How to Choose Between Different Types of Auto Insurance, Napa CA
Car with hands covering over
Regardless of whether you’re a new driver or someone looking to switch to a new auto insurance napa ca company, there are a few things you should be aware of. First, you must understand each of the coverages available on your auto insurance policy and how they protect you and those around you.
Please continue reading below if you want an auto insurance policy tailored to meet your needs and want to know which coverages are best for you. We will cover all you need to know about the many different car insurance coverages and who you can contact for more information.
Different Types of Auto Insurance Coverage
You can add several car insurance coverages to your insurance policy. For example, you can add collision, comprehensive, and rental car coverage. In addition, most insurance policies come standard with liability coverage, property damage, and bodily injury coverage. These liability coverages protect the other driver if you are found to be responsible for the incident.
Collision coverage is first-party coverage that you can use to take care of damages caused to your vehicle due to an accident. There is typically a deductible that you must meet before your auto insurance company pays out anything. For example, if you have a deductible of $500, you must have at least $500 worth of damages before your auto insurance company pays anything.
So if you have $1,500 worth of damages on your vehicle, you will pay $500, and the insurer will pay the remainder. You can use this coverage regardless of who is at fault for the accident.
You cannot use collision coverage for any damages that are not accident related. So, for example, if your vehicle breaks down due to maintenance issues, you can’t use this coverage for those repairs.
Similar to collision coverage, comprehensive coverage is first-party coverage that takes care of accident-related damages. The main difference between collision and comprehensive coverage is the type of accident. Comprehensive claims do not involve collisions, such as acts of God.
Comprehensive coverage claims:
- Collision with an animal
You have the opportunity to select your deductible for this coverage as well. However, similar to collision, you must meet your deductible threshold before your auto insurance company pays for your damages.
Rental coverage provides you with a loaner vehicle while your car is in the shop for accident-related repairs. Depending on the coverage you elect for, you may be able to borrow a car similar to yours.
You are only allowed to keep the vehicle for as long as your car is being repaired or once you run out of rental coverage. Most policies cover thirty days but check in with your insurer before you get stuck with the rental bill.
Liability Insurance Coverage
As mentioned earlier, liability coverages on your policy take care of the other driver if you are found responsible for the accident. In addition, these coverages work to protect you from the other driver seeking compensation from you directly.
Property Damage Coverage
If your insurance company finds you responsible for the accident, they will use your property damage coverage to take care of the other driver’s damages. Unlike the first-party coverages we mentioned earlier, you don’t have to pay anything out of pocket for third-party liability.
Instead, your insurance company will handle their repairs out of your property damage coverage limit. So long as the other driver’s damages don’t exceed that threshold, you won’t have to pay anything out of pocket.
For example, let’s say the other driver has $10,000 worth of damages and your property damage limit is $25,000. In this case, you won’t have to worry about paying anything additional. However, if that driver had $30,000 worth of damages and you only had $25,000, your insurance will pay out their limits, and the driver may come after you for the remaining amount.
Bodily Injury Coverage
Bodily injury liability coverage takes care of the other driver’s injuries they sustain from the accident. But, again, your insurance company must first find you liable before they will use this coverage.
If you are, they will use this coverage to pay for the other driver’s medical expenses associated with the accident. If the other driver decides to retain counsel for their injuries, your insurance company will handle those attorney fees. They will also take care of the negotiation process for you.
Car Insurance Mistakes
A typical car insurance mistake many people make is not purchasing enough coverage. Each state has its required minimums for how much liability coverage you need, but sometimes that is not enough.
For example, for auto insurance in Napa, CA, the minimum property damage coverage you have to carry is $5,000. So if you were to get into a severe auto accident, $5,000 most likely wouldn’t cover the repairs of the other driver’s vehicle.
You may want to purchase more than the state-required minimum to protect yourself. Increasing coverage may save you a lot of money in the long run. Of course, if you are unsure what type of coverages to get or how much, you can always contact your insurance company for more guidance.
How Much Will My Insurance Cost?
Several variables are taken into consideration when figuring out your insurance premiums. No two drivers are the same, and most insurance companies have their own underwriting department that helps them rate your policy.
Factors that affect your insurance premiums:
- Driving history
- Years of driving experience
- Insurance history
- Claims history
- Annual mileage driven
Some insurance companies consider your credit score when rating your policy as well. Per their research, a client with good credit is less likely to file a claim than someone with fair to bad credit.
Age is a huge factor that most insurance companies consider when creating your policy. Of course, younger and newer drivers are more likely to pay more in insurance premiums than other seasoned drivers.
Newer drivers are viewed as a higher risk since they don’t have enough driving experience. Teen drivers are statistically more likely to get into an accident than other drivers.
Even if you aren’t a teen driver, you can expect higher premiums if you are a newer driver or someone without a driving history. Your insurance company will also consider your driving tickets. You can expect to pay more than the average driver if you have a history of DUIs, reckless driving, or other driving violations.
Car insurance is typically priced by ZIP codes. You are at a higher risk if you live in an area with more crime, such as car break-ins, vandalism, or theft. Those who live in safer neighborhoods tend to pay less than those who don’t.
Areas that are prone to fire, flood, or another severe weather face higher rates. Generally, those who live in more rural parts of town pay less than those who live in busier urban areas. The main reason for this is because there are less traffic and fewer chances of theft or break-in.
Another significant factor insurance companies take into account is your insurance history. For example, do you have a history of lapsing your policy?
How long have you been insured? Are you actively insured? Clients with a lapse in coverage are more likely to have higher rates because they are seen as risky.
Every insurance carrier views a long history of claims filed as a red flag. This includes any lawsuits filed against you.
Your insurer will look into those previous claims and see if those claims were your fault or not and how much an insurer had to pay on your behalf. If you have a long list of claims, especially ones where you were found to be at fault, you may have to pay more than the average driver.
Auto Insurance Napa CA
Having the right auto insurance policy over your vehicle is essential to ensure that you have coverage if you sustain damages to your car. It can also protect you from any potential lawsuits.
If you are found responsible for the accident, you want to ensure that you have enough coverage to take care of the other party’s damage. If you are looking for a new auto insurance Napa CA policy, contact us for a free quote. We are here to answer any questions or concerns you have about your policy and the proper amount of coverage you need!