Cheap and auto insurance may seem like an odd pairing, but if you want to know how to get cheap auto insurance in Florida, you need to be prepared to do a little research. The rewards can be substantial, in that you’ll possibly be able to save hundreds of dollars in annual premiums.

State Auto Insurance Requirements

First, know what is required for automobile insurance in the state of Florida. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles website stipulates that vehicle owners need to carry at least $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and $10,000 Property Damage Liability (PDL). While these are the minimums, keep in mind that any accident in which you are determined to be at-fault can easily exceed state minimum insurance requirements. Still, this information is important when you go to look for cheap auto insurance in Florida.

Comparison Shop Online Rates

Armed with the information on how much auto insurance and type you are required to carry in Florida, the next step to finding cheap auto insurance in the state is to do a little comparison shopping. This isn’t as tough as it sounds, since you can make terrific use of the Internet in your search for the cheapest rates.

You can use services that are provided by auto insurance companies such as Progressive Direct’s insurance company comparisons. Using the Progressive chart of insurance companies in the state of Florida, you’ll see how Progressive auto insurance compares with other big-name carriers such as State Farm, Allstate, GEICO, Nationwide and Liberty Mutual. These are all highly-rated (A, A+ and A++) by A.M. Best for financial strength, have good or better state and national market share and have been in business for many decades.

The comparison chart gives contact information for these other auto insurance companies, as well as its own, including website URL and phone number.

When you request a rate quote from Progressive, you can compare your quoted rate with those charged by other companies.

Get All The Discounts You Can

Once you have a few names of auto insurance companies that you want to get quotes from, or through an independent agent representing multiple auto insurance companies, be sure that you ask for all the discounts that you’re eligible for. This alone can save you hundreds of dollars in annual premiums.

There are literally dozens of discounts that may be available to you for auto insurance in the state of Florida. These may include multi-car discount (insuring more than one vehicle with the carrier), multi-policy discount (insuring car, home and/or life with the same carrier), homeowners discount (insuring your home and car with the carrier), claims-free history, senior discount, good driver discount, student discount, and many more.

Raise Your Deductibles

Another way to find cheap auto insurance in Florida is to raise your deductibles to the level that you are comfortable. Instead of a $250 deductible for collision and comprehensive, for example, you may wish to up the deductible to $500 or $1,000. This will substantially reduce your premium and, coupled with taking advantage of the discounts available to you, can make a big difference in the annual outlay for auto insurance.

Maintain a Good Driving Record

How much you’ll pay for your auto insurance in the state of Florida, or any state, will depend on numerous factors, not the least of which is your driving record. If you’ve been accident-free for many years, or at least have not made a claim within the last three to five years, have no speeding tickets, DUIs or accidents on your driving record, your rates will be much less expensive than if you’ve had a somewhat checkered driving history.

Remember that every claim you make may impact your rates. And any accident will stay on your policy, thereby negatively affecting how much you’ll pay in premiums, for at least three years. If you’re looking to change auto insurers and you’ve had a claim within the past three (and, in some cases, five years), other insurance companies will likely charge you a higher premium.

So, it pays in more ways than one to keep a good driving record.

Bottom line: How to get cheap auto insurance in Florida involves a little legwork and preparation, but the key ingredient in the equation is you. Be a good driver. Be a savvy consumer and a diligent shopper, and you’ll wind up with the best rates possible.

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