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Shopping for car insurance is a chore, isn’t it? Calling company after company and locating the price that fits best with your lifestyle isn’t exactly a walk in the park. However, once you’re covered, there is a weight lifted from your shoulders. While it can become very easy to get comfortable with the company you selected so long ago, there may be better solutions out there for you and without keeping a close eye on prices, you may never know. Below are some of the most unknown reasons for larger insurance rates. Knowing what to look for is the first step towards locating savings.

Erased Tickets That Still Count Against You

As most people are aware, tickets increase the cost of your insurance. What many people do not realize is that even if a ticket has been removed from your record, it may still be counting against you – maybe not against your ability to operate a vehicle but these ‘zero points’ infractions may still show up when insurance agencies are renewing your policy. When fighting a ticket, verify that the ticket is not going to appear anywhere on your motor vehicle report and that it isn’t simply being removed from your license.

Every Mile Counts

If you’ve moved since purchasing your policy and have noticed an increase in the bill, this may be due to the fact that you no longer reside within the same zip code anymore. What can be frustrating about this type of situation is you can literally move a few blocks or miles and have insurance rates that suddenly shoot through the roof. The best thing to do before moving is to get quotes from various insurance providers, using your soon-to-be zip code. Companies base their prices on how risky you are to have as a customer. If the zip code you are moving to has a large number of claims on average year after year, this makes you a higher risk. Maybe this means there are more break ins or vehicles stolen within that area. You may like your current company but sometimes switching is the better option. Find better deals? Show evidence of this to your current provider and they may just work with you in order to keep you as a customer.

Your Past Affects the Future

Maybe you still have debt looming over your head from that shopping spree you went on as a new adult, back when the importance of credit was a discussion that went right over your head. While you may be working hard these days and fighting to get your debt to income ratio in check, insurance companies may still be able to penalize you for your past behavior. Studies have shown that people with lower credit scores are more likely to get into car accidents than those with outstanding credit. While this isn’t exactly something you can change overnight, this can be used as more motivation to get those bills paid on time and avoid accumulating more debt in the future.

Going Without Coverage

And this doesn’t just pertain to people who are driving without insurance. Let’s say you have a vehicle and it’s completely paid for so there’s no need for comprehensive or collision. You have it sitting in your garage and it never enters the roadway – technically no insurance is required. Even a single day or a mere week of this could lead to higher insurance rates when you decide to begin driving again. If looking to swap insurance companies, be sure that your end date and start date are in line so you are continually covered. Although such lapses in protection may not always mean you are likely to have an incident, companies view this as ‘red flag’ behavior. Luckily, if you do experience higher rates due to a lapse in coverage, these additional charges will reduce over time.

Today’s guest author, Dawn Anderson, is a financial consultant at Money Saving Angels, an insurance company based in England. Her firm is a premier insurance firm in the country and has received excellent reviews from its customers.