When you call your favourite insurance broker to get quotes to insure that new car, or to try to beat your current rate, the broker will ask you certain standard questions. These are based on the rating factors that car insurers in Ontario are allowed to use when determining your premium, so whoever you call, the questions should be very similar.
When answering the questions below, remember that if you give an approximate answer, you’ll get an approximate quote. Only once the insurance company has your exact information will you get the final price for your policy. To be sure, have the VINs of all your vehicles ready, and confirm details of your driving record before calling, texting, or going online for a quote.
Here are the questions your broker should ask. It may not be in this exact order, but they will need to get the following information:
Questions About You (The Driver)
- What is your name?
- What is your home address (include unit # if applicable)
- What is your phone number?
- What is your email address?
- What is your gender?
- What is your date of birth?
- Are you married or single?
- Are you retired? (May be eligible for retiree discount)
- Are you a student? (May be eligible for a good student discount)
Questions About Your Driving Record
- What class of license do you have? (G, G1, G2) On what dates did you get each level of licence?
- What is your driver’s license number?
- When did you first become licenced in Canada or the U.S.?
- When were you first insured in Canada or the U.S.?
- How long have you been with your current insurer?
- What is the name of your current insurance company?
- Has an insurer cancelled your policy in the last 6 years? What was the reason?
- List dates when you have had a gap in auto insurance coverage and why?
- Did you take a Ministry-accredited driver training course?
- Has your licence been suspended in the last 6 years?
- Do you have any traffic convictions (tickets) on your driving record (convicted in the last 3 years)?
- Do you have any traffic-related criminal code convictions (like drunk driving)?
- Do you have any accidents on your record in the past 10 years. Please list all claims whether your fault or not.
- Have you ever had a claim denied for fraud or misrepresentation?
Questions About Your Vehicle
- What is the year, make and model of the vehicle(s)? (Know your VIN to make sure this info is correct)
- Is the car leased, financed or owned outright? (This won’t affect the price, but will determine if you need collision and comprehensive coverage)
- Do you put snow tires on your vehicle during the winter months?
- When did you originally purchase or lease the vehicle?
- Was it new or used when you originally leased or purchased it?
Questions About Your Driving Habits
- Will you be using the vehicle for driving back and forth to work? If so, how far is it one way?
- Will you be using the vehicle for any business or commercial use? If so, what percentage of vehicle use is for business?
- Will you be driving for a ride sharing company such as UBER or LYFT? If so, which one?
Questions About Where Your Car is Parked
- What is the address where the vehicle(s) will be parked?
- Are there other licensed drivers in the house? (All the same questions as above)
- If the other drivers have their own vehicles and insurance, please provide details.
- Is the vehicle(s) parked in a private garage, in a driveway, or on the street? If it’s an apartment or condo, is the parking indoor?
Questions About Coverage and Discounts
- Do you want to buy a home or tenants insurance policy from the same insurer? (Bundle discount may apply)
- Do you want more than the minimum coverage for liability and/or accident benefits? (Check out the Ontario minimums.)
- Do you want collision and/or comprehensive coverage? (Protects your vehicle if it’s damaged in a crash, stolen, vandalized, or damaged by severe weather)
- What do you want your deductible to be?
- Would you like to install a device on your phone that monitors how you drive and gives you discounts for safe driving?
- Will you be paying monthly or annually? (some companies give discounts if you pay annually)
If you ask to bundle your auto policy with homeowners or other insurance, the broker will ask additional questions to determine the right coverage and get quotes for those coverages as well. That aside, if you answer the above questions accurately for each member of your household and each vehicle you want insured, you’re likely to get an accurate auto insurance quote. If you get something wrong, it may not seem like a big deal to you at the time, but it certainly can affect the final price you pay.
Why don’t you give us a call at 1.800.731.2228 today, let us know if we asked the right questions, and hey, if you have your own questions, you can ask those too!
Thanks to Morgan Roberts, Insurance Broker, and Scott Logan, sales manager at Mitchell & Whale Insurance, for her input to this post.