Car Insurance Rates Up 23 Percent in 5 Years

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That's more than double the rate at which consumer prices have grown.

Households spent an average of $983 for car insurance in 2011, according to the U.S. Labor Department. That was a 23.2 percent increase over five years, CNNMoney says. Meanwhile, overall consumer prices rose just 10.7 percent.

It’s not as if the difference was going to insurance claims. “You’re certainly not getting any more for your money,” Consumer Federation of America insurance expert Mark Romano told CNNMoney. Claims are keeping pace with inflation, he said.

Here’s some of CNNMoney’s advice to make sure people get their money’s worth from coverage:

  • Always report incidents. Even if it’s minor and there seems to be no damage, call the cops and file a report. That way you have evidence if you discover damage that wasn’t immediately apparent, such as to the car’s electronics.
  • Use apps for evidence. A smartphone camera app paired with an insurer’s app or WreckCheck (for Android and Apple) can help with your claim.
  • Pick the shop. The repair shop your insurer likes may not be the best one. Push for one that specializes in your car make.

If you want ways to lower your premium, check out the video below.

Stacy Johnson

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