So You Can’t Afford Car Insurance?

| September 18, 2013


Location: Dallas, TX. Era: My college days. As a college student one is often met with a choice: get bogged down with student loans or slave your way through college. I chose the latter. That decision led me to living in self-enforced frugality. This meant a lot of things:  living in a crummy apartment, ingesting chicken flavored Ramen noodles daily, and stressing month to month about whether I would have enough money to pay my Dallas car insurance bill.

The truth was most of the time I didn’t have enough to pay, so the payment went directly onto my credit card which meant I was racking up debt anyway. Something had to give, and it couldn’t be my car insurance because I needed my car to drive to work. For anyone in a similar situation, here is how I made the unmanageable manageable.

Keep a Budget

Despite my financial issues, I lived month to month without actively tracking my money. Then one day I sat down on one of the university computers and used Excel to create a budget. I had always known how much excess money I had to spend, but I never really tracked my money. This often left me going 10, 20, or 30 dollars over my monthly pocket money. If you want to grasp control of your finances I would track your monthly spending using Excel or the numerous free budget sites online.

Find Excess

Once I created a budget I discovered that there are always areas where your expenses can be more efficient. For me it was the money I spent on food. Despite the fact that I was continuously short on funds, I still bought the name brand products. Once I changed to generic cereal I was able to save enough to at least break even every month.

Seek Discounts on Car Insurance

Unfortunately breaking even isn’t enough. I had my credit card bill to pay off. And what if my car broke down? How would I pay for it? One option I explored was discovering ways to decrease my car insurance bill. Here are some deductions that are currently available to decrease your car insurance bill.

  • It wasn’t available back when I was in college, but today you may want to look into usage based car insurance. With usage based car insurance you can save up to 30% by driving skillfully and limiting your driving.
  • By the time I was in college I had already been driving for 5 years and managed to somehow stay accident free, so I qualified for an accident free discount.
  • As a college student with an A average I qualified for a good student discount. If you are a high school or college student under 24 years old, you might qualify.
  • I didn’t actually qualify for this discount, but many insurance firms will offer up to a 10% discount if you take a defensive driving class. In some states you may need to be over 55 to qualify.
  • As a poor college student I experienced a reduced car insurance bill because I had an older car. You may want to think about turning in your old car for a newer one because new cars are more expensive to ensure due to the increased cost of repair.

Car insurance is essential for car owners. Insurance will protect you from state fines, and ensures that you the help required to pay for any repairs when you are in an accident. If you are short on cash there are various ways to save enough money to pay for your insurance. Creating a budget, pruning your excess expenses, and researching car insurance are only 3 possible solutions.


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Category: Car Insurance

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