OTC (other than collision), “Comp”, or most commonly, comprehensive auto insurance is the type of insurance that gives you coverage for any physical damage on your car that may not have been caused solely by an accident. Comprehensive insurance coverage can be a little confusing due to the sheer amount of things it covers so we’re going to break it down here to help you figure it out.
Comprehensive insurance coverage does not mean that you are covered for every single bit of damage that might happen to your car. It is not full coverage. It is comprehensive which means that it covers common occurrence incidents that are not as a result of a collision. Comprehensive coverage is designed to work with collision coverage and since most states require you to have collision it will be purchased in addition to your collision coverage. There are certain things that comprehensive insurance coverage covers, and certain things it does not.
Coverage included with comprehensive insurance:
Water, flooding, or hail damage
Vandalism (other than by family or employees)
Vehicle theft (other than by family or employees)
Missiles and falling objects (this is not the kind of missile the army might fire at you, but refers to any propelled object like a roman candle, bullet shot, and so on)
Animal damage (not if your dog has a bathroom break in the back seat – this covers you if you hit an animal and damage is caused)
What comprehensive insurance doesn’t cover:
Contents theft (personal belongings that may have been left in the car at the time it might have been stolen – stereos, purses, wallets, and so on)
Regular wear and tear on the vehicle
The cost of comprehensive insurance coverage:
the cost of your comprehensive insurance will be determined by the same factors that determine your basic coverage – age, gender, driving record, car value, location, and mileage. Never get only one insurance quote. You can use online tools to get several quotes and use them to get your preferred, if not more expensive choices, to come down in price. They all want your business in the end.
Once you’ve carefully read the details of the coverage you’re looking at to ensure you are getting the options you need and any extras that you want (you can get theft of personal belongings added to your policy, for instance) you need to determine the current market value of your vehicle. Never pay more for your insurance than your vehicle is worth! Lastly, remember that all car insurance comes with a deductible for each option and that the lower your deductible, the higher your premium will be. However, keep in mind that if you have a lower deductible it’ll be easier to get your car fixed or replaced in case of damage or theft.