Are you irritated from not being able to scrape enough together to pay insurance each month? Your situation is no different than most other drivers in California.

Unfortunately, most insurance customers have been with the same company for over three years, and roughly 40% of drivers have never even compared rates from other companies. Many consumers in California can cut their rates by nearly $470 a year by just comparing quotes, but they feel it's too difficult to compare other rate quotes.

Many insurers vie for your business, and because of this it can be hard to compare car insurance companies to find the absolute best rate on insurance.

Get cheap costs by understanding these factors

Part of the insurance buying process is learning some of the elements that are used to determine the price you pay for insurance. When you understand what impacts premium levels, this allows you to make good choices that may reward you with lower insurance prices. Lots of things are part of the equation when premium rates are determined. Some are obvious like your driving record, but other factors are more obscure such as your credit history or your financial responsibility.

Better prices with anti-theft devices - Choosing a vehicle with anti-theft technology or alarm system can help lower your rates. Theft prevention features like vehicle immobilizer systems, General Motors OnStar and LoJack tracking systems all hinder your car from being stolen.

Do you know your comp and collision deductibles? - The deductibles tell how much you are required to spend if the claim is covered. Insurance for physical damage, also known as collision and other-than-collision, covers damage that occurs to your car. Some examples of covered claims could be rearending another vehicle, vandalism, and having a roll-over accident. The higher the amount you have to pay, the lower your rates will be.

How old are your drivers? - Youthful drivers in California are known to be inattentive when driving with friends therefore insurance rates are much higher. Having to add a young driver to your insurance policy can really hurt. Older insureds tend to be more responsible, statistically cause fewer accidents, and are generally more financially stable.

Certain employers pay higher rates - Occupations such as real estate brokers, airline pilots, and accountants generally pay higher rates than average attributed to high stress levels and lots of time spent at work. On the flip side, occupations like actors, students and performers have lower than average premiums.

Are women or men drivers cheaper? - Over time, data shows that females take fewer risks when driving. However, this does not mean men are WORSE drivers than women. Women and men tend to get into auto accidents at a similar rate, but the men have costlier accidents. Not only that, but men also receive more major tickets like reckless driving and DUI.

To find cheap rates, there are a couple of ways of comparing rate quotes from many auto insurance companies in California. The simplest method to compare rates consists of shopping online.

Comparing rate quotes online is fast and free, and it makes it obsolete to call or drive to all the different Santa Monica insurance agencies. The ability to quote auto insurance online eliminates this option unless you have a need for the trained guidance only provided by licensed Santa Monica agents. It is possible to find lower rates online and have a local Santa Monica agent actually service the policy.

It's important to know that getting more free quotes helps locate a lower rate than you're paying now. Not every company does online price quotes, so it's necessary to compare price quotes from the smaller companies as well.

The providers in the list below have been selected to offer free quotes in California. If your goal is to find cheap auto insurance in California, it's highly recommended you visit two to three different companies to get a more complete price comparison.

Insurance Cost Estimates for Popular Vehicles in Santa Monica
Make, Model, and Trim Level Annual Policy Premium 6-month Policy Premium Monthly Premium
Chevrolet Silverado Crew Cab Hybrid 4WD $1,972 $986 $164
Dodge Ram Quad Cab Laramie 2WD $1,358 $679 $113
Ford Edge SE 2WD $1,248 $624 $104
Ford Escape XLT 4WD $1,010 $505 $84
Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer 4WD $1,562 $781 $130
Ford F-150 Lariat Crew Cab Harley 4WD $1,276 $638 $106
Ford Focus SES 2-Dr Coupe $1,976 $988 $165
Honda Accord EX 4-Dr Sedan $1,042 $521 $87
Honda CR-V LX 4WD $1,228 $614 $102
Honda Civic LX 2-Dr Coupe $1,612 $806 $134
Kia Optima LX $1,588 $794 $132
Nissan Altima 3.5 SR 4-Dr Sedan $1,710 $855 $143
Toyota Camry Hybrid $1,306 $653 $109
Toyota Corolla XLE $1,232 $616 $103
Toyota Tacoma Double Cab TRD Sport Package 4WD $1,048 $524 $87
Get Your Own Custom Quote Go

Price data assumes married female driver age 50, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $500 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include homeowner, multi-vehicle, safe-driver, claim-free, and multi-policy. Rates do not factor in vehicle location which can impact premium rates substantially.

Rate increases following a ticket or accident

The chart below illustrates how violations and at-fault accidents can influence Chevrolet Silverado insurance prices for different age groups. The premiums assume a married female driver, full coverage, $500 deductibles, and no discounts are applied.

Chevrolet Silverado rates are for example purposes only. To get rates for your specific vehicle, click here.

Should you buy full coverage?

The chart below illustrates the comparison of Chevrolet Silverado insurance premiums with and without physical damage coverage, medical payments, and uninsured/under-insured motorist coverage. The data assumes no driving violations, no at-fault accidents, $100 deductibles, married female driver, and no additional discounts are factored in.

Chevrolet Silverado rates are for example purposes only. To get rates for your specific vehicle, click here.

Should you pay for full coverage or liability only?

There isn't a steadfast formula that works best for making the decision to drop physical damage coverage, but there is a general guideline. If the yearly cost of full coverage is more than around 10% of replacement cost minus your deductible, then you might want to think about dropping full coverage.

For example, let's assume your Chevrolet Silverado replacement value is $3,000 and you have $1,000 deductibles. If your vehicle is totaled, you would only receive $2,000 after paying your policy deductible. If it's costing you more than $200 annually for physical damage coverage, then you might want to think about dropping full coverage.

There are some conditions where removing full coverage is not a good idea. If you still have a loan on your vehicle, you have to keep full coverage to satisfy the loan requirements. Also, if you don't have enough money to buy a different vehicle if your current one is totaled, you should maintain full coverage.

Three good reasons to insure your vehicle

Even though it's not necessarily cheap to insure a vehicle in Santa Monica, buying insurance may be required and benefits you in several ways.

The benefits of buying enough insurance definitely exceed the price paid, specifically if you ever have a liability claim. Today the average American driver overpays more than $800 each year so you should quote rates at every renewal to ensure rates are inline.

Auto insurance policy discounts you can't miss

Companies offering auto insurance don't list every discount in a way that's easy to find, so the next list breaks down both well-publicized and also the more inconspicuous credits available to you.Auto insurance discounts

As is typical with insurance, most credits do not apply to all coverage premiums. Some only apply to specific coverage prices like collision or personal injury protection. Even though it appears adding up those discounts means a free policy, you're out of luck.

A few of the larger companies and some of the discounts are detailed below.

When comparing rates, check with every prospective company to give you their best rates. Some discounts might not be offered on policies everywhere. To see a list of companies who offer auto insurance discounts in California, click this link.

You can find cheap coverage

Budget-friendly car insurance in Santa Monica can be found on the web and from local insurance agents, so you should be comparing quotes from both in order to have the best chance of saving money. A few companies may not have the ability to get quotes online and many times these smaller companies only sell coverage through independent insurance agents.

When shopping online for car insurance, it's very important that you do not skimp on critical coverages to save a buck or two. Too many times, an insured cut liability limits or collision coverage only to discover later that saving that couple of dollars actually costed them tens of thousands. Your aim should be to purchase a proper amount of coverage at a price you can afford, but don't skip important coverages to save money.

Additional information can be found at the links below