There is no point in being anything other than completely honest. The US economy is in trouble and things are going to stay this way for some time. That means unemployment will remain a problem and credit will be hard to find. The majority of people have responded to this situation by switching from a high-spending lifestyle to something more modest to keep enough money to service all the debts. Otherwise, the bank may foreclose on the mortgage and credit scores will be lost. This creates dilemmas. What do you need and what can be cut back? Public transport is poor. Most people need a vehicle to get around. Almost all states make it an offense to drive a vehicle on a public highway without a valid insurance policy in place. The temptation is therefore to cut back on coverage but this can be financially dangerous.
The main types of policy are liability, comprehensive and collision. The minimum legal requirement is liability coverage. Auto loan and leasing contracts usually require comprehensive and collision coverage. Thus, if you own an older car outright, you could buy a liability policy for the minimum amount and save several hundred dollars. This is called self-insurance and is generally popular in the form of deductibles where you agree to pay the first slice of any claim out of your own pocket. Let’s work through an example to see how it works. Suppose you own a car worth $2,500 and it costs you $1,000 a year for all three policies. You decide to cancel the collision coverage and this saves you $300. Sadly, two months later, you are involved in an accident that totals your vehicle. You may have saved $300 but can you afford to replace your car? Worse, you kept you car because it was well-maintained and reliable. There is no guarantee that a secondhand replacement will be as good.
Similarly, you could reduce your liability coverage to the statutory minimum amount. But, if you cause an accident and the victim’s claim for injury and property damage exceeds the minimums, can you afford to pay the balance? If you have assets or savings, these could all be lost if there’s a judgment against you. The more you self-insure, the greater the risk to your financial safety. Of course, if you have no assets, it is unlikely anyone will chase you for payment. But if you own property or have a portfolio of investments for retirement, these are at risk. So you need to take a hard look at your situation and, more importantly, shop around. This site gives you the chance to get car insurance quotes from all the top insurers. You can run the search as many times as you need to get comparative quotes for different levels of cover. Never assume you can cut coverage safely. Never assume you cannot find affordable coverage when you get a good range of car insurance quotes.