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If The Gecko Did The Robot

This article was written by in Insurance. 15 comments.

Yo. I think your website would be da bomb if you had the gecko do the Robot.

Last month, the nine points on my New Jersey Driver’s License fell into obsolescence. It has now been three years since the points were “awarded” to me for various stupid indiscretions. This is good news for my wallet.

My auto insurance yearly premium is $3,536. I’ve decided that my newfound point-freedom and a $500 payment due this month give me a perfect opportunity to shop around for new insurance.

So I did. I first called AAA, who brokered my current insurance. Currently, I’m on the state-mandated high risk plan so I had no options. AAA offered me new insurance through Libery Mutual for $1,568 (with options similar to my current coverage). That’s a decent amount of savings, but maybe I could do better.

I shopped around a little more and I’ve settled with Geico. They were able to offer me the same coverage for $810. The choice is clear. Now, there is one last obstacle: I must wait while they verify my information through “independent sources” before they decide whether my application is approved.

Update: I’ve received the response from Geico. Read the comments for the rest of the story.

Updated February 6, 2012 and originally published June 2, 2005. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about Luke Landes and follow him on Twitter. View all articles by .


avatar Dusty

Just don’t try to file a claim. There’s a reason their premiums are so low – they never pay!

avatar Luke Landes

Well, there’s always something. I have a deductible that is high enough that I’ll be paying for most minor things, anyway. If they do accept my application, I’ll outline my coverage.

avatar savvy saver

I’m sure you’ve had people tell you this before, but try State Farm. I had a pretty bad record (lots of tickets, one totaled car), and they have given me great rates. They are also cheap for good drivers as well, and it’s nice to have my homeowners and other insurance products all through one place. I have recommended them to quite a few people, and almost all of them have switched over. My agent even steps through and will price out each individual line item, as well as run split-screen comparisons.

avatar Luke Landes

State Farm was one of the first ones I checked after AAA. They were my service provder many years ago before they decided they would drop most of their NJ customers. I suppose they’re back in the state, but their price is too high.

Thanks for bringing them up, though. They provided good service when I was a customer.

avatar nickel

We have State Farm for two cars, house, umbrella, and a personal articles policy. A couple of years ago I called Geico, and the price they quoted was higher than what we were already paying. Perhaps it’s because we have clean driving records, and they might undercut other insurers on ‘risky’ customers? Or perhaps it was due to our mulit-line discounts, as well as the accident-free discounts that we had earned for being long term customers. Whatever the cause, Geico was far from a good deal for us.


avatar Luke Landes

I received my verification from Geico quicker than I expected, and they came back to me with $1,900 for the year. I’m going back to the drawing board, and right now AAA has the best bid at $1,568.

avatar Dusty

Just to follow up, I’m another happy State Farm customer. They paid out a big claim on my motorcycle only months after I started the policy. No questions, hassles or delays. As long as the rates stay competitive, I’ll stick with them.

avatar Personal Finance Blog

I guess not many people use Safeco in the east. Maybe you can try Insweb to let people compete for your business?

avatar Jonathan

I’m also a (mostly) happy State Farm customer. I can say that they pay out claims pretty well. Make sure you like your agent, they’ve got one every couple blocks it seems.

Glad to see you’re shaving off some serious bucks on that insurance though!

avatar Luke Landes

My uncle was in the military, but unfortunately that doesn’t qualify me for USAA.

According to their website, you have to be actively or formerly in the military, married to someone actively in the military, an adult child of a USAA member, or a spouse or former spouse of a USAA member.

avatar Darren R. Sussman

If you have any veterans in your family, I strongly recommend looking into USAA. That’s who Alison and I use for our auto and homeowner’s and they’re very cheap and incredibly responsive. Like I said, though, it’s only available to veterans and their families.

Still, even if you go with AAA, it’s a huge savings over what you were paying before, so stay positive! :)

avatar Luke Landes

I received another follow-up email from Geico. Apparently my credit report negatively affected their offer. This entitled me to a free credit report through TransUnion, the agency they used.

The credit report shows some old delinquencies I had in 2000 and 2001, some time before I was on the path to financial intelligence. Sigh.

I contacted AAA and provided them the information they need to process my new insurance through Liberty Mutual.

avatar stacey

i’ve had good experiences with liberty mutual. they were my carrier for at least 2 of my accidents. currently i have allstate though. they under bid my liberty mutual and geico accts. also they give pretty decent multi-policy discounts. but you sound pretty settled… :)

avatar Luke Landes

I did check out All State and their bid was a few hundred higher than Liberty Mutual.

avatar Miss Clairol

Bad NJ driver here. I just saved more than $2,000 by switching to Geico (ha ha – more fun than new clothes!). For the past year I was in the state pool because of an accident and a speeding violation. Those two citations are still on my record, but at least actual insurance companies are willing to take me on. Allstate and Liberty Mutual quoted higher than were I to stay in the state pool. I looked into NJ Cure, and it was about $1,000 cheaper … I didn’t even think about calling Geico because I didn’t think they’d take on imperfect drivers.

I asked my boyfriend – probably the only driver worse than me – what he has … he gets USAA because his dad was in the Army (and still works for them). So that was no help.

I’m a bit uneasy, but I’m saving enough to buy a new fancy handbag. I’m still paying more than $2,000 a year with Geico though. I just tell myself my family is happy, and – if I don’t get in trouble – I should be too.

“Let’s get campy!”