7 ways to get cheaper car insurance, no matter which company you use

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  • The best way to get cheap car insurance may be to comparison shop for multiple quotes.
  • However, there are a few strategies, you can use, too, starting with asking your car insurance agent about discounts you may be eligible for.
  • You can also check out local and regional car insurance providers for cheaper rates, and see if any trade associations you belong to offer member discounts.
  • Check out our partner Savvy — a free tool that lets you compare car insurance quotes in minutes  »

Everyone likes to save money on car insurance.

Like most types of insurance, your monthly car insurance premium (the cost you pay to keep your coverage) depends on multiple factors like where you live, what type of car you drive, and your driving history. That means everyone pays a slightly different amount for coverage, and that price varies by insurance carrier.

However, there are a few strategies you can try to get the cheapest car insurance rates, no matter which company you use. Below, Snejina Zacharia, founder and CEO of Insurify, tells Business Insider about additional ways drivers can save money on car insurance, from simply asking for a discount to exploring pay-per-mile insurance.

If none of these work, though, it may be time to switch auto insurance carriers. Comparison shop and get as many quotes as possible to secure the best rates. (You can start with Business Insider's picks for the best car insurance companies).

Ways to get the cheapest car insurance rates

1. Ask your car insurance provider for a discount

If you encounter financial difficulty and cannot afford your car insurance, contact your car insurance agent. Ask for discounts or a payment forbearance. During the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, many auto insurance carriers gave drivers discounts and rebates.

2. Cancel, suspend, or put your car insurance on hold

Zacharia suggested canceling, suspending, or putting your car insurance on hold to save money if you have an out-of-use vehicle — something that's become more common during quarantine and remote work. 

3. Put your car in storage

If you have a spare car, putting it in "storage" may help. If you keep the car in storage for 30 days or more and are not driving at all, you may be able to suspend your liability and collision coverages, Zacharia says. This means you'll be able to eliminate some types of coverage from your policy (liability and collision are driving-related coverages that you wouldn't need for a car in storage) but it doesn't mean you can be without coverage completely.

Comprehensive or "full" coverage helps pay to repair vehicle damage from things like theft, fire, or hail, all scenarios that are still possible while your vehicle is in storage. However, if you are financing the vehicle in storage, Zacharia says your auto lender may require both collision and comprehensive coverage until the loan is paid off.

4. Reduce your coverage to the minimum required by your state

Almost every state requires liability insurance, but some don't require much more. Zacharia says you may notice a lower premium if you pare down your policy to the state minimum. Also, you prevent yourself from having a lapse in coverage that could result in higher insurance costs in the future.

5. Check local or regional car insurance providers

Sometimes providers that are local or regional carriers offer better rates. In our best cheap car insurance guides by state (we have New York, California, Texas, Florida, and more) we look at which companies have the largest market share and customer satisfaction in the state. Some of these companies are not nationwide and focus only on that state or region. For example, your regional Farmers Bureau may offer the best rates.

6. See if your professional or trade association has discounts

If you belong to a professional organization, like a state bar or a trade association, many offer discounts to members on hotels, rental cars, and insurance. For example, AARP offers discounts on insurance, hotels, and much more. Likewise, your Costco membership or college alumni association may offer discounts on car insurance from affiliated partners. 

7. Explore pay-per-mile insurance

Zacharia says that some car insurance companies offer pay-per-mile insurance. Metromile, Noblr, and Root are some of the most well-known pay-per-mile insurance companies on the market, which use app-based telematics to track how much you drive to adjust your insurance cost depending on how much you drive.

She noted not many traditional car insurance companies provide pay-per-mile insurance, but some offer discounts by tracking your driving. Companies that offer some form of this include Esurance, Progressive, Nationwide, Allstate, Safeco, and State Farm.

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