How quickly do changes I make to my policy go into effect?

There are a variety of "changes I make to my policy" questions out there, all with different answers. The changes you make to your policy go into effect immediately, so you could get cheaper rates right away depending on what changes you decide to make. If you're the policy owner, you're only one who can change your policy so you should regularly review it. You can compare new auto insurance quotes with the cost of changes to your policy to get the best price.

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Chris Tepedino is a feature writer that has written extensively about auto insurance for numerous websites. He has a college degree in communication from the University of Tennessee and has experience reporting, researching investigative pieces, and crafting detailed, data-driven features. His works have been featured on CB Blog Nation, Flow Words, Healing Law, WIBW Kansas, and Cinncinati.com. ...

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Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health in...

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Reviewed by Rachael Brennan
Licensed Insurance Agent Rachael Brennan

UPDATED: Feb 3, 2022

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Can't-Miss Facts

  • The changes you make to your auto policy go into effect immediately
  • You can switch to a new insurance company in the middle of your policy period
  • You can adjust free quotes online to see how changes to your policy will affect your rates

When I buy auto insurance, can changes I make to my policy get processed right away?

That’s a question that a lot of drivers ask themselves, and the answer is, yes, all changes you make to your policy go into effect right away. You can adjust your automobile insurance policy as you see fit, and most insurance companies these days allow you to make changes to your policy at any time of day through the use of a mobile app or by calling the company’s 24-hour customer service phone number.

The next question that is most likely on your mind is: Will my insurance company offer lower auto insurance rates after changes I make to my policy are processed?

While you could get cheaper rates, you could also face an increase in your rates depending upon what kind of changes were made to your policy. Keep reading to learn who can make changes to your policy, when you can make changes to your insurance policy, and how to get lower rates on your insurance.

Enter your ZIP code to get free insurance quotes if you’ve caught yourself wondering, can changes I make to my policy make my insurance more affordable?

Are changes to an insurance policy effective right away?

As soon as any changes are made to a policy, they go into effect right away, but who has the authority to make changes to an insurance contract?

You, the owner of the policy, must give your direct consent for any changes to be made to your insurance policy. For example, if you were to call your insurance representative and ask what your rate would be if you raise your deductibles, your insurance representative would be able to change the deductibles and tell you what the new rate is without finalizing the change.

This way, you can process new information without fear of experiencing buyer’s remorse and make the best insurance decision for you. Once you know what will happen to your rates if you raise your deductibles, you can approve it or say that you’ve changed your mind and keep your policy exactly as it is.

Of course, once you say that you would like your deductibles or coverage options to be adjusted, the insurance representative will do as you have requested, and all the changes you asked for will go into immediate effect.

Now, changing a car insurance policy after an accident is not so simple. If you happened to cause an accident where you collided into someone’s brand new Rolls Royce, you can’t hop on the phone right away and hike up your coverage limits. Your insurance company will not look up such actions kindly, and you could face some serious repercussions for trying to pull a fast one on your insurance company.

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Can drivers switch to a new insurance company at any time?

Are there any rules that forbid drivers from changing auto insurance mid-policy? No, there are not. At any point in your policy, you can choose to switch to a new company.

Now, if you’ve spent some time searching “how to change my insurance plan” on the internet, you’ll be pleased to learn that switching insurance companies is very simple. All you’ll need to do is shop online, find the best policy for your needs, and make sure that the effective date is no later than the cancellation date of your current policy so you don’t have any lapse in coverage.

If you want to find a new insurance company but aren’t sure where to start, take a look at the average rates offered to different age groups by the biggest names in the insurance industry today. You can use this chart as a reference to determine which insurance company is the best fit for you:

Insurance ProviderSingle 17-year-old femaleSingle 17-year-old maleSingle 25-year-old femaleSingle 25-year-old maleMarried 35-year-old femaleMarried 35-year-old maleMarried 60-year-old femaleMarried 60-year-old male
Allstate$9,702.39$11,687.90$4,498.53$4,674.05$3,644.62$3,668.74$3,595.93$3,595.93
American Family$8,606.74$11,338.72$4,508.70$5,172.72$3,076.88$3,440.54$2,918.23$3,357.40
GEICO$5,977.56$6,157.76$2,937.45$2,902.58$2,717.10$2,944.34$2,638.90$3,023.87
Nationwide$6,664.22$8,542.40$2,762.74$2,985.74$2,350.64$2,387.13$2,080.17$2,198.96
Progressive$10,399.12$11,605.52$2,927.41$2,965.04$2,473.67$2,345.40$2,202.78$2,243.60
State Farm$5,378.84$6,859.94$2,421.28$2,488.98$2,223.31$2,223.31$1,985.80$1,985.80
USAA$4,775.09$5,170.04$2,235.59$2,376.51$1,683.17$1,685.90$1,619.86$1,600.72
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So, can you switch insurance at any time? Yes, you can, but if you catch yourself thinking, “Do I need to find a different auto insurance company for changes I make to my policy to be cost-effective?” you may want to pause for a moment before you do anything drastic. You must understand that you may be able to make adjustments to your current policy that could save you money.

How can changes to a policy lower insurance rates?

How can I get affordable auto insurance when changes I make to my policy go through?

The answer is simple. You can all the discounts you qualify for to your policy, and by making that change, you could earn yourself some immediate savings. Many insurance companies offer a wide range of discounts that benefit new and more experienced drivers.

Take a took at this extensive breakdown of different types of discounts offered by major insurance companies and see how you could save on your insurance coverage:

Auto Insurance Discounts Available by Company and Discount Amount

Discounts21st Century Discount AmountAAA Discount AmountAllstate Discount AmountAmerican Family Discount AmountAmeriprise Discount AmountAmica Discount AmountCountry Financial Discount AmountEsurance Discount AmountFarmers Discount AmountGeico Discount AmountLiberty Mutual Discount AmountMetLife Discount AmountNationwide Discount AmountProgressive Discount AmountSafe Auto Discount AmountSafeco Discount AmountState Farm Discount AmountThe General Discount AmountThe Hanover Discount AmountThe Hartford Discount AmountTravelers Discount AmountUSAA Discount Amount
Adaptive Cruise Control and/or Headlights----------5%--------3%--
Anti-lock Brakes--10%-3%5%-5%-5%5%5%5%-5%-5%8%5%3%--
Anti-Theft--10%-3%25%10%25%-25%20% off of comprehensive portion of policy.10% -- this discount factors in features such as VIN etching and vehicle recovery;
one anti-theft discount applies.
25%; combined with vehicle recovery discount.---15% discount off of comprehensive coverage; higher discount with "engine cut-off."8%; one total anti-theft discount applies; if vehicle recovery, a higher discount applies.5%3%--
Claim Free--35%----25%-26% for going five years without an accident.Awarded "accident free" on account for lower rating.20% if claim/violation free:
"Superior Driver"
3+ yrs=12%
"MetRewards"
5+ yrs 20%
AND
save $50 each claim-free year up to $250 (off deductible).
10%-10% if you go six months without filing a claim;
one safe driver/claim free discount applies.
20% "Safeco Safety Rewards" if you have no at-fault accidents in the last 36 months,
no more than 1 point on your license, and
no DUI in the last ten years; one safe driver/claim free discount applies.
15%; must have State Farm for at least three consecutive years without an accident.-15%-23%; must be accident and violation free to get the "Safe Driver" discount listed below;
must be accident and violation free to qualify:
23% - 5 years
10% - 3 years;
one safe driver/claim free discount applies.
12%; "Premier Driver Discount"
4%-12%, depending on driving record;
12% is for being accident and violation free for five years; one safe driver/claim free discount applies.
Not available in HI.
Continuous Coverage-----3%-------No gaps or cancellations;
discount depends on how long you have been consistently insured.
10% for going six or more months with no more than a 30-day coverage gap.7% if you have been with Safeco or previous provider for one year or longer; five or more years gets you the highest discount.--10%; discount applies at each renewal.-15%-
Daytime Running Lights--2%------1%5%5%5%-5%---5%3%--
Defensive Driver5%-10%10%-5%5%10%--10%7%5%10%10%5%5%8%5%10%10%3%
Distant Student--35%---------10%--15%--5%3%7%-
Driver's Ed--10%--5%10%---10%10%-10%10%5%15%8%5%3%8%3%
Driving Device/App--20%40%---25%--30%15%40%20%-30%50%--10%30%5%
Early Signing--10%---10%10%---15%8%--8%----10%12%
Electronic Stability Control--2%--5%----5%-----------
Emergency Deployment---------25%------------
Engaged Couple------10%---------------
Family Legacy-----5%---------------10%
Family Plan------25%-----25%------5%--
Farm Vehicle--10%-------------------
Fast 5-------5%--------------
Federal Employee---------8%10%-----------
Forward Collision Warning-----8%----5%--------3%--
Full Payment--10%--4%-10%--$5---5%15%-8%15%20%7.5%-
Further Education-------15%--10%-15%---------
Garaging/Storing---------------------90%
Good Credit------------"Financial Stability"
gets you a lower rate. You must also have stable residence.
-------
Good Student--20%--10%25%10%-15%22.5%15%10%-10%15%25%8%5%3%8%3%
Green Vehicle--10%-----5%-10%--------3%10%-
Homeowner-----5%12%----2%5%-10%10%3%5%5%-5%-
Lane Departure Warning-------------Safety features get automatic discounts applied when VIN entered in system. --------
Low Mileage-----10%-15%-------20%30%-----
Loyalty-----5%------5%--7%---5%--
Married--------------5%-------
Membership/Group-7%--15%-----10%-7%------20%--
Military-------25%-15%4%15%--25%-------
Military Garaging---------------------15%
Multiple Drivers-------------------5%--
Multiple Policies--10%--15%25%--10%20%10%10%12%-15%17%15%10%20%13%-
Multiple Vehicles-----15%15%--25%10%-20%10%15%15%20%15%5%5%8%-
New Address----------5%-----------
New Customer/New Plan-----------10%--10%-------
New Graduate----------5%-----------
Newer Vehicle--30%---10%---------40%--3%10%12%
Newly Licensed----------5%-----------
Newlyweds----------5%-----------
Occasional Operator---------------------Discount based on operator's individual driving record.
Occupation------10%---10%-15%------10%--
On Time Payments--5%-----------------15%-
Online Shopper-------11%-----7%--------
Paperless Documents- -10%--2%------5%$50-`-------
Paperless/Auto Billing-5%--2%-----25%$30-$410%$28%2%$53%3%
Passive Restraint--30%30%3%30%-33%-40%-5%20%-5%2%40%8%5%3%--
Recent Retiree----------4%--------3%--
Renter-----2%-30%--------------
Roadside Assistance-------5%--------------
Safe Driver--45%--15%-40%15%-12%35%31%10%20%15%---23%12%
Seat Belt Use---------15%------------
Senior Driver--10%--------10%-----5%5%---
Stable Residence-------------------5%--
Students and Alumni-------15%--10%-7%---------
Switching Provider-------5%--10%10%--10%--5%5%---
Utility Vehicle--15%-------------------
Vehicle Recovery--10%-5%10%-25%-25%35%10%25%---5%8%-3%--
VIN Etching----------5%10%----------
Young Driver------10%--------------$75
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As you can tell, making a small change to your policy, like adding a discount, could earn you some pretty big rewards. What’s even more exciting is that when a discount is added to your policy, it goes into effect immediately so you will see the effect of your efforts right away.

Making Changes to an Insurance Policy: The Bottom Line

After learning all this new information, you may find yourself wondering if you should make changes to your policy, or compare rates online before you do so.

When you shop online, you can have all the information you need to make the best decision for your insurance needs right in front of you within minutes. You can adjust coverage levels, and your deductible amounts to find the insurance company that has the right policy for you.

And remember, any changes that you want to make to your current policy will become effective as soon you give the word.

While you consider how changes you make to your policy might make your insurance cheaper, consider what other companies have to offer. Enter your ZIP to get free quotes right away.

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Enter your ZIP code below to compare auto insurance rates.

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