While shopping for auto insurance, an individual always aims for lower cost of insurance. In that case a good credit score may help to lower the cost. Credit score is a statistical method of evaluating an applicant’s credit worthiness. Companies are always trying to pool that part of the consumers which will provide the maximum profit with minimum loss. So they try to judge the rate of an insurance policy against the actual amount of claim. It has been found that almost all auto insurers use the credit information to decide whether to issue a policy. They even set the premium level on the basis of the credit score.
The companies generally do not look at the actual credit report. They just look out for the credit score. In fact they receive the credit score from any of the three major national credit depositories – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Credit scoring is a method to live skor determine the likelihood that credit users will pay their bills.
Credit scores are prepared by analyzing a borrower’s credit history. The factors considered while calculating a credit score are:
- The duration for which credit is used.
- The amount of credit used versus the amount of credit available.
- Record of whether payments are made in time.
- Employment history.
- Length of time at present residence.
- Negative credit information such as bankruptcies, charge-offs, collections, etc.
Now the insurance score is based on the FICO score. It is a credit score developed by Fair Isaac & Co.
Raise the FICO score: One can raise the FICO score over a period of time through the following ways:
- Pay your bills in time. Late payments can have a serious impact on your score.
- Reduce your credit-card balances. If you are “maxed” out on your credit cards, this will affect your credit score negatively.
- If you have limited credit, obtain additional credit. Not having sufficient credit can negatively impact your score.
- Do not apply for credit frequently. Having a large number of inquiries on your credit report can worsen your score.
Insurance score: There is another concept called insurance score which also plays an important role in determining the cost of insurance. An insurance score predicts whether a person is likely to file a claim in the future. This helps the insurance companies to determine the amount of premium to be charged. An insurance score is a numerical ranking based on a person’s credit history. It predicts the average claim behavior of a group of people with essentially the same credit history. Typically a good score is assumed to be above 760 and a bad score is below 600. People with low insurance scores tend to file more claims. But there are exceptions. For example, It has been found that teenagers as a group have more accidents than people of other age groups. But there are some teenager drivers who never had an accident.
Insurance scores do not include data on race or income because companies do not collect this information for insurance. Insurance score is not much concerned with the tendency to take a new credit. Instead it focuses on the issue of stability.
Studies have shown that how a person constructs his financial planning is a good predictor of insurance claims. It is accepted that people who manage their finances well can also manage other important aspects of their lives, such as driving a car. The factors such as geographical area, previous crashes, age and gender, insurance scores collectively enable auto insurers to price more accurately, so that people less likely to file a claim pay less for their insurance than people who are more likely to file a claim. Insurance scores are useful to the insurer to differentiate between lower and higher insurance risks people and thus to charge a respective premium.
There exists a kind of debate regarding the use of insurance credit scoring. Insurance companies claim that the use of these scores helps them to issue new and renewal insurance policies based on objective, accurate, and consistent information, better anticipate claims and better control risk. This enables them to offer more insurance coverage to more consumers at a fairer cost.