I bet you're surprised there's even a difference — well, we are too
Within determining your car insurance, companies look your gender because, statistically, it tells a story of what kind of driver you will be. Insurance companies use historical forecasting to better understand and price risks. There is a difference between men and women’s car insurance because, historically, men tend to be riskier clients than women and are thus charged accordingly.
Still, more and more states are starting to phase this methodology out. Hawaii, Massachusetts, Montana, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania are the only states which do not consider gender as a rating factor. Currently, men pay more in 34 states while women pay more in only 12 with the remaining states not factored in as previously mentioned.
Although that dollar a year is some pretty sweet savings, you might still find yourself wanting some extra savings. Here are our best suggestions:
Multi-policy: This discount refers to having two types of insurance policies under one insurance company. Common policies are home/auto or renters/auto. The discounts affect both your policies, typically. Here are the typical amounts of discount you can receive.
Savings on Bundles
|Savings with Renters||Savings with Home|
Defensive Driver Discount: This discount entails taking an actual defensive driving course and then presenting your insurance company with proof (sometimes a receipt or transcript) of it. The logic behind this discount is clear - a safer driver makes you a cheaper client because you’re less likely to have a claim. Prior to taking the course, however, make sure your company accepts this discount.
Equipment Discount: If your car comes with anti-theft devices or if you have services like LoJack, your insurance company usually provides you with a discount. The discount tends to be smaller than a multi-policy or defensive driver discount, but can still help with making premium payments.
Average Savings from Safety Devices
|Safety/Anti-Theft Device||Avg Annual Premium||Discount|
|Passive Disabling Device||$1,312||$10|
|Electronic Stability Control||$1,318||$5|
You should consider that these discounts, while not a huge amount, are averaged amount across all insurance companies and across all states. Some states and some insurance companies might give more.
Good Driver Discount: Naturally, this discount is offered to you if you have a clean driving record - no accidents or citations. This is typically a higher paying discount and a lot of times it is automatically added to your policy when your Motor Vehicle Report is pulled at the inception of your auto policy. Still, if you are sure you have a clean driving record and are not receiving any discount, speak with your insurance company and ask if they offer a discount for good drivers. In addition to the added bonus of this discount, you stand to benefit by not having your premium raised due to a claim or citation. This is the average of how accidents can impact your premium.
Average Increase in Annual Premium in 2016
|Accident/Violation||6 Month Premium Increase|
|Speeding 11 - 15 MPH Over Limit||$141|
|Speeding 16 - 20 MPH Over Limit||$153|
|Speeding 21 - 25 MPH Over Limit||$165|
Military Discount: Many companies offer discounts for active or former military members and their families. The amount and qualifications differ per company so speak with your company to see if this discount is offered!
Multi-car discount: Like a multi-policy discount, a multi-car discount refers to have more than one car with a single insurance company. Typically, the discount is automatically added either at the policy inception (if two cars were originally added) or when you add the second vehicle to the policy.
Preferred Payment Discount: This discount refers to the manner in which you make your insurance payments and has tiers, typically. For example, if you pay your entire premium up front, you are often given a discount which is usually the highest preferred payment discount. Moreover, if you set up for automatic payments from a bank account, you can often receive an “EFT discount.” If you are able to pay upfront or through automatic payments, this is a discount worth considering. Amount of discounts are featured below.
Savings Based on Method of Payment
|Savings with Paid in Full||Savings with EFT|
Profession Discount: This discount goes by many names but the idea is the same. Some insurance companies will give you a discount based on your occupation. Statistically, some occupations like teachers, physicians, or police officers are less likely to file a claim. Because of this, some insurance companies return the savings back to you. Usually, they will require you to submit some type of proof of your profession - a photocopy of your degree is common.
Good Student Discount: If you or your children have the grades, typically above a 3.0 GPA, speak with your insurance company about a good student discount. Normally, they’ll ask for a transcript every policy period (6-12 months) as proof.
Sit down and look over your policy either by yourself, or if your company provides agent, with them. See if there are any ways you can reduce your coverage for some additional savings. For example, if you have an older vehicle, you might consider if having collision or comprehensive coverage is financially worth it. Unlike liability insurance, these coverages are only required if you’re leasing your vehicle or have a bank or dealership financing it. If your car is bought and paid for, chances are you are not required to have this. Raising your deductible can result in a high decrease in your premium. Removing the coverage on the vehicle altogether is another way to save. However, if you still have a vehicle you want coverage for in the event of an accident, keep these coverages.
Once you reach the age of 25, your gender won’t really impact your car insurance. Insurance companies use historical forecasting to try to predict what qualities will equate to a risky driver. And whether you agree with it or not, insurance companies see male drivers as slightly riskier than female drivers. Still, the difference is quite small - only a dollar on average. So, we offer some alternative ways to still find car insurance. Merging your insurance policies (home/auto, auto/renters), double checking for discounts, evaluating your coverage options, and comparing for car insurance every 6 months are great ways to ensure you’re getting the best rate possible. Start comparing with us.