety features, but it must be of acceptable standards that meet your expectations. Car insurance companies offer good discounts for driving safer vehicles because it acts as an incentive to promote safety. You just could not care less about the safety features of the car because by paying some extra upfront cost for a car with state-of-the-art safety features you can enjoy more peace of mind as your life on the road would be much safer.
When buying cars, regardless of your specific choices, you must pay more attention to the safety features over the looks and other fancy features. Striking a balance between good looks, fuel efficiency, comfortable drive, and safety features is the secret to own a dream car with an affordable insurance premium. With safety in mind, you can find a lot of car brands and models that are friendly on pockets while providing adequate safety. Going a step ahead, you can choose a car from the list of IIHS Top Safety Pick that ensures guaranteed vehicle safety because it belongs to the class of the best among the rest in safety.
The IIHs listing is also an encouragement for automakers who are continually making changes and addressing issues to improve the safety of their vehicles. Going by the recommendation of IIHS, you stay assured of owning cars that have advanced collision avoidance systems, strong crash test performance, and high-quality headlights. IIHS has tightened the crash test standards in 2019 that shows how much it cares for safety.
What discount you can get
The type of discount offered by insurance companies varies because some companies offer an itemized discount for each safety feature such as anti-locking braking system, extra airbags, blind spot sensors, lane departure warning, lane-keep assist, reverse and pre-collision automatic braking or above average safety ratings. Some other insurance companies offer a flat discount between 8% and 10% if the car has any combination of these features. The safety features reduce the chances of vehicle damage during accidents, and insurance companies could save some cost over time that they pass on to customers by offering a discount.
The total discount
Car safety discount is just one of many other discounts that insurance companies offer to its customers as a discount for safe driver, having multiple policies, owning a home etc. The offers can vary between insurance companies, but on the whole, you cam club the discounts to avail a total discount of 20% to 25%, which is the normal limit. The following safety features and its combination could qualify you for a discount on your car insurance premium.
- Air bags – Since 1998, airbags are a standard safety feature in cars in the US. Besides the recommended airbags, you can incorporate additional airbags like side-curtain airbags and dashboard airbags to enhance passenger safety.
- Seat belts – In the US, seat belts are mandatory for cars made after 1968.
- Anti-lock brakes – ABS or anti-lock braking systems help to bring cars to a halt faster, almost instantly, on applying the brakes. Studies have shown that cars with ABS are less likely to be involved in certain types of accidents compared to cars that do not have the system. When driving on ice or snow, the ABS ensures better steering control. Since 2012, it is mandatory for all passenger vehicles in the US to have an antilock braking system.
- Adaptive cruise control – This is not yet a standard safety feature, but cars that have it are safer because it monitors traffic around the car and helps to maintain a safe following distance by using automated braking or automated throttle control.
- Daytime running lights– To increase visibility on the road regardless of the light conditions having daytime running lights add to the safety of vehicles. It also helps other drivers to take notice of your vehicle and reduces the risk of an accident.
- Lane departure warnings – Sensors attached to the vehicle keeps track of your position within the lane lines alerting you the moment you get close to the edge of the lane so that you do not bump into oncoming traffic or drift off the road.
- Safety ratings – Safety ratings do not attract discounts on premium but impact the overall insurance rate because owning a car with higher safety ratings can fetch a better insurance rate. The more safety features a car has lower will be the insurance premium.
Going by the trend of discount for car safety you can save as much as 7% to 10% on your insurance premium on this account.