If you are in the trucking industry, then you probably realize the importance of insurance that is right for you and an attentive insurance provider that acts in your best interest.
This blog is dedicated to providing advice on trucking insurance and safety. To start, we are addressing the question that is near the top of everyone’s list: how can I get cheaper trucking insurance without compromising—and when I need it?
Agent knowledge is the key. If you look past the promotional rates and other gimmicks, insurance with the same terms will cost about the same from any company. The difference is working with an agent who invests time in you. A good agent that understands the value of your truck, your freight, your driving distances, etc., can save you money by targeting your terms precisely and “trimming the fat.”
Find out how quickly your insurance company responds. If you are waiting days for proof of insurance or auto ID cards, you are losing money on time that you could be on the road. Ask your agent how quickly their company typically responds to requests. It won’t affect your premium, but it will affect your bottom line.
Help yourself. The single biggest factor in determining the cost of your insurance premium is your risk for accidents. Part of this is controlled by your past, which you can’t control. The other part is your commitment to safety for the future. Here are some tips:
- Develop habits that encourage safety. This may mean making a checklist that you check off before hitting the road. Or memorizing the day’s itinerary. Habits help when you realize what you don’t do well. Maintenance procrastinator? Then always have your truck in the shop on the first of every month.
- Avoid tickets. Whether for speeding or driving with a busted taillight, tickets are a sure way to raise your premiums.
- Understand the Department of Transportation’s rules. If you are penalized by the Department of Transportation because of a failed compliance or inspection, prepare for higher premiums. This is another signal of sloppy driving. Don’t give up money simply because you didn’t know the rules.
- Watch your credit. In some states, your credit can affect your insurance. Check with your agent to find out if this is an important factor in your premiums.
Find out what your options are. If you are planning on staying with your current insurance company, call them and find out what ways you can lower your premiums. Some may offer discounts for longer term policies or payment for the entire year upon renewal or multiple policies. If your insurance provider doesn’t have any options like these, it might be time to look elsewhere.
Understand the reality of insurance. If an insurance premium seems too good to be true, it probably is. Were you realistic in the valuation of your truck? Did you report all violations in your driving history? These may seem like easy ways to adjust your premiums in your favor, but they will end up costing you in the long term.