While some places in the US have seen steady or even decreasing car insurance rates in recent years, here in Chicago, premiums are on the rise. The average cost hovers around $1,100 per year or $92 per month.
High premiums are sometimes out of your control. For instance, your age, gender, zip code, and severe weather events in your area affect what you pay, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Fortunately, if your premiums are higher than you think they should be, you still have several ways to bring your costs down.
- Choose your car wisely: In general, vehicles that cost more to purchase are also more expensive to insure. Run an insurance cost estimate before buying a new vehicle so you know what you’re getting yourself into.
- Reduce your coverage: Illinois has minimum requirements for car insurance—$25,000 bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident, and $20,000 property damage liability—but you are not required to have personal liability, collision, or comprehensive. Try lowering your coverage in different areas to see how it affects your premiums.
- Raise your deductible: If your deductible is set to $500, but you can handle a $1,000 loss following an accident, change your coverage to save on car insurance premiums.
- Combine policies: Do you have renter’s or homeowner’s insurance with a company that also offers car insurance? See if you qualify for a rate cut by bundling your policies.
- Claim discounts: Insurance companies offer numerous discounts to help their policyholders save. These may include being a safe driver, getting good grades, having multiple cars covered, going paperless, and more. Call your provider to find out what discounts you may qualify for because they may not apply unless you ask.
- Pay by the mile: Illinois is one of seven states that offer pay-per-mile car insurance. If you drive less than the national average of 12,000 miles per year, you could save by making this change.
- Pay semi-annually: You may have the option to pay premiums in monthly installments or one lump sum every six months. While paying six months’ worth of insurance is more money out of your pocket upfront, you may avoid installment fees in the process.
- Compare rates often: Carriers entice drivers with loyalty perks, but it’s still wise to check car insurance quotes once a year. Identical policies can vary widely in price, so focus on keeping your premiums low to maximize your savings over time. With useful online tools, you can compare multiple quotes in minutes without hurting your credit score.
You may dislike paying for car insurance, but you’ll be glad you have it if you ever get in an accident. B&L Automotive Repairs can help you file a claim to get you the money you’re entitled to. To learn more, or to request a collision repair estimate, bring your car to our Chicago collision repair shop or call us at (773) 463-1622.