The price of car insurance is ticking up slightly so far in 2017 – up 5% to 10% in average state-to-state price increases. Additionally, in the past five years, the auto insurance consumer price index has risen by 21.5%, while the overall consumer price index rose 4.5% during the same timeframe.

But drivers don’t have to take those rising policy costs lying down, although many may not be aware of that fact.

“Actually, it’s easy to save money on car and home insurance; however, most consumers don’t take the time to shop for better rates,” notes Seth Birnbaum, CEO and co-founder of EverQuote, an online insurance marketplace. “In fact, 39% of U.S policyholders have never shopped for a better auto insurance rate.”

With consumers tightening their financial belt straps, what can vehicle owners do to cut into the rising costs of auto insurance? Buckle up and start steering toward these money-saving tips:

Shop for better rates.

“If it were me, I would pick an insurer with high name recognition and also speak to an independent insurance agent who can shop multiple carriers,” says Patrick Crider, principal agent for The Insurance Shoppe of Tennessee, in Collierville, Tenn. Crider says auto consumers can get up to ten more quotes from an independent agent, which at the very least, lets you know where the market, rate-wise. “I would talk with more experienced agents or agency owners because, in general, there is a high turnover in the insurance industry, so you know that person has been there for the long haul,” he says.

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