Alabama auto insurance premiums among most affected by poor credit

Published 3:00 am Thursday, November 3, 2016

Alabama auto insurance premiums skyrocket more due to poor credit ratings than most other states according to a new study commissioned by insuranceQuotes.

The study examined the effects of dropping a credit rating from excellent to poor using a hypothetical 45-year-old married female driver with a bachelor’s degree and no prior claims or lapses in coverage.

The average premium increase for this credit drop in Alabama was 190 percent, or almost triple what an Alabamian with an excellent credit sore would pay. That increase is the sixth-highest in the nation according to the study.

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When dropping from excellent credit to fair credit, Alabama showed the most dramatic premium increase in the country at 56 percent.

Laura Adams, senior insurance analyst at insuranceQuotes, discussed the results of the study in a release on Tuesday.

“What’s really concerning is that 42% of Americans aren’t aware that there’s a relationship between credit and insurance rates,” Adams said. “Over 95% of U.S. insurance companies use credit to set auto premiums in every state except California, Hawaii and Massachusetts, where the practice is not allowed.”

Adams said that the lack of knowledge about how insurance companies use credit scores to set premiums can result in people missing an opportunity to save money.

“Insurance companies set premiums based on the information in your credit history and typically use it only for an initial quote. So consumers who have improved their credit over time should request a new auto insurance rate in order to save money,” Adams said. “What helps boost your consumer credit—paying credit obligations on time and not maxing out credit accounts—also helps increase your CBIS and keeps your auto insurance rate down.”

InsuranceQuotes allows consumers to compare rates for auto, home, health, business and life insurance quotes online.