Evaluating Your Auto Insurance Needs

When you're shopping for an auto insurance policy, it helps to have in mind the type of coverage you're looking for. Are you trying to find a minimum coverage policy, or do you want to opt for extra coverage types. If you're unsure of the answer to this question, here are some steps that you can take to evaluate your needs.

Step 1: Locate Your State's Minimum Insurance Requirements

The first step would be to find out your state's requirements for auto insurance coverage. It will likely start out with a minimum coverage limit for damage to another person's vehicle, personal injury claims, and/or property. It may also include requirements for insurance against underinsured motorists and bodily injury, but in many states these can be waived by signing a disclaimer.

Step 2: Evaluate Crime, Accident and Theft Rates in Your Area

The various types of insurance add-ons protect you against various accidents, such as theft, car break-ins, and collisions caused by your own actions. It helps to look at the local statistics when you're deciding how much of a risk these things are to you. For instance, if you live in a city that has a high rate of car prowls or theft attempts, then comprehensive insurance is an important consideration. Knowing the collision rates in your area is important for deciding on collision insurance, because your chances of being in an accident go up; even considering the same driver, accident rates can change in different areas based on congestion, weather conditions, and the conditions of the local roads.

Step 3: Evaluate Your Health Insurance Policy

Also take into account how well your insurance policy would cover you in case you get injured. If you have a great health care plan, then you may not need to add on bodily injury insurance. But if your plan is lacking or you don't have one, this coverage will help protect you against a source of major medical bills.

Step 5: Consider Your Personal Comfort Level

The final thing to consider is your own comfort and personal preferences. Some people prefer to accept personal risk, and they might want to opt for lower coverage at the potential risk of a hefty bill down the road. Others like to mitigate risk, and they would prefer to pay higher premiums now to avoid an unforeseen bill. Taking all of the above into consideration, and deciding which of these two camps you fall into, is a great approach to finding an auto insurance policy that you're happy with.

For more information and options, talk with a local auto insurance company, like Matlack & Company.