Have you ever wondered what discounts are available on your auto insurance, how choosing higher deductibles could save you money? Or even how much your daily commute adds to the cost of your insurance? You might be surprised how much you could save if you change your auto deductibles, ask about discounts, or minimize how much time you spend in your car.
We set out to get car insurance quotes here at Kanetix.ca for a 35-year old living in Toronto and driving a 2014 Honda Civic (we picked the Civic because it's Canada's best-selling car). From this original set of quotes, we then layered in details that could improve the chances of getting a cheaper car insurance rate to see how much could be saved. Here's what we found.
Car insurance deductibles explained and why they matter
A deductible is the portion of an insurance claim you agree to pay. Your insurance company picks up the rest. By agreeing to take on more financial responsibility in the event of a claim, the insurance company adjusts your premiums accordingly. In other words, the higher the auto deductible you choose, the lower your insurance rate. How much lower? Well it depends on the insurer and how much your rate is already, but when the deductible was changed from $500 to $1,000 the lowest rate was now $90 cheaper.
Winter tire discount
Do you install snow tires before the winter season begins each year? Some insurance companies offer a discount when all four of tires are changed seasonally so that in the winter the vehicle is equipped with tires designed specifically for driving in the cold and snow. By changing the tires seasonally, $101 was saved.
- Related Read: Ontario Drivers To Get Winter Tire Insurance Discount
Whether you own your home, condo, or rent, you should have some sort of property insurance coverage. If you get your property insurance from the same insurer as your car insurance you will likely qualify you for a discount called the "Multi-line Discount". In our scenario, combining our home and auto insurance coverage knocked off $96.
If you have a car but limit how often you drive you could benefit with a cheaper car insurance rate.
In our scenario, we originally indicated the driver drove 35,000 kilometres a year of which 80 a day were to get to and from work (not unreasonable since this is about the distance from Toronto to Oakville or Toronto to Pickering.
Given the price of gas and parking, many drivers alternate between driving to work and taking the train or carpooling, effectively reducing the commute mileage put on the car by half. If your current policy is set up in such a way that it assumes you commute every day without consideration for the times you take the train or carpool, talk to your insurer because in our scenario another $90 came off the lowest car insurance rate quoted.
- Related Read: Gas Prices Driving You To Walk? Fuel Savings Tips
Some companies offer a discount if you work in a particular field, have a particular professional designation, work for a particular employer, or belong to recognized group like a union or alumni association. We layered into our scenario that our driver is an alumni of a nearby university, and received a quote that was $251 cheaper.
The total savings
All in, the options chosen in the scenario and the available discounts translated into a potential savings of $628 off of the original car insurance quote that was already competitively priced. Of course, this is just an example, and the savings will vary, but the fact remains: there are savings to be had. Speak to your current insurance provider to make sure you are getting all the savings you should be. If you're shopping for car insurance, make sure to take advantage of these opportunities when you complete your quote.
Kanetix.ca can help you find those savings. Chances are the single most important factor in lowering your car insurance rate is to compare car insurance quotes, at minimum on an annual basis before your renew. Rates often change-not just with your insurer, but all insurers-and the company who provided you the best rate five years ago, two years ago or even last year, may no longer offer you the best deal today.