For many people, car insurance is the single largest expense associated with owning a vehicle. It is difficult, though, to nail down exactly how much insurance will cost. A person’s car insurance rate depends on a wide range of factors, and every insurance company weighs those factors differently. Ultimately, if the insurance company deems someone to be more of an accident risk, that person pays higher premiums.
Demographics. Statistically, male drivers are more likely to be involved in accidents than female drivers, so their insurance rates tend to be higher. Likewise, younger and less experienced drivers tend to be more accident-prone, so they pay more for car insurance. Married people are less likely to be involved in accidents, and so they generally pay less for insurance. These and other demographic factors heavily influence premiums.
Vehicle. Certain cars are more likely to be involved in accidents. Insurance companies compute premiums based in part on each model’s accident history; that is, the number of accidents involving each model of car. It is very important to consider the cost of insurance when buying a new car. Certain optional safety features can also influence the cost of premiums.
Driving Record.Insurance companies charge known unsafe drivers more than safe drivers. Every ticket and every accident results in increased insurance premiums for the driver. Conversely, many insurers offer safe driver discounts, lowering premiums for drivers who stay out of accidents for a certain length of time.
Deductible. A deductible is the amount of money the customer is responsible for on a claim; the insurance company pays the rest. Most insurance policies come with a standard $500 deductible. Some drivers opt for a higher deductible in order to lower their monthly premiums. The higher the deductible, the lower the premium.
Location and Mileage. Drivers who live in particularly dangerous areas pay more for insurance than drivers who live in areas where there are fewer accidents. Likewise, drivers who drive less than a predetermined number of miles may qualify for discounts. The less time someone spends on the road, the less chance of an accident.