If you drive a car, you probably already know that your driving record affects the amount you pay for auto insurance. But what you might not realize is that that price you pay can be greatly affected by purely demographic information — like your zip code. [More]
Some Minority Neighborhoods Pay Higher Car Insurance Premiums Than White Areas With The Same Average Risk
While many consumer advocates believe that drivers’ auto insurance rates should be based on factors that only relate directly to their activity on the road, many states allow insurers to use a wide variety of considerations — including education, marital status, homeownership, and occupation — to help set those rates? With one state looking to halt the use of occupation data, we wanted to know what our readers think. [More]
Accident forgiveness in auto insurance is a pretty simple concept: while plans that have the feature cost more, your insurance company can’t hike your premiums after you get in a crash and actually need the insurance. It also happens to be illegal in California, which is why the district attorneys in San Diego, Riverside, and Los Angeles counties filed a consumer protection lawsuit against Liberty Mutual over ads touting the feature, which it settled for $925,000. [More]
If error by fallible human drivers causes 90% of car crashes, what will happen in the future when most or all of the cars on the road are autonomous? Insurance companies are already working on the answer to that question, and one of them, State Farm, had a few years’ head start. [More]
Renting a home means that you’re not responsible for fixing the leaky roof or replacing the broken furnace, and you aren’t wedded to a mortgage for the rest of your life. But according to a new analysis of auto insurance rates, it also means you could be paying a lot more to insure your car. [More]
A longstanding complaint against auto insurance is that it sometimes lumps in drivers based on things — like location, type of car, and age — that may have little-to-nothing to do with a particular driver’s behavior or history. In recent years, some insurers have begun offering drivers a way to get more personalized rates by allowing the insurance company to track their vehicular movements, but many American consumers simply aren’t willing to share that information. [More]
Sometimes, it’s annoying to watch television and see ads for businesses or products that don’t exist in your area, like the Sonic ads on cable that taunted us here in the Northeast for years. In a series of Allstate ads that air nationwide, the insurer talks about a biannual bonus check that customers who don’t get in accidents receive. “Where’s my check?” asked one Allstate customer who hasn’t had an accident in decades. Where, indeed? [More]
Here’s our idea of what a typically Walmart shopping list looks like: bread, butter, milk, eggs, toothpaste, shampoo, and auto insurance. That is not a typo, Walmart has officially entered every facet of our lives with the launch of their new auto insurance comparison service. [More]
Getting a ride via UberX, a service that pairs up those in need of a lift with pre-screened drivers in the area willing to give them that lift, is getting slightly more expensive, as the company adds a one dollar Safe Rides Fee. [More]
This is the first in a multipart “How To Not Suck…” series on insurance. Upcoming installments will cover homeowner’s, life, long-term care, and disability insurance.
Whether you just drove off the dealer’s lot in a shiny new vehicle or you’re puttering down the highway in an old clunker, you must protect yourself, others, and your two/three/four/eighteen-wheeled investment with auto insurance. [More]
Unless you’re like me and the sight of the GEICO pig on your TV has you instantly lunging for the mute button, you may have seen the ads where the porcine insurance shill blabs on about the convenience of having his insurance card on his smartphone. That’s nice and all, but it won’t currently fly in most states. [More]
All those ads trying to wheedle, cajole, convince and otherwise get drivers to switch car insurers add up to billions of dollars for insurance companies. But a new study says that even with all that financial heft, fewer drivers are deciding to take the plunge and go elsewhere. That sound you hear is money sliding down the drain. [More]
This story isn’t just about possible malfeasance by MetLife insurance in Massachusetts. It’s also a good example for why screwed-over consumers should file complaints with regulatory agencies. [More]
If the amount of money you paid for insurance last year went up, you are not alone. According to a new survey, 37% of Americans paid more for home, health, auto, or life insurance in 2012, while only 7% of people saw their insurance bill shrink. [More]
You don’t need a driver’s license to own a home. You don’t need to own a home to drive a car. But Allstate insurance has launched a product in Oklahoma that looks at policyholder’s driving records when determining their homeowner’s insurance rates.
When your credit score sustains a dent, make sure your car doesn’t. Because higher car insurance is just what you need when you’ve lost your job. Auto insurers use customers’ credit scores as part of the formula to determine premiums. Shop around—different companies assign different weights to credit score in their calculations. [MainStreet.com]
Progressive Responds To Question About Using Recent Military Service To Determine Rates And Eligibility
The Progressive auto insurance company saw our post “Why Is Progressive Using “Recent Military Service” To Determine Rates And Eligibility?” and responded to let us know that it’s just to make sure that service members aren’t penalized for having a lapse in their coverage due to the fact that they’ve been deployed overseas. They’ve apologized for the confusing wording on the website and have pledged to rewrite it for clarity. Full official statement, inside…
[Update: Progressive responded and clarified that the fine print does NOT mean they will use military service to give you a higher rate.] We got this email tonight from Ceaser, who wants to know why his military service would negatively affect his car insurance:
While searching for new car insurance on progressive and sadly other insurance carriers, figuring what the rate check would be I answered a few questions. Some questions asked were if I was currently in the military and in college, I am both. As an Iraq war Army vet I am currently going to school with the GI bill, and tuition assistance from the Air national guard, so I put that I am both a student and national guard.