Should you get your car insured before buying it? Technically, you can buy a vehicle without needing car insurance before taking it home.
However, the second you get on the road, you are breaking the law in most states. That’s because in most states you must have minimum liability insurance anytime you’re behind the wheel. Also, when you buy from a dealership and finance the car, the majority will not let you leave without it.
Check your state’s DMV for car insurance requirements before buying a vehicle because relying on luck is not smart. Even driving once without insurance is a risk. You may have an accident on the road.
If you drive without insurance, you may have to pay for not just your repairs but those of the person you collided with. Worse yet, if anyone gets injured or dies, not only is it devastating but the costs can potentially skyrocket.
At the end of the day, having some vehicle insurance is always better than having none. But how exactly do you go about it?
Can You Get Auto Insurance Without Owning a Car?
If you have a car insurance policy, it should cover you. However, you will need to get in touch with your insurance company or agent to inform them about your new car so they can add it to your policy.
What if you’ve never had car insurance before? Don’t worry, you still have some options. You can get in touch with any insurance company that provides temporary auto insurance. You can purchase a policy for just a couple of days.
This will give you enough time to find the right auto insurance company that fits your long-term needs. You can also get online quotes for car insurance, including from Geico and others, completely free.
When getting a quote, you’ll only need to provide general personal information, like your ZIP code and address, birth date and name plus some information about the vehicle, like year, make and model to get accurate price estimates.
How Long Does It Take to Get Car Insurance?
It depends, but it’s possible to get your car insurance in just one day. Most insurance companies provide that service. If you want vehicle coverage that fast, however, you need to have all of your information prepared beforehand, such as vehicle identification number, or VIN, current insurance information, driver’s license number and other personal data.
Keep in mind that it could take some time. So, make sure you set aside the time in advance to get this done to avoid stress. Of course, the best-case scenario is when you don’t need same-day coverage and everything goes smoothly.
What Kind of Coverage Do I Need?
The vehicle insurance you will need depends on the situation you are in. For example, most lenders will insist on full coverage auto insurance. So, typically, you need to get full coverage if you are financing your vehicle.
If you’re buying a used car, many states require specific coverage so it’s wise to look into guidelines where you live.
Other than that, a combination of liability and collision or liability and comprehensive or even just liability insurance (which is not very wise) will work. That again depends on your personal preferences and the state where you live, which also may have requirements. Make sure you know what kind of protection is included in each type of auto insurance before you decide whether to get it or not.
Are the Rates for Full Coverage Auto Insurance Expensive?
When buying a car, almost all lenders will require that you to obtain full coverage auto insurance. The full coverage includes collision, comprehensive and liability insurance. When you fully cover your car, you will have protection from all kinds of accidents or other damage such as theft or fire.
The average cost for full coverage auto insurance will vary. The cost depends on the state where you live, your personal driving record and other variables. But in return, you will have the comfort knowing that your car is completely protected from accidents caused by you and others.
Is There a Way to Save on Auto Insurance?
Yes! The best way to save money on auto insurance is to shop around. Every company may charge a different rate for what’s seemingly the same coverage.
The rate a particular company charges will depend on a number of factors. For example, one company may charge you more because you had a speeding ticket in the past. For another company, speeding tickets may not matter at all.
You can always ask if any discounts are available to you. Some of the most popular discounts are multi-policy and multi-car.
There are discounts for combining insurance policies for your auto and home and reduced rates for safe drivers and even for good students. You can always ask an insurer what kind of discount options they offer. Eventually, you may be surprised by how much you saved.
What if I Want to Buy a Used Car?
New or used, insurance is required in every state except New Hampshire and in Virginia, you’ll be financially liable if you don’t have the minimum insurance or you’ll need to pay the uninsured motor vehicle fee, according to the state DMV.
So, why risk getting into an accident. Driving without insurance coverage could cost you so much more when paying the bill out of pocket if something happens. Don’t assume that you will not get into an accident. It’s best to obtain insurance. The truth is, you never know what can happen and when.
Buying insurance for a used car is a simple and quick process. In most cases, you can add a used car to your existing policy if you have one.
But let’s jump ahead now to the best part. Do you have your eye on any specific vehicle already? If you have anything specific in mind or even if you don’t, you can browse online, including on Kelly Blue Book or Autotrader, with its used and brand new car listings.
Remember, it’s always better to have some insurance than none, even if it’s not required by law. Do this for your own safety and peace of mind.