Online Quotes Overview
Insurance-Canada.ca is pleased to point you to sites which offer online quotes, although we ourselves do not quote or sell insurance. These sources for online quotes are accessible inside each category of insurance on the site.
Before getting a specific quote we suggest you read the following:
Considerations of Quotes: Things to Think About
The cost of insurance is only one characteristic you should consider. Reports indicate that online buyers often do not choose the least expensive insurance, suggesting that shoppers do consider other factors as well.
Always provide the real facts – otherwise you may not be insured when you thought you were.
Regardless of the type of insurance, the estimate or quote of the insurance premium you receive may be lower or higher than the premium you will actually pay after your insurance application is processed, when, for example, additional factors are identified as a result of a medical exam in the case of life insurance. The insurance estimates which are least likely to change are those for less complex insurance, such as travel health, and from sites which allow you to purchase on-line. Caveats of Quotes will help you understand what you are and are not getting with the estimates. If you are new to insurance, start with “Insurance: what's it all about?”
We also recommend that you seek quality insurance advice and have all your questions answered before you buy.
Some online quote sources provide instant online estimates. Others offer you an online application form which they will process the next business day and provide you with a response in a day or two, often by e-mail. We list both and try to indicate clearly whether the quote will be immediate or not. Lastly, most any broker or agent will give you a quote, if not on the telephone, then across the desk in his or her office.
Caveats of Quotes: Things to Understand
Insurance in Canada is in most cases very competitive. It is also regulated to try to make sure that the company making a promise to you concerning some future event will be able to deliver on that promise – and that it is a realistic promise to begin with.
Some insurance products, including travel and term life, are quite standard across the country. Where you live has little impact on the price you will pay.
Home insurance also tends to be a consistent product across the country. The more general perils you are subject to – earthquakes in BC, hurricanes in the Atlantic provinces, forest fires in wooded areas, flooding in low-lying areas – will have some impact on the price you will pay. However, most of the premium will be based on the characteristics of your home and its more immediate surroundings.
Auto Insurance is arguably the most defined and regulated of insurance products. Many of the following points will, however, apply to some extent to most other insurance products.
- Each Canadian province regulates auto insurance intensively. There are different rules, such as the mandatory insurance, by province. Some like Ontario have unique approaches and coverages provided by insurance companies. Others like British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba require one to buy at least basic auto insurance from a government-owned insurer. Quebec is a combination with bodily injury insured by a government insurer, and non-person damage insured by insurance companies.
- In order to get a precise quote of what your auto insurance premium will be, you must almost always answer a large number of questions. Many firms offering "quotes" on the Internet thus trade off the time for many questions with accuracy - a few questions can give you an "estimate" of your insurance costs quickly, but you may end up with a different price when you have later answered all the required questions.
- A broker may, for example, represent six auto insurers – but your particular characteristics (vehicle you drive, for example a classic antique auto or high performance sports car) may not be insured by all six, so you may see fewer premium estimates or quotes.
- Different insurers offer different discounts and some of these such as a discount based on multiple policies (auto and homeowners for example) often cannot be determined and calculated in an Internet engine which calculates premiums, unless you are connected to the Web site of the company where your other policy has written and even then they may not have the ability to capture the fact.
- The computer application which calculates your premium estimate or quote varies from site to site, and the currency of the rates may also vary. Each may also ask some different questions. Thus you may end up with different premium estimates for the same company from different sites.
- Much of the information will be verified by most of the insurance companies. Most will verify your driving record with the provincial authorities and the industry shares prior claims information.
- Trying different sites, and looking for different sources of information can help you understand how to reduce your insurance premiums. These sources can also help you understand the questions you wish to ask an advisor before you buy, whether the advisor is a broker or agent, face to face or over the telpehone.
- Some sites will allow you to purchase insurance on-line. This will normally require them to gather enough information to give you an accurate price. Not everything (driving record) will necessarily be verified on-line and they have the right to change your premium should such checks show discrepancies.
- The lists we provide do not offer any recommendation of one site relative to another, although we plan to point you to sources of information which may influence your decision about an insurer, such as their financial strength, claims service quality etc.