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If you want to switch car insurance companies, you’ll need to compare quotes from at least a few companies, contact your current carrier to check for cancellation penalties, and time your switch carefully to avoid a lapse in coverage.
Switching auto insurance can open up greater savings, new discounts, and better coverage. It’s an especially good idea if you’ve recently removed or added a driver to your policy, purchased a new car, or moved to a new state.
The process is relatively simple, but it’s important to make sure you follow all the steps to avoid the serious financial and legal consequences that could come with a coverage lapse.
Ready to make a change with your car insurance? Car insurance comparison shopping app Jerry is the expert assistant you need to walk you through the process and make switching auto insurance painless.
Continue reading to learn how to switch car insurance companies.
How to switch car insurance companies
It’s not hard to switch your auto insurance, but to do it right you’ll need to follow a number of specific steps. Here’s how to switch insurance companies in six easy steps (or just one with Jerry!).
1. Consider your coverage needs
Start by determining what kinds of coverage you want to buy. If you’re buying insurance for an older car, you may want to stick to the basics of liability, collision, and comprehensive insurance. Insuring your brand-new dream car? Don’t forget new car replacement insurance.
If you’re changing policies because you’ve moved to a new state, this step is particularly important. Check your state’s car insurance laws to make sure you’re buying the right types and amounts of coverage.
2. Comparison shop
Comparison shopping is the most labor-intensive part of switching insurance companies, but don’t skip this step! Look up average insurance costs based on your area and demographics and get quotes from three to five insurance companies so you can compare their policies.
When you’re getting quotes, you’ll need to provide the company or agency with some basic information about yourself and your car, such as your address; the car’s year, make, and model; the vehicle identification number (VIN); and your driver’s license or Social Security number.
Don’t just look for low rates—keep track of the customer service you get from each company so you can factor that into your decision.
3. Contact your current carrier
This step is easy to forget: Make sure you let your current carrier know you’re planning to switch. They won’t be able to negotiate a new rate, but you may have the chance to find new discounts with them that would make staying worth it.
If you’re shopping for new rates in the middle of your policy term, you should also check that your carrier won’t charge you a cancellation fee. Your carrier will be required to refund any unused premium, but some companies will add charges for customers who cancel early.
4. Switch before your old policy expires
Once you’ve chosen the company you’re switching to, schedule your new policy to begin before your old policy expires. Putting even a day or two between your insurance policies will leave you uninsured and in violation of the law, and the consequences could be serious.
Driving without insurance could lead to higher premiums in the future—and if you cause an accident during a lapse in coverage, you’ll be responsible for all the costs out of pocket.
5. Cancel your old policy
Don’t forget to cancel your old policy once the switch is complete! It won’t be canceled automatically, and if you forget to cancel and don’t keep up with payments, you’ll take on new debt that could damage your credit. Cancel online or by phone to avoid a sticky financial situation.
6. Print out new insurance IDs
Congratulations—you switched your car insurance! Make sure to print out your new insurance ID and keep proof of insurance in your vehicle at all times.
Switch auto insurance in one easy step with Jerry
There’s an easier way to switch car insurance companies. If you don’t have the time to research insurance companies and fill out all the forms to switch and cancel policies, just download the Jerry app.
As a licensed insurance broker, Jerry will help you find the perfect carrier and policy that meets all your needs without breaking the bank. Jerry will find and compare quotes from top companies, schedule your switch to avoid a coverage gap, cancel your old policy, and handle all the paperwork to set you up with savings.
Worried you’ll miss out on savings if you don’t do things the old-fashioned way? Jerry users save an average of $879 a year on car insurance, so you can sit back and save with the confidence that Jerry’s getting you the best rate.
Key Takeaway: When switching car insurance companies, you’ll need to compare rates, contact your current carrier, and schedule your switch to avoid a lapse in coverage. Or, you could download the Jerry app and let Jerry do the work for you.
Thousands of customers saved on average $887/year on their car insurance with Jerry
This app is great, but the customer service is even better! Not to mention convenient! My husband and I got the lowest rate (much lower than the rates I was finding online through my own searches), quickly, and pretty much all through text message! Thank you so much for a hassle free experience👍
Why switch car insurance companies?
Switching auto insurance can bring a host of benefits, from lower rates and better discounts to improved customer service and increased coverage. There’s no limit on when you can switch, so any time you’re dissatisfied with the service or rates you’re getting from your current carrier, it’s worth looking for a new company.
Your car is one of the biggest expenses in your life, and it’s also an important resource. Don’t miss an opportunity to improve your coverage or save additional money—even a small reduction in insurance costs could have a big impact on your financial health!
When to switch car insurance companies
Not sure when you should consider a switch? The best time to switch insurance companies is when your driving status or life situation has changed, but you can look for new rates at any time.
Here are a few times when it’s a good idea to switch your auto insurance—and a few times when it’s better to wait.
When to switch
It’s smart to search for new auto insurance around any major life events or changes to your driving status. If you just got married, added a new driver to your policy, moved to a new state, or bought a new car, you should compare quotes from a few carriers to see if you could get a better premium or different coverage elsewhere.
When to wait
In general, there’s no wrong time to switch auto insurance, but in a few specific situations, it makes financial sense to wait before switching. If you have an open insurance claim, it may be better to wait before switching so that you avoid the complications of processing a claim while dealing with two companies at once.
If you’ve just been in an accident or if you have a recent violation on your driving record, don’t switch until your policy is up for renewal. Most companies don’t recalculate your premium until your renewal date, so you’ll enjoy a few extra months at your lower rate before the violation triggers an increase.
Finally, it may be worth staying with your current carrier if you qualify for a loyalty discount or other discounts that are only available to long-term customers.
How to save time when switching auto insurance
Nobody should have to switch auto insurance alone. To save time and money when switching, download the Jerry app. With Jerry, you’ll get expert end-to-end support throughout the switching process, and you’ll do the least work possible while getting the best available rate.
Jerry won’t just connect you instantly with competitive quotes from top insurance companies. They’ll also handle the paperwork, protect you from common insurance pitfalls, and demystify the insurance shopping process. No more endless forms or hours on hold—it’s all in the app!
“My monthly insurance payment went from $469 to $362 and Jerry gave me a $25 gift card from Amazon! I’m so happy they helped me switch between companies. I sent my sister their link and she’s saving money now too!” —Wanda P.
Haven’t shopped for insurance in the last six months? There might be hundreds $$$ in savings waiting for you.
Judith switched to Progressive
Saved $725 annually
Alexander switched to Travelers
Saved $834 annually
Annie switched to Nationwide
Saved $668 annually
Can you get a refund on car insurance?
If you switch insurance companies before your policy is up for renewal, your carrier should refund you any unearned premium. Keep in mind, though, that some companies charge a cancellation fee for customers who switch well before their policy expires, so be sure to check that you’re not risking an extra charge by switching early.
Will switching car insurance companies affect my credit?
No. You won’t see a drop in your credit score if you switch car insurance companies, and you can switch any time.