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4 Tips for Getting the Lowest Auto Insurance Premiums

Anyone who drives in the GTA knows the frustration of driving pretty much anywhere. The 400 series highways are not only a daily source of frustration for commuters, but also some of the busiest roadways in North America.

There are 24.2 million vehicles registered in Canada – of that number, one third are registered in Ontario. With so many drivers packed into one area, accidents are bound to happen. That’s probably why cities in the GTA consistently rank as the most expensive cities for auto insurance in Canada. In fact, only one of the top ten most expensive cities for auto insurance in Canada is not in the GTA – Hamilton.

The Ontario provincial average for auto insurance is $1316 per year, or $110 per month. Citizens of Brampton, the most expensive city for car insurance, pay an average of $2268 per year, or $189 per month – 72% more than the average! And if that isn’t bad enough, the average annual cost in Quebec is $628; Brampton rates are 261% more.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing a single driver can do about the millions of other drivers on Ontario roads. Your only option is to follow these guidelines to make sure your premiums are as low as possible.


1. Shop around

There are dozens of insurance providers in Canada. While their prices reflect conditions of the area you live in, so they’ll all tend to be higher or lower in certain areas, they still are in competition with each other for your business. This competition may result in lower rates or other benefits. Before deciding to go with a certain company, get auto insurance quotes from others to see if you can get a better deal.


2. Increase your Deductible

The deductible is the amount of money you will have to pay before insurance will cover the rest. If you have a deductible of $500, and you’re involved in a collision that causes $3,000 worth of damage, then you have to pay $500 and your insurance will pay $2500. If, with that same deductible, you are involved in a collision that causes $200 worth of damage, you are responsible for the full amount.

The higher your deductible, the more money you will have to pay when you make a claim. Since you’re taking on more responsibility, insurers will usually charge you lower premiums. This can be a good way to save money, but be sure that you do have enough in your savings account in case the worst happens.


3. Check the Insurance Cost before Buying a Vehicle

Some vehicles cost more to insure. The price is determined by many different factors, such as the car’s value, safety record, cost to repair, and likelihood of being stolen. If you’re more concerned about the total monthly cost of running a vehicle than you are about owning a specific vehicle, choosing one vehicle over another can save you money.


4. Be a Safe Driver

Nothing will lower your premiums faster than not making claims and not receiving tickets.  Being a safe driver is not only good for you and your wallet, but everyone else as well. Receiving tickets and making claims can cause your insurance to skyrocket, even above the Brampton average. Remember, as an average, there are people paying more than $2268 a year – don’t be one of them.

Chris Chris 01/26/2019
Canadian personal finance buff and all-around writing enthusiast, Chris loves breaking down complicated money ideas to show that they're really not so complex. 
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