Cutting car-insurance costs

October 11, 2010

Odds are you can, but most people-about 75 percent-haven't shopped for a better plan in the past year.

Consumer Reports has not found one company that always delivers the lowest rates, so you should get quotes from several companies. There are websites to make that a lot easier. Two good ones are and

One downside is that you'll probably get lots of follow-up e-mails from insurance agents.

Other ways to save on car insurance:

  • Consider dropping rental reimbursement if you have a car that you can use while yours is being repaired
  • Drop roadside assistance if you can get a better deal from AAA or another auto club
  • Drop collision coverage on older cars. If the insurance costs more than 10 percent of your car's value, you'll pay more for insurance than you'll ever get back if your car is damaged or totaled
  • Notify your insurance company if you are driving less often these days.
  • Consumer Reports says one way you should not try to save is by cutting back on liability coverage. You could face financial ruin if you're at fault in an accident and there are large damages. Stick with at least the standard coverage. It pays bodily injury of up to $100,000 per person and $300,000 per accident and property damaged up to $100,000.

    In addition to getting a low rate, you want an insurance company that delivers good service and promptly pays claims. Consumer Reports surveyed more than 28,000 of its readers and found that overall satisfaction with insurance companies is high, but some companies earned higher scores than others.

    These companies scored especially well:

  • Amica Mutual Group
  • The USAA Group, if you have family members in the military
  • New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Group
  • Auto-Owners Insurance Group of Companies.
  • You can get more advice on saving on car insurance at

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