Ready to buy a new car? Here's how you can lower your insurance costs.

Car insurance rates have always been the hidden expense to owning a vehicle. Beyond the sticker price and whatever interest you pay with your car loan, your interest rates can potentially add hundreds of dollars to your monthly ownership bill.

If you're considering a new vehicle purchase in the coming months now is the perfect time to begin looking for ways to lower your insurance costs before buying your next vehicle. While each insurance providers will have its own rates and rules, you will generally find these tips and suggestions will work for most insurance companies. 

Safer Driver Monitoring

Many insurance providers now offer a safe driving monitoring service. This is where a small chip will be placed onto you your vehicle. This chip will monitor your driving habits, ranging from how fast you go, how hard you break, and so on. Basically it wants to monitor how you drive and then award you a lower rate if you meet all the requirements.

This will only work if you're willing to drive at or below the speed limit, break slowly, and turn smoothly. If you're an aggressive driver you will need to change your habits (which is a good thing anyway, as it will help keep you and everyone else around you safe).

Talk to your insurance provider to see if they offer this kind of service. You should also find out if you're able to use the monitor on your current vehicle and have the lowered rates applied to your new vehicle when it's purchased. 

Compound Insurance Plans

Chances are your car insurance is not the only form of insurance you have. You might have home insurance, renter's insurance, life insurance, umbrella insurance, or any other number of insurance policies. When you go through the same company you can usually combine rates and lower insurance costs for each one. 

Good Student Rates

Many insurance providers will offer discounted car insurance rates for students who maintain a specific minimum grade point average. If you're a student this is perfect for you. I you current are not yet receiving a good student rate you should talk with the insurance provider to not only find out if this is a kind of insurance they offer, but also what the required grade point is to earn the lowered interest rate.

This will give you extra incentive to hit the books and to study. After all, you might be able to save hundreds of dollars over the course of the year with the good student rates. 

Shop Around

Nobody says you have to keep your same insurance provider. In fact, now may be the perfect time to make the switch over to a different company. So contact your current provider to find out their rates for a new vehicle and then look at other providers to see what they can offer.

If your current insurance provider finds out you're looking at other companies they may be able to alter your rates and lower what they charge you. 

Ask What You Can Do

You're going to tell your insurance company that you're buying a new vehicle sooner or later anyway, so you might as well find out what exactly you can do to help make the costs lower. They can go over your current rates and tell you what you qualify for and what you might qualify for if you make certain changes. It's as good of a way as any to keep your current provider and lower your rates. They can even tell you which vehicles might be less expensive to insure if you're stuck between a few models.  

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