Simple ways older drivers can save money on auto insurance

June 3, 2013

(BPT) - Are your auto insurance premiums too high? Maybe they are, but not for reasons you might think. Insurance companies arenít charging you higher premiums because youíre in an over-50 age group. You may be paying too much because you havenít done anything to lower the cost of your premiums. Check out these money-saving tips Ė they could be right up your alley.

* Comparison shop. You donít need to stay with the same insurance company forever. Prices vary from company to company. Just be sure you discuss the identical coverage with each company representative. Also, donít go by price alone. Consider the companyís reputation, customer service and available discounts. Look online at customer reviews to get a better picture.

* Combine policies with one carrier. You may save money if you insure all your vehicles on a single policy. Your premium may also go down if you have life or homeownersí insurance with that company, too.

* Consider asking about higher deductibles. In some cases, if you increase your deductible, you could lower your premiums. Of course, that means youíll have to pay more money out-of-pocket if youíre in an accident.

* Take an AARP Driver Safety course. Available both online and in the classroom Ė in English and Spanish Ė this course teaches valuable defensive driving techniques and provides a refresher about the rules of the road. When you complete the course, you could qualify for a multi-year discount from your auto insurance company (check with your insurance agent for more details). Visit to find a course in your area.

* Consider dropping collision and/or comprehensive coverage. It may not make financial sense to pay premiums over many years to maintain collision and comprehensive coverage. If your car is worth less than 10 times the premium, purchasing the coverage may not be cost effective, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). But donít drop your liability coverage, which can help cover expenses for property or bodily damage you cause while driving your car.

* Take advantage of low-mileage discounts. Some carriers offer discounts to drivers who put less than a predetermined number of miles on their vehicles each year. If youíre only using your car to drive to your kidsí houses, the grocery store, the mall and the gym, this could be a money-saving opportunity.

* Ask about car-safety discounts. Some insurers give discounts for having certain safety devices in your car, such as air bags, automatic safety belts, anti-lock brakes, daytime running lights, or even an approved alarm system. In addition to lowering your premium, these features will help keep you safe on the road.

* If youíre in the market for a new car, consider purchasing a low-profile vehicle. Itís more expensive to insure a vehicle thatís expensive to repair, popular with thieves or known for not having a good safety record. To find out vehiclesí risk levels, visit the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety website.

Everyoneís trying to save money these days. By following these tips, youíll be in the driverís seat when it comes to auto insurance premiums.