Tips to Finding a Good Auto Insurance Agent in San Diego California

Selecting a auto insurance company in San Diego, CA can be time consuming since there are a lot of options and picking a good California car insurance agent is more difficult than just randomly choosing from the yellow pages. Consumers need a professional agent, and also want to find the lowest rates in San Diego.

Big-name insurance companies like Allstate, Liberty Mutual and State Farm increase brand awareness with TV and radio ads and it is difficult to see past the geckos and flying pigs and effectively compare rates to find the best deal.

Quote online but work with a neighborhood agent

Professional agents can answer important questions and give you someone to call. The biggest benefit of comparing insurance prices online is the fact that you can find lower rates but still work with a licensed agent.

For easy comparison, once you complete this form (opens in new window), the coverage information is sent to agents in your area who will return price quotes for your coverage. There is no need to leave your house as quotes are delivered to the email address you provide. Now that’s easy! It’s the lowest rates without the usual hassles of price shopping.

Selecting a car insurance agent should depend on more than just the bottom line cost. These are valid questions to ask:

  • What will you get paid if your car is a total loss? How is that amount determined?
  • How long has their agency been open in San Diego?
  • Which insurance companies are they affiliated with?
  • If you have an accident, are you able to get your vehicle repaired at the shop of your choice?
  • Do they carry Errors and Omissions coverage?
  • How much will you save each year by using a higher deductible?
  • Does the agency provide any after hours assistance?

What types of insurance agencies are in San Diego?

When researching a reliable agent, there are two types of agencies from which to choose. Insurance agencies in San Diego are either independent (non-captive) or captive.

Captive Insurance Agents

This type of agents can only write with one company like State Farm, AAA and Liberty Mutual. They usually cannot give you multiple price quotes so keep that in mind. Captive agencies are very knowledgeable on their products and sales techniques which can be an advantage.

The following is a list of captive agents in San Diego who may provide you with rate quotes.

Allstate Insurance – 8555 Aero Dr # 209 – San Diego, CA 92123 – (858) 277-9511
Farmers Insurance Group – 814 Morena Blvd # 307 – San Diego, CA 92110 – (619) 294-4710
Liberty Mutual Insurance – 9444 Waples St # 150 – San Diego, CA 92121 – (858) 558-8311
State Farm Insurance – 5915 Mira Mesa Blvd – San Diego, CA 92121 – (858) 450-6000

Independent Agents

Independent agencies are not employed by any specific company but rather can write business with any number of different companies depending on which coverage is best. To transfer your coverage to a different company, an independent agent can move your coverage and you don’t have to find a new agent.

When searching for an agent, you should always get quotes from several independent insurance agents for the best price selection.

The following are independent agencies in San Diego willing to provide price quotes.

Conway Insurance – 10717 Camino Ruiz # 161 – San Diego, CA 92126 – (858) 566-0964
Pension and Insurance Agency – 2878 Camino Del Rio S – San Diego, CA 92108 – (619) 243-2222
Davey Insurance Svc – 6863 Casselberry Way – San Diego, CA 92119 – (619) 229-6260
Dean Moore General Agency – 3511 Camino Del Rio S # 303 – San Diego, CA 92108 – (619) 280-7117
Thompson Mc Queen Agency – 444 Camino Del Rio S # 219 – San Diego, CA 92108 – (619) 295-9935

To view a full list of insurance agents in San Diego, visit this link.

After getting acceptable answers to all your questions and an acceptable price quote, most likely you have located a car insurance agent that is a good match to service your policy.

Aren’t companies like Geico cheaper than local agents?

Car insurance agents are perfect for certain consumers, but California car insurance can also be bought from companies direct over the internet. Certain companies who employ agents also allow consumers to get a quote and buy online, so this should also be taken into consideration.

If you’re worried about choosing your own coverages when buying direct, don’t let it bother you. Online car insurance companies that allow you to purchase coverage provide phone numbers and online resources for getting questions answered.

Are online companies cheaper? A lot of shoppers won’t buy anywhere else, but it’s impossible to say because there are so many things that impact your final bill. Common logic is that a customer who purchases direcly from an online company saves money because there is no commission. But that assumption is generally incorrect because advertising and marketing take a lot of money so rates may not be all that different from traditional agents.

Keep this in mind

While you’re price shopping online, do not skimp on coverage in order to save money. There have been many situations where drivers have reduced liability limits or collision coverage to discover at claim time they didn’t purchase enough coverage. Your goal should be to find the BEST coverage at an affordable rate, not the least amount of coverage.

California insurance agencies

Cheap auto insurance is available both online and with local San Diego insurance agents, so you should compare both in order to have the best price selection to choose from. Some companies do not offer the ability to get a quote online and usually these small, regional companies provide coverage only through local independent agents.

Even more information is available at the California Department of Insurance website. Visitors are able to read enforcement actions against agents and companies, download brochures, and view a list of available companies.

Other useful links include this Car Insurance FAQ and this page of insurance agents in San Diego.