4 Ways for a Frugal Family to Reduce Auto Insurance Premiums

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Things to Remember...
  • Some insurance tips such as dropping or adding coverage can actually cost, not save, you money
  • Comparing insurance companies and reducing your risk as a driver are two guaranteed ways to save money
  • Find ways to save on car insurance premiums by combining several policies or installing safety features in your car

In these days of tough economic times, frugal families are looking for ways to cut costs from the budget and save money.

Reducing auto insurance premiums is one way to trim the monthly budget in order to save money.

The tips for reducing auto insurance premiums found below will be truly frugal. All of the ways listed are relatively inexpensive or even free!

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1. Combine Policies

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One of the biggest discounts offered by auto insurance companies is for multiple cars, according to the Insure U Center created by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

If your family is not already doing so, combine your car insurance policies with just one company.

Get quotes from both companies, and compare the coverage and prices to find the best fit.

Another option that may also be available to your family is to bundle your car insurance policies with other insurance policies, such as:

  • Homeowners insurance
  • Renters insurance
  • Life insurance

Many insurance companies offer multiple lines of insurance beyond just auto insurance.

Sometimes called an umbrella policy, a family can get considerable discounts for having all of their insurance policies with the same company.

2. VIN Etching

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Every vehicle has a Vehicle Registration Number or VIN, which is an identifying number that is unique to the vehicle.

All vehicles have a VIN stamped in multiple places on the vehicle, such as on the driver’s side dash near the windshield or on the driver’s side door compartment.

VIN etching is a process where a stencil or mold is created from your vehicle’s VIN and then etched on the glass surfaces of your vehicle with an acid solution.

The VIN is etched onto the windshield, the rear window, and all of the side windows of a vehicle. Since windshields and other car glass are interchangeable between vehicles, and they are like goldmines to car thieves.

Car thieves hate VIN numbers because they lead to the true identity of a vehicle, making stolen parts labeled with a VIN hard to sell.

A VIN is needed to sell or register a vehicle, so any inconsistencies in a vehicle’s VIN raises a red flag with authorities.

Many auto insurers give discounts for anti-theft devices such as VIN etching. In fact, the Michigan Automobile Theft Prevention Authority lists savings for VIN etching as 5 to 10 percent of overall premiums.

Frugal families can buy VIN etching kits for under $20. Many municipalities or police departments also offer VIN etching free.

VIN etching is one of the most frugal options for security devices, as many car alarms or anti-theft systems can be very expensive.

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3. Reduce Your Risk

Auto insurance companies are concerned with a driver’s risk of getting into an accident or putting in a claim for a stolen vehicle.

Drivers who have caused accidents in the past, those who drive more miles every day, or live in areas with high theft rates will pay more in insurance premiums because of their higher risk.

If one driver in the family has had an at-fault accident in the last three to five years, that driver’s history is likely raising overall premiums for everyone.

If it is an extreme issue, such as multiple accidents or a DUI, then the best option might be for that driver to be excluded from the policy and either not drive or purchase his or her own policy.

Another option in less extreme cases is for that driver to take a driving course that will remove points from his or her license.

Another way to reduce the family’s risk for an accident is to drive less. Some family members might be able to carpool or take public transportation.

Such efforts will also further reduce the family budget by saving on gas and wear-and-tear on the vehicle.

If your family has a garage, clean it out and use it for parking the vehicles. Employ the use of guarded parking garages or other monitored parking areas to reduce theft.

Make sure to let your car insurance company know that your family’s vehicles are now parked in secured areas to garner a discount.

4. Compare Car Insurance

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One of the best options for reducing premiums is to check out what other car insurance companies may have to offer for your family.

Getting quotes online from a car insurance quote comparison site is easy, allows you to compare prices, and has no further obligations.

You can even take your quotes to your current car insurance provider in an effort to get them to match a quote for lower premiums.

Your family could save money by combining policies, completing VIN etching, lowering risk and searching for a new insurance company.

Every little bit helps a frugal family to save on their budget.

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