Debunking Common Auto Insurance Myths

The principles of the auto insurance industry are very straightforward, and yet there are a lot of myths that persist. They are based on false information and misunderstandings. Here are some of the most commonly heard myths about auto insurance visit:

New cars are stolen more than older ones

You may have also heard people say that more expensive cars have a greater chance of being stolen. This is simply not true. Studies show that motor vehicles are stolen because of their popularity amongst consumers. The majority of cars that are stolen are stripped for their parts and components, and a car that is a very popular make and model will always need spares so those cars are subject to theft far more frequently. The car currently stolen more than any other is the 1995 Honda Civic, The runner-up in close second is the 1991 Honda Accord.

Red cars attract a higher auto insurance premium

Simply another myth, although there is a small kernel of truth at the core of this one. Red is the most popular color for sports cars. So a higher proportion of red cars happen to sports models, and of course these sports cars do generally cost more to insure because of their capacity for speed, and because drivers are more likely to drive them above the prescribed speed limits. So the higher premium is related to the model, not the color. Color is not a factor in determining rates by any of the insurance companies.

Vandalism and theft are covered in all policies

If you have comprehensive coverage you can expect to be covered for these things, and for such possibilities as fire and acts of nature like hail damage. You should always read your policy carefully, however, because not all “comprehensive” insurance is the same. On the other hand, if you have bought a liability and collision policy it will not include acts vandalism of theft of the vehicle.

If my vehicle is totaled, the insurance will pay out my loan

There is no truth to this at all on a standard policy – even if it is comprehensive insurance. The only way to have that is to purchase additional gap insurance.

On a standard policy, if your car should be totaled you will paid out its current market value (almost all cars begin depreciating immediately after purchase), less the stated deductible that you are liable for. So, for example, if you bought your car for $35,000 and its market value today is $23,000, and your policy has a $2,000 deductible, you will be paid $21,000. End of story. If you still owe $30,000 on your loan you are going to be $9,000 short. Once you’ve been paid out you can either use the money to put towards paying off your loan, or you can purchase a new car and simply keep making the payments on the old loan. Gap insurance, if you had purchased it, would have paid you the shortfall amount of $9,000.

Driving an SUV or a sports car makes it more likely to get speeding fines

In itself this is statement is another myth. There is nothing about any one car over another that attracts tickets. Statistically, however, drivers of high performance vehicles do head the list of traffic violation offenders. It is the actions of the driver, not the car itself, which get the tickets. It’s possible to drive a Hummer, or a fast 500 brake horse power Mercedes and not get fined for speeding. Just do not break the law. The statistics are what they are because the owners of these faster vehicles tend to want to use the power they have and end up violating traffic rules.