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UPDATED: Mar 13, 2020
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When it’s time to start looking for cheap car insurance quotes drivers certainly have plenty of places to look. You can get quotes online, which is the preferred method for many people or you can contact an independent agency or local area. You can even contact insurance companies directly via the phone or the web.
The best place to start for online car insurance quotes is by entering your ZIP code into FREE search tool on this page!
With so many sources of car insurance quotes the question becomes, “What is the best place to look?” Unfortunately, that’s a question easier asked than answered. Much of what you determine is best will be influenced by your own preferences. If you prefer to shop online, we can help point you in the right direction.
The Importance of Shopping Around
Before we get to the best places to buy cheap car insurance online we should first discuss the importance of shopping. It’s no secret that many people enjoy shopping for clothes, electronics, household products, etc. However, because insurance tends to be confusing and uninteresting, we tend to not be as enthusiastic about shopping for the best policy.
According to the state of Texas, a study conducted by their Office of Public Insurance Counsel (OPIC) backs up the assertion that shopping around for auto insurance policies is a good idea. Their data showed that consumers who stay with the same insurance provider year after year without doing any investigation are more likely to pay more than they have to.
This actually makes complete sense when you consider the fact that insurance rates fluctuate on an annual basis. The company that was the cheapest in 2011 may no longer be in 2012. Furthermore, your particular carrier may change the way it determines rates, negatively affecting what you pay.
Using a Free Quote Tool
In discussing the best places to get online quotes for rates, we’ll begin by talking about using free quote tools like the one on this page. We believe ours is the best, for obvious reasons, but we also believe the general idea of using an online tool is great.
The main advantage of this type of tool is the fact that it allows you to get multiple quotes from a bunch of different car insurance providers without having to contact each one separately. In the old way of doing things drivers would have to fill out a quote form for every individual carrier they contacted. Either that or they have to submit to a lengthy phone interview.
When you use an online tool for getting quotes, the website collects your information once, something that automatically speeds up the process. Then the site sends that information to multiple insurance companies who can then use it to create quotes.
There is no quicker or easier way to get as many quotes as you want without all the hassle on your end when you use an online quote tool.
Useful Information with Your Quotes
Sir Francis Bacon once said, “Knowledge is power.” Although Sir Bacon was dealing with things much more philosophical than your car insurance, his statement is true in this arena nonetheless.
The more information you have regarding car insurance, the better equipped you are to make good decisions.
To that end, some Internet quote sites, like the one you’re on now; provide a ton of useful information by way of well-written and topic-specific articles. With a little bit of browsing you’ll be able to find answers to your questions about insuring your teens, how much coverage is enough, and how to deal with car insurance companies after an accident.
When you take advantage of this type of information, you are strengthening your position as a car insurance customer. You’ll be able to use what you glean to make sure you’re purchasing adequate coverage, not paying too much, and using the right company to meet your needs.
Some Insurance Companies to Consider
If you decide to purchase your auto insurance online, there are a couple of things to consider. First is the choice of whether to purchase directly from an insurance carrier or go through an agent. Both are possible with the online model.
Since purchasing directly from a carrier is the least expensive option, we assume most drivers will choose to go that route. That said; there are a couple of insurance companies that pioneered the online sales model. They would be the ones to check out first.
Progressive Insurance is one of the largest car insurance providers in the United States. According to Bloomberg Businessweek the company dates its history back to 1937 when it was established under the name Progressive Corporation.
major insurance company to launch a website, the first to offer free comparisons between its own policies and competitors, and the first to launch a fleet of quick response vehicles. Their innovation certainly makes them worthy of a look.
Another company you might consider for purchasing car insurance online is Esurance. According to Hoover’s, Esurance is a pioneer in the field of offering car insurance direct to consumers through an online sales model. If you’ve seen their commercials, you know the company markets themselves as a modern insurance company for modern technology.
While Esurance certainly isn’t the biggest car insurance company on the planet, Hoover’s says they are one of the industry leaders in selling policies online. They may be the only company that allows you to purchase a policy without ever speaking to human representative. Of course, you do have the option of speaking to someone first if you so desire.
Other Companies You May Want to Check
Though Progressive and Esurance readily come to mind when talking about buying car insurance online, they aren’t the only players in the game. Most of the nation’s major car insurance providers offer online quotes and policy purchase options. Those that don’t still have an Internet presence that allows consumers to do their research prior to purchasing.
You may want to consider checking out some of these companies including Allstate, Geico, Nationwide, State Farm, USAA, 21st Century, and Travelers.
Shopping around is extremely important if you want the best policy at the best price.
How to Compare Policies
In the wrapping all this up let’s discuss how to compare policies when you’re shopping. The first thing to look at is how much each company offers in terms of liability insurance. Some will pitch a quote with only the minimum amount required by state law; others will bump up those minimums significantly.
If you don’t know what the minimums are in your state, you can always check with your local DMV office or look it up online. As an example, New Hampshire’s Insurance Department offers free PDF documentation for download on their website. You can find all the information you need about liability insurance in the Granite State.
Next, you’ll want to compare how much each company will charge you for collision and comprehensive coverage. This tends to be where the greatest fluctuation of prices occurs. As part of that comparison, be sure to pay attention to annual deductibles.
A deductible is the amount of money you agree to pay toward repairing or replacing your vehicle after an accident.
If you’re willing to accept higher deductibles on you coverage, you will be rewarded with a lower monthly rate in return. The opposite is true if you choose to lower your deductible, as your rates will become higher.
Pay Attention to Billing Options
Lastly, you’ll want to take a serious look at the various payment options different insurance companies are offering. Most of us probably like the idea of making monthly installments that fit well within a limited budget. Unfortunately, this tends to be the most expensive way to pay for car insurance.
Car insurance companies are willing to give you a break in price if you will pay your entire premium at the start of your policy. If you choose to pay in installments you’ll not only pay a higher rate, but there will be added surcharges and fees.
The more installment payments you make, the more expensive your insurance will be overall.
Once you’re comfortable with a couple of quotes from different companies use them to try to get a better price. For example, contact the company that offered the highest quote and give them the price of the lowest quote to see if they’ll come down. You might be surprised how much flexibility there is once you start playing one insurance company against together.
Now that you know a little bit about the best places to find online auto insurance quotes and how to compare them, you’re ready to get out there and start searching for a new policy. Be sure to take your time, do your homework, and not allow yourself to be pressured into a decision you don’t want to make. Remember that you’re talking about your car and your money; the policy you choose is entirely up to you.
Get started in your search for car insurance quotes right now by entering your ZIP code into our FREE search tool!