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It seems that finding quality and affordable car insurance is getting harder every year. Even if you are a good driver comprehensive coverage could be very expensive unless you know where to look. However, there are many categories of drivers and a lot of factors that go into the price calculation. We have assembled all of the information you need to find out where you can get affordable car insurance in Florida. The information is broken down into all kinds of categories and we will even tell you about some alternative methods of coverage if you are unable to find a policy.
First of all, we need to understand that the car insurance rates will vary by the city. The average rate Floridians pay is $1,589 a year. However, residents of the following cities pay much less than the state average:
|City||Average Annual Rate|
|Fort Walton Beach||$1,267|
If you live in one of the cities listed above, you will pay about 21% less than the state average. While this does not mean that you should move there to get a better rate, it is a great example of how many factors go into the price calculation. In case you were wondering about Miami, the price of car insurance there is about $1,000 higher than the state average.
If you are a good driver you would think that you would pay less than the state average, but as we will see from the rates offered by insurance companies, this is not the case:
|Insurer||Monthly Rate||Annual Rate|
From this table we see that the even good drivers will pay about $400 more than the state average and that is just if you are with the cheapest insurance company. If your state has high rates for car insurance. It is an added incentive to shop around because there is no sense in overpaying if you are good driver.
Speeding tickets and other violations can cause your insurance rates to skyrocket regardless of where you live and Florida is no exception. Let’s take a look at how each citation will impact you rcar insurance rates:
|Citation||Average Annual Rate||Increase Amount|
When you get pulled over by the police for any of these traffic offenses, the ticket amount will be high, but this is the least of your problems. For example, if you get caught racing, your insurance could increase by $1,000 a year or the insurance company could drop you altogether. This means that it will be very difficult to find another company that will cover you since you are high risk. The ticket or accident will remain on your record somewhere between 3-5 years. Once this time is up, you will be able to get insured for much less.
Having bad credit can also impact your car insurance rate and if you live in Florida, this could end up being a lot of money. The average driver in Florida with bad credit will pay $367 a month or $4,403 a year. Let’s see which insurance companies offer the best rates for drivers with bad credit:
|Insurer||Monthly Rate||Annual Rate|
Usually some of the bad things on your credit report will go away after seven years, therefore be sure to monitor your credit score and if it goes up be sure to notify your insurance copany. This could save you a lot of money every month.
Even the best drivers get into an accident once in a while even if it just a fender-bender. However, a car accident that involves the insurance company to payout could mean a price increase. Let’s take a look at the insurance companies that offer the best rates for driver with one at-fault accident:
|Insurer||Monthly Rate||Annual Rate|
While these prices are very expensive, let’s get some perspective. The average price drivers paid if they had only on at-fault accident was $3,597. The first three insurance companies mentioned above will be able to insure you for about $1,000 dollars less. Just like with traffic citations, the accidents will remain on your record for about 3-5 years and will influence your insurance rates.
If you drive less than 5,000 miles every year, you could be eligible for a low mileage policy. Usually these low mileage policies are much cheaper than the state average, but in Florida it is not the case. Let’s take a look at how much low mileage drivers pay in the State of Florida:
|Insurer||Monthly Rate||Annual Rate|
While even the cheapest option is still higher than the state average, the low mileage policy is a great choice for student driver who travel to one location and back as well as for senior drivers who do not drive a lot but want to maintain their independence.
While it is highly recommended that you buy comprehensive coverage, you have the option of buying only the State minimum. We will go over what these state minimums are later on, but right now let’s take a look at the cheapest car insurance companies for purchasing the minimum policy:
|Insurer||Average Monthly Rate||Average Annual Rate|
Now that we know the prices for minimum coverage, let’s find out what the prices for these basic prices are.
Florida drivers will have to carry property damage liability and personal injury protection (PIP) in the following amounts:
In addition to this, if you are at fault in an accident, you will also have to carry protections for bodily injuries in the following amounts:
It is also interesting to note that Florida is one of the few states that has a no-fault statute. This means that everybody involved in the accident will first have to file their claims to their own personal injury protection instead of seeking such coverage from the driver responsible for the accident. If the injuries suffered by the drivers are serious, as determined by the state, the insurance company of the driver at-fault will pay for additional costs. Serious injuries include:
Drivers who suffered these injuries can file lawsuits in the State of Florida. If you have bodily injury protection, you can use this coverage to pay your legal fees as well as for the medical costs of the injured person. However, if you have only the basic policy, these costs will be out-of-pocket.
As if this was not complicated enough, in the State of Florida you can be partially at fault for an accident. There is something called a comparative fault statute, which means that the drivers involved in the accident will split the costs. For example, in the event of a lawsuit a jury could decide that the injured driver is responsible for 35% of the accident which means that the other driver will only have to 65% of the costs. It is important to remember that car insurance companies do not simply eat these costs. Just like with other states that require personal injury protection, drivers in Florida will have to pay more than states do not require such coverage.
All drivers are required to have coverage in the amount of at least $10,000 of personal injury protection. Along with medical bills, the no-fault insurance policy in Florida can also pay for:
Perhaps this personal injury protection coverage could explain why insurance costs are so high in Florida. There are so many fake accidents and frivolous medical providers that cause the insurance for everyone go through the roof. In order to address these issues, Florida enacted the no-fault insurance law in 2005. According this law, drivers injured in a car accident must see a medical professional within 14 days of an accident to make a personal injury protection claim. It also limits the payouts to 80% of the reasonable medical expenses as determined by the state.
It important to note that while personal injury protection will cover your drivers, it will not pay for the damages cause to your car. If you were deemed at fault for the accident, you will have to go through the collision coverage of your own insurance. If the other driver was found at-fault, then you go through the at-fault overage of the other driver. This is why it is a good idea to get comprehensive coverage, even if it is expensive. In the State of Florida there are a lot of Staged accidents and insurance fraud, therefore it is a good idea to be covered for whatever you might encounter on the road.
In the State of Florida, you will need to have additional insurance if you are at fault in a serious accident or if you get a DUI or driving under the influence of drugs. If this happens to you, then you will need to purchase additional policies called the SR-22 and FR44. Let’s take a look at each of them:
This policy is also known as the certificate of financial responsibility. You will need to file one in the event you cause an accident that seriously hurt someone or possibly killed. According to this law, you will need to buy additional bodily injury liability insurance in addition to the property damage liability and the personal injury protection. If you need to buy this sort of coverage, the requirements are as follows:
In Florida you will be penalized more for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs than other states. If this happens to you, the car insurance policy you will need to buy has to satisfy the FR-44 requirements. In fact, the lability limit will be 10 times more than the SR-22 policy in addition to the no-fault insurance requirement. The coverages of the FR-22 include:
Keep all of these rates in mind the next time you decide to drink and drive. If you do not have a whole lot of cash sitting around, it will be hard to get insured.
It is always a good idea to have uninsured motorist protection, but ion the State of Florida it is highly recommended because Florida has the highest uninsured motorist rate in the country at 26.7%. If you get into an accident with somebody who is underinsured or has no insurance at all, you could be stuck paying for your car yourself. This is one of the reasons why car insurance rates are so high in Florida. Car insurance companies have to pay for accidents that their drivers did not cause. Keep in mind that if you are caught driving without insurance, your license will be suspended and there is no temporary license provision that will allow you to drive to school or to work. In addition, your vehicle registration could be suspended for as many as three years.
If you are too high risk for the voluntary car insurance market, you can still get covered through the Florida Automobile Joint Underwriting Association (FAJUA). Basically, having a policy from FAJUA will cover you just a like a regular insurance policy, but it will be a lot more expensive. In fact, in some cases prices can be as much as 200% higher than the voluntary insurance markets. Other states such as New York and California have residual pools where each car insurance company is assigned a certain amount of high-risk drivers depending on their market share. FAJUA works a little differently. All insurance companies in the state pitch in a certain amount and, in the event of accident, the costs will be drawn from this pool.
In order to be eligible for FAJUA you do not need to provide proof that you cannot get covered. All you need to be eligible is have a private passenger vehicle registered in Florida. However, even though you are not required to provide evidence of inability to get covered, it is important that you go to any length to find coverage because FAJUA is so expensive. Try looking at traditional and online insurance companies to find anything that you can. It could end up saving you a lot of money.
If you cannot find a policy that suits your needs, or you feel that you are a safe driver and there is no sense in paying for a car insurance policy you can choose to insure yourself. What this means is that you are assuming all of the risks and responsibility for an accident instead of an insurance company. However, in order to do so, you will need to have a lot of money in the bank.
You will need to provide the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles that you have assets worth at least $40,000. However, you should not list your home in these assets because they will take it away if you get into an accident. Upon providing such a statement of net worth, you will also need to provide the licenses and social security numbers of all the drivers that will be covered under the self-insurance certificate as well as the car that will be covered.
The rates for car insurance in the State of Florida have increased steadily over the past decade. In fact, Florida is the third most expensive state for car insurance in the country. The only states that are more expensive are Louisiana and Michigan. There are a lot of factors that cause car insurance ion Florida to be so expensive. Let’s start with the population. Florida has a sizeable population of senior drivers, tourists coming in who are not familiar with the area as well as colleges and universities who have student drivers. This increases the likelihood of an accident which causes car insurance rates to increase for everyone.
In addition, let’s consider the weather. While Florida is known for its beautiful weather, it also has its share of hurricanes and violent storms. As you can imagine, when these hurricanes and big storms hit residential areas, this causes a lot of property insurance claims to ensue. The insurance companies will have to pay for the damages cause to the vehicles even if the car was completely totaled. In order to make up for the losses, car insurance companies increase the rates to account for all of the weather conditions and damages they can cause. Therefore, if you live on the coast, low-lying areas or waterways, you can expect to pay more for your car insurance. This is why the insurance companies factor in where you live. We mentioned that car insurance rates will be higher in Miami than in place like Orlando or Jacksonville because one of the reasons is that Miami is located on the coast.
Also, we need to take into consideration the low coverage limits and their influence on prices. While it may seem that this would keep prices down, in fact, it is having the opposite effect. This only increases the premiums of drivers who want coverage of $300,000-$500,000 and want to get underinsured motorist protection. So, what we end getting is low rates for drivers who only buy the minimum policy, while more responsible drivers pay a higher rate.
The residents in the State of Florida tend to be more litigious than in other states. They are more likely to go to court as a result of an accident. This also increase insurance for everybody.
Since the price for car insurance is so higher, it is important to ask the insurance company for any possible discounts. This can include your car’s safety features such as anti-theft devices, anti-lock brakes and many other things. If you have not been in a serious accident and have no DUIs you should be able to get affordable coverage, even if it higher than most other states. If you cannot find coverage on the voluntary market, just keep in mind that FAJUA is always available for you. It will be a lot more expensive than a regular insurance policy, but it will get you back on the road.
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