If you are now a senior, you can enjoy many discounts at restaurants and even at fitness clubs. You also may have the benefit of decreased housing costs if you choose to live in a senior community with a low maintenance design. However, many seniors may find themselves wishing their car insurance rates could also go down. After all, your pension, social security, and retirement savings need to stretch as far as possible.
Fortunately, there are many things you can do as a senior to lower your rate. Here are some tips to consider.
1. Register any change of address with your car insurance company.
Sometimes, people downsize or move to less busy areas to enjoy retirement. If you have recently moved or plan to move, you should let your insurance company know. Moving to an area with less traffic, fewer statistical violations and accidents, and safer road conditions could mean a drop in your rate. After all, the chances of you getting into a car accident have gone down. Areas with lower crime rates also have fewer break-ins and vehicle vandalism, which can also drop your rate, since insurance covers theft and damage as well.
2. Make sure your company knows about reduced mileage.
Before retiring or moving from full-time work to part-time work, you might have had a daily commute. Your insurance company looks at the number of miles you drive in a year to help determine your risk of getting into an accident. More miles on the road means more chances of collisions. Reporting less driving time will mean savings for you.
3. Invest in a vehicle with improved safety features.
One of the reasons why insurance rates might go up for seniors is because they, as a group, have more statistical risk on the road. Certain medications, for example, used to treat common illnesses can decrease attentiveness. Vision and hearing are less acute, and reaction times slower. However, modern vehicles with safety features can help to compensate. For example, a back-up camera gives you increased visibility. Parking assistance reduces the risk of parking lot collisions. Traction control helps to compensate for human error in tricky conditions. Sensors that stop the car when an obstacle suddenly appears can also help decrease incidences of accidents. Newer 360 degree cameras can help you see around corners on bigger streets where visibility is blocked by parked cars.
If these new cars seem too tech-heavy for you, consider taking a small refresher driving course to help you see how functional they can be. The extra education can also reduce your insurance rate.
4. Take advantage of senior discounts.
Many insurance companies like to have responsible senior drivers. They have more time behind the wheel, and therefore more experience handling a car. Many seniors have decades of clean driving history that shows a consistent consideration for safety and the rules of the road. These clients are low-risk assets to insurance companies, and some offer promotional rates to help draw in this "cream of the crop."
5. Get a physical each year.
When you were younger, you might have only gone to doctor when you were ill or when your job required a check-up. However, getting a clean bill of health on a yearly basis can help reduce your liability on the road, especially if you don't need to take medications or if you have no conditions that might affect your overall driving ability. As a plus, if you do start to experience vision changes or decreased attentiveness, catching the root cause early with a physical can be save your health and keep you driving and independent longer.
For additional information, contact an insurance agency like LIVINGS INSURANCE.