When I was eighteen, I needed to get car insurance for my used car. It was the first car that I had ever purchased on my own so I wanted to be very responsible and get the car insurance policy myself without any help from my parents. This is where I went wrong. I ended up getting myself into a car insurance coverage nightmare. My story was a very traumatic one for me but maybe it can help others who may find themselves in a similar predicament.
Do Your Homework before Buying a Policy
Many people just call an insurance agent or go online and begin filling out an insurance quote without even knowing what they are doing. This is what happened to me and it cost me a lot of money. My nightmare began when I called an insurance agent about insuring my used Toyota Corolla.
It was about five years old at the time that I purchased it. I knew right away that I would need to get it insured quickly because the state that I lived in at the time had strict mandatory insurance laws. I had no idea about the amount of car insurance coverage that I needed or how much coverage was too much.
Know What You Need before You Get Swindled
I did not know that I could just insure my car with liability coverage and come out okay. The insurance agent that I spoke to was only trying to sell me collision insurance. At the time, I was just beginning my senior year of high school and many of my friends were borrowing their parents’ cars and did not own their own yet. The insurance agent told me that I needed collision coverage with the highest coverage terms in case I hit someone or someone ended up hitting me and had no insurance coverage.
No mention of discounts or special programs for younger drivers were relayed to me either. I found out later that they had special programs for younger drivers which required a driver to watch a few videos and provide their driver’s education certificate to get a discount. There was also a program that gave discounts to young drivers with good grades and I was a straight A student.
I took what the insurance agent said at face value and ended up buying a very expensive collision car insurance policy for my five year old Corolla. I learned from my parents after I had signed up for my policy and had begun paying my premiums that I should have gotten liability only coverage on my car. Most used cars only need liability only car insurance coverage because many people end up paying more than one thousand dollars a year to insure their car this way.
For me, that was about one third of what I had paid for my Corolla with over eighty thousand miles on it. The decision was very bad and my parents said that the insurance agent had taken advantage of how naïve I was to make a sale.
Learn From My Mistakes
If people can learn anything from me it is to ask for help. People need to know what their car is worth, how far they drive weekly, and what type of car insurance best fits your needs. I should have asked my parents and other adults for their recommendations on types of car insurance to explore and which companies to use. My nightmare could have been avoided if I had just not jumped the gun and would have gotten better information.