Insurance rates decreasing: Right time to shop car insurance online

With gas prices hovering over $2 a gallon, and economy declining, the cost of driving is taking a toll on American’s pocketbooks. But one positive is emerging from our nation’s current economic status: car insurance rates are dropping.

The average rate for car insurance has dropped to $1,879 a year, according to Ratewatch research. The overall average has fallen $103 since its 12-month high in October 2008.

While the average fell only 0.5% in March, that came on the heels of December’s 3.2% plunge. If you break down the numbers state by state, 19 states saw insurance rates fall last month. Arizona saw the largest rate decrease (5.1%) and South Dakota had the largest hike (6.7%).

This research also provides a case study in what happens when competitive forces are unleashed and markets are allowed to operate more freely. And while some drivers are worse off, the vast majority of consumers have gained from the changes.

Auto insurance prices have been declining around the country, lower rates in 19 states were a welcome sight. March auto rates continued to decline. The lowest annual car insurance quotes, on average, decreased from $1,888 per year to $1,879 annually. The highest rates in the past 12 months were quoted in October 2008. Rates increased 8% in total in 2008.

If you break down the numbers state by state, 19 states saw insurance rates fall last month. Arizona saw the largest rate decrease (-5.1%), Virginia (-4.5%), and South Dakota had the largest hike (+6.7%), following Nebraska and Minnesota with (+5.9%).

“The insurers have been pouring millions into advertising and then provide better deals to customers, it’s all about new customer acquisition” says Nick Nicholaidis PR Manager at “People are changing the way they shop for car insurance. Shopping online is an easy way for people to learn their car insurance options quickly and with no hassle. By comparing quotes, people can save hundreds of dollars” says Nicholaidis.

Learning your car insurance options is simple. Start by visiting Once on the site, fill out a short form about your car insurance needs. It takes less than 5 minutes and is totally free.

Once you complete the form, your information is distributed to your local insurance agents who will research quotes from leading companies. These agents are simply motivated to get you the best deal they can based on your needs and profile. They all work with highly reputable, top-rated insurance providers such as: GMAC, Farmers Insurance, Unitrin, The Hartford, Liberty Mutual and Esurance. They are all trained to provide personalized service and can answer any questions you have regarding your policy and the quotes you receive.

A few minutes of your time, could save you hundreds of dollars.

Big parking lots: Responsible for Thousands of Car Insurance Claims

The next time you make a trip to a shopping mall or big box store, drive with caution. U.S. nationwide car crashes and fender benders happen on a regular basis in the parking lots, access roads and surrounding shopping areas. is warning motorists to take extra caution when they embark on their weekly food run as claims for damage such as scratched paintwork and dented bumpers can significantly affect car insurance premiums.

The top four car park mishaps were:

  1. Bumps and scratches caused by drivers trying to reverse into tight parking spots
  2. Dents caused by banging car doors against another parked car
  3. Reversing into another car while trying to back out of a space
  4. Scrapes and scratches due to runaway shopping carts

Nick Nicholaidis, PR Manager at said: “Although most motorists are driving at low speeds in parking lots, a surprisingly high amount of accidents occur. Many drivers are too busy thinking about shopping and not concentrating on their driving leading to careless mistakes. These small bumps and scratches can have a big impact on car insurance premiums.”

Shopping mall parking lots can be notoriously difficult to navigate, as drivers throw caution, and the rules of the road, to the wind in frantic search of a parking space. The layout of some shopping mall driving, drop-off, and parking areas, combined with shrubbery, hedges and other visual obstacles, can add to the confusion of mall driving.

But, if you are involved in an accident in a parking lot who pays what? “Many factors may determine who will pay for any damage. Usually the party who is cited for the accident will be responsible for the damages. If the police are not called and the drivers exchange insurance information and the loss is later reported to the insurance company then an adjuster may decide who is liable. But make sure that at least your vehicle is insured”- ended Nicholaidis.

Did you know: If you were hit by another vehicle in the shopping mall or supermarket parking lot and you are unable to make a claim against the at-fault party because they are unknown, then you should be able to place a claim against your own collision coverage.