Car insurance can be expensive, yet it’s surprising how little people shop around each year.  Instead of just renewing your car insurance, you should try getting quotes from at least three car insurers each year.  Thanks to our friends at CURE Auto Insurance, when you're shopping around for car insurance,  you may want to use some of these tips:

Flickr User


 Don’t Just Listen to Your Agent


Fact is, most insurance agents may only represent a handful of companies, and may receive different commissions from each one they represent.  Because of this, you can expect that they are not going to tell you that you might find a rate cheaper if you shopped around to different insurance companies that he/she doesn’t represent.  TIP:  If you use an agent, ask what insurance companies he/she is contracted to – and visit other competitor’s websites to see if you qualify for lower rates elsewhere.

Find Out the Underwriting Methods


It’s unfortunate, but most car insurance companies use factors like your credit score, whether or not you have a four year degree, if you own or rent a home, what you do for a living, and a handful of other socioeconomic factors to determine your rates.  TIP:  Look for insurers such as CURE Auto Insurance, who do not use these factors.

OEM Parts


When searching for an insurer, find out if they guarantee original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts if your car is involved in a car accident and needs repair.   OEM parts simply means that the parts are from the original manufacturer and the quality of the repair will not be sacrificed by the use of possibly inferior parts.  Often times companies only pay for “after market” parts; they could be made anywhere in the world and there is no guarantee that the parts are made the same or will be consistent with the OEM parts.  This is especially important if you have a high value car, because could possibly affect your car’s worth.

Research Discounts


Every company offers discounts to its customers, but they usually won’t make them obvious to you.  You may be surprised what you could be getting a discount for; for example an insurance provider offers drivers a 25% discount on physical damage coverage for parking in a garage, or a 10% discount for parking in a driveway.

Hopefully these great tips will come in handy the next time you're shopping for car insurance. This post was produced in collaboration with our advertising partner CURE Auto Insurance.