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Car Insurance - What a Caveman Needs to Know
"It's so easy even a caveman can do it", the announcer proclaims, alluding to how easy it is to save money with their car insurance company. While the advertisement has been hugely successful, even leading to a television series, the reality is neither a caveman, talking lizards, scantily clad models or anything else will make your car insurance any cheaper. Your insurance premium is primarily based on such things as your driving record, age, gender, location, the vehicle that you're insuring, and not on what insurance company you are with. If you really want to see how easy it is to save money with any insurance company, try getting cheap auto insurance with a less than perfect driving record including such indiscretions as speeding, accidents, or the dreaded D.U.I. You'll quickly find that 'easy' is a relative term; perhaps easier than Chinese Arithmetic, but not as easy as the ubiquitous commercials would lead you to believe.
Even a caveman will find it hard to get cheap car insurance in some places. The place that I call home; referred to by many as the People's Republic of Maryland, has a 'point' system in place where you get nailed twice for the same violation. Commit a driving violation here, and you will receive a gift that keeps on giving because not only will you pay when you go to court, but you will also be rewarded with higher insurance premiums when the auto insurance company finds that you've scored some points. If you are a really high achiever and score enough points, you can even get your license revoked or suspended. The 'point' is, your driving record is the major determinant as to how much you pay. If you want to keep your car insurance low..er, avoid tickets, and if you live in Maryland, take the bus.
When it comes to car insurance, it is definitely better to be a cave woman than a caveman. It's an established fact that all things being equal, you will pay more for auto insurance if you happened to born with the XY chromosome.The reasoning behind this is that since men have the testosterone thing going on, they are more likely to drive fast and reckless and therefore are a higher risk than the fairer sex. Having many years of experience behind the wheel, I would have to add that it's not so much whether or not you are a caveman or woman that matters, but whether or not you are a 'young' cave person. I could not begin to tell you how many times I have seen young Cro-Magnon women driving up on another cars bumper at 70 miles an hour. While this gender discrimination may seem a little Neanderthal to many of us, nobody said that life was fair; even for a caveman.
It also matters where you cave is located. When I was living out in Washington State, I paid less than half for car insurance than what I pay here in Maryland. In Baltimore, you can even pay higher rates just by living in the wrong zip code. I have a brother who lives just two miles from where I reside yet his auto insurance is much cheaper because he lives in a different zip code. You can be the safest driver on the roads but if you happen to live in the wrong area, you might just get penalized for it. Like real estate, when it comes to car insurance, location matters.
Lastly, the type of vehicle that you're insuring also plays a large part in how much you pay for auto insurance. For instance, certain vehicles are more popular with car thieves than others. According to the 'National Insurance Crime Bureau(NICB), the Honda Civic and Accord were among the most reported stolen vehicles in 2006'. 'The report also mentioned that thieves tend to target the most popular vehicles because they offer the best market for stolen vehicle parts and illegal export to other countries'. Insurance companies are aware of this as well, and most will charge a premium for the privilege of owning one of these thief happy cars.
While it may be true that you can save some money by insuring your auto with an insurance company that has a caveman as a spokesperson, the truth is that what you pay for insurance is based on numerous factors such as driving history, age, sex and location. Slick advertising aside, that should be so obvious that even a cave man can see it.