Nobody plans on staying with the same auto insurance company forever. Once upon a time, maybe, but nowadays sticking with the same insurance company from the day you get your driver's license to the day you hang up your car keys is an open invitation to pay too much for your auto insurance rates. The problem is, it's not enough to just shop around and find the best rates in town. When you're trading in your insurance policy for a newer model you have to make sure you're doing it the right way, or your checkbook won't be the only one paying the price.

Is there a wrong way to swap auto insurance providers? That's like asking if there's a wrong way to quit your job! Yes, there are many, many options when it comes to finding a new insurer. You'd be surprised to discover how many people simply don't bother to pay their next month's bill and let their current insurer cancel their policy-after they've bought a new one, of course. While this might seem like the easy way to do it, it's a decision that's going to come back to haunt you.

Did you know that when your insurer cancels your insurance policy due to non-payment it gets reported to various credit reporting agencies? Not to mention the fact that canceled policies show up on your "permanent record", waving a red flag in the air to insurance companies that you're a flight risk and should be handled with kid gloves-and some of the highest auto insurance rates on the market. You may not have a single accident on your record, but if your policy has lapsed due to non-payment you're going to watch your rates go flying up.

Since you've got better things to do with your money than pay too much for your auto insurance (I've got a few suggestions for you if you don't!) you want to make sure you're making the right decisions about your coverage. When you know you're going to be swapping insurers, give your current policy holder a call and let them know what day you want your coverage to end. That way they can note it on your records, make the proper payment (or refund) arrangements and bid you a fond farewell with the option to come back when their rates become a little more competitive.

Be sure to plan carefully. The last thing you want is to be stuck driving around uninsured because you forgot to line up your cancellation date and the date your new policy begins. All it takes is an hour, a single hour, of driving uninsured. Accidents happen in a matter of moments, and if you're caught in a major one without any insurance coverage you can bid your future fiscal security a fond farewell.

If that's not a gruesome thought, I don't know what is.

Look, everyone expects you to change auto insurance companies sooner or later. They'd be shocked if you didn't! All your insurer is asking is that you do it the right way-the way that's not going to end up with you either thousands of dollars in debt or watching your credit score plummet. In the grand scheme of things, that's not such a bad way to go.

Cliff Berman is the CEO of QuoteScout.com. To learn more about auto insurance and your credit score, pay them a visit online at http://www.QuoteScout.com.0x80240008).,Adi Displays,ERROR_DS_ATTRIBUTE_TYPE_UNDEFINED,ERROR_RETRY,Reinstall Extender Player
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