Do you think you bought an expensive auto insurance policy? It's quite common and you're not alone.

It's hard to fathom, but over 70% of drivers have been with the same company for four years or more, and 38% of drivers have never even shopped around for cheap coverage. Many consumers in California could save about $500 every year just by shopping around, but they just don't want to go online and compare rates. Many car insurance companies compete to insure your vehicles, and because of this it can be hard to compare insurers and get the best coverage at the lowest rate on auto insurance.

It's smart to shop coverage around before your next renewal because auto insurance prices change frequently. Despite the fact that you may have had the best deal on auto insurance six months ago you will most likely find a better premium rate today. Block out anything you think you know about auto insurance because we're going to show you the proper way to properly buy coverages and cut your premium.

Auto insurance companies in California

The auto insurance companies shown below provide comparison quotes in Cupertino, CA. If multiple companies are listed, we recommend you get rates from several of them to get the best price comparison.

Insurance Estimates for Popular Vehicles in Cupertino
Make, Model, and Trim Level Annual Policy Premium 6-month Policy Premium Monthly Premium
Chevrolet Colorado LT 4WD $1,602 $801 $134
Chevrolet Silverado LS Extended Cab 4WD $1,164 $582 $97
Dodge Grand Caravan SE $1,292 $646 $108
Dodge Ram Crew Cab Sport 4WD $2,056 $1,028 $171
Ford Escape XLS 2WD $966 $483 $81
Ford Explorer Limited 4WD $1,338 $669 $112
Ford F-150 XL Crew Cab 2WD $1,362 $681 $114
Ford Focus S 4-Dr Sedan $1,648 $824 $137
Honda Accord EX-L 2-Dr Coupe $1,586 $793 $132
Honda CR-V EX-L 4WD $1,326 $663 $111
Honda Civic DX 2-Dr Coupe $2,026 $1,013 $169
Honda Odyssey EX-L W/Navigation $1,418 $709 $118
Hyundai Sonata Limited 4-Dr Sedan $1,978 $989 $165
Nissan Altima 2.5 S 2-Dr Coupe $1,572 $786 $131
Toyota Camry Hybrid $1,518 $759 $127
Toyota Corolla XLE $1,232 $616 $103
Toyota Tacoma 4WD $1,242 $621 $104
Get Your Own Custom Quote Go

Prices above based on married female driver age 40, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $500 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include homeowner, multi-vehicle, multi-policy, claim-free, and safe-driver. Rate quotes do not factor in Cupertino location which can alter rates greatly.

Annual premiums for males compared to females

The diagram below shows the difference between insurance costs for male and female drivers in Cupertino. The data assumes no violations or accidents, comp and collision included, $100 deductibles, drivers are single, and no discounts are factored in on a Nissan Sentra 2.0 SR.

Nissan Sentra rates are for example purposes only. To get rate quotes for your specific vehicle, click here.

Difference between liability only and full coverage rates

The diagram below shows the comparison of Hyundai Elantra annual premium costs with and without physical damage coverage, medical payments, and uninsured/under-insured motorist coverage. The prices are based on no claims or violations, $500 deductibles, single male driver, and no other discounts are factored in.

Hyundai Elantra rates are for example purposes only. To get rates for your specific vehicle, click here.

When to eliminate full coverage

There is no definitive rule of when to drop comp and collision coverage, but there is a general school of thought. If the annual cost of coverage is 10% or more of any settlement you would receive from your insurance company, then it may be the right time to buy liability only.

For example, let's assume your Hyundai Elantra replacement cost is $5,000 and you have $1,000 policy deductibles. If your vehicle is totaled, you would only receive $4,000 after paying the physical damage deductible. If it's costing you more than $400 annually to have full coverage, the it may be a good time to stop paying for full coverage.

There are a few situations where dropping physical damage coverage is not in your best interest. If you still have a loan on your vehicle, you must maintain physical damage coverage in order to satisfy the requirements of the loan. Also, if you can't afford to buy a different vehicle in the event your current vehicle is totaled, you should not remove full coverage.

Verify you're applying every discount

Auto insurance is not cheap nor is it fun to buy but you might find some hidden discounts that could drop your premiums quite a bit. Some discounts apply automatically when you purchase, but some must be specially asked for before being credited. If you do not check that you are getting every discount possible, you are just wasting money.Save money with discounts

Keep in mind that most discount credits are not given to the entire cost. A few only apply to specific coverage prices like collision or personal injury protection. Despite the fact that it seems like you can get free auto insurance, you won't be that lucky.

Some of the insurance companies that may offer quotes with many of the previously listed discounts include:

If you need lower rates, check with all the companies which discounts can lower your rates. Savings may not be offered in Cupertino.

Good decisions result in lower premiums

Smart consumers have a good feel for the factors that are used to determine car insurance rates. When you understand what determines base rates, this empowers consumers to make smart changes that will entitle you to lower car insurance prices. Lots of factors are part of the equation when you get your auto insurance bill. Most are fairly basic such as your driving history, but others are less obvious like your vehicle usage and annual miles driven.

Shown below are just a few of the factors that factor into premiums.

How your age affects costs - Mature drivers are viewed as being more responsible, file fewer claims, and receive fewer citations.Inexperience drivers are proven to be more careless when at the wheel of a vehicle and because of this, their car insurance rates are much higher.

Pay more of a claim out-of-pocket - Comp and collision deductibles represent how much money you are required to spend out-of-pocket before your car insurance pays a claim. Protection for physical damage, otherwise known as comp (or other than collision) and collision, is used to repair damage to your car. Examples of some claims that would be covered are collision with another vehicle, hail damage, or theft of your vehicle. The more money you have to pay, the lower your rates will be.

No coverage gaps is important - Having an insurance coverage lapse is a fast way to bump up your car insurance costs. Not only will you pay higher rates, getting caught without coverage will get you a hefty fine and possibly a revoked license.

Occupation reflects on premiums - Jobs such as judges, social workers and miners generally pay higher premium rates due to high stress and lengthy work days. Conversely, jobs like professors, students and performers receive lower rates.

Location can influence price - Living in smaller towns and rural areas of the country can save you money when shopping for auto insurance. Fewer people means a lower chance of having an accident and lower theft and vandalism rates. Drivers who live in large California cities have more aggressive driving styles and longer commute times. Spending more time driving can result in more accidents.

Vehicle features that cut prices - Selecting a car model that has a built-in theft deterrent system can help lower your rates. Theft deterrent systems such as vehicle immobilizer systems, General Motors OnStar and LoJack tracking systems can help prevent your car from being stolen.

Advertising myths

Consumers get pounded daily by advertisements that promise big savings for switching from the likes of State Farm and Allstate. They all seem to try to convey promises that you'll save big if you move your insurance policy to them.

It sounds good, but how can they all lower your rates?

Companies can use profiling for the driver that earns them the highest profit. A good example of this type of insured might be described as over the age of 40, has no tickets, and drives a car with an anti-theft system. A customer that matches those criteria will qualify for the lowest premium rates in Cupertino and have a good chance to save when they switch companies.

Drivers who cannot meet these standards may be required to pay more expensive rates and this results in the customer buying from someone else. If you listen closely, the ads state "people who switch" not "everybody who quotes" save that much money. That's why companies can advertise the way they do. This emphasizes why it is so important to get price quotes at each policy renewal. Because you cannot predict which insurance company will give you lower car insurance rates than your current company.

Quote more and you will save more

Lower-priced auto insurance in Cupertino can be found both online and from local agencies, so get free Cupertino auto insurance quotes from both of them to have the best selection. Some auto insurance companies may not provide online quoting and many times these small, regional companies only sell through local independent agencies.

When buying insurance coverage, never sacrifice coverage to reduce premiums. There have been many cases where an accident victim reduced physical damage coverage and found out when filing a claim that it was a big mistake. Your focus should be to purchase a proper amount of coverage for the lowest price, but do not sacrifice coverage to save money.

Much more information about auto insurance in California can be read at these links: