By Laurie Montoya, President and Founder of BikerDown Foundation

New research shows Colorado has had the second-largest increase in car insurance premium rates in the last 10 years.

Colorado’s premiums jumped 53% during that time period with the average yearly premium currently at more than $1,900. Florida tops the list with an 88% increase and premiums hovering around $2,500

What is the reason for such jumps in Colorado vehicle premiums?

Accident claims are on the rise, making repairs more expensive, and there are labor shortages.  Supply chain issues stemming from the pandemic have affected the availability of glass and other materials.

Auto/Motorcycle Theft claims are up in Colorado.  The auto theft problem is only worsening, and it’s concentrated the most in two counties.  In 2022, there were 15,267 auto thefts in Denver alone. Adams County tallied 12,539. Adams and Denver counties represented 61% of the state’s auto theft.   Theives are professionals and very patient.  They go from house to house and parking lot to parking lot to find vulnerable vehicles to steal.  Here are some things you can do to lower the odds of stealing your vehicles.

  • Lock your car and take your keys every time.
  • Keep your vehicle clean of incentivizing goodies like shopping bags, electronics, and tools.
  • Take additional measures if your vehicle is over five years old, in an auto theft hot spot, or on the top ten most stolen list.
  • Park in a well-lit area.
  • Never leave valuables in your vehicle, especially if they are visible to passersby.
  • Add after-market barriers to theft.
  • Use surveillance cameras to protect your vehicle.

What can you do to lower your vehicle insurance rates?

Customers looking to save money should first get a real insurance agent and not call 800 insurance.  Insurance representatives on the phone are not knowledgeable about what you have and what you stand to lose in the event of an accident or theft.  An insurance agent will evaluate your assets, vehicles, home, and auto/bikes and give you a competitive rate.  They can also bundle home and auto coverages, giving you additional discounts. Many companies offer better rates for good credit and discounts if you allow them to monitor driving habits.

One type of insurance that some insurance agents will say you can remove to save money is uninsured/underinsured coverage. Don’t do it! (See the next section to learn what uninsured/underinsured insurance covers.)

Another option is to speak to an insurance broker. Brokers will shop around to various insurance companies and can do research on your behalf for the best rates and best coverage. There could be times where using different insurance companies can save you money and it doesn’t cost you a cent more to use this service.

What policies should you always keep on your vehicle insurance?

Underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage – At a time when rates are rising, this writer is asking you to add this coverage to your vehicle insurance.  The reason is simple: With rising insurance rates, 60% of all drivers out on Colorado roads are driving with limited 25k liability-only coverage or no insurance at all.  When or if you are injured in an accident, hospital visits are the next step after the police arrive.  Emergency room visits and possible admittance into the hospital for surgeries/recovery can be in excess of 50k, 100k, or more, depending on the severity of your injuries.  Most victims of a careless driver will want to rely on the driver’s insurance to cover their damages, but What will you do when you find out the driver only has 25k liability coverage or no coverage at all?

In an accident, the at-fault person’s insurance is supposed to compensate the other injured person. If the at-fault party’s policy has a limit below the cost of the damages, the injured party’s underinsured motorist coverage would cover the rest.

For example, assume you have medical and automobile damages totaling $200,000. The other driver has insurance to cover only $25,000. You can claim the balance against your insurance provider, up to the limit of your policy’s coverage. You can not request more than the actual costs you had as a direct result of the accident. 

Get an Insurance Review TODAY

Rider Justice Motorcycle LawyersInsurance agents and motorcycle attorneys, such as Scott O’Sullivan here in Denver, Colorado, are willing to do a FREE insurance review (vehicular and motorcycle) on your policies.  Scott is a personal injury lawyer in Denver who handles motorcycle and vehicular accidents and sues insurance companies on a regular basis.  There is no one better suited to look over what you really have for vehicular insurance than someone who regularly negotiates with insurance companies.

There is nothing more disheartening than to get into an accident you have full coverage and then find out that the myth of full coverage doesn’t really cover everything you need in the event of an accident.