Standard VS Non Standard Insurance:

Non-standard auto insurance,
is auto insurance sold to drivers whose driving experience makes it difficult or impossible to get insurance through a standard insurance carrier.
Some Insurance companies deal exclusively in the non-standard insurance business, while others sell non-standard and standard policies.Drivers who fit this category may have had a number of claims filed or are considered a high risk such as someone with a DUI or another serious offense on their driving record.
Or persons with high performance or sports cars that can’t afford standard insurance rates.

On the flip side some people will shop for non-standard insurance in order to have a less costly premium to pay.

Non-standard Insurance will usually be sold to drivers who simply can’t get insurance through a standard carrier or those who choose a non-standard policy to avoid high premiums.
I have also seen on occasion people get stuck with non-standard insurance through a purchase at a car dealer.

Some states require an insurance policy to be in effect before you can drive your new car off the lot.
In this case the dealer will sometimes offer instant insurance to satisfy the requirement, once the customer has their new car they usually don’t bother to even think about what type of coverage they have.

Everyone wants to have the nicest vehicle they can afford but this is really sort of a backwards mentality, you should purchase the best insurance you can afford and then get a vehicle that fits within your budget.

An example would be a person who purchases a used Escalade and then insures it with non standard insurance.


Things your auto insurer won’t tell you

“When I say this is a good policy, I mean it’s good for me.”

Although agents can help you navigate auto policies, some may not have your best interests at heart. Often, large auto and home insurers use “contingent” commissions to compensate agents who sold their policies. These fees come in two types: “steering” commissions, for signing customers with a particular carrier, and profit-based commissions, when clients don’t file a lot of costly claims. The concern with the former is that unscrupulous agents push certain policies to reap larger commissions; with the latter, they might delay or discourage claims.

How can you protect yourself? Ask about commissions, and have prospective agents explain their recommendations.

“Bad or Questionable credit? That’ll cost you.”

Since the 1990s, insurers have discovered a strong correlation between low credit scores and lots of claims. Today, more than 90% of insurers use credit histories in their underwriting, according to the Insurance Information Institute in New York.
Although consumer advocates say that unfairly penalizes the poor, it can also bite the middle class, says Birny Birnbaum, the executive director at the Center for Economic Justice. After all, “87% of families in bankruptcy are there because of a job loss, medical catastrophe or divorce,” he says.

Because many insurers do factor in credit histories, it’s important to get a credit report from each of the three major bureaus.

“How do we set premiums? That’s for us to know and you to find out.”

As insurers continue to adopt complex pricing systems, not everyone is seeing savings. Why the disparity? For starters, premiums vary widely by state. According to a 2007 study from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, the average yearlong policy in 2005 cost $949, ranging from a low of $664 in Iowa to a high of $1,343 in the District of Columbia.

What has muddied the waters even further are the formulas used to set premiums for individuals. Twenty years ago, most insurers sorted customers into four or five pricing tiers, based on where they lived, their ages and their driving records. Over the past decade, hundreds of variables have been added to the mix, including credit histories, home-ownership and limits on past policies. Because each insurer interprets these variables differently, it’s even tougher for consumers to get a handle on the system.

Read the entire article here.

Q; Is there a difference in the parts used to repair my car from one insurance company to another?
A; Yes

Many parts used to repair your vehicle will be the same across the board regardless of insurance company, but some insurance companies will want to use the absolute cheapest parts available regardless of fit or finish.

Q; Are all aftermarket parts created equal?
A; No

A common misconception is “parts is parts & pieces is pieces” there are various grades of aftermarket parts available on the market today.
CAPA certified parts are certified to fit and perform as well as an OE part.

The image below will show some cosmetic Fit and Finish issues with the cheaper non certified aftermarket Mustang fender.

Structural components are something that should not be compromised on, an outer panel that may not fit well might not effect how well you vehicle fairs if in another collision but Structural pieces could effect many things such as Air Bag timing and ultimately put the occupants at greater risk.

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