What’s an insurance score and how does it impact your rates?
Cast your eye towards the (fictional) town of Elma, Texas, home to a misfit soccer team coached by a transplant teacher from southeast England and the local Deputy Sheriff, played by Steve Guttenberg. Yes, we are talking about the cinematic triumph The Big Green.
The team’s mascot is a goat, and the state of play is particularly weak, especially since the goalie is terrified of any offensive attack. But, because this is a Disney movie, The Big Green steadily improves, and to everyone’s astonishment, they make it to the championships. Unluckily, they lose their best player just before the big game, when The Big Green have to play The Knights, the biggest, baddest team in town. By halftime, the score is 2-0 for the Knights. At this rate, it seems unlikely that The Big Green will ever score. Or will they?
Much like sports, the insurance world is also governed by scores. And despite what your PE teacher told you, they do matter, because in the world of insurance, your insurance score directly impacts your rates.
An insurance score is the number the insurance industry has calculated to determine whether you’re someone prone to accidents (i.e., whether you’re going to cost them a boatload of money) or not. The riskier you seem, the higher your rates.
It can help to think of an insurance score like a credit score. Low credit affects the types of loans you get or whether you can open a new credit card. Although the industries are different, a low credit score can even influence your insurance score. Yep, you read that correctly: if you failed to pay off a few months of bills, your renters / homeowners / auto / you-name-it policy could suffer as a result.
If you file a claim with your provider, this too can alter your insurance score, which may in turn affect your rates. That’s why some people choose to pay out of pocket for certain expenses (usually more minor ones), like a smashed windshield or small leaks.
As the kids of The Big Green show us, it is possible to stage a comeback, and by believing in themselves (and getting their star player back), they end up beating The Knights in a penalty shootout. That said, though successful in film, you may want to consider other tactics when addressing your own struggling insurance score. Make sure to:
- Improve your credit score
- Pay all your bills on time
- Have a mixture of credit (loans, multiple credit cards, etc.)
- Dispute any inaccurate charges
And while you’re working to improve your insurance score, you’ll want to shop around for insurance regularly. To help you keep track of all your insurance policies — and who you’re paying what — you’ll also want to create your Marble account today. We’ve built the first digital wallet for insurance to help you stay organized and in control — and earn rewards while doing it!