5 Discounts Albany Consumers Neglect when Buying Car Insurance on the Internet

5 Discounts Albany Consumers Neglect when Buying Car Insurance on the Internet

Having to pay for overpriced car insurance can drain your savings account and put a big crunch on your finances. Doing a price comparison is free, only takes a few minutes, and is a good way to make sure you’re not throwing money away.

There are many insurers to pick from, and although it’s nice to have a selection, so many choices can make it hard to find the best rates for your vehicles.

Pricing the lowest cost coverage in Albany can be fairly easy. Just about everyone who has to buy car insurance should be able to lower their premiums. But New York vehicle owners do need to know how insurance companies price online insurance and use this information to your advantage.

Take these 5 discounts and save

Insuring your fleet can be pricey, but companies offer discounts that can drop the cost substantially. Some discounts apply automatically at quote time, but a few must be specifically requested before you get the savings.

  • Club Memberships – Participating in a professional or civic organization could qualify you for a break when shopping for car insurance.
  • Early Signing – Select companies give a discount for switching policies prior to your current policy expiration. This can save 10% or more.
  • Safety Course Discount – Taking a defensive driving course could save 5% or more if you qualify.
  • Discount for Good Grades – A discount for being a good student can save 20 to 25%. The discount lasts well after school through age 25.
  • No Claims – Drivers who don’t have accidents pay much less when compared to frequent claim filers.

Drivers should understand that most credits do not apply to all coverage premiums. Most only apply to the price of certain insurance coverages like physical damage coverage or medical payments. Even though it may seem like you could get a free car insurance policy, car insurance companies aren’t that generous. But any discount will bring down the amount you have to pay.

How to know if you need help

When choosing the right insurance coverage for your vehicles, there really is not a best way to insure your cars. Everyone’s situation is unique so this has to be addressed. These are some specific questions could help you determine whether or not you may require specific advice.

  • Is there coverage for injuries to my pets?
  • Is a new car covered when I drive it off the dealer lot?
  • How do I file an SR-22 for a DUI in New York?
  • When should my teen driver be added to my policy?
  • Will I be non-renewed for getting a DUI or other conviction?
  • I have good health insurance, so how much medical payments coverage do I need?
  • What companies insure drivers after a DUI or DWI?

If you’re not sure about those questions then you might want to talk to an agent. If you want to speak to an agent in your area, complete this form or click here for a list of car insurance companies in your area.

Do I need a local agent?

Certain consumers would rather buy from a local agent and that is a personal choice. The biggest benefit of price shopping on the web is you may find the best rates but still work with a licensed agent. And supporting local businesses is especially important in Albany.

To find an agent, once you fill out this short form, your insurance coverage information is emailed to local insurance agents in Albany who will give you bids to get your business. You don’t have to leave your house as quotes are delivered to the email address you provide. You can find better rates AND a local agent.

Albany insurance agents come in two flavors

When finding a local agent, there are two types of insurance agents from which to choose. Agents are either independent or captive.

Independent Insurance Agents

Independent agencies are not locked into one company but instead can place your coverage with many different companies and potentially find a lower price. To move your coverage to a new company, the agent simply finds a different carrier and you don’t have to find a new agent.

When searching for an agent, you should always include several independent insurance agents to have the most options to choose from.

Below is a short list of independent insurance agents in Albany that are able to give comparison quotes.

Freyer Agency – – Albany, NY 12205 – (518) 869-1333
Anchor Agency Inc – 61 Colvin Ave – Albany, NY 12206 – (518) 458-8908
Moore Insurance – 21 Everett Rd – Albany, NY 12205 – (518) 273-9501
Geico Insurance – – Albany, NY 12207 – (518) 433-1089
Bradley Agency – 1826 Western Ave – Albany, NY 12203 – (518) 452-2736
New York insurance quotes

Captive Insurance Agents

These agents can only place business with one company and examples are State Farm, AAA and Liberty Mutual. These agents are unable to compare other company’s rates so they are skilled at selling on more than just price. Captive agents are very knowledgeable in insurance sales which can be an advantage.

The following is a list of captive insurance agents in Albany who can help you get rate quotes.

State Farm Insurance – 4 Tower Pl # 3526 – Albany, NY 12203 – (518) 489-0294
Allstate Insurance Co – 80 Wolf Rd # 306 – Albany, NY 12205 – (518) 459-1234
Liberty Mutual Insurance – 1770 Central Ave – Albany, NY 12205 – (518) 456-8054

To view a complete directory of Albany captive insurance agencies, view this link.

Picking a car insurance agent requires more thought than just the bottom line cost. Any agent should be forthright in answering these questions:

  • Who is covered by the car insurance policy?
  • How much can you save by raising your physical damage deductibles?
  • If they are an independent agency, which companies do they recommend?
  • Can they give you a list of client referrals?
  • Are there any discounts that you might be missing?
  • Do clients work directly with the agent or are most inquiries handled by a CSR?
  • Do they have any clout with companies to ensure a fair claim settlement?

Once you have good answers to all your questions and an affordable coverage quote, it’s possible that you found an insurance agent that is a good match to adequately provide car insurance. But keep in mind consumers can cancel your coverage for any reason so never feel that you’re stuck with any particular company with no way to switch.

Are you falling for claims of savings?

Car insurance companies such as State Farm and Allstate constantly bombard you with ads in print and on television. They all seem to have a common claim that you can save if you switch to their company. How can each company claim to save you money?

All the different companies have a certain “appetite” for the type of customer that is profitable for them. A good example of a desirable insured could be between the ages of 40 and 55, insures multiple vehicles, and drives less than 10,000 miles a year. A customer getting a price quote who matches those parameters will get the preferred rates and therefore will pay quite a bit less when switching companies.

Potential customers who don’t qualify for this ideal profile will have to pay higher prices and this can result in business going elsewhere. The ad wording is “drivers who switch” but not “drivers who get quotes” save that kind of money. This is how companies can claim big savings.

Because of the profiling, drivers must get a wide range of price quotes. It’s impossible to know the company that will provide you with the cheapest rates.

Additional car insurance links

Additional information is available on the website for the New York Department of Financial Services located here. Visitors are able to find out which companies have the most complaints, read industry bulletins, learn about insurance regulations, and read consumer alerts.

Car insurance coverages and their meanings

Having a good grasp of your policy aids in choosing appropriate coverage and proper limits and deductibles. Policy terminology can be confusing and even agents have difficulty translating policy wording. Shown next are typical coverage types offered by car insurance companies.

Collision – Collision insurance covers damage to your vehicle resulting from a collision with an object or car. A deductible applies then the remaining damage will be paid by your insurance company.

Collision can pay for things like hitting a parking meter, rolling your car and hitting a mailbox. Collision is rather expensive coverage, so consider dropping it from vehicles that are 8 years or older. It’s also possible to increase the deductible to bring the cost down.

Auto liability – This coverage will cover damages or injuries you inflict on other’s property or people by causing an accident. Split limit liability has three limits of coverage: bodily injury for each person injured, bodily injury for the entire accident and a property damage limit. You might see values of 50/100/50 which stand for a limit of $50,000 per injured person, a total of $100,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and $50,000 of coverage for damaged propery. Occasionally you may see one number which is a combined single limit which limits claims to one amount without having the split limit caps.

New York insurance quotes

Liability can pay for things such as funeral expenses, legal defense fees, loss of income and medical expenses. How much liability should you purchase? That is a personal decision, but buy as large an amount as possible. New York state law requires minimum liability limits of 25,000/50,000/10,000 but it’s recommended drivers buy better liability coverage.

Uninsured Motorist or Underinsured Motorist insurance – This protects you and your vehicle’s occupants from other drivers when they are uninsured or don’t have enough coverage. This coverage pays for injuries to you and your family and damage to your vehicle.

Because many people only carry the minimum required liability limits (25/50/10 in New York), their liability coverage can quickly be exhausted. That’s why carrying high Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage should not be overlooked. Frequently the UM/UIM limits are similar to your liability insurance amounts.

Insurance for medical payments – Coverage for medical payments and/or PIP reimburse you for short-term medical expenses for chiropractic care, ambulance fees, nursing services and EMT expenses. The coverages can be used in conjunction with a health insurance policy or if you do not have health coverage. Coverage applies to you and your occupants as well as getting struck while a pedestrian. Personal injury protection coverage is not available in all states but can be used in place of medical payments coverage

Comprehensive coverage (or Other than Collision) – This will pay to fix damage OTHER than collision with another vehicle or object. A deductible will apply then your comprehensive coverage will pay.

Comprehensive can pay for claims such as damage from a tornado or hurricane, falling objects and a broken windshield. The highest amount you’ll receive from a claim is the market value of your vehicle, so if the vehicle is not worth much consider removing comprehensive coverage.

What is YOUR best insurance company?

Cheaper car insurance is definitely available both online and with local Albany insurance agents, and you need to price shop both so you have a total pricing picture. There are still a few companies who do not offer online quoting and many times these small, regional companies only sell through independent insurance agents.

We’ve covered a lot of ways to reduce car insurance prices online. The key concept to understand is the more times you quote, the better chance you’ll have of finding lower rates. Drivers may discover the lowest rates come from a smaller regional carrier. These companies may cover specific market segments cheaper than the large multi-state companies such as State Farm or Progressive.

When you buy insurance online, do not buy lower coverage limits just to save a few bucks. There are a lot of situations where an insured dropped comprehensive coverage or liability limits and found out when filing a claim that saving that couple of dollars actually costed them tens of thousands. The proper strategy is to buy the best coverage you can find at a price you can afford while still protecting your assets.