When shopping for a new vehicle, you’re bound to have a number of questions about your purchase. one of those questions is if you buy a new car, is it insured?
Do I have insurance when I pull my new car off the lot?
If you already own a car, your insurance company will automatically provide the same amount of coverage for your new vehicle that you have on your old vehicle. your current policy will cover your new car for four days. For example, if you currently own a 2002 Ford Ranger and you trade it in for a 2019 Honda Civic, your Civic will be covered under your Ranger policy for four days. As Neckerman Insurance Services points out, you should be aware that if you don’t have comprehensive and/or collision coverage on your old car, you won’t have it on your new car either. automatic four-day coverage is exactly the same coverage you’ve always had. If you want to upgrade coverage on your new car, you should contact your insurance agent as soon as possible, especially if you want additional coverage for a car you’re financing or leasing.
Insurance Panda notes that if you have more than one car listed on your current insurance policy, your new vehicle will have coverage equal to the car listed on the policy with the highest amount of coverage. note that this maximum coverage is still only valid for four days. When you call your insurance agent to add your car to your policy, make sure you have the following information handy:
- make and model of the vehicle
- vehicle model year
- the vehicle identification number (vin)
- contact information for your lender or leasing company
According to Zebra, if you’re buying your first vehicle or your insurance has expired, you’ll need to purchase insurance before you buy your car. you can’t leave the lot without it. As a driver, purchasing auto insurance for your new vehicle is your responsibility. Even if the dealership offers to buy insurance for you, you shouldn’t trust them to do so. If you already have insurance, it’s best to contact your agent before you buy your new car to make sure your current policy automatically applies to your new vehicle. While four days of automatic coverage is common practice in the insurance industry, there are exceptions to the rule.
is there a grace period to get new car insurance?
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According to carinsurance.com, many insurance companies will give you a grace period to add your new car to your current policy. still, once again, it is up to the individual company to grant such a period. If you’re an existing customer with an active policy, you can get up to two weeks to add the new vehicle. Depending on your particular situation, your insurance company may be willing to extend that grace period even further. loyal customers can receive a grace period of up to one month. however, some insurance companies do not offer any type of grace period, so be sure to check with your company. Even if they give you a grace period, it’s always better to add your new car to your policy as soon as possible rather than wait.
the zebra points out that if you have an accident and are still within your insurance company’s grace period, your current policy will cover the accident. Your previous automobile coverage limits will apply. If you had collision coverage on your old car, you’ll have the same coverage on your new vehicle. Please note that your insurance rates will increase if you decide to file a claim.
The zebra also points out that if you buy a car from a private seller rather than a dealer, you still need to insure it. Your insurance company’s grace period applies to a privately purchased vehicle in the same way as a car purchased from a dealership. Also, as with the dealer, it is your responsibility to obtain insurance, not the responsibility of the seller. this is still the case, even if the seller does not require proof of insurance like a dealer would. Just as you would when buying a car from a dealership, it’s best to get coverage before buying a car from a private seller. compare quotes to make sure you get the best rates possible.
what happens if my coverage expires?
insurance panda recommends that you do everything you can to prevent your auto insurance coverage from lapsing. If you go over your insurance company’s grace period without coverage, the consequences could be serious. in the event of an accident, you would not have any coverage. the lack of coverage means that you would be personally responsible for paying for any damages that are your fault. You would also be subject to higher rates when you continue your coverage. A gap in coverage is an important factor in determining the rate you pay for insurance. customers with gaps in coverage are often classified as high risk. clients in the high-risk category generally have to pay higher premiums. On the other hand, if you’ve had five consecutive years of coverage, you may be able to pay up to $216 less than someone with coverage gaps. Get insurance on your new car as soon as possible to continue your coverage.
Insurance grace period considerations
Buying a new car is certainly an exciting experience. however, you should not be distracted from the details of the process, including making sure you have insurance. don’t wait too long to get coverage. remember, the dealer will not handle this task for you. Be sure to contact your insurance agency before you even set foot in the dealership to make sure you have a grace period to add the new vehicle to your policy and to check how long the grace period is.
if you are renting a vehicle, full coverage is required
If you choose to lease a car instead of buying a new vehicle, you will need to meet additional insurance requirements. Most leasing companies will insist that you immediately add physical damage coverages to your insurance policy. You will need to purchase collision coverage and comprehensive coverage so that your vehicle is fully covered in all circumstances.
Information and research in this article verified by ASE Certified Master Technician Duane Sayaloune of yourmechanic.com. For any feedback or correction request, please contact us at [email protected].