How to switch car insurance companies – As a driver, there are many good reasons to switch your car insurance provider. Shopping around for a new insurer or a new car insurance policy is a way to ensure you are getting the best deal on your auto insurance policy. Based on Statistics, there are about 77% of drivers are shopping for new auto insurance companies. Or have recently compared different quotes after a situation triggered them to go for a new policy?
Whether you are buying a new car, moving, removing, or adding a driver, or filling a claim, you may wonder if it is time to switch car insurance companies. And how you can switch car insurance companies. Luckily for you, changing car insurance companies is not difficult and very easy to do. In this guide, we will cover how to change car insurance companies and when you can change them.
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When can I switch car insurance providers?
You can switch car insurance companies anytime you want. However, certain events or situations mean it is time to start shopping for a new carrier. Or at least to get insurance quotes from other companies to ensure you are getting the best coverage to meet your needs and the best deals. You may want to consider switching insurance companies or shopping for new coverage if you are;
- Moving to a new state, zip code, or city
- Experiencing a life change such as Marriage, divorce, getting a new job, or buying a new home
- When the current auto insurance policy is nearing expiration.
- If you have a bad claim experience with your current insurer.
- Seeing an increase in your car insurance bill
- Lack of Additional coverage
Although, switching insurance companies is very good, there are times when changing providers may be a bad option. For instance, if you just filed a claim you may not be able to change carriers. If the claim is not settled, your new insurer may not have the chance to rate your policy correctly. And this may affect your new policy premium and cause more problems if your new insurance does not know about it.
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Steps to Switch Car Insurance Companies
Just as mentioned above, switching car insurance companies is not difficult and very easy to do. Below are the steps you need to follow in the right order;
Analyze your Requirements thoroughly
The first step you need to take toward switching car insurance is to go through your requirements thoroughly. You must know the exact coverage that you need. This will help you avoid purchasing unnecessary coverage. Additional coverage will only lead to higher insurance costs. To analyze your requirement, consider the car’s daily usage, the experience of the driver, age, driving habits, and many more.
Check out for Cancellation penalties
If you already made up your mind to switch your insurance company, you should find out if there are penalties like cancellation fees. For changing providers before the end of the coverage period. Fortunately, all insurers give policyholders the right to cancel their policy anytime as long as they provide the right notice. While some companies will refund your unused premium some may charge a fee if you choose to cancel in the mid-policy term. So, it is advisable to speak with your insurance provider’s customer service or agent to know if the company has a specific cancellation protocol.
If you find out about the penalty fee, you may have to hold switching policies until the policy term is over and up for renewal. However, if you can find a new policy with a premium that can help pay cancellation fees charged by your old provider, it may still make good sense to change companies immediately.
Shop around and compare car insurance quotes
Since auto insurance rates vary among companies, the next step is to find the right policy by comparing quotes from multiple companies. Get quotes from at least 3- 4 insurance companies to get good rates. This will enable you to compare coverage options, auto policy premiums, and the discounts you may be eligible for.
However, make sure you are getting quotes for the same coverage. Whether you are comparing quotes by phone or online, you will likely have to prepare some information. Such as your Address, vehicle year, make mode, Vehicle identification number, Drivers license, and social security number.
As you are researching different companies, you will be able to review available discounts. Make sure you ask companies to include all discounts can qualify for on the quote. this could help you find cheaper coverage.
Contact your current car insurance company
Before you make any changes, make sure you talk to your current insurer. And see it is willing to offer a lower premium. If it does not provide a better rate, find out how you can cancel your policy and request the end date of the policy in witting.
Purchase a Policy
Now, purchase a new plan from the best insurance company. If your current policy is going to end very soon, make sure you schedule the new policy a least a day before your current coverage expires. Also, ensure you make thorough research on the new company before purchasing the policy. And be sure that you get the coverage that you need to avoid unnecessary costs. Make sure you proactively cancel your old one when you start a new policy rather than stop paying bills. Otherwise, your former carrier may continue to bill you and report your failure to make payment which may affect your credit score.
Avoid a coverage lapse
Insurer charge higher rates after a coverage gap. So make sure you have auto insurance all the time. You can even set your new policy to the same day your old one ends. Because if you get in an accident or crash during the gap, you will have no coverage.
Most insurance companies offer a discount for continuous coverage even if you are switching coverage later. Some insurers will require you to sign up for a new policy 7 days before the term ends. So make sure you keep this in mind when determining your start date.
Change and print out your new car insurance ID card
Remember to swap out your old auto insurance cards with the new ones for your insurer. You will have to change your insurance ID card to an updated one to keep your vehicle or wallet after officially canceling your old policy. If you are involved in an accident or stopped by law enforcement, you will need evidence or proof of coverage under your new insurer.
If you have a car lease or loan, make sure you contact the leasing company or lender and notify them about changing the car insurance company. Note; that some leasing companies and lenders may require you to have collision and comprehensive insurance. In addition, ask your new insurer to send proof of your insurance to the leasing company or lender as well as to you.
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Can I switch car insurance companies at any time?
Yes, you can change auto insurance providers any time you want. Just make sure your last claim is settled and also find out if there is any cancellation fee before ending your coverage.
Is switching car insurance bad?
No, changing car insurance provider is not a bad idea. As long as you avoid a lapse and maintain continuous coverage, you don’t have to pay any penalty for switching.
Can I change car insurance companies while I have an open insurance claim?
Yes, you can. You can switch companies while you have an open claim with your current insurer. If an event or accident happened while you were covered under your previous policy, the company needs to handle your claim. Just make sure your new insurer knows about it. And also, you must stay in touch with your previous insurance to resolve the claims.
Can I get a refund if I switch car insurance companies mid-policy?
Well, this depends on the insurance company. Some companies will refund the remainder of your policy term when you cancel a policy midterm without a cancellation fee. While some will charge a cancellation fee depending on your policy.