If you’re paying for car insurance on your own for the first time as a young driver, you may find yourself facing a little bit of sticker shock at the price. Whether you’re a brand new driver or just on your own plan for the first time, many young drivers don’t always know what they’re getting into when it’s time to insure their car. Here are some details about car insurance for first-time drivers that you might not have realized. First thing’s first, it’s important to know: drivers in every state are required to carry insurance if they want to drive on public roads, regardless of their age, vehicle, or driving record.
What Insurance is Required By Law?
Ultimately, the state you live in will determine the minimum amount of insurance you’re required to carry in order to legally be on the road. In almost half of states, the minimum requirement is liability insurance, and any other coverage beyond that is optional. That may not be the case, however, if there is a lien on your vehicle. Similarly, about half of states require that you carry insurance for any injury you may cause. The bottom line, in this case, is that if you want to drive, you need to carry insurance that covers the cost of any damages or injuries you may cause.
Why Is My Rate So Much Higher as a Young Driver?
There are a variety of factors that go into determining your car insurance rate, from your age, where you live, to the length of time you’ve been driving, to the make and model of your vehicle. Any of these factors might contribute to why your rates are higher than expected. So how do you protect against these high costs? In many cases, the only answer is time. Insurance companies factor in statistical risks in deciding how big of a risk driver’s are, and because such a high percentage of the 6 million auto accidents per year occur within people of a certain age, rates for those drivers is higher to offset the risk. The good news is that once you age out of that group of drivers where the risk is higher, you’re likely to see a sharp decrease in your rates. The same is true if you’re a new driver and go for a policy period or two without having to file a claim.
Should You Bundle Your Car Insurance?
If taking on your own auto insurance is also coming at a time where you’re renting for the first time, bundling your auto insurance and renters insurance might be a way to save money on both. Renters insurance is some of the most affordable insurance on the market, costing as little as $15 a month and protecting against damage and theft in your apartment. Bundling it with your auto insurance will make it even cheaper, giving you peace of mind at home and on the road.
How Do I Choose an Auto Insurance Policy?
Ultimately, there will be a lot of factors in place determining which auto policy is right for you. When you’re shopping around, you should look for a policy that offers the coverage you need (remember, this may be different if there’s a lien on your car) at a price you can afford. You should also consider going with an agency you trust, with customer service that you can depend on. Having an accident in the middle of the night and needing to call your insurance company is much easier if you know that you’ll be able to talk to a person in a moment you really need them.
Having your own car insurance policy is sometimes the first step many young people into adulthood, and trying to navigate rates and different coverages and figure out what they all mean can be a confusing and rude awakening. If you have questions about which auto insurance is right for you, or what you can do to save money as a young driver, give our office a call. One of our representatives will be glad to help you get out and stay safe on the road.