Shopping For the Best Auto Insurance


In recent years, all rates for automobile insurance have been set by the Commissioner of Insurance under what was known as the "fix-and-establish" system. Under this system, companies were not allowed to compete for drivers by charging lower premiums.

Beginning April 1, 2008, automobile insurance companies will begin setting their own rates. This means that if you request premium quotes for the same coverage from several different companies, you will most likely receive different quotes from each of them. You will then be able to choose the best rate for the coverage you want. The Commissioner of Insurance still must approve a company's rates, but the new system will allow companies to compete for your business.

Will My Auto Insurance Coverage Change? 

Although the minimum limits and basic coverage will not change, insurers will now be permitted to offer additional coverage, higher limits, and lower or waived deductibles. Therefore, you may have more choices available to you, and may want to shop around if there are additional coverage you wish to purchase.

Will Competition Lower My Premium?

Competition is designed to encourage insurance companies to offer their lowest possible premium to each driver. Although the majority of Massachusetts policyholders will probably benefit from reduced rates under the new system, the amount that you pay will depend on your individual risk factors, such as your driving record, the territory in which you live, and other rating factors approved by the Commissioner. While every policy is different, maintaining a clean driving record should decrease your rates.

How Should I Shop For Auto Insurance?

First you should determine what types of coverage you need, and how much of each type you need. Once you have decided what you need, you should then get premium quotes for that coverage from several companies. You will be able to do this by working with one or more agents and by contacting different insurance companies directly. Use this free tool to compare insurance quotes.