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Pennsylvania Tips for Saving on Car Insurance

As a Pennsylvania driver, you are required by state law to carry auto coverage on any and all vehicles you put on the road. There are certain minimum levels of coverage each Pennsylvania auto owner has to maintain; beyond these minimums, you have many options on ways to round out your car insurance coverage. Taking a look at some Pennsylvania tips for saving on car insurance can help you to manage the cost of coverage and save money on your premium.

Financial Factors Affecting Insurance Choices

Probably the first variable most of us take into consideration when we are making our decisions on Pennsylvania car insurance coverage is our financial situation. Auto insurance is a necessary and unavoidable expense for all of us who drive in PA-according to the state vehicle code, each of us has to at least carry auto liability insurance to get our cars registered and out on the road.

But not every auto policy is the same. Certainly not every auto policy costs the same amount of money. When money is tight and you are having trouble making ends meet each month, auto insurance is one area where you are sometimes tempted to skimp. Many of us have had to make do with only the bare minimum auto liability policy and nothing more. In a perfect world, every driver would be covered with a full coverage automobile policy covering their cars from every possible angle. But in the real world, many of us cannot afford such coverage.

But this is not to say that auto coverage is unimportant. On the contrary, it is of the utmost importance, especially to those of us who do not have a lot of extra money to work with from month to month. Imagine, for example, having to pay a substantial liability judgment out of pocket after an at-fault injury accident. Or imagine having a lien holder tack on collision and comprehensive coverage on to your car payment at twice the average market cost because you failed to maintain this coverage while repaying your loan. Pennsylvania car insurance is an important investment, a relatively small expenditure protecting us from potentially larger ones.

Saving money, then, must become our focus once we have gotten past the notion of going without auto coverage. It is a necessity-and a valuable one at that. Those of us who are working with very limited financial budgets especially need to do everything we can to get the most out of our auto insurance premium dollar. If you are not making that much money, or if you are struggling with credit issues, reaching this goal is of the utmost importance.

Understand Each Coverage Option

Saving money on car insurance in Pennsylvania and getting the most out of your policy requires a keen understanding of what you are getting for your money. You need to understand each coverage option inside and out if you are to make wise choices. For the vast majority of us just barely getting by from month to month, our auto insurance priority has to be this: to find the right balance between coverage and savings. Without adequate coverage, we are just wasting money on a cut-rate policy. Without a great value on our insurance, we will never be able to keep up with our premiums. Striking the right balance is our main job when we go hunting for coverage.

Since auto liability coverage is mandatory in PA, this area of coverage might as well be the place to start. The state mandates a minimum 15/30/5 split form liability policy. This means at least $15,000 in first victim bodily injury liability coverage, $30,000 in per-accident bodily injury coverage, and at least $5,000 in property damage liability insurance coverage. The state minimum is only the lower threshold of coverage, and policy holders in PA are free to carry higher limits.

The cost of liability insurance is generally cheaper than any other types of coverage, so it is worthwhile to investigate adding to your coverage limits. By all means, get insured and get legal, to protect yourself from legal fees or financial responsibility in the event of an accident. Contact your provider about the possibility of increasing coverage limits, and take a look at how such an increase would affect your rates. As always, make your decision based on the goal of trying to balance coverage with cost control.

Beyond liability coverage, you may be forced to carry comprehensive and collision insurance if you have a loan on your automobile or you lease. These forms of coverage give you great protection if your car is worth some money. They will pay up to the fair market value of the vehicle less deductible in the event of a covered loss. Accidents are covered by collision, and other losses like theft, vandalism and storm damage are handled by comprehensive insurance coverage in Pennsylvania.

There are other optional forms of coverage that you may not even think you are interested in if you are working from a very limited budget. But once again, these elective forms of auto insurance do provide a benefit of filling in and rounding out the protection offered by your policy. And they may be less expensive than you think. A few examples are uninsured motorist coverage, underinsured motorist coverage and medical payments coverage.

Pennsylvania is a tort state for auto insurance. This means that in any accident situation, someone has to be found completely at fault for the accident. This is true whether or not multiple cars are involved. The trouble with tort law arises when liability insurance is not present in the at-fault vehicle. If you are involved in an accident and the other driver is found at fault but does not carry any liability coverage, you may be hard pressed to get compensated for the costs of your injuries. Your collision coverage may take care of the costs of repairs to your car (though you will have to pay a deductible), but your medical care could go unpaid if you do not carry uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage or medical payments coverage.

Shop Around to Save Money

It's true that most of us by necessity view auto insurance as an expense we need to keep down as far as possible. But we also need to view it for the protection it represents against much greater potential costs we could face without it. Rather than deny the import of this critical coverage, shift your focus to doing what you can to make it more affordable. Shop around to save money on your PA car insurance premiums. You may be surprised what a wide range of pricing you may find if you take the time to put together even a handful of quotes.

Pennsylvania drivers can best accomplish the task of striking a balance between coverage and affordability on their auto insurance by evaluating their own financial position, understanding each coverage option they have, and taking the time to shop around for coverage. Auto insurance is an expense we cannot do away with, but with a more focused strategy, we can make it much more affordable.

 

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