Its that time of year again where I have to come with 00 to pay my high risk car insurance for the year. I knew it was going to a bit higher this year since I got another ticket last Jan in the States which has showed up on my Canadian driving history. I had budgeted for it. The good news that I have been shopping around and found a different company that will be about $600 lower. I want to just point out that I agree with the high risk driver assessment and I am working on being more careful on the roads.
Why is my car insurance so high you ask? Well, because I am a very impatient driver (read: high risk), and when you commute for work every day, driving the speed limit isn’t very easy, thus I now classified as a high risk driver and pay to high risk insurance premiums. I am lucky that I live in the suburbs or my premiums would be double. Evan, from My Journey to Millions explains it very well here.
My driving record has 5 minor convictions for speeding and 1 at fault accident from almost 4 years ago. The accident wasn’t even my fault so please don’t assume that I am that bad of a driver.
Personally I have found that dealing with an Insurance broker is a nicer of experience. My broker is fantastic, and he took 2 days to find a few different options for me, even sending me 7 different scenarios. Since not everyone is lucky enough or patient enough to search for a great broker, here are a few things you should keep in mind when dealing with a broker.
Ask to see what your driving history looks like, and keep a copy for your self. I can memorize the dates of my tickets off by heart. I know when each ticket drops off and the anniversary of my accident. This is valuable information when looking for an insurance company that can re-assess rates mid year. For example, I have one ticket dropping off Dec 21 and another May 15, thus I will be going with a six month policy and re-assess in May after my second ticket drops. I also have another one coming off in September, so hopefully by this next year my policy will be under the $3000 range. I drive a nicer car and I know that the rates wont drop drastically, but I wont be a high risk driver anymore (if I don’t get anymore tickets).
New policy: Nov 29th to May 28 = $2100
May 30 to Nov 30 = $1800
There are a few high risk insurance companies in Canada: Jevco, Facility, Kingsway, Coachman, Pembridge, Pafco and Perth and Echelon. It is a good idea to find a brokerage that deals with all or most of them. They can shop around for you. The brokers get paid per new net policy and per renewal (except Allstate) so it is in the brokers best interest to find you a rate that you will be happy with and customize a insurance policy that benefits you.
And finally make sure you shop around for a broker and brokerage that you are comfortable with. I called 3 high risk insurance companies who told me that they dont have agents ready to speak to anyone and I need to fill out a form online. This was before I told them that I was looking for rates for a high risk driver. Definitely a bad strategy. I know that you can’t barter when it comes to insurance, but being able to speak to someone when you are offering to give them new business is a must for me. I want to know that I can call them when I have an issue or a concern, or when I need advice.
And yes- I know I have to stop speeding… I hope that was implied. This is definitely putting a dent in my savings goal for this year, but I need access to my car and have to deal with it.
Anyway, does anyone else have any advice or horror stories about high risk insurance? Let me know in the comments.