The funny thing about Advertisements

It’s funny how advertising works. You can market to a segment of people and target their concerns and then show them how your product solves their concern. One such commercial that I heard on the radio today was an advertisement for an insurance programs designed for drivers over 50 years of age. The advertisement asks whether the listener thinks it would be great if your auto insurance rate reflected your experience and not everyone else’s. Guess what – It does reflect your own experience!

The thing about auto insurance is that it is standardized in Ontario. Certain cities, town, regions have statistics in place that determine the risk to the insurer of certain events happening. For example, a certain area of town could be prone to more teenagers speeding than another area. A completely different area could be prone to more thefts than another (I am being simplistic in order to prove a point).

Within these standardized groupings, the auto rates have some flexibility for different levels of experience, vehicle types and number of drivers in the home etc.

There are 2 types of online quoting sites:

  1. Sites where you put in your info and then get fed to a brokerage paying for leads and
  2. Sites advertised and administered by a licensed broker (for example: Insurance Help Canada)

Whether you go online to a sourcing site or a broker site, the auto quote request sheet is very detailed (not as detailed as the personal watercraft app, but I digress). There are so many factors that are taken into account when you get your premium estimate like:

  • How long have you been driving & had continuous insurance?
  • Your address, how long is your commute (if any)?
  • How long have you been accident and conviction free?
  • How many drivers in the house?
  • What license class do you have?
  • What kind of car? etc.

Asking many questions is key so that you don’t get bunched in with the 18 year G2 driver’s astronomical rates. The plans that sell to the baby boomer generation can offer cheaper rates (although in the current market conditions, the rates may be beatable) because a broker decided to target a specific group of people and made a deal with an insurance company to offer an extra 5 -20% discount exclusive to those group members. That’s it – nothing extra-ordinary to it!

While group programs are great for getting cheap rates, you may also want to try a non-group quote as well. You situation is unique and sometimes being grouped together with a bunch of others may not be in your best interest.

Here’s a tip: Always remember that when you are shopping for car insurance, shop for your home as well. Regardless if you have a condo, house, farm or apartment, you can take advantage of a multi-policy discount on both your residence insurance and your auto insurance – it will save you money!

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