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Girl Drivers, Insurance and Risky Behavior

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Research Last Updated: 05/27/2011

Female drivers aged 16-19 lack the driving experience and sometimes maturity that is needed to be a good driver, leading these girl drivers to be a high insurance risk.

Girl Driving Toy Car

Girl drivers are not quite women yet and are a high insurance risk due to lack of experience driving.

Not quite women yet, but with a new driver’s license they are no longer children either. These girl drivers are still learning how to handle both life and driving at the same time.

Because still they are still learning, they make bad decisions and mistakes in driving situations that they are not familiar with and both lead to car accidents. Because of the higher chance of having an accident, these girl drivers face higher insurance premiums.

Ages 16-19

From the time that they get their license at age 16 until they turn 20 these girls are still learning how to handle dangerous driving situations that may happen quickly and that they are not experienced enough to react correctly to in order to avoid an accident. They are also still learning how to be responsible and can make bad decisions in judgment behind the wheel, which is why this age group pays the highest insurance rates of all females and is second only to the boy drivers of the same age group.

Insurance Rates for Girl Drivers

Insurance rates have always been cheaper for girls than they have been for boys of the same age group. The general rule of thinking has continued to be that girls are less of an insurance risk than boys are because they are seen as less aggressive and less likely to take chances while driving a vehicle.

These chances could be anything from passing another vehicle when it is clearly not safe to do so because they want to drive faster or doing things behind the wheel to impress others that they would not normally do when driving alone.

However, while boys continue to have the higher insurance rates, the girls are closing in. In recent years, insurance companies have seen more accidents and aggressive driving behavior in girls and have started to raise their rates accordingly. While they are still cheaper to insure than a boy, they may not be for much longer.

What Is Going On With Our Girl Drivers?

Is the increase in auto insurance claims and risky behavior behind the wheel something that we need to be worried about with these girls? Yes and No.

Yes, we need to be concerned because bad teen driving, no matter what the gender, has an effect on us all. It may be just minor damage to our property from a teen showing off that they can drive with no hands or it could be a loss of life because a teen driver didn’t want to follow behind a slower moving vehicle and passed them while in a no passing zone.

No, we shouldn’t be concerned because the increase of claims has a lot to do with more girls getting their drivers licenses than they have in the past and also the increased amount of time and miles that girls spend behind the wheel as compared to earlier generations. The more time behind the wheel means more chances for an accident and increases the statistics. It does not mean that our girl drivers are necessarily becoming worse drivers.

Continuous Car Insurance – Why It’s Important!

Written by Todd Clay. Posted in Research Last Updated: 10/21/2011

Having continuous car insurance on your vehicle will save you more money than you would if you were to cancel your current policy to save on the premium.

A Swinging Pendulum and Continuous Car Insurance Are both Best When They Don't Stop

Continuous car insurance works best for you financially if you never stop it.

Even when times are tough financially, dropping your car insurance is one of the worst things that you could possibly do to save yourself money. Car insurance, at least liability insurance, is required to be in place if you are going to drive your vehicle.

If you are caught without having insurance on your vehicle, not only will you be paying for a ticket, you will now be paying more for your insurance than you did before cancelling your policy. In the end you will not have saved yourself much money at all by cancelling your insurance and not keeping continuous car insurance.

High Risk Insurance for Those Without Continuous Car Insurance

If you are caught by a police officer or you have an accident and you have no continuous car insurance in place, you are both legally and financially in trouble. Setting aside the fact that you will have to pay the ticket for not having insurance coverage, any money that you thought that you would save by cancelling your policy won’t even be close to what you will now have to pay out of your own pocket.

First, if you get into an accident with no insurance and it is your fault, you are personally responsible for paying for the damages and medical bills for the other party. This can either happen with you being taken to small claims court by the other party or through subrogation through the other party’s insurance company. Subrogation is when the insurance company goes after the responsible party of a car accident to get back the money that they paid out for their insured’s damages and even their insured’s deductible.

On top of all that, you will then most likely have to carry SR-22 insurance which adds a surcharge on your now new insurance policy that you went out and got after the incident. Thought we were done there? Not even close. You will also be placed in high risk insurance which is significantly more expensive than in the standard market that you cancelled your continuous car insurance from in the first place.

The State of California Requires Continuous Car Insurance

If you live in the state of California, the state tracks your insurance coverage through a database that all insurance companies that sell in that state have to report to. If you fail to keep continuous insurance on your vehicle you are required to stop driving the vehicle and report that it is no being driven. If you do not keep continuous car insurance or at least replace your continuous car insurance with a new insurance policy within 45 days, the state will suspend your vehicle registration and you will face financial penalties.

If you don’t live in California, your state is not far behind – if not already there.

Lose Longevity Discount

One of the discounts that people can take advantage of to lower their insurance premium is a longevity discount. This discount is basically a reward to you for keeping continuous insurance with the same company. If you cancel your continuous car insurance you will lose this discount even if you return to the same company at a later time.

When to Stop Paying Collision

Written by Todd Clay. Posted in Research Last Updated: 10/21/2011

Collision insurance is there to protect you from having to pay for damages that may happen to your vehicle, but it is not required to be able to drive and may not be needed in some cases.

A damaged vehicle needing collision insurance

If you stop paying your collision coverage, at-fault damage like this will not be covered.

Unlike liability coverage, collision insurance is not required to be in place for you to be able to drive. There are situations that you have to carry collision insurance on your vehicle, but this is not something that is required by your state government.

For those situations that you do not have to have it on your vehicle and you are looking to save some money in your budget this may be when to stop paying collision insurance on your car.

Stop Paying Collision Insurnace if You Can’t Afford It

Some people live on a very tight budget and have to cut corners where ever they can. If you need to cut some expenses, dropping your collision insurance from your insurance policy will save you money and you will still be able to drive your vehicle. However, you have to weigh the good with the bad in this situation.

Dropping collision insurance will do you good in saving you money, but you may be in a bad place financially if you cannot afford to fix any damages to your car from out of your own pocket. Because you dropped your collision insurance, your insurance company is no longer going to be stepping in to pay for the cost of damages above and beyond your deductible.

Stop Paying Collision Insurance With No Lienholder

The one situation in which you will be required to carry collision insurance on your vehicle is if you have a lienholder on it. A lienholder is the business that gave you the money to buy your vehicle and who you are now making monthly car payments to. They require that you carry collision insurance on your vehicle because until you pay off your car loan, the vehicle actually belongs to them and they want to make sure that it is protected from damages.

Once you have paid off your car loan and your lienholder sends you the title of the car, you are no longer required to carry collision insurance on this vehicle. If you wish to remove this coverage to save money on your premium you are now free to do so.

Stop Paying Collision Insurance when Your Vehicle is Old

If your vehicle is in pretty bad shape or it is just old, it may not be worth your money to even worry about putting collision insurance on it. If you were to get into an accident and the vehicle is a total loss, the insurance company is only going to pay up to a certain percentage of the vehicles worth.

If you have paid out more in insurance premium for the collision insurance than what the insurance company is going to pay out, you are better off just putting that money in a bank account and paying for any damages yourself. At least with having the money that you would have paid for collision insurance with in a bank account you can earn some interest off of the money.

Should You Trust Car Insurance Reviews?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Research Last Updated: 05/16/2011

An unbiased car insurance review is a great way to get information on other people’s experience with an insurance company so that you can avoid bad companies and find a good company to go with.

Giving a thumbs up or down to insurance companies through reviews

A good car insurance review will give you more information than any company advertisement.

In the world of business, word of mouth advertising can be just as important as any other form of advertising. Word of mouth advertising is when a client of a business tells people about their experience with that business.

Car insurance reviews are a form of word of mouth advertising for car insurance companies as they are not paid for by the insurance company and are written by people that have had experience with the company.

While this is a great way to see a company in a more realistic light than from the advertising they put out about themselves, car insurance reviews are not without their downfalls and should you trust car insurance reviews?

Car Insurance Reviews Should Be Unbiased

The most important thing that you need to look for is that a review is unbiased. If the review has nothing but good things to say about a company and no suggestions that they could improve on anything or any negative experiences, you may want to question the source of the review.

A good review has a “person looking into a box” type of feeling about it. The person writing the review should be able to see the company as a whole and how each part works together for the insured.

Watch Out for Very Negative Car Insurance Reviews

On the other side of a biased review are those that are extremely negative. If the review has nothing good to say about an insurance company this is not a review to form an opinion of the insurance company from.  A review that is very negative could very well have been written by a person that has had a very unpleasant experience with this company or it could be a former, disgruntled employee.

Either way you are not getting a good idea of how the company works.

Who is Sponsoring the Car Insurance Review?

Take a look around the site that is hosting the insurance company review that you are reading. Is there a company that is listed as sponsoring these reviews and is it the same company that you just read a review about? If that same company is sponsoring the review you can almost be sure that this site is going to present that company in the best light possible.

Now keep in mind that this is only if you see that the company is directly sponsoring the review or the site as a whole. This is not the case if an advertisement for the company is visible on the same page through Google or on a banner on the top of the site’s page. The person that runs the site sometimes has no control over what shows up as advertisements on their page if they have agreed to sell part of the space on their site for rotating advertising to a third party.

Read Multiple Car Insurance Reviews

Never, ever base your whole opinion of an insurance company on a single review. While the review that you read may have a great unbiased view of the company and may have covered all of the information that you need, it is still just one person’s view of the company. To make a solid decision about an insurance company, seek out multiple reviews and notice if there is any pattern in each of the reviews. For example, is the company listed as having rude claims adjusters in all of the reviews or maybe they have a quick pay out time on their claims.

If you are able to see the same information in multiple reviews, this is the information that is best to base your opinion on. For more reviews on car insurance companies, checkout these reviews:

Auto Insurance Customer Reviews

Is Car Insurance Refundable?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Research Last Updated: 06/11/2013

You can get a refund on your car insurance if your only vehicle is a total loss, you cancel your policy and have paid ahead on your premium or if you have overlapping coverage.

Cash Being Refunded for Insurance

As unlikely as it may sound, there are instances when insurance companies refund back your money.

Is car insurance refundable?

Because car insurance is not something that you can feel or touch a lot of people ask this question, especially when they never use their insurance.

Unfortunately, there are only certain circumstances where you can actually expect a refund from the insurance company and most involve cancelling your policy.

Refund for Car Insurance Paid in Advance

When you purchase auto insurance it is for 6 months of insurance. You have the option of paying for the coverage term in full, in two payments or monthly. No matter what you chose though you are paying for your coverage in advance.

For the two payment plan you are paying for the first three months when you buy the policy and then the last three months when you are two months into the term. The monthly payment plan is paid from month to month, but you put two months down when you buy the policy and then you are always paying a month ahead for your coverage.

By doing this the insurance companies make sure that they get the premium for the coverage period in advance in case there is a claim. This also means that if you cancel your insurance policy during your coverage term, the insurance company owes you a refund for the future coverage that you paid for.

Refund for Changing Insurance

If you place your insurance coverage with a different company and forget to tell you old insurance carrier, you are entitled to a refund. Because you already have coverage in place in with a new company, your old carrier cannot use the excuse that they cannot cancel your policy to a past date and give you a refund because they would have provided coverage for that time period in the case of an accident. In this situation be prepared to show proof of your policy start date with your new carrier to get your refund.

Refund for a Car that Is a Total Loss

If you only have one vehicle on your policy and it becomes a total loss due to an accident you could be owed a refund for your coverage. As your vehicle no longer needs insurance coverage because it is not drivable your insurance company could owe you a refund of the premium you paid in advance. The refund should be effective back to the day after the accident. This of course depends on the circumstances you are in and you should consult your agent to see if you are owed a refund.

When Car Insurance Is Not Refundable

Car insurance is not refundable if you do not use it. You are paying an insurance company to make a contract with you that they will cover the damages to your vehicle and also the damages you cause to another person. At the same time if you do have an accident, the insurance company could end up paying out a lot more in damages than you have paid in premium.

It is also not refundable if you have a claim and you have paid more premium than the insurance company ends up paying out for your claim.

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