Car Insurance – Are You Stumped About Choosing a Provider?

In your search for affordable auto insurance, you’ll find that many mainstream car insurance providers service motorists in Tucson. You might even recognize some of these from television ads or the local yellow pages in Tucson… MetLife, Bristol West, Farmers, Travelers, Safeco, GMAC, Progressive, Allstate, Foremost, Colorado Casualty, etc.

With so many providers to choose from, how will you know which company can best serve your needs? There’s really no way of knowing unless you take time to compare at least 10 or more Tucson providers. You can’t rely on friends or relatives to recommend the best provider for you. Every person’s situation differs from the next, and providers realize this truth.

Why Should You Compare Providers?

Auto insurance agencies use various factors to determine their rates, and the rates are not set by any outside government agency or other organization. Tucson providers have the freedom to charge what they want based on certain risk factors. For example, you might see one company advertising good rates for high risk drivers. Another provider might shun high risk drivers and jack up their rates extremely high for those who have blemishes on their driving record. One company might charge outrageous fees for a teen driver while another caters to the younger generation of motorists.

As you can see, choosing a provider is a matter of simple comparison to find which company favors your situation and driving habits. Thankfully, you can use the Web as a quote comparison tool as well as a source for research. You’ll find a number of quote comparison websites that enable you to compare anywhere from 10 to 50 car insurance providers in Tucson! You can enter your car and driving history data only once to receive numerous quotes immediately, by e-mail or by phone. It only takes a few minutes of your time to narrow your choices.

Time to Research Further

Once you’ve found a few providers that seem to offer the best rates, use the Web for further research. Contact each company by phone or e-mail to ask about possible discounts and to be sure you can lock in a quote according to what the site offered. Then, use car insurance rating sites to find out which companies are financially sound. You might be surprised at the results. Rating services such as A.M. Best offer ratings based on a provider’s ability to fulfill its claims each year. This is important because some providers give very cheap quotes up front but later on, will raise those prices or even go out of business due to a loss in profits. They cannot handle the claims that are pouring in due to not charging enough. Their customers suddenly find themselves without insurance or paying very high premiums.

Also, check with Better Business Bureau and the state of Arizona’s Department of Insurance to see if the provider has an unusually high number of customer complaints.

Auto Insurance Reviews – Reviews of Top Car Insurance Companies

It is very important to conduct a thorough auto insurance review when trying to find out which insurer will be the top car insurance company to meet your specific needs. Auto insurance companies throughout the nation provide essentially the same products. Some do offer slightly different policy options, but because there is regulation in auto insurance, there is little actual difference from a policy at one company to another. However, the companies themselves can differ greatly. Some are more financially stable than others, some do better at customer service, some have better prices with more discounts available and still others are better at claims handling.

Financial Reviews Of Top Car Insurance Companies

Doing a review of insurance companies is very important if you are in the market for car insurance. The most important thing to review is the company’s financial stability. This can easily be done by finding out the rating the insurer was given by one of the major independent insurance ratings companies like Moody’s, A.M. Best or Weiss Ratings.

Below is a review of several of the top car insurance companies in the country in regards to their financial stability. The rating given by A.M. Best is beside their name. All these companies received ratings that are considered to be financially stable with a positive outlook for the future. This indicates that they can be expected to be able to meet their financial obligations and be around for quite a while.

Liberty Mutual Insurance: A

Unitrin Insurance: A

Esurance: A-

Sentry Insurance: A+

Allstate Insurance: A+

SF Fire and Casualty: A+

Nationwide Insurance: A+

Progressive Insurance: A+

AIG Casualty: A+

GEICO: A++

There are things to keep in mind. Some of these companies may operate under slightly different names in certain states. It may be to your benefit to check the company’s full name as it is used in your state to be sure that the rating is the same. Also ratings can change at any time, so it is important to check them at least as often as you get quotes.

Customer service is another aspect of insurance companies that can be very different from one state to another and one year to another. Do an online search for complaints made to your state department of insurance concerning the company in question. You can also do an online search for information on customer service as it pertains to the company you are reviewing. This is also a great way to get information on claims handling and speed.

Since insurance is such a personalized financial product, the only way to review the top companies in terms of price is to get quotes on your own individual insurance needs. To do so quickly and easily, you can use an online quote tool. Such tools are free to use and in return for several minutes of your time answering questions; you’ll be rewarded with multiple quotes from top insurers in your area.

Car Insurance Rates Increase During a Hard Market

The car insurance marketplace periodically changes from a “soft” market to a “hard” market. What is happening right now in Florida is an excellent example. After years of a soft market as indicated by reduced rates and relaxed rules a hard market now exists. Rates are on the rise and rules for qualifying are strict. Most consumers will experience a rate increase. Shopping and switching companies to maintain or lower rates will be more challenging in 2010 for Florida drivers. Hard and soft markets periodically shift from one to the other in all states. Unfortunately for Florida drivers they are now experiencing a shift away from a soft market.

The primary culprit responsible for the current market in Florida is Fraud. Companies are adjusting rates and rules to compensate. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage is the main target for phony claims in Florida. $10,000 of this coverage is mandatory in the state. PIP pays policyholders and their household residents for bodily injuries after an accident. Policyholders in Florida receive PIP benefits from their own policy regardless of fault in an accident. Fraud is a contributing factor in a hard market for any state not just Florida.

Consumers can expect increased underwriting (investigation) when purchasing a new car insurance policy during a hard market. Progressive now requires a photo ID for Florida applicants to verify identity for a PIP policy. Infinity insurance company will now conduct phone calls to Florida policyholders to verify application information. A variety of new measures is underway by most companies to combat fraud in the Sunshine state. Until these counter measures begin to reduce fraud the current market condition will persist.

The last hard market in Florida occurred in 2000 – 2001. This is a time when a conservative and well-informed insurance company can gain market share from competitors. Companies that demonstrate rate stability during this hard market will be rewarded with new customers and retain existing ones. Consumers who seek out these companies will reduce their car insurance cost over the long term.

During the last hard market in Florida, Mercury Insurance Group was a “stand out” company providing excellent value. They have provided rate stability for Florida drivers ever since and will likely grow during this market. Infinity insurance company is poised to be prominent this time around. There is good value in a hard market for those who shop thoroughly. The two companies mentioned here would not be the only ones.

Florida drivers should expect a rate increase at their next car insurance renewal. Fraud associated with PIP coverage in Florida has always been problematic and is on the rise. Sensible rates from quality companies are available in a hard market for those who shop thoroughly. This basic principal applies in any state where you may reside.

Cheap Car Insurance For Young Drivers – How Teens Can Get a Better Auto Insurance Rate

It is the dream of every young teenager to get his first car as it signifies a big step of independence in his life. Now he or she no longer has to depend on their parents to drive them to school or any other place such as a high school football game or the prom. It also gives them the independence to progress in their social life and start dating, but along with the car comes responsibility and your job as a parent is to make sure that they are protected as much as possible and part of that protection is being sure that they are fully insured on their vehicle, but what are the best ways to get them the best auto insurance policy at the lowest price possible. You also know that since they are young that will also be used against them when the car insurance company is tallying up their monthly rate, but there are some things that they could do to ensure that they can get insured at a discounted rate and we will discuss them here in the next few paragraphs.

One of the most overlooked factors for teenagers when they are applying for car insurance policy is how well they do in school. Believe it or not, a high school student’s grades are considered very important when they are trying to get insured. The broker will ask to take a look at your grades and if he sees a good grade point average he will know that you have already learned some responsibility in your life and are more inclined to drive with the same responsibility on the road.

Another way they can get cheap car insurance for young drivers is for the parents get their teen insured under their own car insurance policy. This way your son or daughter will get a better deal as part of a group discount. Just make sure that when you do get insured for the very first time that you keep driving safely and responsibly so that you build a good record which will come in very handy in the future just in case you want to get insured again under another company’s policy.