We made it Michigan! Bye-bye 2020, hello 2021. Now is the perfect time to review your auto insurance policy. You may never have considered this before, but you should make it a point to review your car insurance policy regularly. It may seem like a weird thing to do, but you and your needs are changing all of the time. Use this list to make sure you have the right coverage and insurer for all your auto needs.
When To Review Your Auto Insurance Policy
1. Are There New Drivers in Your House?
Do you have a child who has recently gotten their driver’s license? All drivers in your home should be listed on your auto policy. Teen drivers raise your insurance rates, but there are often discounts for good grades, attending college, and more.
If someone who lives in your house gets into an accident and they’re not listed on your auto policy, your insurance may not cover your claim. All potential drivers should be listed on your policy to ensure any claims will be covered.
2. Did You Buy or Sell a Car?
The purchase or sale of a car will affect your rates. Having a car on your insurance that’s been sold will cost you. If you’ve recently gotten a new car, you could be eligible for discounts. If it’s safer or has particular safety features your previous car didn’t have, then you may be able to lower your rate.
You may also be able to bundle multiple vehicles under one policy. Be sure to ask your Michigan agent about discounts you may be eligible for during your auto policy review.
3. Have You Moved?
Where you live ties into how much you pay for your auto policy. If you’ve moved to a different part of town or even another city in Michigan, your risk of theft and vandalism may have increased or dropped. Your insurer will factor this in when calculating your auto policy.
Another risk you may not have considered when moving is the weather. Flooding, tornadoes, hurricanes, wind, hail, and other weather phenomena can hurt your rates. You may also want to increase your comprehensive coverage to account for the new risks.
Either way, if you’ve moved or are planning on moving, you should review with your agent to determine how it may affect what you pay for your auto policy.
4. Creeping Prices
Have you noticed that your rate has been slowly increasing? Some companies make a habit of gradually raising rates over time. They might give you reasons like “changing factors” or other vague justifications. Review your past auto policies to see if you noticed a steady rise over time.
If you notice changes you don’t understand, you should contact your insurance company to see what might be happening. We suggest you ask your Michigan agent to shop around for better rates when this happens.
5. Does Your Coverage Meet Mandated Minimums?
States usually have required minimum coverage for property damage and bodily injury liability. These liability coverages are a safeguard for when you’re found at fault for an accident. Most states also require uninsured motorist coverage. These minimum coverage requisites vary from state to state.
Review with your agent to see what they are in your state to ensure you’re adequately covered. Your Michigan agent may advise you to invest in coverage that goes beyond the minimums to protect you from any potential lawsuits.
6. Additional Michigan State Requirements:
If you choose lower PIP limits you need to requalify at each renewal. The state of Michigan has put this rule into place to make sure that with ever-changing circumstances, you have the coverage you are qualified for.
If you have a new person in the house and they are not qualified you might be at risk of losing your lower rate. Please make sure to review and re-sign any documents your carrier sends. Compass is here to help walk you through these steps. If you are a client and have questions, we have staff that is trained to make sure your auto policy stays relevant, the way you intended.
7. Thinking About Deductibles
A deductible can add insult to injury when you have a car accident, but it also has an impact on what you pay every month. If you are doing well financially and have money in the bank, you may want to raise your deductible and lower monthly fees.
Conversely, if your funds are low, you may want to lower your deductible for now so you won’t get caught in a bind if you have an accident. Your Michigan agent can help you weigh the risks and benefits.
8. Hidden Risks – Parking
You may never have thought about it, but where you park your car might be costing you. Parking your car on the street may cost you more than putting it in the garage. Parking in a lot or driveway could also jack up your premium, especially if there are many break-ins or frequent vandalism.
If you’ve started parking your car somewhere new, you should let your insurance company know. Otherwise, you may end up with penalties and/or denied claims when it hurts the most.
9. Claims Review
A periodic review of past claims is worth your while. You should always check to make sure these are accurate because inaccurate auto claims can have a negative impact on your premium.
Going Above and Beyond
We reviewed all of the required stuff, but auto insurance doesn’t end there. You can save yourself more money by bundling or provide an extra cushion by getting an umbrella policy.
Here are a few final points to consider:
- Do you want to protect yourself with more liability coverage through an umbrella policy?
- Do you know what your claims process is like and what’s included?
- Do you have no-fault auto coverage and personal injury protection?
- Are you bundling to get the best prices and utilizing all your available discounts?
Our auto insurance policy review list is just a start. It never hurts to have a trusted, local Michigan agent take a look to ensure you’ve got the best coverage at the best price to fit your needs.
At Compass Insurance Agency, we work with about 20 providers to get you the best coverage, premiums, and discounts.
See How Much You Can Save On Your Auto Insurance
We spend the winters in Florida and the Jeep sets home in Michigan in the garage for three months. Is it possible to lower the cost of coverage during that period?