Car insurance can be complicated, in large part because of how many different features are offered. It’s enough that you have to choose between liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage, but when you throw in smaller features things can really become difficult.
One of the best things you can do before shopping around for a car insurance policy is identify what features are important for you to have. If you know what you’re looking for, it’s easier to find it, and you increase the chances that you pay for what is a priority, and not for features that you’re unlikely to use. That said, it can be hard to figure out exactly what you prioritize in car insurance.
To help you find what matters most to you, here are six of the most popular car insurance features available: market value, payment plans that don’t have fees, roadside assistance, unnamed driver coverage, age restrictions, and a help line.
Feature 1 of 6: Market value
The most important car insurance feature is straightforward: market value. Market value is when car insurance providers set the value of your vehicle at the market price, so you know that you will get a fair payment if your vehicle is totaled.
If not market value, drivers are interested in agreed value, which is simply when the policyholder and the insurance company agree on a valuation of the vehicle. That way, there are no surprises when it comes to valuation.
Feature 2 of 6: Payment plans without fees
Most drivers want to pay their auto insurance on a month-to-month basis, or occasionally quarterly. This is a very common feature, but some auto insurance companies charge more money for installed payments.
Because monthly payments don’t guarantee business for as long as annual payments, and because it increases the amount of times that a provider has to run your credit card, companies often charge a service fee, or simply charge more than 1/12th of what your annual payment would be. Not surprisingly, drivers like to be able to pay monthly, without paying extra.
Feature 3 of 6: Roadside assistance
Roadside assistance is incredibly beneficial, as it aids drivers who can’t get in their vehicle, start their car, or drive safely. It’s one of the most practical car insurance features.
Feature 4 of 6: Unnamed driver coverage
Unnamed driver coverage means that the insurance policy covers the vehicle regardless of who is driving it. For drivers who share their car with a lot of friends or family members, and can’t put them all on the policy, this is a highly valuable feature.
Feature 5 of 6: Age restrictions
Car insurance companies charge a lot more money for young drivers, because inexperienced people are more likely to cause accidents. As such, many providers offer reduced rates if you agree on an age restriction for any and all additional drivers. This can help a lot of people save money.
Feature 6 of 6: Help line
While help lines are not as popular as roadside assistance, they can really help drivers that are in need. Help lines are usually very affordable add-ons to car insurance plans, so the extra security they provide is very valuable to a lot of drivers.
Owning car insurance is one of the most vital parts of being a car owner. However, auto insurance providers steadily raise rates, and situations change, and as a result it’s common to pay way more than you should for your premiums. Choosing the right car insurance plan for you depends on your situation, your car, your wallet, and what you use your vehicle for. Knowing which of these features you prioritize can make finding the right policy that much easier.