It’s no secret that home and auto insurance rates vary drastically from one ZIP code to the next. But did you know that your home address can also have a big impact on your rates?
We’ll discuss some of the factors that insurers consider when calculating premiums and give you some tips on how to keep your homeowners insurance and auto insurance rates as low as possible.
You’ll also learn why auto insurance rates by ZIP code can vary greatly, and how to save money however you can when buying the home of your dreams.
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There can be many hidden costs for first time home buyers, so it’s good to be prepared for what to expect. Even if you’ve purchased a home before, it’s still easy to forget all the extra fees you may need to pay, so here’s a quick review of what goes into pricing your monthly premium costs.
When insurers calculate premiums, here’s some of what they take into account regarding the driver:
- Driving History
- Type of Vehicle
They also look at the location where the vehicle will be driven, as well as the amount of coverage that is requested.
One of the most important factors that insurers consider is the driver’s ZIP code. The reason for this is that auto insurance rates are based, in part, on the number of claims that have been filed in a particular area.
For example, if you live in a high-crime area, your rates will likely be higher than if you live in a low-crime area. This is because insurers assume that you are more likely to have your car stolen or vandalized in a high-crime area.
Similarly, if you live in an area with a high rate of accidents, your rates will also be higher. This is because insurers assume that you are more likely to get into an accident in a high-traffic area.
In general, urban areas tend to have higher rates than exurbs and rural areas. This is because there are often more cars on the road and, therefore, more opportunities for accidents to occur.
For example, a few places that have higher rates include Michigan, Florida, and New York. If you live in one of these areas, you should shop around for the best rates.
Alternatively, some other places have really low rates, including Iowa, South Dakota, and Vermont. If you live in one of these areas, you may be able to get away with a lower monthly premium.
Either way, it’s important to compare rates from different insurers to make sure you’re getting the best deal. If you end up living in a state with higher rates, sometimes there’s not much you can do about it, but it’s helpful to understand why it is the way it is.
There are a few things you can do to keep your auto insurance rates low. One is to shop around and compare rates from different insurers. Another is to take advantage of discounts.
Many insurers offer discounts for things like having a clean driving record or installing anti-theft devices in your car, or if you’re a student or a member of certain professional organizations.
You may also be able to get a lower rate if you pay a higher premium or if you have multiple cars on the same policy. For example, if you agree to pay a $1,000 deductible instead of a $500 deductible, you may be able to get a lower monthly premium.
Now that we’ve discussed auto insurance, let’s talk about additional questions to ask to keep you on the most affordable side of homeowners insurance.
Here are some helpful questions to gain more information from your insurer:
- Are there any discounts available?
- How much does the policy cover?
- What is the claims process?
- What is the deductible?
- What is the premium?
Asking these questions will help you understand the coverage you’re getting and how much it will cost. It’s also a good idea to shop around and compare rates from different insurers before you make a decision.
Home insurance rates are based, in part, on the number of claims that have been filed in a particular area. They are also based on the value of your home, the type of home, and the amount of coverage that is requested.
Other factors of buying a new home besides paying for insurance include your down payment, monthly mortgage payments, and homeowners association dues (if applicable).
You might even need to make some repairs or have a plumber or pest control come out to the house. All of these costs can really add up, but they are crucial for maintaining the value of your home, so it can make a big difference to have a little extra funds on hand.
If you do end up with some extra cash, some fun additions you may be able to add to your newly purchased home include:
- A set of new furniture to help you feel more at home
- Adding a fresh coat of paint
- Landscaping the yard
- Upgrading the appliances or electronics
All of these things can help you love your new home even more and make it feel like your own.
After you’ve finally saved up enough money for a down payment and you’re ready to put an offer on a house, the last thing you want to think about is how much insurance is going to cost.
But by asking the right questions and doing a little bit of research, you can save yourself a lot of money on auto and homeowners insurance.
Just remember to shop around, compare rates, and take advantage of discounts. And then you can put that extra cash towards making your new house a home.
And remember, your ZIP code can make a big difference in how much your home and auto insurance will cost. Keep these factors in mind to help you find your dream home while saving some money along the way.
Luke Williams writes and researches for the auto insurance comparison site, AutoInsurance.org. His passions include insurance and helping others save money on premiums.