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If you have more than one vehicle in your household, you might wonder if you should cover them all under the same policy. Depending on your situation, having multiple vehicles on your policy could save you money through a multi-car discount. Sometimes, however, insuring your cars separately makes more sense. Bankrate can help you make an informed decision about the best way to cover more than one car.
What is a multi-car policy?
Most auto insurance companies offer multi-car (or multiple-car) insurance policies. While insuring at least two or three vehicles is usually the standard, each provider might have its own limits to the number of vehicles coverable on a single policy. Multi-car policies are available through almost every insurance carrier and usually with an available discount, often categorized under customer loyalty.
Each company is likely to have its own requirements for multi-car insurance policies. Some only require that all covered vehicles be located at one address, while other carriers factor in the insured’s relationship to the policyholder. It never hurts to ask carriers about their specific criteria for multi-car insurance policies or whether you can add the vehicle of another person in your home to your policy.
Potential benefits and drawbacks of multi-car insurance policies
|Financial savings with multi-car discount||One renewal date with a total premium due at once, which could be more expensive|
|A single premium payment||Not all insurers offer the same discount amount|
|Shared deductible||One high-risk driver may impact the entire policy|
While a multi-car insurance policy could save families with good driving histories significantly on premiums, opting for one may not be ideal if one or more drivers have poor driving records. In some instances, including a high-risk driver on your policy may increase the overall premium, potentially discounting the additional savings. This may also be the case if you have a young driver in your household, although most insurance companies require all household drivers to be listed on your policy. Consider speaking with your insurance provider to see how different circumstances could affect your rates.
What discount can you receive for a multi-car insurance policy?
Insurance companies usually regard customers willing to insure more than one car on a policy as loyal. Some companies choose to reward this loyalty through a multi-car discount.
You will generally see discounts up to 25% of the total premium for adding a multi-vehicle policy which is how you get the discount on your policy. However, each provider’s exact discounts may vary based on your coverage and other factors. Here are a few companies that offer discounts for insuring more than one vehicle:
|Company||Multi-car discount %|
|Progressive||Average of 4%|
|Geico||Up to 25%|
|Amica||Up to 25%|
Some companies (like State Farm and Nationwide) also give a multi-car discount, but the amount of money the discount can save varies. You may want to consider asking your agent for more information about the car insurance discounts you may be eligible for.
Is there a limit to how many cars or drivers I can have on my policy?
Every company is different when it comes to how many cars and drivers you can list on your policy. Some will let you have as many cars and drivers as you want, while others have rules regarding who and what you can add.
In general, companies require that you have an ‘insurable interest’ in a vehicle before they will add it to your policy. Insurable interest means that you have a financial responsibility towards the vehicle. An example of this is a vehicle that you co-own. Whether that vehicle is covered and cared for matters to you because you have partial ownership. Insurable interest implies that you will take fewer risks with the vehicle and, in turn, will be less likely to cause an accident with it.
If a company allows you to add a car to your policy that you don’t own or co-own, they may require the owner to be a household family member. Additionally, you may need to list that family member as an active driver on your policy. Your agent should have more specific information on their company guidelines.
How much does a multi-car insurance policy cost?
The average cost of car insurance for a single vehicle is $1,771 annually for full coverage, but varies significantly from carrier to carrier and between individuals. Additionally, although you may get a multi-car discount for insuring two or more vehicles, you’ll likely still pay more than you would for just one vehicle. Rates are also influenced by multiple factors such as age, driving history, location and the condition of the car.
Because multi-policy types are so common, getting several multi-car insurance quotes is relatively straightforward. Usually, car insurance companies will ask you for the following information:
- Make, model and year of the cars you want to include on the policy
- Vehicle identification number (VIN)
- Odometer reading for each of the vehicles
- The name, date of birth and driver’s license numbers of each driver to be added to the policy
What coverage do you need on your multi-car insurance policy?
Most states require that drivers carry some level of liability insurance. On the other hand, requirements for carrying certain levels of collision or comprehensive coverage are not imposed at the state level. In most situations with a multi-car insurance policy, drivers need to cover each vehicle with the same amount of liability or uninsured motorist coverage.
Typically, you are free to insure each vehicle with different levels of collision and comprehensive coverage. However, you may want to keep in mind that the incidents and amounts you are covered for could vary if each vehicle includes different coverages.
Frequently asked questions
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2022 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Rates are weighted based on the population density in each geographic region. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:
- $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $50,000 property damage liability per accident
- $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
- $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
- $500 collision deductible
- $500 comprehensive deductible
To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverage that meets each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2020 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.
These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes