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By Sarah Reiser, Owner of Brightway , The Harmony Agency with locations in Fort Collins, Colorado and Seneca, South Carolina.
Dedicated Mortgage Referral Partner | Homeowners Insurance Specialist | Multi-Line Insurance Expert
We all love to hear we are safe drivers. With the advent of driver monitoring devices and telematics in our smart phones, it is now easy to track and score our driving habits. If your driving habits are considered safe enough by your insurance carrier, you could be rewarded with a big discount.
Today, carriers have access to a war chest of even more data and the computational power to calculate a very precise insurance score. This score and the corresponding coverage requested make premiums even harder to understand. Even with all this data, insurance companies are still looking for ways to make the premium calculation even more personal. This is where usage based data loggers come into play. These devices can be installed directly into you OBII port of your car or a simple application download on your phone.
Does My Carrier Offer an Insurance Monitoring Device or App?
Just about every carrier now offers some sort of UBI device. These devices are designed to track a few major data points that drive a large portion of premium rate. Most look at hard accelerations and braking events, distance traveled, time of day driven, speed, fast cornering, and cell phone usage while driving. Monitoring these events give the insurance carriers a better understanding of your driving habits and the corresponding risks.
We know what you’re thinking, “What if my driving habits could use some work? Thankfully, usage-based programs will not increase your premium, but instead can offer you some very nice discounts. You will always have your initial premium amount as a backup, so you really have nothing to lose. If your driving habits don’t qualify for a discount, your app will help you know what you need to improve.
Usage-based insurance programs are also great for teenage drivers. They can make your teen more conscious of their driving habits, which can help them become more cautious behind the wheel.
So, Are Car Insurance Monitoring Devices and Apps Worth It?
We think 100 percent yes! We’ve found that car monitoring systems and usage-based insurance programs are worth a try. This is because you’ve really got nothing to lose — your insurance premium will never go above what you originally set.
And besides saving on your policy, the greatest benefit is building safer driving habits. My husband always says, "What gets measured, gets improved." Our recommendation is give it a try.