• Sponsored Post: Maintaining Your Auto Insurance Rate

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    This sponsor post is brought to you by 21st Century Insurance. The views expressed here are solely those of the sponsor and do not necessarily represent the views of Make Love, Not Debt.

    Many drivers spend a lot of time shopping for lower car insurance rates. Once you find a low rate, you’ll want to keep it that way. Here are a few tips for avoiding a premium increase.

    1. Avoid traffic violations.
    Speeding tickets and other moving violations can automatically result in an automobile insurance rate increase. Follow the letter of the law to avoid getting a ticket in the first place. If you do get a citation, some states will erase it if you attend traffic school. See if your state is one of them.

    2. Drive carefully.
    Exercise extreme caution whenever you drive. You can expect your rate to increase if you’re involved in accident for which you are held responsible. The industry standard is to increase your premium by 40% of your base rate after your first at-fault accident. Be sure to look carefully at the next insurance bill you receive after an accident. You shouldn’t be penalized for accidents that weren’t your fault. If you think your rates have been increased unfairly, contact your insurance company.

    3. Lend your car sparingly.
    If you lend your car to a friend who gets in an accident, you’ll be responsible for any deductibles incurred. There’s also a good chance your rates will increase as the result of any claims filed.

    4. Don’t get your license suspended.
    Too many driving violations or a DUI can result in your losing your license. Once that happens, you may find your auto insurance rates increase by as much as 35-40%… or that you may not be able to get coverage at all.

    5. Keep your car locked … in the garage, if possible.
    It doesn’t seem fair, but a stolen car can result in an increased auto insurance policy. Always lock your vehicle and park in the safest place possible. If you have a garage, use it.

    6. Choose the car you drive carefully.
    When shopping for a new vehicle, choose a safe, low-risk model. If you have a few makes and models in mind, call your insurance company and ask will cost more to insure.

    7. Pay your bills on time.
    Many car insurance companies look at credit reports to determine the amount of your premium. The belief is that drivers with higher credit scores are more responsible behind the wheel. A poor credit score could result in a higher auto insurance rate.

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