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What Determines Auto Insurance Rates?

Ever wondered about auto insurance rates and what factors determine how much your premiums are? If you’re over the age of 30, you may have noticed that your insurance rates were much higher when you were first licensed. Or, if you moved from a big city to a smaller town, your rates might have been slashed, but do you know why?

If you’re like most licensed drivers in New York, two things you know for sure: 1) a driving while intoxicated (DWI) conviction will cause you to lose the Good Driver Discount, and 2) speeding tickets will lead to rate hikes. But is that it, or are there other factors that can affect your auto insurance premiums?

Believe it or not, there are a number of things that determine your auto insurance rates. According to the Insurance Information Institute, “Many factors help determine the cost of car insurance,” including the following:

  • Your driving record – This one is a given. Moving violations, such as speeding, reckless driving and DWI add points on your driving record, which translate to increased auto insurance premiums. Why? Because, drivers who violate the traffic laws are at a higher risk of being in a crash.
  • How much you drive – The more miles you drive each year, the higher your chances of being in an accident. If you commute far to work, it can affect your insurance premiums.
  • Where you live – Drivers who live in big cities, such as Buffalo and New York City pay higher premiums than drivers who live in rural areas or small towns. This is because there is a higher incidence of auto thefts and vandalisms in urban areas.
  • How old you are – The older the driver, the more the experience behind the wheel and the less likelihood of a collision. Because of this highly-documented fact, younger, less experienced drivers pay higher insurance premiums.
  • If you’re a guy or a gal – Statistically, men get more DWIs and speeding tickets than women, so they pay higher insurance premiums. It’s the same with male teenagers; they are at a greater risk of an underage DWI or speeding than female teenagers.
  • The kind of car you drive – Certain automobiles cost more to repair or replace, and certain vehicles have poorer safety ratings than other vehicles in the same class. Such vehicles can cost more to insure based on these factors.
  • Your credit score – Drivers with poor credit can find themselves paying higher insurance premiums.

To learn more, check out: “Why did my auto insurance costs go up even when I didn’t file a claim?”

Need to file a car accident claim in Saratoga Springs? Contact DeLorenzo, Grasso & Dalmata, LLP to schedule a free consultation.