14 Jul 2020 How Can I Pay for my Insurance Policy?
We know nobody is ever excited to get their insurance bill.
Even though you can’t get around paying your insurance bill, fortunately, there are many options nowadays that can make paying easier.
Often, when getting an insurance policy, we’re so busy thinking about the shopping and buying process, that we don’t really think about what happens after we buy.
Even though paying for insurance may seem simple, it’s not always as straight-forward as you’d expect. Because many people don’t ask, they don’t know all the options available to them that make paying easier.
Fortunately, that’s what we’re here for. At Berry Insurance, we always try to educate our clients so they know all their options and have the freedom to choose what works best for them. We certainly see the value in convenience.
Below, we’ll get into ways you can split your payments, your payment options, and some payment rules and requirements for certain types of insurance.
Insurance payment plan options
Once you get a new personal or commercial insurance policy, you usually have options of how to split the payments, generally by either paying the lump sum up front, or dividing the payments over the course of the policy life.
Pay in full
I know many people can’t afford to pay for insurance in full (I certainly cannot), but if you can, it could be a great option for you.
Depending on the carrier and type of insurance, you can often get a discount if you pay for your policy in full. It also feels good to know you don’t owe anything until your policy renews (usually a year after the plan started).
Most people choose to pay in monthly installments, splitting the cost of the premium into 12 equal, monthly payments.
Depending on the type of insurance, some carriers offer 9, 10, or 11 month payment plans, with a period of no payments before renewal, if you prefer to pay in that way.
Note: some insurance companies require a 20% deposit for most types of new policies.
Ways to pay your insurance bill
Once you’ve figured out how you will be splitting your payments, you’ll also have several options of payment methods.
Some people just prefer the good old fashioned snail mail. If you wish, you can send a check to your insurance carrier each month after you get your bill. Simply mail a check to the address listed on your statement.
While this method is generally simple, it is not immediate as it needs to travel through the mail for a number of days before being processed. You also run the risk of the check being lost and not making it to the right person.
If you prefer the voice-to-voice conversation, you can always call your insurance carrier’s customer service center to pay your bill. Just call the company’s billing number listed on your statement, and read your payment information over the phone.
The convenience of this method depends on how your insurance company handles phone calls, and how busy they are.
Some companies may have an automated menu you can pay your bill through, others might connect you with a representative immediately to pay, while others might keep you waiting on hold before they get to you.
Also, many insurance companies charge a fee (usually $2.00 to $5.00) for paying over the phone. If you work with an insurance agency, it may be a better option to call your agent to pay and have them handle it instead.
Through online pay, you can login to your insurance provider’s website every month and pay your bill with a card or your checking account. If you haven’t already, you’ll need to create a username and password that you can use to access your account information and the online bill pay option each month.
Many carriers also have apps, which make it easier to pay on your mobile devices.
With these online payment portals, you generally have the option to save your payment information, so you can easily login and pay with just a few clicks each month.
For those who prefer convenience, you can easily pay online through Electronic funds transfer (EFT) or Automated Clearing House (ACH), without having to think about it each month.
With both electronic payment methods, you can schedule a day every month that the payment will automatically withdraw.
This works the same way as paying online, but you will select the option to have payments automatically withdrawn from your selected payment method each month.
This method also saves you money ($50 – $100) by eliminating billing fees.
Some policies may have restrictions:
Keep in mind, all of these payment methods may not apply to all types of policies.
For example, for workers compensation policies under $5,000, the policyholder must pay for the policy in full at the beginning of the term.
For other types of policies, a deposit greater than 20% might be required.
What comes next?
It always feels great when you pay off your insurance policy … and then it renews again.
Fortunately, if you work with us at Berry Insurance, we always make sure you are getting the coverage you need for the right price. (Sometimes this even means we can save you money on next year’s policy!)
Generally, you don’t need to do much homework when renewing. We always reach out before renewal to conduct a review and make sure everything is accurate. But there should be some things you should be considering during renewal. Read more to find out what you need to know for your personal insurance renewal and commercial insurance renewal.