- Auto insurance can be a big expense.
- There are several discounts typically available, including a low mileage discount.
It pays to take advantage and save.
Owning a car may not be a luxury for you, but rather, a necessity. If you live someplace without public transportation, you may have no choice but to have a car of your own. And even if there is public transportation in your area, it may not be reasonable to take it everywhere -- such as the supermarket to load up on a week's worth of groceries.
But owning a car could get expensive. AAA estimates that it costs $9,666 a year to own a vehicle, and that includes expenses like maintenance and auto insurance. The good news, though, is that there are steps you can take to make your car insurance less expensive. Here are four discounts you may be eligible for.
1. A good driving discount
Drivers with a history of operating a vehicle safely tend to be rewarded with lower auto insurance premiums. Now if you already have a moving violation on your record, you can't go back in time and undo it. But what you can do is aim to drive safely and follow traffic laws going forward so that in time, you're eligible for a discount.
2. A defensive driving discount
Some people learn to be defensive drivers with experience. But if you're a newer driver, there are courses you can take to learn the ropes. And in some cases, taking a defensive driving class could result in a discount on your auto insurance.
Plus, you don't necessarily need to be a new driver to snag a discount after taking a defensive driving course. While some insurers reserve their defensive driving discounts for newer drivers, others let all drivers benefit from this option.
Before you sign up for a course, though, check with your insurance company to see what sort of discount you're looking at. Also, make sure the course in question is acceptable to your insurer.
3. A bundling discount
Some insurance companies will give you a discounted premium rate if you bundle your auto and homeowners insurance. If you're buying a home or own one already, it pays to see what savings you can reap by using the same company to insure your home as well as your car.
4. A low mileage discount
Some drivers use their cars every day, such as to commute to work. Others only use their cars for errands or on weekends. If you fall into the latter category, you may be eligible for discounted insurance premiums. The logic is that if you're not using your car as much, you may be less likely to get into an accident.
These days, a lot of people are working remotely. If your driving status has changed since applying for auto insurance and you're no longer using your car for a daily commute, it pays to let your insurance company know. Making that call could result in lower premiums.
Owning a car isn't cheap -- even if your vehicle is already paid off in full. But these tips could result in lower auto insurance costs -- and more savings for you.
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