#cheap full coverage auto insurance
Cheap Full Coverage Auto Insurance
The search for cheap full coverage auto insurance begins by determining what full coverage means and if you actually need it. Florida law doesn t require drivers to carry full coverage insurance, but if you are borrowing money to purchase a vehicle, the lien holder may. Just because full coverage isn t required, doesn t mean it s not a good idea. Having complete collision and comprehensive insurance protects you and your property against accidental damage and provides capital to cover medical expenses and vehicle repair or replacement.
Comprehensive and Full Coverage
Comprehensive insurance is a component of insurance coverage but is not the same thing as full coverage. A comprehensive coverage policy will cover any damage done to a vehicle not due to a collision with another vehicle. This means it will cover things like damage from falling objects (tree branches, golf balls, etc.), fire, certain natural disasters (determined by the individual policy), vandalism, theft of either the vehicle itself or items from within it, windshield and other glass damage and damage due to hitting animals.
Comprehensive coverage is required to be bundled with collision insurance in the state of Florida. Collision insurance covers damage that occurs in a vehicle to vehicle accident. It is usually reserved to pay for accidents in which you have been determined to be at fault, but it can also be claimed if the other driver is at fault and doesn t carry enough insurance to cover the damages to your car.
When a policy has collision and comprehensive components, it is generally referred to as full coverage insurance. This doesn t mean that every situation is covered, nor does it mean that all of the possible insurance options have been purchased. There are separate components that can be added to Florida auto insurance policies such as; emergency road assistance, lease/loan coverage, special customized equipment coverage and rental coverage.
In all cases, comprehensive and collision insurance carries a deductible in Florida. The deductible is the amount of liability the individual retains in the case of a claim. Deductibles can be as low as $100 but are usually between $300 and $1000. As the deductible goes up, the price of the coverage goes down. To determine which deductible is best for you, you should consider what kind of repairs you could handle paying for without making a claim. For instance, if you could cover a $400 repair to your car without making a claim against your insurance, it makes sense to carry coverage with the same level deductible. That way you will be paying a lower premium than on a $100 deductible policy and still retaining coverage for accidents that you would need to make a claim on.
Minimum Insurance Coverage
Florida requires any driver who owns or operates a vehicle within the state for 90 days or longer in a year to have a minimum of $10,000 PIP/PDL (personal injury protection/property damage liability) insurance as a component of its No-Fault Law. If you fail to meet these minimums, the state of Florida can suspend your license for up to three years and impose a fine of between $150 and $500 dollars. If your coverage lapses for any reason, your auto insurance company is required to contact the State Department and report the delinquency.
If you have been convicted of an alcohol or drug related violation (DUI, OUI, etc.), or you have been involved in an at-fault accident, the state will require you to also obtain extra coverage under the Financial Responsibility Law. The minimum requirements are $10,000/$20,000 BIL (bodily injury liability) and an additional $10,000 PDL.
Carrying minimum insurance is only advisable if you are financially unable to secure better protection for your assets. One significant at-fault accident could financially cripple you for life.
Benefits You Should Have
It is understood that financial constraints are a major factor in deciding on insurance coverage.
When you are getting ready to purchase your auto insurance, there are legally some must haves and some common sense additions that you should seriously consider. The first consideration you need to make is the value of your vehicle. If you have a relatively new car that is in good shape, you should protect it with comprehensive and collision insurance. Carrying this insurance will allow you to replace the car immediately if it is involved in a catastrophic accident. If your car isn t tipping the scales at more than $4000, you should be able to replace it without the need for collision/ comprehensive coverage and should consider the lower PIP/PDL insurance.
Even if you are looking at purchasing just the PIP/PDL insurance, consider looking at coverage that is higher than the minimum. This is the amount of money that will be available to cover medical expenses if you are injured in an accident no matter who is at fault. If the accident results in you being hospitalized for more than a few days, the hospital bills will quickly eclipse the amount of insurance coverage, and you will be left with the balance of the bill. Increasing your PIP coverage to $500,000 can help you avoid this situation.
Getting the Best Value
- To get the best value on a car insurance purchase in Florida, do some comparison shopping.
- Look into the coverage that you believe you will need for the type of vehicle you are insuring, and then get quotes from multiple insurance companies.
- Get quotes for different deductibles. Deductibles influence the amount that you will pay for a policy. Higher deductibles usually mean lower monthly insurance rates.
- Ask if the insurance company offers accident forgiveness. This is extremely important in a no fault state like Florida because one accident claim can raise payments by hundreds of dollars.
- Look into multiple policy discounts for combining insurance on auto, home and life insurance.
- Consider the value of your automobile and limit comprehensive and collision insurance to the amount it would take to replace it. Get a quote for an auto dealership on the going rate for your particular vehicle to use as a base price.
- Understand that cheap full coverage auto insurance usually involves high deductibles and it may be a better value for you to take a lower deductible and higher premium to make sure that the coverage will actually leave you in a good financial position in the case of an accident.