A short time ago, I experienced what I like to call “bill shock." The six-month renewal for my vehicle, and my husband's, was once again increasing...and not by a small amount. I was thinking to myself, there is simply no reason for the premium to go up because we had no claims, no speeding tickets, or any other criteria that should make the premium increase. I called the insurance company to ask why the rate had increased and they told me that the type of truck my husband drove had a lot of claims over the past year, so all trucks of this same make and model would have an increase in the premium cost statewide. Interesting! Then I asked why my auto insurance premium was increasing and they said they would have to research it and get back to me. A week later, they still had not gotten back to me.
During that week, I became frustrated and thinking to myself, I have the power to do something about this. Just because we had used the same company for seven years doesn’t mean I shouldn’t check around for better deals. What was holding me back? Well, my husband has a hard time with change. He likes dealing with the same people and being able to call them and get personal assistance. I like dealing with people I know, too, and customer service is always important. I remember an article that I had seen, written by Dave Ramsey, about his Most Popular Money-Saving Tip and it had to do with independent Insurance Agents. As a Financial Well-Being Director and Coach, I decided to follow through with this money saving tip to see if it works. And guess what? It did!
First United Insurance Solutions is an independent agency that shops around with its partners to find the best rate possible, while ensuring all your insurance needs are met. I made the decision to seek out the assistance of Amanda Hunt, a First United Insurance Agent, who was able to help me obtain a quote during the week that I was waiting to hear back from the other insurance company. When the quote came back, my husband’s truck insurance (with the same coverage) was almost half the cost! My car insurance also decreased by more than half, which saved us approximately $850 during that six-month renewal period. It was a "no-brainer." Now, I have insurance with a reputable company and I have more money to save.
Here are some key tips to help make the process go smoothly, if you’re looking to save money on your insurance.
- Be sure to call 3-4 weeks prior to making the change, as this allows plenty of time for the agent to shop around, and get the new documents signed and ready to avoid a lapse in coverage.
- Have your insurance policy declaration ready so that you can get a quote that compares the same coverage you already have. Comparing apples to apples vs. apples to oranges is key to comparing rates.You can always save money by increasing your out-of-pocket deductible, or dropping a coverage you may need but, if you don’t have the money sitting in an emergency fund, I would caution against this strategy as this could put you in a financial crisis.
- Check to see how much money you can save if you pay your premium monthly, quarterly, or every six months. You can often save a pretty good chunk of money when you pay a lump sum amount every six months. If you do decide to pay on an infrequent basis, be sure to put that money away each month so, when the renewal time occurs, you have the funds to pay premium. For example: If your premium is $700 every six months, you will want to put aside $116.66 every month to ensure the money will be available the next time your premium is due.
If you’re reading this and thinking, “Okay, this is just another sales pitch” I can promise you it is NOT! I am simply an everyday person who wanted to save money. Will everyone be able to save the same amount of money I did? Likely not, but I encourage you to call and check. It only took about 5-7 minutes for Amanda to get the information she needed. I was not obligated or pressured to make a switch, but I’d be nuts not to save almost $142 dollars a month!
Next time you are looking for a way to cut your monthly expenses, contact First United Insurance Solutions at 877-699-1688. I’m sure glad that I did!