Car insurance

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Woman giving thumbs up from passenger seat inside car

Whether you’re looking to change insurers or find coverage for that brand new ride of yours, we make it easy for you to shave cash off your car insurance policy. We get it! Comparing car insurance quotes is time consuming and a pretty tedious thing to do. We know you’d rather be doing something fun. That’s why we’re here to help you find the right type of policy for you.

How much does car insurance cost?

The average cost of car insurance in Canada is $1,320 per year, or $110 a month, but rates vary based on your car, location, driving record, demographics and other reasons. The biggest factors that affect your rate include:

  • Your car’s make and model and the year you bought it are the biggest factors in your insurance rates. Its current value and whether you own it will also affect your coverage costs and how much coverage you need.
  • Your location is the second biggest factor for rates. Each province sets its own minimum insurance requirements, and even rates in different postal codes in the same city can vary by hundreds of dollars. Living in a high risk area can drive your rates up, like a big city or an area with a high rate of uninsured drivers.
  • Your demographics affect your rates more than you might think. Your rates are based on your age, gender, marital status, credit score and other factors that have nothing to do with your driving. Insurance companies use these factors to predict your risk level and set your rates.

Types of car insurance

Third-party liability insurance

The most basic policy. Third-party liability insurance provides coverage for any damages you may cause to someone else’s vehicle or property. It also covers losses like injury and death which your vehicle causes other people. This means if you smash into a Mercedes, you won’t be paying the repair costs from your pocket. However, it won’t cover the expense of repairing damages to your own vehicle.

Best for: Mandatory coverage for everyone

Collision insurance

This level of insurance provides coverage for repairing or replacing your own vehicle if you hit another car or object. it could also protect you if you get into an accident with an uninsured motorist. It usually includes mandatory third-party coverage.

Best for: Those who want a bit more coverage for themselves and their vehicle without the price tag.

Comprehensive insurance

If you want premium coverage, this is the option for you. It’s the only policy type that offers “real, proper, actual” protection for your car. So if you love and care for your vehicle, this is probably the policy you want to opt for. It covers theft, vandalism, storms, flood, hail, fire, key replacement, emergency accommodation, rental cars, accidental damage (to name a few) – in addition to everything covered by cheaper policies.

Best for: Those who want peace of mind, knowing they have the highest coverage available.

How to compare auto insurance

Ever wonder why insurance policies and quotes are different for every provider? You might not be comparing equivalent rates. Make sure you’re comparing apples to apples to get the best insurance quotes.

  1. Consider the biggest discounts. To get your business, many providers quote lowest possible price. It might, say, include a hefty 25% car insurance discount for buying online. However, other insurers might offer the same discount but not include it in your quote. While it’s good to consider discounts in your initial search, make sure you’re also considering the final price too.
  2. Make sure you’re comparing apples to apples. When you’re comparing quotes, make sure you put in the same amount of info on each quote. Check to see if you’re getting any extra coverage or missing any discounts, and that the deductible and pay schedule are the same.
  3. Look for specialist insurance. Driving for business, rideshare drivers and adding on coverage can all affect your premiums. If you’re not getting good rates from the big national companies, look for a company that specializes in the coverage you need.
  4. Balance the best coverage with the cheapest rates. The goal is to get the right coverage for you with the best deal. But consider every factor that might be important, such as how easy it will be to make claims, or whether you’ll pay extra for perks you need. It’s helpful to consider at least two to three of the cheapest quotes with the same level of coverage you need.
  5. Consider customer satisfaction. While price is a big reason many people switch insurance, issues with billing or customer service are another big reason drivers shop around. When your’e comparing quotes, look into each company’s customer satisfaction ratings to avoid denied or lengthy claims

10 tips for getting cheap car insurance

No one wants to overpay for car insurance. And it’s hard to compare policies to get enough coverage at the right price. The best way to save is by shopping around.

1. Start with customized quotes.
Different people can pay drastically different prices for car insurance even at the same company. Compare car insurance companies that can offer you the best deal for you individually, not across the board. You can also compare local insurance companies, which tend to have higher customer satisfaction rates than their big-name counterparts and could potentially have lower rates.

2. Hunt for discounts.
Some insurers offer discounts to drivers for a variety of reasons such as having a clean record, paying an annual premium all at once or being a safe driver for a certain period of time. If the insurance company you’re with offers more than just auto insurance, consider bundling all your insurance through them, like home and car insurance. Most companies offer a group discount, even if it’s just for more than one car.

3. Get the right coverage for your car.
Make sure you are getting the appropriate coverage for the car you’ve driving. Consider skipping collision or comprehensive coverage for an old car. The value of your car determines your maximum payout if it’s stolen or totaled, meaning these policies are not very useful for older vehicles.

4. Raise your deductible.
A higher deductible means lower premiums, your monthly or annual price. But if you get in an accident, you will have to pay more than if your deductibles were lower. For example, if you have a $500 deductible on a $2,000 accident, you’d pay $500 before your insurance company covers the other $1,500. With a $1,000 deductible, you’re paying $1,000 and your insurer covers the remaining $1,000.

5. Look into pay-per-kilometre insurance.
If you drive under a certain amount of kilometres every year, you can tell your insurance company and possibly qualify for a low mileage discount. This is a common discount that many drivers actually qualify for but are not aware of. If you only use your car for occasional short trips, you can sign up for a usage-based insurance program that determines your rates based on how much you drive.

6. Avoid accidents and tickets.
These two are surefire ways to make your premium go through the roof. If you live in a high risk area or are prone to getting in accidents, look into a provider that offers accident forgiveness, where your first accident won’t make your premiums go up.

7. Take a defensive driving course.
If you have a less than stellar driving record, sign up for a defensive driving class. Most insurers will give you a discount on your premiums. Your local provincial service centre can point you in the right direction.

8. Combine policies with your parents or spouse.
Look into being a nominated driver on your parents’ insurance. Their rates might go up, but it could be less than keeping your solo policy. And because married drivers tend to file fewer claims, you’ll often get a discount on your premium just for getting engaged or married. Married couples can also save by combining their insurance on one policy to save money.

9. Check and maintain your credit history.
Most auto insurance companies take your credit history into account for your pricing. The reasoning behind it? Research actually shows that people with a higher credit score tend to make fewer claims.

10. Choose the right car.
Newer, cheaper cars tend to be cheaper to insure. Luxury cars have a higher sticker price and tend to cost more for as long as you use it. It’s worth buying a cheaper car, especially if you’re a young driver. If you haven’t purchased a car yet or are getting ready to shop for a different car, compare insurance prices for car models you’re interested in. The insurance price differences might surprise you.

There are many reasons why you might want to leave your current insurer.

Your circumstances might have changed; you might be paying a bucket load, or maybe you’re just fed up with their customer service. We get it! If you’re unhappy, there’s no reason why you can’t switch to another company.

There are a few times where you should actively consider changing policy. If your circumstances have changed, chances are, your premiums may alter too. Consider finding a new insurer when:

  • Your policy comes up for renewal
  • You change cars
  • You move into another home
  • The number of drivers using your car changes
  • You’ve just celebrated a birthday
  • Your driving record has changed

Why changing insurers isn’t that hard

So, you figure out you’re excessively charged for your car insurance. You’re probably thinking about switching, and if you’re not, maybe you should. There’s a common misconception that changing car insurance is a huge hassle. In reality, it isn’t as hard as you think.

Here’s how to do it.

Step 1: Find a new car insurance policy

Before you abandon ship, it’s a good idea to have another one you can climb aboard. Compare car insurance policies side-by-side. Be sure to consider not just price but what features you need in a policy and how much cover you want, especially if you’re looking at a comprehensive policy.

Step 2: Take out the new policy before you cancel the old one

When do you want to switch? Some people prefer to do it so they can benefit from discounts from their new company, while others like to change at the end of the payment period. If you’re switching companies mid-policy, take note of the cancellation fee. This fee is usually in your policy documentation, so check it out to see how much you need to pay. Ensure you have a thorough read of your new Product Disclosure Statement (it’s just some light reading). Before you cancel your old policy, make sure you accept the new policy and have the letter of confirmation from the insurer. This prevents you being without cover while you change over.

Step 3: Cancel your old policy.

Inform your old insurer in writing that you are cancelling your policy. Ensure you receive written confirmation that the policy is cancelled. Aim for your new policy to take effect on the same day your old policy is cancelled.

Step 4: Profit!

Enjoy the benefits that come with switching to a better policy. Go out and buy yourself something fantastic!

Still not sure? Your questions about car insurance answered

Finding the right coverage

Policy information

Purchasing, renewing or cancelling your policy

What you will/won’t be covered for

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