It goes without saying that auto insurance companies don’t want customers comparing rates. Consumers who get price quotes annually will presumably move their business because there is a good chance of finding a lower-cost company. A recent auto insurance study revealed that people who shopped around saved over $850 each year compared to policyholders who don’t regularly compare prices.
If finding the most affordable auto insurance is your ultimate goal, then having some insight into the best ways to find and compare coverages can help you succeed in finding affordable rates.
Really, the only way to find cheaper prices for car insurance rates in Fresno is to regularly compare quotes from providers in California. Price quotes can be compared by following these steps.
- Step 1: Get an understanding of how companies price auto insurance and the measures you can take to keep rates in check. Many rating criteria that are responsible for high rates like accidents, traffic tickets, and an unfavorable credit rating can be amended by improving your driving habits or financial responsibility. Keep reading for additional tips to help reduce premium rates and get bigger discounts that may have been overlooked.
- Step 2: Compare rates from exclusive agents, independent agents, and direct providers. Direct companies and exclusive agencies can provide rates from one company like GEICO and State Farm, while independent agents can give you price quotes for a wide range of companies.
- Step 3: Compare the new rate quotes to your existing rates to see if switching to a new carrier will save money. If you find a lower rate quote and decide to switch, make sure coverage is continuous and does not lapse.
- Step 4: Tell your current company of your intent to cancel your existing policy and submit the signed application along with the required initial payment to the new company. Make sure you keep the new certificate verifying coverage somewhere easily accessible.
One key aspect of rate comparisons is to try to use similar deductibles and liability limits on every price quote and and to get price estimates from as many companies as you can. This provides an accurate price comparison and the best price selection.
Locating the most cost-effective auto insurance policy in Fresno is actually not that difficult if you follow our advice. If you have a policy now, you will definitely be able to get lower rates using this strategy. Although California vehicle owners do need to know the way companies determine how much to charge because rates are impacted by many factors.
Smart Buyers Know How to Quote Auto Insurance Cheaper
Many factors are used in the calculation when pricing auto insurance. Some are pretty understandable like a motor vehicle report, but some are not quite as obvious like where you live or your commute time.
- Prevent your car from being stolen – Driving a car with a theft deterrent system can help bring down rates. Theft deterrent systems like vehicle immobilizer systems, OnStar, and tracking devices like LoJack all hinder car theft.
- Don’t cut corners with liability insurance – A critical coverage on your policy, liability insurance is the coverage that protects you if ever you are determined to be liable for personal injury or accident damage. Your liability coverage provides legal defense to defend your case. This coverage is very inexpensive when compared with rates for comp and collision, so do not cut corners here.
- Commute or pleasure use – Driving more miles each year the higher your rates will be. Many insurance companies calculate rates based upon how much you drive. Cars and trucks that sit idle most of the time receive lower rates than cars that get driven a lot. An incorrectly rated Stratus may be costing you higher rates. It’s a good idea to make sure your auto insurance coverage reflects the correct usage, because improper ratings can cost you money.
- Where you call home plays a part – Choosing to live in a small town is a good thing when shopping for auto insurance. Drivers in populated areas have congested traffic and more time behind the wheel. Lower population translates into fewer accident claims in addition to lower liability claims.
When comparison shopping, there are several ways to compare rate quotes from many different California insurance companies. The best method to find cheaper Dodge Stratus rates is simply to get online rate quotes.
Comparison shopping rates online is easy and it makes it a waste of time to drive around to insurance agents’ offices. Shopping for auto insurance online makes this process obsolete unless you’re the type of person who wants the personal advice only provided by licensed Fresno agents. It is possible to comparison shop online and have a local agent actually service the policy. Keep in mind that more quotes helps you find more affordable insurance.
The companies shown below provide price quotes in California. In order to find the best cheap car insurance in Fresno, we recommend you visit as many as you can in order to get a fair rate comparison.
Insuring your Dodge Stratus just makes sense
Even though Fresno Stratus insurance rates can get expensive, insurance serves an important purpose.
- Most states have compulsory liability insurance requirements which means state laws require a specific level of liability in order to drive the car. In California these limits are 15/30/5 which means you must have $15,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $30,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and $5,000 of property damage coverage.
- If you have a loan on your Dodge Stratus, it’s guaranteed your bank will require that you have comprehensive coverage to guarantee loan repayment. If you do not pay your insurance premiums, the bank or lender will purchase a policy for your Dodge at an extremely high rate and force you to reimburse them for it.
- Insurance safeguards both your car and your assets. It also can pay for most medical and hospital costs incurred in an accident. Liability insurance will also pay attorney fees if someone files suit against you as the result of an accident. If you receive damage to your vehicle caused by a storm or accident, collision and comprehensive coverages will cover the repair costs.
The benefits of insuring your car outweigh the cost, especially when you need to use it. The average driver in America is overpaying more than $869 every year so you should quote rates once a year at a minimum to be sure current rates are still competitive.
Cheaper rates with these money saving discounts
Insuring your vehicles can cost a lot, but you might already qualify for some discounts that may help make it more affordable. Many of these discounts will be applied automatically at the time of purchase, but occasionally some discounts must be asked about before you get the savings.
- Defensive Driving Course – Participating in a class that teaches defensive driver techniques may get you a small discount depending on where you live.
- Save with More Vehicles Insured – Insuring multiple cars with the same company could earn a price break for each car.
- Claim-Free Discount – Claim-free drivers can earn big discounts when compared with policyholders that have many claims.
- Homeowners Savings – Just being a homeowner can get you a discount because maintaining a house is proof that your finances are in order.
- Drivers Ed for Students – Teen drivers should complete a driver education course if it’s offered in school.
- Air Bags and Passive Restraints – Vehicles equipped with air bags or automatic seat belts can qualify for discounts of 25 to 30%.
Drivers should understand that some credits don’t apply to your bottom line cost. Some only apply to specific coverage prices like collision or personal injury protection. Just because you may think adding up those discounts means a free policy, nobody gets a free ride.
A few popular companies and some of the discounts can be read below.
- State Farm discounts include good student, anti-theft, Steer Clear safe driver discount, driver’s education, and multiple autos.
- GEICO may have discounts that include daytime running lights, defensive driver, driver training, good student, emergency military deployment, federal employee, and anti-lock brakes.
- Allstate offers discounts for new car, premier discount, good student, economy car, resident student, utility vehicle, and anti-lock brakes.
- SAFECO offers premium reductions for teen safe driver, drive less, multi-car, teen safety rewards, anti-theft, bundle discounts, and anti-lock brakes.
- Farm Bureau has discounts for multi-policy, youthful driver, safe driver, 55 and retired, renewal discount, good student, and multi-vehicle.
- Progressive includes discounts for continuous coverage, homeowner, good student, online quote discount, online signing, multi-vehicle, and multi-policy.
- AAA may offer discounts for good student, education and occupation, multi-policy, AAA membership discount, and pay-in-full.
Before you buy a policy, ask each company or agent which discounts you qualify for. Some of the earlier mentioned discounts may not apply to policyholders in every state. To choose providers with the best discounts in California, click here.
Insurance agencies can give valuable advice
Some consumers prefer to buy from a local agent and doing so can bring peace of mind One of the best bonuses of getting online price quotes is that you can obtain cheaper car insurance rates and still choose a local agent.
Once you complete this simple form, the coverage information is instantly submitted to insurance agents in Fresno who can give free rate quotes for your coverage. It’s much easier because you don’t need to even leave your home because prices are sent to you instantly. Get lower rates without a big time investment. If you need to compare rates for a specific company, don’t hesitate to navigate to their website to submit a rate quote request.
Finding the right insurance company should depend on more than just a cheap price. Below are some questions you should ask.
- What companies can they write with?
- Are claims handled at the agent’s location?
- Does the agency support the community they serve?
- Does the agency have a good rating with the Better Business Bureau?
- How long has their agency been in business in Fresno?
- Can you contact them at any time?
- Do the coverages you’re quoting properly cover your vehicle?
- How does the company pay claims for a total loss?
Different types of Fresno auto insurance agents
When researching an insurance agent, there are two different types of agencies that you can choose from. Auto insurance agents in Fresno can either be exclusive or independent (non-exclusive).
Agents in the exclusive channel have only one company to place business with and some examples include Allstate, Farmers Insurance, State Farm, and AAA. They generally cannot shop your coverage around so it’s a take it or leave it situation. Exclusive agents receive a lot of sales training on their products and sales techniques which helps overcome the inability to quote other rates.
Shown below are Fresno exclusive insurance agents willing to provide price quote information.
Independent Auto Insurance Agencies
Agents that choose to be independent are normally appointed by many insurers and that is an advantage because they can write policies with an assortment of companies and get the cheapest rates. If your premiums go up, they simply switch companies in-house and you can keep the same agent. When comparing rates, we highly recommend that you include rate quotes from multiple independent agents to get the best comparison.
Below are independent insurance agents in Fresno that are able to give comparison quotes.
Which is the best insurance?
When buying your policy for your vehicles, there really is no “perfect” insurance plan. Every situation is different so your insurance should reflect that
For example, these questions might help in determining if you might need an agent’s assistance.
- What can I do if my company denied a claim?
- How much liability insurance is required?
- Should I file a claim if it’s only slightly more than my deductible?
- Can my teen drive my company car?
- Can I drive in Mexico and have coverage?
- Does my medical payments coverage pay my health insurance deductible?
- Is my Dodge Stratus covered for flood damage?
- What is motorclub and do I need it?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions but you think they might apply to your situation, then you may want to think about talking to a licensed insurance agent. If you don’t have a local agent, fill out this quick form or you can go here for a list of companies in your area.
Don’t give up on cheap premiums
As you go through the steps to switch your coverage, it’s very important that you do not buy lower coverage limits just to save a few bucks. In many instances, someone dropped physical damage coverage only to find out that the few dollars in savings costed them thousands. The ultimate goal is to get the best coverage possible at the best price while still protecting your assets.
Budget-conscious Dodge Stratus insurance can be found on the web as well as from insurance agents, and you need to price shop both to have the best chance of lowering rates. Some insurance providers may not offer online quoting and usually these small insurance companies only sell coverage through independent insurance agencies.
Additional detailed information can be found in these articles:
- Safety Tips for Teen Drivers (Insurance Information Institute)
- What Insurance is Cheapest for a 20 Year Old Female in Fresno? (FAQ)
- Electronic Stability Control FAQ (iihs.org)
- Five Steps to Filing an Auto Insurance Claim (Insurance Information Institute)