Rising insurance rates? Here’s what you can do about it
10/16/2023 12:00:00 PM
Your homeowners, renters or auto insurance is probably something you don’t think much about until you need it. As long as you have peace of mind that you’re protected, you might not give your insurance much thought on a regular basis.
So when your insurance provider notifies you that your rates will be going up by a large amount for the year ahead, it can be frustrating. The good news, though, is that you’re not completely powerless in that situation. It helps to understand the factors that could have caused the increase, and what options might be available to you to help lower your costs.
If your rates have gone up recently, here’s what you need to know.
Why are insurance rates rising?
- Costs of extreme weather disasters: Severe storms and extreme weather typically lead to high insurance claims activity as people repair or replace their cars or homes damaged by wind, hail or fire. This can then affect everyone’s rates in the marketplace, even for people who weren’t directly impacted, as insurance providers have to raise rates to cover the money spent on claims. This has been the case in recent years, as extreme weather disasters from 2018 to 2022 caused a total of $595.5 billion in damages, according to research from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
- Rising costs of repair: During periods of high inflation or disruptions to global supply chains, it can cost significantly more to repair, rebuild or replace your home or car if they’re damaged or destroyed. The higher costs of construction materials, auto parts and used cars gets passed on to insurance providers as they cover claims, which then gets passed on to consumers in the form of higher rates, even if you personally haven’t filed a claim recently.
- Your location: Where you live can also have a major impact on your insurance rates. For example, if you live in an area that’s more prone to severe weather – such as hail, tornados, hurricanes or wildfires – insurers will have to take on more risk to provide coverage to you, which translates to higher premiums that you may have to pay.
- Your claims history: The type and amount of insurance claims you file can also have an effect on your premiums. If you recently filed a large claim, or have a history of filing multiple claims, your insurance provider will take that into account when updating your rates for the coming year.
What you can do about rising rates
If you received a notice that your rates are going up, don’t be afraid to call your provider to ask about the increase and if there’s anything that can be done about it. There could be several options available to you, including:
- Increasing your deductible: The higher your deductible, the less you’ll pay in premiums.
- Combining your policies: Look at bundling your home and auto policies together, if you haven’t already. This can usually provide savings on your rates.
- Asking about discounts: Your insurer may offer a discount for installing protective devices, such as a burglar alarm or automatic water shutoff in your home, or anti-theft devices in your car. You should also mention if you’ve had any major updates or renovations done to your home recently, such as replacing your home’s roof or windows. Because these types of updates provide better protection for your home than if they were outdated and in need or repair, they could translate to lower rates for you.
Explore other options: You should also take this opportunity to call around and get new quotes for your policy. If you haven’t gotten a new quote lately, you could be missing out on savings. It only takes a few minutes to reach out to a provider to make the request.
If your rates are going up, contact Bell Insurance at 800-369-2501 today. As an independent agency, Bell’s team works with different carriers to find the best options to help you protect your home or car.
Bell Insurance Services, LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Bell Bank.
Products and services offered through Bell Insurance are: Not FDIC Insured | No Bank Guarantee | May Lose Value | Not A Deposit | Not Insured by Any Federal Government Agency