How Complacency costs money

Ever since stepping onto the other side of debt three years ago, I’ve been on a mission to save money on my “fixed” expenses. I first started with cutting cable and going with the awesome (and inexpensive) Mohu Leaf to get my TV fix when I needed it. My wife and I also kicked Verizon to the curb and laughed at their high prices and stupid contracts. I’ve tried a number of services like Walmart Family Mobile, Republic Wireless, Cricket, and many more. It’s nice being able to switch with no worries about breaking a contract or paying termination fees. Those are stupid.

To say that I’m on a mission to cut most of our costs might be an understatement. Yes, I can go a little overboard with trying to save, but it’s all for a good cause. I always want to be on the side of keeping more of the money I earn than using it to purchase stuff I really don’t need. While I’m on this mission, I realized that I’ve been focusing on other things in my life. My blog management business is booming (good thing) and there are just a lot going on. When this happens, I let some things slide. We can’t tackle everything at all times, right?  While I have cut many costs, I realized I was being a little too complacent with our car insurance costs and that was my fault. I didn’t focus on it because it wasn’t right in front of my face. That’s going to change.

How Being Complacent Was Costing Me Money

When my wife and I bought our house last year, we compared home insurance rates. I had been with our previous provider for 14 years. We had our car and home insured with them. They had always been good and immediate when we needed them. The problem was their rates were no longer competitive. They also didn’t seem to care when I gave them a chance to keep my business. I guess 14 years as a loyal, paying customer is not enough motivation. Oh well!

In a short phone call, I was able to save money and move over our car and home insurance. It didn’t take me much and was all done before we closed on the house. I was happy since we were paying less money and got the same coverage. I considered it a big win and that made me complacent. My advice has always been to shop around for better pricing.

We are probably not a normal family when it comes to auto insurance. We both have a car, but I have two. Yes, I know. I bought a used Jeep Wrangler almost two years ago and I keep that in my garage to drive around when I please. It’s my fun/play vehicle. See what you can do when you don’t have debt on your back? This has been my third used Jeep since 2009. Don’t ask about the others!

I did finance the purchase to try out a little experiment. Yes, I added debt to my name to try something out, but before you jump on me or go click the X in the browser, understand one thing. I had the full amount of cash to pay for the vehicle out right. I was testing to see if I could advance my wealth by using low-interest debt to my advantage. It did work for those interested.

Either way, we have full auto insurance coverage on our two newer vehicles. We have that because we feel the benefits outweigh the costs, especially when something happens. If you want to learn more about full auto insurance coverage, check out this site. It’s full of information and helpful when you need to think about how much coverage you really need.

The Jeep should have been a different story, but when I set up the insurance, I told the agent to just put the same coverages on everything. I was so happy to have been able to get a lower rate on my auto insurance as a whole, I didn’t think about individual coverage.  Oops!

Now, a year later, I realized that was a mistake. I didn’t need both comprehensive and collision on a vehicle that is from 1997. The amount the insurance company would reimburse would be small if something happened to the vehicle. The agents told me they might even just scrape it because it’s not worth much according to their calculations. I disagree because it has a lot of aftermarket work done, but insurance doesn’t really care much about that.

Fixing My Mistake

I’ve been complacent for the past year and just paying the higher premium for the Jeep. It’s been sitting in my garage and I only drive it here and there. So, it’s really becoming more expensive to just insure, but I’m not going to get rid of it. I figured it was time to give the insurance company a call and see what can be done. In about 10 minutes, I had the insurance adjusted, collision coverage dropped, and a simple comprehensive plan that only cost me $10 a year!! All in all, I was able to save about $30 a month by dropping coverage that was really unnecessary. Since most of our costs for insurance are only the newer vehicles, keeping the Jeep insured wasn’t a huge sum of money.

This is just a reminder to everyone who’s looking to save money. Always remember that complacency will typically cost you money in the long run. Something might not be high on your list, but doesn’t mean it won’t affect your bottom line. Car insurance was mine, but I fixed it in less time than it took me to write this post. Think about it…

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  1. Complacency really can cost you. I figured that out the hard way when something auto-shipped today, and I didn’t know in time to stop the payment! It’s always good to go back over your expenses and see where you can cut costs.

    Fun to note, my husband has a second vehicle as well. It’s a title in hand, Jeep CJ-7 with antique plates. It’s his hobby/recreational vehicle. Jeeps are fun! No judgement here!

  2. It’s easy to get complacent. Especially in your investments. Holding a stock too long, or staying in cash too long.

    That is why index investing is so good. just buy and forget.

  3. This shows that being complacent is not good sometimes. This is one great example, Gray. I hope those people who are complacent would think twice.