Do Anti-Theft Devices Lower Auto Insurance Rates?

Last Updated on March 7, 2020

If you’re looking for small, easy ways to lower your auto insurance rates, you may want to consider getting an anti-theft device for your car. Some insurance companies will lower your premiums when you install an anti-theft device because you will be less likely to file claims of theft or vandalism. It’s a worthwhile investment for many reasons – not only will you save a little bit of money on your monthly insurance premiums, but you will also be keeping your vehicle safe. This is particularly important when living in one of New York’s many dense, urban areas.

Why Do Anti-Theft Devices Lower My Insurance Rate?

When insurers are determining the appropriate rate for your car, they think about their financial risks first. If you are more likely to file a car insurance claim, they are more likely to have to pay for damages, which is a financial cost to them. To offset this risk, they charge people who they consider to be more likely to file a claim higher monthly payments. Since anti-theft devices lower your chances of having your car stolen or broken into, insurance companies can charge you lower premiums, since your risk of having to file a claim is much lower.

What Sort of Discounts Can I Get?

anti-theft device discountIf you have comprehensive car insurance, you’ll be able to file a claim if your car gets stolen. Car insurance companies want to reduce their chances of having to pay out a theft claim. They’ll reward customers who install anti-theft devices and take other safety precautions with discounts. Discounts vary between companies, and can also depend on what vehicle and safety devices you have. Your discounts may also depend on where you park your car – your car is going to be a lot safer in a garage in the suburbs than parked on the street in New York City, and insurance companies will adjust premiums accordingly to reflect this. When getting a quote for car insurance, be sure to bring up that you are using an anti-theft device to make sure this is reflected in the overall price.

What Anti-Theft Devices Can Give You a Discount?

Car Alarms

Car alarms are one of the original anti-theft devices. They’re designed to scare away thieves, although they aren’t always effective. Some vehicles have them already installed upon purchase, although you can buy them as well. Since they’re relatively simple, not all insurance companies offer discounts for them.

VIN Etching

This is a simple anti-theft trick that can make it much easier to keep track of your car. By etching your Vehicle Identification Number onto your windows, you are essentially making it impossible for a thief to sell your vehicle. This also makes it much easier for the police to track down your car if it does get stolen. It’s easy and affordable to do, and although it won’t always deter thieves from taking your car, your chances of getting the car back are much higher.

Automatic Disabling Devices

Many newer cars come with these devices installed, and they are incredibly effective. If you have one in your car, you are very likely to receive a discount on your insurance. These automatic disabling devices require a smart key to be present in or near the car to unlock it. If the key isn’t present, the vehicle’s driving mechanisms will completely shut off. These are incredibly convenient because the owner of the car doesn’t have to do anything manually to prevent the theft.

Remote Disabling Devices

These devices allow you to lock the brakes, acceleration, or other driving mechanisms on your car remotely if you believe it has been stolen. These devices are costly and are typically not included in your car – you will have to purchase it separately. If your car doesn’t come with an automatic disabling device and you are particularly concerned about theft, you may want to buy one of these for your peace of mind. You’re also likely to get a significant insurance discount for having one. These advanced anti-theft devices give you more control over your car and peace of mind as well.

GPS Tracking Systems

Companies like OnStar have popularized vehicle tracking systems as an anti-theft device. With OnStar, you can easily monitor your car’s location through an app, so you’ll know where it is at all times. These vehicle tracking systems are very accurate and can help police recover your car quickly if it is stolen. OnStar offers remote control services for your vehicle as well – if it’s stolen, they can shut it down remotely. Subscriptions to these services can be expensive, but they are a powerful anti-theft device.

How Much Money Can I Expect to Save?

There is no standard discount for having an anti-theft device in your car, but many insurance companies do offer it. Discounts can range anywhere from 5 to 30 percent, and this typically depends on the insurance company’s policies on the matter, as well as the specific anti-theft device in your car. When determining your premiums, your car insurance company will assess a variety of different factors, including the type of car you have, your driving history, where you live and park your vehicle, as well as accessories like anti-theft devices that could help keep your vehicle safe.

If your car already has an anti-theft device on it, you may want to look specifically for an insurance company that offers a discount for this. It’s worth comparing and getting quotes from several different insurers, as some may give you a more significant discount than others. If you are looking at buying an anti-theft device for your car, it may be worth your time to talk to an insurance agent before doing so. They may be able to let you know which anti-theft devices will get you the most significant discount. If you don’t already have an anti-theft device and want to get one to lower your insurance, it’s essential to consider the cost of the anti-theft device upfront versus the amount of money you will save over time. Ideally, you’ll want the eventual savings that you would get to outweigh the initial cost of the anti-theft device.

What Are the Benefits of Anti-Theft Devices?

Many different types of anti-theft devices are designed to deter thieves or vandals from trying to break into your car. The simplest anti-theft devices will sense when someone is trying to break into your vehicle and set off a piercing alarm. This will not only scare the would-be thief but will also catch the attention of people nearby, which will deter them even further. Some anti-theft devices are more advanced. They can disable critical functions if the car is stolen, making them difficult or impossible for the thief to use. These are often paired with GPS devices so that if your vehicle is stolen, you can easily track its location using your car’s registration information.

Within New York state, there are many urban areas where you are at a higher risk of falling victim to car theft or vandalism. While the percentage of criminals in the population is no higher in urban areas than anywhere else, the sheer volume of people means that there are just more likely to be criminals nearby. Add to that the fact that many people in dense areas need to park their cars on the street or in unsecured lots, and you have an environment where cars are vulnerable. Anti-theft devices can help protect your vehicle in this situation.

To prevent vehicle thefts and damage, try always to park your car in a populated, well-lit area. Vehicle crimes are more likely to happen in areas that are dark and quiet, as the perpetrators are less likely to get caught. If you have the option, you may also want to consider parking in a secured garage. Although this is slightly more expensive, it may keep your car safer in the long run. On top of this, you should avoid leaving valuables in your vehicle, mainly where they might be visible from the outside. This could make you a target for thieves.

Do I Need an Anti-Theft Device?

Even if you live in a relatively safe area, there’s always a risk that your car could be stolen. That risk is higher if you live in a dense area or an area with a high crime rate. Parking your car on the street or in unsecured lots also means your vehicle is more likely to get stolen. Anti-theft devices can prevent a huge financial loss and stress that comes along with having your car stolen. With so many different anti-theft devices to choose from, you can find one that fits your budget. Many car manufacturers are including anti-theft devices on their products as well, so you may already have one built-in. When shopping for a car, you may want to look for models that have these features included. Although they are a bit more of an investment, they will save you money on your car insurance payments and can prevent an extremely costly theft. 

Anti-theft devices have become increasingly accurate and effective over the last few decades. In fact, car thefts have gone down because of the advancements in anti-theft technology. If you don’t currently have an anti-theft device in your car, investing in one can give you peace of mind. If you already have an anti-theft device, make sure your insurance company offers discounts so you can save money on your monthly premiums. When looking for a new insurance provider, be sure to shop around and compare discounts to make sure you are getting the best value.

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