College students paying their own way – who are becoming more in number due to the country’s economic troubles – often struggle to pay their expenses. When it comes to things like rent, utilities, gas and groceries, the bills can pile up quickly. And then when you add in auto insurance payments, it seems that the never ending cycle of financial obligations rears its ugly head.

Unfortunately, most college students don’t know that saving on car insurance is one of the easiest ways to reduce expenses. Here are 5 things you might not have known about car insurance:

1) Your credit matters

Your insurance company uses a series of criteria to determine what you pay in premiums. One of those is your credit history. If you’ve racked up a lot of credit card debt, or you have applied for a number of loans in a short period of time, you may have to pay more. To get the best auto insurance rates, keep your credit use under control.

2) A higher deductible equals lower premiums, but may not be the best option

It can be tempting to opt for a higher deductible plan so that you can pay lower premiums, but that may not be your best option. If you get in a situation where you have to make a claim and you can’t pay the deductible, you run the risk of being denied future coverage.

3) Full time student discounts can help you save

Whether you’re a high-performing student, or you live on or near campus and don’t use a car very often, you may have access to discounts. Good student discounts enable you to save if you meet a certain GPA and attendance requirements, and resident student discounts account for where you live and how much you drive and apply that to your premiums to help you save. There are a ton of money saving apps, so get going!

4) Driving certain cars can be costly

Some cars are targeted more frequently than others for theft, and thus are more of a risk for the insurance company to insure. If you’re driving a Honda Civic, Honda Accord or any other car that’s at a higher risk of being stolen, you may pay more. Ask your insurance provider if your car carries a higher risk of being stolen.

5) Where you park matters

Do you park on the street, in a driveway, in a parking lot, or in a garage? If you live an apartment and have to park on the street or in a lot, the insurance company considers this more risky due to the higher probability of a non-moving accident or a break-in. Consider all your parking options to get the maximum benefit on your auto insurance policy.

Doing some research and knowing how the system works can help you save, and can ultimately help you focus more on your education and enjoying your college days.

 

 

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