Why it Pays to Shop Around

We are creatures of habit. Once we find a bank or insurance company we tend to stick with them, sometimes for life. We assume that since we are a loyal customer we will be rewarded, but sometimes that is just not the case!

I stayed with the same national car insurance company for years. I was relatively happy with them and although I noticed my rates rising year after year, I didn’t think much about it. I thought it was a normal occurrence. I was a good driver so I figured everything was fine. I even added my husband to the account.

This went on for years until I had a problem and found this company had mismanaged my account and shared my information with a stranger. Needless to say it was time to start shopping for a new provider! I was shocked when I started getting quotes back for hundreds less than I was currently paying. In the end this company’s mistake opened my eyes to how much I was overpaying, and I ended up saving almost $1000 per year with another nationally recognized company (for the same level of service).

Sometimes we get complacent but it is a good idea to shop around, preferably every year, but at least every two years. And not just for car insurance. Make sure you also get quotes for your house or renter’s insurance. Many companies offer discounts for bundling your services, such as your car and home insurance. Also make sure you check your coverage regularly for any special conditions such as natural disasters (that may require additional riders). In addition, if you have recently renovated you may want to update your policy. The value of your home or property may change over time and it is a good idea to make sure you are fully covered.

A person holding a miniature house and some dollar bills for making payments

Just a few days ago, I stopped by my new car insurance company and asked for a quote on my house insurance. Turns out I can save another $900.00 by switching! I’ll retain the same amount of coverage and they will even help me make the switch.

While you’re at it, don’t forget about your Financial Institution. Recently I’ve noticed more and more fees creeping into my traditional bank account that I’ve had for decades. Now that I am more aware of how money works, I will be moving to a Credit Union.

Sometimes it’s not fun or easy to shop around. Many of us put it right up there with going to the dentist, but in the end it is your money and you need to make sure it is working as hard as it can for you. I was shocked to learn how easy it was to save hundreds on just one bill. That one incident really opened my eyes to how some companies take advantage of our complacency.

Don’t forget, you can also check your cable, electric and phone bills to make sure you are getting the best possible deal. I admit, it takes a little leg work but it could save you money and put you in the driver’s seat of your financial life.

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