High-priced auto insurance in Columbia can dry up your personal savings and make it tough to pay other bills.
It's astonishing, but almost 70% of insureds in South Carolina kept their policy with the same company for four years or more, and 38% of customers have never even compared quotes to find affordable rates. American insurance shoppers could save themselves nearly $850 a year by just shopping around, but they feel it's too difficult to find affordable insurance by shopping around.
Insurance companies such as GEICO, Farmers Insurance and State Farm all promote huge savings with TV and radio ads and it is difficult to not get sucked in by the cute commercials and effectively compare rates to find the best deal.
It's a good habit to do rate comparisons on a regular basis since prices change frequently. Just because you had the best rate on Hyundai Sonata insurance in Columbia a year ago a different company probably has better premium rates today. Block out anything you think you know about auto insurance because we're going to show you the fastest and easiest way to find better rates and still maintain coverage.
To get affordable Columbia car insurance quotes, there a variety of ways of comparing rate quotes from many car insurance companies in South Carolina. The best way to compare rates is to perform an online rate comparison.
It's so simple to compare car insurance rates online makes it obsolete to drive around to each insurance agency near you. The ability to buy insurance online has reduced the need for local agents unless you're the type of person who wants the guidance of a licensed agent. Although you can find lower rates online but have a local agent actually write the policy. When quoting car insurance, remember that quoting more provides better odds of finding a lower rate.
The auto insurance companies shown below have been selected to offer quotes in South Carolina. If multiple providers are shown, it's highly recommended you visit two to three different companies to get the best price comparison.
|Model||Comp||Collision||Liability||Medical||UM/UIM||Annual Premium||Monthly Premium|
|Sonata GLS 4-Dr Sedan||$240||$408||$398||$24||$118||$1,188||$99|
|Sonata GLS 4-Dr Sedan||$184||$370||$436||$26||$130||$1,146||$96|
|Sonata GLS 4-Dr Sedan||$334||$530||$506||$30||$152||$1,552||$129|
|Sonata SE 4-Dr Sedan||$158||$322||$394||$24||$118||$1,016||$85|
|Sonata SE 4-Dr Sedan||$254||$592||$502||$30||$150||$1,528||$127|
|Sonata Limited 4-Dr Sedan||$378||$624||$506||$30||$152||$1,690||$141|
|Sonata Limited 4-Dr Sedan||$208||$414||$404||$24||$122||$1,172||$98|
|Get Your Own Custom Quote Go|
Premium data assumes married female driver age 40, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $500 deductibles, and South Carolina minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include safe-driver, multi-policy, homeowner, claim-free, and multi-vehicle. Information does not factor in specific location which can increase or decrease auto insurance rates considerably.
The diagram below demonstrates how deductible levels and can influence Hyundai Sonata yearly insurance costs for different age categories. Data assumes a married female driver, full physical damage coverage, and no discounts are taken into consideration.
How much more does full coverage cost in Columbia?
The example below visualizes the comparison of Hyundai Sonata insurance costs with full coverage compared to only the South Carolina minimum liability coverage. The rates are based on no driving violations, no at-fault accidents, $250 deductibles, single female driver, and no discounts are applied to the premium.
When to stop buying full coverage
There is no set rule for dropping physical damage coverage, but there is a general guideline. If the annual cost of coverage is more than around 10% of the replacement cost minus the deductible, then it may be the right time to buy liability only.
For example, let's say your Hyundai Sonata replacement cost is $7,000 and you have $1,000 policy deductibles. If your vehicle is severely damaged, the most your company would pay you is $6,000 after the deductible is paid. If you are currently paying more than $600 annually for full coverage, then it might be time to consider dropping full coverage.
There are some conditions where buying only liability insurance is not financially feasible. If you still owe a portion of the original loan, you are required to maintain full coverage in order to satisfy the requirements of the loan. Also, if your savings is not enough to buy a different vehicle if your current one is damaged, you should not eliminate full coverage.
How accidents and tickets impact rates in Columbia
The chart below shows how speeding tickets and at-fault fender-benders can influence Hyundai Sonata premium costs for different ages of insureds. The costs are based on a married male driver, comprehensive and collision coverage, $250 deductibles, and no other discounts are factored in.
Auto insurance discounts help lower rates for Hyundai Sonata insurance in Columbia
Car insurance companies don't always publicize every available discount in an easy-to-find place, so here is a list a few of the more well known as well as the least known credits available to you.
- Home Ownership Discount - Owning a house in Columbia can save you money because of the fact that having a home requires a higher level of personal finance.
- Employee of Federal Government - Active or former government employment may qualify for a discount when you quote Columbia car insurance with a few auto insurance companies.
- Buy New and Save - Buying auto insurance coverage on a new vehicle is cheaper due to better safety requirements for new model year vehicles.
- Defensive Driving Course - Taking a defensive driving class can save you 5% or more and easily pay for the cost of the class.
- Organization Discounts - Participating in specific professional or occupational memberships or organizations can get you a small discount when shopping for auto insurance.
- Discount for Good Grades - A discount for being a good student can save 20 to 25%. The discount lasts well after school through age 25.
- No Claims - Insureds with no claims or accidents have much lower rates compared to accident-prone drivers.
While discounts sound great, it's important to understand that most credits do not apply to the overall cost of the policy. Some only apply to the cost of specific coverages such as liability, collision or medical payments. Even though it may seem like you can get free auto insurance, it's just not the way it works. But any discount will reduce the amount you have to pay.
Some of the insurance companies that may offer these discounts may include but are not limited to:
If you need affordable Hyundai Sonata insurance quotes, ask every company what discounts are available to you. All car insurance discounts may not apply in every state. For a list of auto insurance companies that offer the discounts shown above in South Carolina, click this link.
Three main reasons to buy insurance
Despite the high cost of buying insurance for a Hyundai Sonata in Columbia, insuring your vehicle serves an important purpose.
First, almost all states have compulsory liability insurance requirements which means it is punishable by state law to not carry a minimum amount of liability if you don't want to risk a ticket. In South Carolina these limits are 25/50/25 which means you must have $25,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $50,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and $25,000 of property damage coverage.
Second, if you have a loan on your car, it's most likely the lender will make it a condition of the loan that you have comprehensive coverage to guarantee their interest in the vehicle. If you do not keep the policy in force, the bank may insure your Hyundai at a much higher rate and require you to fork over for the much more expensive policy.
Third, insurance protects both your car and your assets. It will also cover all forms of medical expenses that are the result of an accident. Liability insurance also covers all legal expenses up to the policy limit if you are named as a defendant in an auto accident. If damage is caused by hail or an accident, comprehensive and collision coverage will cover the repair costs.
The benefits of buying insurance outweigh the cost, particularly for liability claims. Despite what companies tell you, the average driver overpays more than $865 each year so it's important to compare rates each time the policy renews to ensure rates are competitive.
Can't I compare rate quotes from local Columbia insurance agencies?
Some consumers would rather get advice from a local agent and that is not a bad decision A nice benefit of price shopping on the web is that you can find the best rates and still buy from a local agent.
For easy comparison, once you complete this quick form, the coverage information is immediately sent to local insurance agents who want to provide quotes to get your business. It's much easier because you don't need to find an agent on your own as quotes are delivered directly to you. You can find better rates and an insurance agent to talk to. If you need to compare rates from one company in particular, you would need to visit that company's website and complete a quote there.
Finding the right insurance company requires you to look at more than just the price. A good agent in Columbia will have answers to these questions.
- Does their agency support local causes in Columbia?
- What insurance company do they write the most business with?
- Does the agent have professional designations like CIC, CPCU or AIC?
- Can you use your own choice of collision repair facility?
- Will they give you a referral list?
Do you need an independent or exclusive car insurance agent?
If you are wanting to find a reputable insurance agent or broker, it helps to know the two different types of agencies and how they are slightly different. Car insurance agents in Columbia can be classified as either independent agents or exclusive agents.
Exclusive Car Insurance Agencies
Agents of this type can only provide one company's prices such as AAA, Allstate, and State Farm. They generally cannot compare other company's rates so keep that in mind. Exclusive agencies receive a lot of sales training on their products and sales techniques which helps them sell insurance even at higher premiums.
Below is a short list of exclusive agents in Columbia willing to provide price quote information.
Bill Weathersbee - State Farm Insurance Agent
9440 Two Notch Rd - Columbia, SC 29223 - (803) 788-7981 - View Map
Independent Agents (or Brokers)
Agents of this type are appointed with more than one company so they can insure your vehicles through many different car insurance companies depending on which coverage is best. To move your coverage to a new company, they simply move your policy to a different company and you stay with the same agent. When comparing car insurance rates, you will definitely want to check rates from several independent agencies so that you have a good selection of quotes to compare.
Below is a list of independent insurance agencies in Columbia who can help you get comparison quotes.
Auto insurance specifics
Knowing the specifics of auto insurance can help you determine appropriate coverage and proper limits and deductibles. Policy terminology can be impossible to understand and coverage can change by endorsement. Shown next are the normal coverages found on most auto insurance policies.
Comprehensive insurance pays for damage OTHER than collision with another vehicle or object. You first have to pay a deductible and then insurance will cover the rest of the damage.
Comprehensive coverage protects against things such as fire damage, damage from a tornado or hurricane, damage from flooding and hail damage. The maximum amount a auto insurance company will pay at claim time is the market value of your vehicle, so if the vehicle's value is low it's probably time to drop comprehensive insurance.
Med pay and Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and medical payments coverage pay for immediate expenses for things like doctor visits, rehabilitation expenses, ambulance fees and X-ray expenses. They are used in conjunction with a health insurance policy or if you are not covered by health insurance. Coverage applies to not only the driver but also the vehicle occupants as well as being hit by a car walking across the street. PIP coverage is only offered in select states and gives slightly broader coverage than med pay
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM)
This coverage provides protection from other drivers when they do not carry enough liability coverage. It can pay for hospital bills for your injuries and damage to your Hyundai Sonata.
Since many South Carolina drivers carry very low liability coverage limits (which is 25/50/25), their liability coverage can quickly be exhausted. This is the reason having UM/UIM coverage is a good idea.
Liability auto insurance
This provides protection from injuries or damage you cause to other people or property that is your fault. Liability coverage has three limits: bodily injury for each person injured, bodily injury for the entire accident and a property damage limit. You might see values of 25/50/25 that translate to $25,000 in coverage for each person's injuries, a total of $50,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and property damage coverage for $25,000.
Liability can pay for claims such as bail bonds, pain and suffering, court costs and attorney fees. How much coverage you buy is up to you, but buy as large an amount as possible. South Carolina requires drivers to carry at least 25/50/25 but it's recommended drivers buy higher limits.
Collision coverage will pay to fix damage to your Sonata resulting from a collision with another car or object. You have to pay a deductible and the rest of the damage will be paid by collision coverage.
Collision insurance covers things such as hitting a mailbox, backing into a parked car and rolling your car. Collision is rather expensive coverage, so you might think about dropping it from lower value vehicles. Drivers also have the option to increase the deductible on your Sonata in order to get cheaper collision rates.