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Yefim Fedotov
Yefim Fedotov

Car Insurance Before You Buy A Car

When looking for a car insurance policy for your new vehicle, shopping around for quotes can help you get the best deal possible. Be sure to compare rates from at least three insurers using similar coverage options. It helps to have a driver's license and an established driving record; it is hard to get real car insurance quotes without a license.

car insurance before you buy a car


Margaret Wack is a freelance writer who covers insurance, saving, investing, banking, and more. Margaret earned a bachelor's degree in classics, comparative literature, and poetry from Smith College and a master's degree from St. John's College.

Should you get your car insured before buying it? Technically, you can buy a vehicle without needing car insurance before taking it home in two states. But all other states require insurance before you buy a vehicle.

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.

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.

Yes, you can. Since it is illegal to drive without insurance, in most cases, you will have to buy insurance without technically owning the car. In instances like this, you will need to provide your personal information to your insurer and information about the vehicle. If you already know the exact car you will be buying, you will need to provide the make and model of the vehicle and the VIN.

Providing this will allow the insurer to provide you with adequate coverage so that you are set to drive off the lot legally when purchasing the vehicle. Since buying insurance is typically a very quick task, you can buy the insurance the same day or the day before you plan on buying the car.

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.

Some of the most common types of car insurance are comprehensive, collision, and liability insurance. It is essential to review your specific needs when it comes to insurance. Depending on where you live, you may need insurance that covers natural disasters such as floods.

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.

Almost all lenders will require you to obtain full coverage auto insurance when buying a car. The full coverage includes collision, comprehensive, and liability insurance. When you fully cover your vehicle, you will have protection from all kinds of accidents or other damage such as theft or fire.

The average state cost for full coverage auto insurance will vary. The price depends on the state where you live, your driving record, and other variables. But in return, you will have the comfort of knowing that your car is completely protected from accidents caused by you or others.

However, you can estimate how much your car insurance will be before actually buying it. Calculating can give you an idea of what you will be paying when it comes time to add your different types of coverage.

And if you do know the specific vehicle you're buying, ask the seller for the VIN so you can get your policy details squared away with your insurance provider ahead of time. Remember to set your policy's start date to the date you'll be driving your new car home.

You need auto insurance to take your car home and legally drive. However, the process for securing coverage is a little different if you're trading in a vehicle versus buying a new one without a trade-in.

There's a chance the auto insurance coverage on the car you're trading in may transfer to the new vehicle for a set amount of time. Auto insurance policies generally include a grace period that may last one week up to 30 days, at which point you must add your new vehicle to your existing auto insurance policy or face penalties. So, if you had liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage on your old car, those coverages would likely apply to your new vehicle during the grace period.

Just remember to check with your current insurance provider to see if they'll extend temporary coverage to your new ride before you drive it off the lot. If they do, great! Find out how long you have to add the car to your policy and what limitations apply. If not, then you'll need to add the vehicle to your policy before you can take it home.

Most car dealerships require you to show proof of insurance when purchasing a new or used car. If you are financing your new vehicle with a loan through a bank or other lender, you will definitely be required to show proof of insurance.

Driving without insurance also means you'll have a gap in your insurance history when you apply for coverage again, which can make it difficult to get insured. Still, it doesn't mean you're totally out of luck. Insurance companies like Direct Auto offer non-standard auto insurance for drivers who have lapsed coverage or might be considered "high risk" by other insurers.

If you're buying a used car, you'll need at least the minimum car insurance coverage required by your state before you can legally get behind the wheel. If you're purchasing a new insurance policy, the cost of your premium will depend on factors like where you live and what kind of used car you're buying. If you already have car insurance, you can add your used car to your existing policy.

You may be able to buy a used car without having an insurance policy, if you are buying a car from a private seller, but you will not be able to legally drive the vehicle without car insurance. It's a good idea to get a car insurance quote before buying a used car so you have a ballpark estimate of how much it will cost to insure. Having a quote in hand will also make it faster to purchase a policy after the sale is complete.

In nearly every state, you'll need to provide proof of insurance before taking a used vehicle home from the dealership. If you don't have insurance when you purchase your used car, you won't be able to drive it off the lot until you have a policy. If you already have insurance, you can add the used car to your policy, though you generally have a grace period of a week to a month to do so after buying it, depending on the insurer.

You don't need a separate car insurance policy for your used car, even if your existing policy only covers new vehicle(s). You do need to inform your insurance company that you bought a used car and would like to add it to your policy. If insurance rates change after adding your used car, you will be responsible for paying the difference in premium costs.

In many cases, a used car can be cheaper to insure than a new one, especially if you carry comprehensive car insurance or auto collision coverage. Since used cars are generally worth less than new ones, they can be cheaper to repair or replace. However, car insurance rates depend less on whether the car is used or new and more on the details of the vehicle and your policy, including the car's make and model, your location, and the amount of coverage that you carry.

For the most part, there's no difference between insurance for used and new cars. Considerations for standard coverages like liability, uninsured motorist (UM), and personal injury protection (PIP) coverage are generally the same.

Please note: The above is meant as general information to help you understand the different aspects of insurance. Read our editorial standards for Answers content. This information is not an insurance policy, does not refer to any specific insurance policy, and does not modify any provisions, limitations, or exclusions expressly stated in any insurance policy. Descriptions of all coverages and other features are necessarily brief; in order to fully understand the coverages and other features of a specific insurance policy, we encourage you to read the applicable policy and/or speak to an insurance representative. Coverages and other features vary between insurers, vary by state, and are not available in all states. Whether an accident or other loss is covered is subject to the terms and conditions of the actual insurance policy or policies involved in the claim. References to average or typical premiums, amounts of losses, deductibles, costs of coverages/repair, etc., are illustrative and may not apply to your situation. We are not responsible for the content of any third-party sites linked from this page. 041b061a72


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