Been sticking with a certain car insurance company you signed up with at the dealership?
While there may be good reasons to keep renewing with the same insurer, know that you don't have to stay with your current provider if you think you deserve better.
Yes, you can change car insurance companies—it's your right as a consumer. In doing so, you won't miss out on a better deal with another car insurance provider.
Here are the important things to know before you switch to a new car insurance company.
What are the Benefits of Switching to a New Car Insurance Company?
Over time, your car insurance coverage needs (and the cost of each type of coverage) change. Your financial situation is likely to be different from the time you got your existing policy. And you might realize that the service you're getting is not up to par with your expectations.
These reasons make signing up with a new car insurance company a good idea.
Depending on the new insurer you choose, you can reap various benefits from changing car insurance companies. Here are some of them:
- Saving money on insurance premiums
- Getting a better deal at a lower cost
- Having better car insurance coverage, with add-ons you really need and excluding the ones you don't
- Improved customer service experience (e.g., more responsive agents, faster and simpler claims processing, etc.)
When Can I Change My Car Insurance Provider?
The best time to switch to a new car insurance company is right before your next renewal. Automotive journalist and TV host James Deakin recommends waiting for the car insurance policy to expire before renewing with a different provider. This way, you avoid breaching your contract or paying cancellation or penalty fees.
How to Change Car Insurance Companies
Switching car insurance companies isn't as complicated as it seems. Just take these simple steps before your existing car insurance policy expires.
1. Assess Your Car Insurance Coverage Needs
Before you shop around for car insurance providers, take a look at your current coverage and how your coverage needs have changed.
For example, the value of your older model has declined, which could qualify you for a lower car insurance cost. Or you need a pet injury coverage (which your current insurer might not offer) for your new dog protected on your road trips together.
Consider also your deductible. Decide if you'll increase your deductible to reduce your premium or keep it as is to save on the repair bill should you get into an accident.
2. Compare Car Insurance Quotes
Perform this step a month or two before your car insurance policy is up for renewal. Ideally, gathering quotes from at least three providers can help you find one that suits you.
Back in the day, shopping around for car insurance quotes meant calling companies one by one, providing details about your car, and inquiring on the cost of insuring it. Sounds tedious, isn't it?
But thanks to technology, all the information you need is right at your fingertips. Just visit a website such as Moneymax that allows you to compare various car insurance companies in the Philippines. The online service is free to avail and quick to use.
Here's how to use Moneymax to compare car insurance quotes:
- Go the car insurance comparison tool. Click "Get a free quote."
- Provide details about your car and usage.
- Click the Get Results button.
- Enter your personal information. Click the Submit button.
The tool will show you the results according to your car information, arranged from the cheapest premium. You can also view the coverage and price per coverage.
An important thing to keep in mind when comparing quotes is to look at not just the prices but also the coverage or benefits that come with each car insurance policy. Cheap doesn't always mean the best. The right policy for you will depend on your budget, the kind of coverage you need, and the quality of service a car insurance company can provide.
Below is a list of top car insurance companies and their features:
3. Gather Feedback
After comparing car insurance quotes, you should already have a shortlist of providers. Don't commit to a new car insurance provider just yet! You have to get feedback first from other clients to get an idea of how good or bad it is to do business with a certain company.
Do your own research—read online reviews on Facebook, forums, and other sites. Particularly, look into each provider's reputation for customer service and claims processing.
Expect to find negative reviews, as it's impossible for companies to please all their customers. A company with zero complaints could actually raise a red flag. Avoid dealing with insurers that get consistently bad feedback. Instead, go for companies with a good number of positive reviews that share about how customers are treated professionally and the claims are processed and reimbursed promptly.
It also helps to ask trusted family and friends about each car insurance company you're considering, as they're the ones who are most likely to give you honest feedback.
4. Choose the Car Insurance Company You'll Switch To
Take your time to decide which provider offers a good balance of competitive rates and satisfactory customer service.
Once you've determined the best car insurance company you'll sign up with, request for a quote and the policy. Review the fine print thoroughly before you sign on. You want to make sure that the switch will be worth it.
5. Make the Switch
Before you get a new car insurance policy with a different provider, make sure to check your policy with your existing provider to confirm when it will expire.
It's best to purchase the new policy right two weeks before the expiration of the old one. This way, you ensure continuous coverage and avoid a gap between the two policies. If you had a coverage gap and you met a car accident, you would have to pay for all the repair and hospital bills out of your pocket.
Ready to sign up with the new car insurance provider? Contact an agent or broker to discuss how to proceed.
6. Notify Your Auto Loan Provider about the New Car Insurance Company
If your vehicle is on loan, don't forget to let the bank know that you've switched to a new car insurance company. A car insurance policy is a requirement for most car loans, and when your policy with your former provider has expired, the bank might assume that your car is no longer insured.
Getting a new policy from a different car insurance provider may be the wisest thing to do. With enough research and car insurance cost comparisons, you can find a provider that can offer a better deal.