Tips for saving on auto insurance in Florida amid rising premiums

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – As Floridians deal with sky-high property insurance rates, they are now also being hit with another financial struggle: car insurance prices are going through the roof.

Insurance guru Mark Friedlander is with the Insurance Information Institute and provided Local 10 News with tips on how to save.

“Sticker shock -- we were seeing it already with home insurance. Now, we’re seeing sticker shock with auto (insurance),” Friedlander said. “Florida rates are up 20 to 25% on average through mid-year, so Florida, typically, is outpacing the U.S.”

But why is this happening?

One reason is that cars are more expensive, and so are their parts, which means it costs more to not only repair them, but to replace them.

“Insurers are paying out more in claims than they’re taking in in premium, so that is a big driver of why rates keep going up,” said Friedlander.

Friedlander says car theft is on the rise, and there’s also insurance fraud and litigation that translates into higher premiums.

Weather is also a factor. Last spring, Broward County saw 2 feet of rain in a matter of days.

“Severe weather is a significant factor,” Friedlander said, adding some food for thought. “One out of every five drivers on the road doesn’t have insurance. That makes it more costly for all of us.”

But there are ways to save. Drivers can bundle policies.

“That can save 20% or more,” said Friedlander.

Multiple cars on one policy can lead to discounts, as can safe driving.

“If you have no accidents or speeding tickets for three to five years, you get a discount for that,” Friedlander said.

Drivers are also encouraged to shop around. Sometimes, new rates means the old company may have to go.

“All the major insurers write auto policies,” Friedlander said.

Historically, rates go up and down, but expect them to go up through the end of next year.

About the Author:

Layron Livingston made the move from Ohio's Miami Valley to Miami, Florida, to join the Local 10 News team.