Shopping for insurance isn’t on any list of “most fun things to do”—at least in my world. But what is very fun to me is to suddenly find out I’m saving lots of money when I switch. I recently went through this process (for more, see #2 below) and saved $500. Now that is some fun I could stand to repeat—often!
3 Things to know before you switch
Here are some fast facts to keep in mind if you want to switch insurers.
- For most products, you can cancel anytime—not just at renewal time. But before you do, read the fine print of your current policy to make sure a) you won’t be charged a fee, and b) you’ll get your prorated balance refunded.
- Insurers often offer multi-policy discounts. Be sure to ask what your discount will be if you bring over more than one type of policy.
- It can be worth it to go back to your current insurer with the new lower quote and renegotiate before you switch over. This is especially true if there are attractive things about your current policy you don’t want to lose—they may not be able to match your price, but at least you asked first!
5 Budget-friendly insurers
Keep in mind, pricing may vary depending on what state you’re in and other factors. Having said that, here are some insurers eager to work with you to help you make the switch!
1. Gerber Life
- Products: Life insurance
The Gerber brand name is closely associated with baby food products…not so much with insurance products. However, Gerber Life has been operating as a separately owned affiliate since 1967!
Gerber Life’s insurance menu focuses on one thing—life insurance to secure your child’s future. With six different products to choose from, you can find the one that complements your child’s age and where you are in life.
It’s very easy to generate a quote—just visit Gerber Life and enter your state, your child’s age, and your child’s gender. You can select your coverage level (from $5,000 – $50,000) and premiums start at less than $4 per month. Plus, you get a free child ID card when you apply!
- Products: Auto, Homeowners/Renters, Life, Personal Umbrella, Small Business, Boat/Watercraft
I have been a card-carrying—and very happy—AAA roadside protection member for years. But only recently did I become aware of how many other insurance products AAA now offers. This news in hand, I just switched over from my long-term auto and renter’s insurance provider to AAA. I’m saving $500 this year because of this decision to switch (and I would be saving even more except for a couple of, um, incidents on my driving record). I also saved because I switched over all my policies, so I got a multi-policy discount. Yay!
When I asked my agent why AAA could under-bid so many other providers, the explanation was simple: AAA is a member-driven organization that does not have to answer to shareholders. The more members AAA has, the more they can work to decrease prices.
- Products: Auto, Homeowners/Rental/Condo, Pet, Life, Specialty Vehicle (Watercraft, Trailer, Motor Home etc.)
- Name Your Price tool: http://www.progressive.com/auto/name-your-price/
Progressive made the list for one simple reason (and it’s not Flo, their perky spokeslady): their “Name Your Price” feature. With this feature, the company aims to match your budget to one of their insurance products. You can also key in your exact current insurance package and get a quote for the same at Progressive (makes it easy to see who is lowest!). Plus, they offer discounts for bundling multiple policies—one of my favorite ways to save!
- Products: Auto, Homeowners/Rental, Flood, Life, Umbrella, Small Business
My best friend has insurance through USAA and she routinely pays about a third of what I pay for auto insurance (and our driving records are similar). But I’m not eligible; USAA is only available for active duty military, military spouses, and military dependents.
Once in, 92% of members say they plan to remain with USAA for life. You can access incredible multi-policy discounts, and your driving-age kids can get discounts for maintaining a good GPA, maintaining a good driving record, and more.
- Products: Auto, Life, Pet, Homeowners/Rental, Food, Identity Protection, Umbrella, Overseas, Specialty Vehicle
I’m not just picking Geico because their super-cute mascot insists you can save by switching. Rather, I’m picking them because, in addition to a multitude of better known available discounts, you can also get military discounts, good grades discounts (for young drivers), federal employee discounts, and discounts through 500+ partner organizations and companies.