How to Get Car Insurance

By Kate Evelyn

  • Overview

    You don't have to purchase car insurance unless your state requires it. However, you could be in for a huge financial burden if you don't have insurance and you get in a serious accident.
    • Step 1

      Get your information together. To get a quote on car insurance, you'll need your driver's license number, your vehicle identification number (VIN) and your car's make, model and year. Find the VIN by looking at the driver's side of the dash near the bottom of the windshield. It has 17 digits if your car was made after 1980.
    • Step 2

      Choose a car insurance company. There are dozens of companies, so this could be the most difficult part of the process. Some companies that are known for having good rates are Geico, State Farm and Progressive. You can get quotes from all three through their respective websites. Note that they are authorized to perform a credit check before they calculate your estimate.

    • Step 3

      Decide on your terms. When you request an online quote, you'll be asked about deductibles (the amount you have to pay out of pocket), comprehensive coverage (which pays for damage not due to an accident, such as a tree falling on your car), collision coverage, medical payments and rental car reimbursement. Play around with these features to create your customized plan. If your state requires a minimum amount of coverage, don't go below that to save money (see Resources).
    • Step 4

      Speak to a live agent by calling the 800 number. Working with an individual instead of simply signing up on your own will make it easier for you to understand the terms of your auto policy, and you may be able to negotiate a better deal. Plus, you will know whom to call if you have any problems in the future.
    • Step 5

      Go to the agent's office and sign your insurance paperwork, or have her walk you through applying online or by mail. You should be covered from the date the agent submits the application.
  • Skill: Moderately Easy
  • Warning:
  • If your state requires insurance coverage, you must have it from the date you register your car. If you don't, you could be fined.
  • Your insurance rate will be higher if you have points on your driving record.

© High Speed Ventures 2010