Michigan Car Insurance
Smart drivers know that making the effort to find the lowest Michigan car insurance rate can be well worth the effort, and this is just as true for motorists in Michigan as elsewhere. Car owners in Michigan paid an average of $925 per year for Michigan car insurance in 2006. By law, all car owners in Michigan must have no-fault car insurance, even if the owner does not drive the car himself. This means it is prudent to find the best deal available and price comparison websites can be a valuable tool to help you do so.
Michigan is unique in that it has the most comprehensive no-fault car insurance benefits in the nation. Assuming you are insured, you receive unlimited medical and rehabilitation benefits as well as generous wage loss benefits regardless of fault for the accident. However, to qualify you must have no-fault car insurance that covers all medical expenses in a given accident, covers up to one million dollars worth of property damage, and Residual Bodily Injury and Property Damage Liability Insurance. This last required element covers bodily injury and property damage that you are declared liable for if it is determined you were at fault for the accident.
By law, Michigan car insurance companies operating in Michigan must provide coverage to most eligible residents. However, there are some situations in which all insurers may refuse to give a person coverage voluntarily. In this case, a Michigan resident can go through the Michigan Auto Insurance Placement Facility (MAIPF). This is a private entity that was established by Michigan state law and arranges for a company to insure a qualified Michigan resident involuntarily. The rate is usually significantly higher when going through the MAIPF, but it guarantees that all eligible residents have access to the mandatory car insurance.
Michigan Car Insurance Companies
Once you decide to begin looking for the best car insurance quote, your first step should be to explore the rates given by online comparison websites. The market tends to be dominated by a few national or statewide companies that can offer low cost car insurance rates because of their relative size and the number of premiums they receive each month. However, there are also a number of smaller niche insurers that specialize in providing Michigan car insurance to specific target groups. These niche markets may be the type of driver (for example, Spanish-speakers), the type of car (for example, rare classic cars), or based on a given locality. The number of companies that may be competing for your business can be enormous.
In that the market for Michigan car insurance is very competitive, companies tend to try to underbid each other and also make it very quick and easy for potential consumers to get general quotes. This is a process that has grown dramatically due to the Internet and most insurers in Michigan offer the means of obtaining a quote on their websites. It is important to note that these free quotes are general in nature and may not represent the actual amount they are willing to insure you for once all of the relevant factors are taken into consideration. Nevertheless, this is still the best first step to take when looking for an acceptable Michigan car insurance rate.
In order to get a free quote, you will have to provide some private information about yourself. This typically includes information about the locality that you live in, some of your personal status information, and information about the car to be insured. This information allows the company to provide a general car insurance quote, but does not include a lot of the information that will be requested once you make a formal application for your Michigan car insurance coverage. These additional factors will probably include your current credit rating, your driving habits and history, and your history with Michigan auto insurance. The general quotes allow you to focus your search on a few companies most likely to meet your needs, but does not amount to all of the research necessary.
Michigan car insurance companies use a series of complicated metrics to determine the risk posed by a particular applicant and the results of this risk analysis will determine whether or not company will cover you and at what rate they will do so. Generally speaking, the higher the risk the company feels you represent, the less favorable your terms for Michigan car insurance will be. The information required to provide you with a free quote is part of this risk assessment process, but does not constitute the entire process. As Michigan auto insurance is required by law, many people consider this process unfair, but this is how it works.
The information requested about where you live provides the company with an idea of how well you are doing financially as well as how likely you – or your automobile – are to be victimized by crime. For example, a person living in Barton Hills, near Ann Arbor, looks good as this area has one of the highest average incomes in the entire United States. At the same time, a resident of inner city Detroit does not look as good because this is one of the poorest areas in the state. Similarly, Benton Harbor (southwest of Grand Rapids) has the state’s highest crime rate and Grosse Ile Township (south of Detroit) has the state’s lowest crime rate. The averages relating to any of these communities will have a direct bearing on your Michigan car insurance premiums.
What Effects Your Michigan Car Insurance Rates
Your personal status information, such as your age, gender, and martial status, are also used to determine risk. By carefully collecting statistics about the personal status indicators of people filing claims, the industry has constructed a risk analysis tool that determines the risk presented by drivers. This tool is an industry standard today. Currently, the highest risk group based on this personal status information is made up of unmarried males under the age of twenty-five. The least risky group is comprised of married middle-aged women. Some companies also use other personal status indicators as well as a person’s personal habits, like smoking, to make these calculations.
The type of car to be insured is the basis of a different metric. In this case, the industry has compiled a detailed list of the types of vehicles involved in claims and then assigned a particular risk value to each. This may deal with general types of vehicles or specific makes and models. A related component of this calculation is the average cost of repairing the vehicle in question. Therefore, luxury and sports cars usually have a higher risk rating than some compacts and low cost sedans. The frequency of claims for your kind of vehicle and the average costs of repairing it will have a direct bearing on the premium offered.
These factors – where you live, your personal status, and your vehicle type – represent the most common factors taken into account when giving you a Michigan car insurance quote. However, as noted previously, once you apply other factors will be considered as well and these may offset – or even negate – the factors described above. For example, you may live in a great area, but if you have a terrible driving record, it may not matter. Each company has its own formula for making this determination, so it is difficult to what the actual outcome will be. That being said, getting these general quotes is still the right way to narrow down your search and find a few companies most likely to meet your Michigan car insurance requirements.
So what are you waiting for? Compare cost and coverage details from the Michigan cities of: Detroit, Grand Rapids, Wyoming, Lansing, Flint, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, Portage, Holland, Grand Haven, Saginaw, Allegan, Battle Creek, Bay City, Dearborn, Farmington Hills, Jackson, Livonia, Monroe, Muskegon, Norton Shores, Niles, Benton Harbor, Sterling Heights, Traverse City, Troy, Warren, Adrian, Alma, Alpena, Big Rapids, Cadillac, Coldwater, Escanaba, Houghton, Iron Mountain, Marquette, Midland, Mount Pleasant, Owosso, Sault Ste. Marie, Sturgis and more.