Monday, February 4, 2019

Aftermarket Parts and Car Insurance: Are You Covered?

You've taken your favorite car and tricked it out. New paint, new coilovers, new wheels and tires, and an awesome sound system. Your ride went from about $30,000 ride to a $50,000 joyride!

But, without the right amount of insurance, you'd be in trouble if involved in an accident. Even if you've spent hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars customizing it, it's just an everyday car with OEM to your insurance company, so you'll only get an everyday payout from your insurance policy unless you've added coverage!

Here's how to decide whether you're protected or you need to add additional insurance.

Are My After-Market Parts Covered?

If you opted for liability coverage only -- the cheapest coverage available -- you're not covered. Liability coverage only protects you from a lawsuit if you hit someone. In a collision that you are responsible for, you have zero coverage on your vehicle and are responsible for all repairs. 

For coverage that includes having your car repaired or replaced, you need collision and comprehensive coverage on your policy. Collision covers fixing physical damage to your car when you hit something or someone who is insured hits you. Comprehensive coverage covers theft and damage to your car from a variety of occurrences. Both of them will pay the actual cash value of your car if it is totaled, but the cash value is the cost to replace it with a car similar to the one you were insuring.

If you haven't added the aftermarket extras you installed to your policy, insurance policies will generally only cover the original equipment. With some insurance companies, the collision and comprehensive coverage will replace a small amount of aftermarket parts, typically up to $1,000. It's a good idea to take photos and keep receipts for any of the extras you have added, in case you need proof.

But many other policies will not cover any aftermarket extras, unless you purchase special coverage. So, if you've shelled out $10,000 or so to make your ride look great, you need to consider extra coverage.

What kind of coverage do I need for aftermarket parts?

Coverage for custom parts and equipment (CPE) isn’t particularly expensive, especially if you’re under 25 and already paying the highest rates due to your age. Most drivers will pay only a few dollars a month for $5,000 coverage.

But you can’t buy CPE by itself; you must also carry collision and comprehensive.

Agreed-Value or Stated-Value Coverage?

An agreed-value policy means you and your insurance company agree ahead of time exactly what the payout will be if your car is stolen or totaled. Your premium is based on that amount.

A stated-value policy means you decide the value of your car. But unlike an agreed-value policy, you're only buying as much coverage as you can afford, rather than insuring the car for its full worth. This policy typically has a provision that allows an insurer to pay out actual cash value instead, if that amount is less.

If you have invested time and money in your vehicle and need to look into additional coverage, call SAV-ON at 888-867-2866 and one of our agents can help you get the right amount of coverage for your 'baby'.


Wednesday, December 19, 2018

New Drivers License Expiration Dates and Renewal Periods in Washington

As of December 17, 2018, the Washington State Insurance Commissioner has changed when your Washington drivers license expires.

In keeping with the National Insurance Producer Registry's (NIPR) recommended best practices and to further the Insurance Commissioner office's commitment to being more uniform with other state insurance departments, Washington state has changed the expiration date for individual licensees from your birth date to the end of your birth month.

For example, if your birthday is March 2nd, 2018, in the past your license would expire on that day. Now it won't expire until the end of your birth month, in this case March 31st.

If your driver's license does expire before you renew it, you can still renew, but if it has been expired for more than 60 days, you'll have to pay a $10 late fee in addition to the renewal fee.

To renew your driver's license in Washington, it will cost you $54 for a standard driver license.

Increased Renewal Period

Prior to the effective date of the new rule change, licensees were able to submit their renewal applications and insurers were able to submit their appointment renewals 60 days prior to the expiration date. This is referred to as the "renewal window." 

Under the new rule change, this renewal window will extend to 90 days prior to the expiration date rather than 60 days. Insurers and licensees will receive email notification of their opportunity to access their license or appointment renewals.

If you have any questions about your license renewal, call 360-725-7144 or renew online at

And if you also need to renew your auto insurance, call SAV-ON Insurance at 888-867-2866 and find out how much money we can save you or go online to and make an appointment at the office of your choice!

Thursday, November 8, 2018

How To Choose the Right Auto Insurance Deductible

When quoting auto insurance for clients, we frequently discuss how to choose the right deductible. Let's take a few minutes to share this information here on our blog, too.

A deductible is the amount you pay out-of-pocket when you have a claim.  If you have a $500 collision deductible and have an accident, then you would pay $500 towards repairing your vehicle and insurance would cover the rest.

The deductible you choose directly relates to the amount of money you spend on premiums each month. The higher the deductible ($250, $500, $1,000), the lower your monthly cost.

So, what's the best choice for you? Cheaper price or lower out-of-pocket expense?

First, look at how much you have in your emergency savings.  Do you have enough cash available to cover a higher deductible if you had to pay it?  If the answer is no, then you’re better off paying a little extra each month, because in the event of an accident you might have trouble coming up with the higher deductible amount.

Compare the cost savings. When we run a quote, we can show you several different options. Ask your SAV-ON agent to run the premium based on several different deductibles so you can see the actual dollar cost savings.

You can always change your mind.  If you’re short on cash now, but know you could afford more out-of-pocket costs next year, you’re always able to lower your deductible at that time.  Keep your deductible in a comfortable range and you’ll always be well protected! 

Call SAV-ON Insurance at 888-867-2866 for more information and a personalized quote!  

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Jobs and School are Important, but Beware the Dangers of Drowsy Driving

If you've got a job while attending school, that's money in your pocket. Congratulations! Work is an important step toward independence and learning time management skills, leadership and patience. These are valuable skills that you can't learn in school.

However, if you are driving to work or back home -- sometimes late after a long, tiring shift -- you run a much greater risk of being inattentive behind the wheel, or even falling asleep! Two-thirds of drowsy driving crashes involve drivers under 30, with males outnumbering females five-to-one.

Usually a combination of overscheduled lives and natural sleep patterns are to blame. Teens, in particular, tend to feel awake later in the evening, meaning they often go to bed too late and get the sleep they need on weekdays. Practice-weary athletes, students juggling classes and jobs, and straight-A overachievers are among those most likely to drive when they are overly tired.

Many students cram for important exams late into the night or early morning, and can be fatigued the next day after the adrenaline (and caffeine) wear off. This can be a dangerous situation when they attempt to drive after they get through the stress of the test.

To help ensure that you stay awake between "Drive" and "Park", sleep experts at the National Sleep Foundation urge you to cultivate good sleep habits. That includes a regular bedtime, no electronics at least 30 minutes before bed, no caffeine after lunchtime, and an understanding that it's OK to say no sometimes to new commitments.

Signs of sleep deprivation in teens include regular naps of more than 45 minutes, relying on caffeine to wake up and stay awake during the day, and sleeping two or more hours later on weekends than on weekdays. If you find yourself nodding off during the day, you're overdoing it and need to work on easing up on your schedule. You don't want to end up in an accident.

Friday, December 29, 2017

What is Liability Insurance and Why Do You Need It?

Have you ever looked at your insurance policy and wondered just exactly what it is you are paying for?
Everyone knows that they are legally required to carry liability insurance.  But many people don’t really understand what that means or how it works.  

In simple terms, liability insurance pays to fix damage that you cause to someone else.  

Auto Insurance Liability Coverage

On your auto insurance policy, this is split into three pieces.  Here is an example:

Bodily Injury:  50/100
Personal Property: 50

Let’s say that this was your coverage amount and you hit another car in an accident.  Your insurance would pay up to $50,000 per person for injuries, up to a maximum of $100,000 per accident.  And it would pay up to $50,000 in property damage to fix the other car.  

Remember, liability only covers the person that you hit.  It doesn’t cover your vehicle or anyone inside your car.  

There are many different amounts of liability coverage.  We work directly with our clients to determine how much you need.  This will vary based on factors like how many assets you have, your income, and home's value.  

Not having enough liability insurance is one of the biggest financial mistakes you can make!  Carrying only the Washington state minimum of $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident/$10,000 property damage, could leave you open to a lawsuit.  Think about those cars you’ve seen on the road worth easily over $40,000!  If you don’t have enough property damage coverage, then you are at risk.  

Homeowners Liability Coverage

There is also liability coverage on your homeowners or renters insurance.  It pays if someone is injured on your property due to your negligence.  One common example is a dog bite.  This is another time when it’s good to have enough liability insurance!

Hopefully this clears up any questions you have about how liability insurance works.  If you need help determining the right amount of coverage for your family, give SAV-ON a call at 888-867-2866 for a no obligation review and quote.  

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

9 Ways to Save on Auto Insurance

Looking for ways to keep your auto insurance premiums manageable?  Here are 9 ways you can save on your insurance (without sacrificing coverage.)

1. Your Driving Record
Your driving record plays a big role in how much you pay for insurance. By keeping a clean record for 3-5 years, you can save hundreds of dollars! Be a cautious driver, don’t speed, and you'll lower your premiums.  

2. Defensive Driving Course
Defensive driving courses are an easy way to achieve an extra discount. They can also help keep a ticket from showing up and messing up your clean driving record. Make sure to call us before taking the class if you're using it for a discount so we can verify that your policy qualifies.

3. Anti-Theft Devices
Installing an alarm or other anti-theft device can lower premiums on your vehicle. Make sure to discuss all features with us, sometimes even power locks and a remote can count!

4. Your Credit Score
While insurance uses a different formula than the credit bureaus, your credit still affects the rate you pay. Good credit can save you hundreds (even thousands) on your premiums! Make sure to review your report on a regular basis and have any mistakes corrected.

5. Where You Live
Rural areas pay less for insurance than the big cities do. It's all about risk, and with a large population there is more chance for an accident. Therefore, where you choose to live can impact your rates. Consider contacting SAV-ON before purchasing a home if you’re concerned about the costs (it is based on your zip code).

6. Your Vehicle
The vehicle you choose to purchase also makes a difference! Some vehicles cost a lot more to repair than others, which drives up their rates. Easy way to avoid buying a money-sucker? Call us first and let us quote the vehicle before you sign on the dotted line.

7. How Often You Drive
If you take public transportation and only drive on the weekend, you'll pay less than someone with a long commute. Make sure to review your annual mileage and daily commutes with us (especially if they change) so that you can receive the extra savings.

8. Raise Your Deductible
A higher deductible (your out-of-pocket cost in a claim) means a lower monthly rate. If you have $1,000 in savings and could afford to use it if you had an accident, then you’ll save on your insurance cost by having a $1,000 deductible instead of $250. We can help you review the costs and benefits in your specific situation.

9. Your Insurance Agent
And the best way to save? Work with a local agent! You'll get the coverage you need plus you'll have an advocate working on your behalf to find the best rate, all the discounts, and an easy explanation of any gaps in your coverage. It's the #1 way to control your risk, maximize your savings, and protect your family.

SAV-ON wants to be your agent! Call us at 888-867-2866 to discuss your policy today, or schedule an appointment online at!

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Someone Broke Into My Car and Stole Personal Items; Is It Covered By My Auto Insurance?

Today we’d like to answer a question we hear all the time - “Are my personal belongings covered if someone breaks into my car?”
Unfortunately, they typically are NOT covered!  Your auto insurance covers your car from damage and accidents, but not the items left inside from theft.
This happens a lot during the holidays, when people are out shopping and put gifts in their car between stops. Thieves roam parking lots and parking garages, knowing that busy shoppers often leave their just-purchased gifts in their car. Many times the result is a broken windshield and stolen items.
There are still ways to protect yourself.  
First, and most obvious, is to avoid keeping expensive items in your car in the first place.  This includes things like your laptop, iPad, and any new gifts. Also, if you're not taking your purse with you, hide it in a locked trunk or some other out-of-sight area.  You're just asking for someone to break into your car when you have nice things (or money and credit cards) on display, and it only takes seconds for them to get them!
If you’re out shopping, always keep your doors locked and hide items away in the trunk.  
But this isn’t always possible; some vehicles don't have trunks and, in other cases, some items are too large to fit in the trunk.  So you also want to make sure you’re covered by carrying renters or homeowners insurance for your personal belongings.  These policies include a certain amount of coverage for property off premises.  These are subject to your deductible, so make sure to discuss this with your SAV-ON agent to see what kind of coverage you currently have. 

With a little bit of prevention and good insurance, you’ve won’t have to worry about items being stolen from your car.  Have questions?  Give SAV-On a call at 888-867-2866 to discuss them anytime!