Sick and tired of paying out the nose to pay insurance each month? Your situation is no different than most other people in California.
It's shocking but the vast majority of drivers kept their policy with the same company for four years or more, and 38% of drivers have never shopped around. With the average insurance premium being $1,847, American drivers can save hundreds of dollars each year by just shopping around, but they won't spend time to do a rate comparison. Companies like Allstate, Progressive and GEICO promote their brand names with catchy ads and it can be hard to see through the deception and find the best price available.
It's important to check insurance prices every six months because insurance prices fluctuate regularly. Despite the fact that you may have had the best deal on insurance a year ago other companies may now be cheaper. Forget all the misinformation about insurance because you're about to learn the quickest way to eliminate unnecessary coverages and save money on insurance.
If you have a policy now or just want a better rate, use these cost-cutting techniques to shop for the lowest rates without reducing coverage. Buying affordable insurance in San Francisco can really be easy if you know what you're doing. Consumers just have to understand the proper way to compare different rates instantly.
Learn how to get car insurance at a discount
Many factors are considered when premium rates are determined. Some are pretty understandable like an MVR report, but some are not quite as obvious like where you live and annual miles driven.
- Single vs. married - Walking down the aisle can get you a discount on your car insurance bill. It means you're more mature and statistics prove married drivers tend to file fewer claims.
- Your credit rating is important - A driver's credit score can be an important factor in your rate calculation. People with very good credit scores tend to be more responsible as compared to drivers with poor credit scores. Therefore, if your credit can be improved, you could pay less to insure your vehicle by repairing your credit.
- Stay claim-free and reduce prices - If you file a lot of claims you shouldn't be surprised to get either higher rates or even cancellation. Auto insurance companies in California generally give most affordable rates to insureds who file claims infrequently. Insurance coverage is meant to be used in the event of major claims that would cause financial hardship.
- Liability limits are a factor - Your policy's liability coverage is the coverage that protects you in the event that you are found liable for damages from an accident. This coverage provides for a legal defense to defend your case. Carrying liability coverage is mandatory and cheap compared to other policy coverages, so drivers should make sure they buy enough to cover all assets.
- Eliminate unneeded incidental coverages - There are many additional coverages that can add up when buying car insurance. Coverages like roadside assistance, death and dismemberment, and additional equipment coverage may be wasting your money. You may think they are a good idea initially, but if you have no use for them eliminate the coverages to reduce your premium.
- Vehicle theft costs us all - Owning a car with advanced anti-theft systems can save you some money. Theft prevention devices such as OnStar found on GM vehicles, advanced tracking like LoJack, and vehicle immobilization systems can thwart vehicle theft.
The companies shown below provide price quotes in San Francisco, CA. In order to find cheaper auto insurance in CA, we recommend you compare several of them to get the best price comparison.
|Make, Model, and Trim Level||Annual Policy Premium||6-month Policy Premium||Monthly Premium|
|Chevrolet Impala LTZ||$1,280||$640||$107|
|Chevrolet Silverado LS Crew Cab 4WD||$1,626||$813||$136|
|Dodge Ram Quad Cab Sport 4WD||$1,834||$917||$153|
|Ford Escape XLS 4WD||$982||$491||$82|
|Ford Explorer XLT AWD||$1,106||$553||$92|
|Ford F-150 Lariat Crew Cab 2WD||$1,576||$788||$131|
|Ford Focus SES 2-Dr Coupe||$1,462||$731||$122|
|GMC Sierra Denali Crew Cab 4WD||$1,578||$789||$132|
|Honda Accord EX-L 2-Dr Coupe||$1,306||$653||$109|
|Honda CR-V EX-L 4WD||$1,336||$668||$111|
|Honda Civic SI 2-Dr Coupe||$1,814||$907||$151|
|Honda Odyssey EX-L W/Rear Entertainment||$1,256||$628||$105|
|Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4WD 2-Dr||$1,588||$794||$132|
|Kia Optima LX||$1,408||$704||$117|
|Nissan Altima 3.5 SR 2-Dr Coupe||$1,564||$782||$130|
|Toyota Camry Hybrid||$1,800||$900||$150|
|Toyota Corolla XLE||$1,664||$832||$139|
|Toyota Tacoma Double Cab TRD Off-Road Package 4WD||$1,378||$689||$115|
|Volkswagen Jetta 2.0T 4-Dr Sedan||$1,830||$915||$153|
|Get Your Own Custom Quote Go|
Data variables include married male driver age 50, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $500 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include safe-driver, multi-policy, homeowner, claim-free, and multi-vehicle. Prices do not factor in San Francisco location which can influence insurance rates substantially.
Rate comparison for different deductibles
One common question asked by San Francisco drivers is where should you set your physical damage deductibles. The following insurance rates help summarize the price difference when you buy lower versus higher insurance deductibles. The first pricing table uses a $250 physical damage coverage deductible and the second set of prices uses a $500 deductible.
Ford Fusion rates are for example purposes only. To get rates for your specific vehicle, click here.
|Model||Comp||Collision||Liability||Medical||UM/UIM||Annual Premium||Monthly Premium|
|Fusion S 4-Dr Sedan||$342||$576||$442||$26||$132||$1,543||$129|
|Fusion SE 4-Dr Sedan||$386||$678||$442||$26||$132||$1,689||$141|
|Fusion Hybrid 4-Dr Sedan||$386||$780||$552||$32||$166||$1,941||$162|
|Fusion SEL 4-Dr Sedan||$386||$678||$442||$26||$132||$1,689||$141|
|Fusion Sport 4-Dr Sedan||$386||$678||$442||$26||$132||$1,689||$141|
|Fusion SEL AWD 4-Dr Sedan||$430||$780||$442||$26||$132||$1,835||$153|
|Fusion Sport AWD 4-Dr Sedan||$430||$780||$442||$26||$132||$1,835||$153|
|Get a Quote for Your Vehicle Go|
|Model||Comp||Collision||Liability||Medical||UM/UIM||Annual Premium||Monthly Premium|
|Fusion S 4-Dr Sedan||$278||$464||$442||$26||$132||$1,342||$112|
|Fusion SE 4-Dr Sedan||$314||$546||$442||$26||$132||$1,460||$122|
|Fusion Hybrid 4-Dr Sedan||$314||$630||$552||$32||$166||$1,694||$141|
|Fusion SEL 4-Dr Sedan||$314||$546||$442||$26||$132||$1,460||$122|
|Fusion Sport 4-Dr Sedan||$314||$546||$442||$26||$132||$1,460||$122|
|Fusion SEL AWD 4-Dr Sedan||$348||$630||$442||$26||$132||$1,578||$132|
|Fusion Sport AWD 4-Dr Sedan||$348||$630||$442||$26||$132||$1,578||$132|
|Get a Quote for Your Vehicle Go|
Data rating is based on married male driver age 30, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include multi-policy, homeowner, safe-driver, multi-vehicle, and claim-free. Price estimates do not factor in garaging location in San Francisco which can modify price quotes greatly.
Based on the above data, using a $250 deductible would cost the average driver about $20 more each month or $240 every year than selecting the higher $500 deductible. Because you would pay $250 more to settle a claim with a $500 deductible as compared to a $250 deductible, if you tend to have at a minimum 13 months between claim filings, you would probably save some money by selecting a higher deductible.
Is there deception in advertising?
Consumers can't escape the ads that promise big savings for switching from the likes of State Farm, GEICO and Progressive. They all state the claim that drivers will save a bundle if you get a free San Francisco car insurance quote and switch your coverage.
Is it even possible that every company can cost less than your current company?
Insurance providers are able to cherry pick for the type of insured that earns them the highest profit. An example of this type of driver may be a married male, carries high limits, and drives a lower-performance vehicle. Any person who fits that profile will probably get cheap prices and as a result will probably save a lot on San Francisco auto insurance if they switch.
Insureds who do not meet these criteria may be forced to pay higher prices and ends up with the driver buying from a lower-cost company. If you listen closely, the ads state "people who switch" but not "everyone who gets a quote" save the amount stated. That's the way insurance companies can advertise the savings.
That is why you absolutely need to quote coverage with many companies. It's just not possible to know which company will have the lowest rate quotes.
Insurance is not optional
Despite the potentially high cost of insurance, paying for insurance is mandatory in California but it also protects more than you think.
- Just about all states have minimum liability requirements which means state laws require specific limits of liability in order to license the vehicle. In California these limits are 15/30/5 which means you must have $15,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $30,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and $5,000 of property damage coverage.
- If you took out a loan on your vehicle, almost every bank will require you to have physical damage coverage to guarantee their interest in the vehicle. If the policy lapses, the bank will be required to insure your vehicle at an extremely high rate and require you to reimburse them for the much more expensive policy.
- Insurance protects not only your vehicle but also your assets. Insurance will pay for hospital and medical expenses for you, any passengers, and anyone injured in an accident. Liability coverage will also pay to defend you if you cause an accident and are sued. If your vehicle gets damaged, collision and comprehensive (also known as other-than-collision) coverage will pay to have it repaired.
The benefits of having insurance more than offset the price you pay, particularly if you ever have a claim. According to a recent study, the average American driver is overpaying over $830 a year so it's very important to do a rate comparison at every policy renewal to ensure rates are competitive.
Take policy discounts and save on car insurance
Companies offering auto insurance don't necessarily list all possible discounts very clearly, so we researched a few of the more well known and also the more inconspicuous credits available to you. If you don't get every credit available, you could be paying more than you need to.
- Bundled Policy Discount - If you insure your home and vehicles with the same company you could get a discount of as much as 10 to 15 percent.
- Discount for Passive Restraints - Vehicles with factory air bags and/or automatic seat belt systems can get savings of more than 20%.
- Full Payment Discount - By making one initial payment instead of monthly or quarterly installments you can avoid the installment charge.
- Save with More Vehicles Insured - Having multiple vehicles with one company can reduce rates for all insured vehicles.
- Theft Deterrent - Anti-theft and alarm system equipped vehicles help deter theft and that can save you a little bit as well.
Drivers should understand that some of the credits will not apply to your bottom line cost. The majority will only reduce individual premiums such as liability, collision or medical payments. So even though you would think you can get free auto insurance, company stockholders wouldn't be very happy.
To see a list of companies who offer online car insurance quotes in San Francisco, click this link.
Compare rate quotes but buy from a local San Francisco insurance agency
Some consumers prefer to buy from a local agent and doing so can bring peace of mind Most agents are highly skilled in risk management and give you someone to call. One of the best bonuses of comparing rate quotes online is the fact that drivers can get lower rates and still have a local agent. Buying from and supporting local insurance agencies is definitely important in San Francisco.
To find an agent, once you fill out this form (opens in new window), the coverage information is immediately sent to local insurance agents who will return price quotes for your insurance coverage. You never need to leave your computer due to the fact that quote results will go to you instantly. If you want to get a comparison quote from a specific insurance provider, you can always visit that company's website to submit a rate quote request.
When narrowing the list to find a local San Francisco insurance agent, you need to know there are two different agency structures and how they are slightly different. Insurance agents can be described as either exclusive or independent agents depending on their company appointments. Both can provide insurance policies, but we need to point out the subtle differences because it can influence the selection process.
Independent Insurance Agents
Independent insurance agents are not locked into one company and that allows them to write policies with a variety of different insurance companies and get you the best rates possible. If you are not satisfied with one company, they simply move your policy to a different company which makes it simple for you.
If you are comparing rate quotes, you will want to check rates from several independent insurance agents for the best price selection.
Below is a partial list of independent insurance agencies in San Francisco that may be able to give free price quotes.
Exclusive insurance agents generally can only insure with one company and examples are Farmers Insurance, State Farm, Allstate, and AAA. Exclusive agents cannot compare other company's rates so you might not find the best rates. Exclusive agents receive a lot of sales training on their products and sales techniques which helps them sell insurance even at higher premiums.
The following is a list of exclusive insurance agencies in San Francisco willing to provide price quotes.
Choosing a insurance agent needs to be determined by more than just a cheap price quote. These are some valid questions you should ask.
- Is vehicle mileage a factor when determining depreciation for repairs?
- Do they make recommendations based only on price?
- Is vehicle damage repaired with OEM or aftermarket parts?
- If you raise deductibles, how much can you save?
- How experiences are they in personal risk management?
- Is insurance their full-time profession?
Quote. Compare. Save.
Some companies may not offer rate quotes online and usually these small, regional companies only sell through independent agents. Lower-priced insurance in San Francisco is available on the web and from local agencies, and you need to price shop both to have the best selection.
You just learned a lot of ways to shop for insurance online. It's most important to understand that the more price quotes you have, the higher the chance of saving money. Consumers may even find the lowest rates come from a company that doesn't do a lot of advertising. These smaller insurers may have significantly lower car insurance rates on certain market segments than the large multi-state companies such as State Farm, GEICO and Nationwide.
More tips and info about insurance is located in the articles below:
- Car Insurance: When not to Skimp (BankRate.com)
- Who Has the Cheapest California Auto Insurance for Drivers with Good Credit? (FAQ)
- How Much is Car Insurance for Drivers Over Age 70 in California? (FAQ)
- What Auto Insurance is Cheapest for a Toyota Corolla in California? (FAQ)
- Who Has Affordable California Auto Insurance Quotes for Low Income Drivers? (FAQ)
- Who Has Cheap California Auto Insurance Quotes for Lyft Drivers? (FAQ)
- How Much is California Car Insurance for a Dodge Ram? (FAQ)
- State Laws for Cellphones and Texting (iihs.org)
- Teen Driving Statistics (GEICO)
- Front crash protection reduces rear-end crashes (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety)
- Hybrid vehicles cost insurers more (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety)