What is your garaging address?

garaging address

Many factors play a role in the insurance premium you are quoted when looking for the best car insurance. Plus, all the information you have to provide for a single application can be overwhelming.

Even an experienced driver who has paid for auto insurance for years can find the process daunting. Providing your insurance representative with the wrong information during the application can affect your quote or can lead to legal issues down the road should you accept the quote and start a policy with incorrect information.

Asking questions like “Can I insure my car at a different address?” while applying for insurance with a provider can save you a lot of trouble down the line since your garaging address plays a major role in the insurance rate they give you.

Understanding what a garaging address means for insurance companies and how it can affect you as a consumer can help you find better car insurance rates and prevent you from unintentionally providing incorrect information on your policy.

What exactly is a garaging address?

The concept of a garaging address can actually be pretty simple depending on your lifestyle factors. Your garaging address is the location where your car is parked most of the time. 

If you have an apartment downtown near your job but have a permanent home in the country, you would put your garaging address where your car spends the majority of the time at. 

So if you work and sleep at your downtown apartment Monday to Friday and go to your permanent home in the country on the weekends, your garaging address would be at your apartment because your car is parked there more. 

For most people, their garage address is where they live, but like the example mentioned above, it is not so simple for everyone. Older individuals who are retired may travel a lot, so they may live in more places than one. Their garaging address may change whenever they relocate.

Why a Garaging Address Is Important

Some may figure that as long as they are paying their insurance on time, then what does it matter what address they give their insurance company? Well, your insurance rate is directly affected by your garaging address. 

Also, say you follow all the important steps to take after a car accident and your insurance provider sends a check for your claim in the mail to your garaging address. If they have the wrong address for where your car is parked most of the time, you may have to wait longer to receive funds to fix your car.

This type of situation can be extremely frustrating if you moved to another city or state. This is why you should always update your garaging address whenever it changes.

ZIP Codes Impact Insurance Rates

garage zip codes 

Your garaging address and the ZIP code connected to it are important because they determine your car insurance rate. Car insurance rates are based on where your car is located the most.

If your car is in an area that has high crime rates, your premium rate will be higher compared to if you live somewhere that is an urban or rural area with low crime rates. 

Even having a garaging address in a city that has a higher population can increase your rates because it increases the chances of having a car accident. 

It also increases the chances of your car being stolen or broken into because a higher populated area includes a wider range of different individuals with varied lifestyles. 

Some other factors that impact your insurance rates are your date of birth, occupation, marital status, education level, driving history, and insurance history. Out of all of these factors, the most significant ones to auto insurance underwriters are your driving history, your age, and your car’s location. 

Those are the most impactful factors because they directly affect the well-being of your vehicle. If you drive poorly, are young with little driving experience, or are regularly parking in a busy or crime-ridden area, insurance underwriters view you and your vehicle as a liability. 

The extra money you pay for parking your car where it is most of the time makes up for the financial risk you pose to your insurance provider. Parking in a safer or less populated area can save you money with your insurance rate. 

Another factor to consider with the higher premium rate for certain locations is the fact that red-light cameras are located in busier cities more often than rural and less populated areas. You are more likely to be caught doing something illegal while driving, whether or not intentional, in a crowded city than in a less busy area. 

Too many traffic tickets display you as a liability and more likely to get into an accident because you break the laws of the road.

What is garaging misrepresentation?

Garaging misrepresentation happens when you give the wrong garaging address on your car insurance policy. People partake in garaging misrepresentation unintentionally or intentionally, but no matter the reason, insurance providers take the misrepresentation seriously. 

Unless you can prove the misrepresentation was a mistake, your provider could cancel your coverage, you could end up paying significant penalty fees, or you could face legal consequences.

Auto insurance companies in the United States lose around $3 billion every year because of garaging misrepresentation. So after you have started a policy, underwriters are usually required to double-check your address through various sources from time to time. 

Misrepresenting your location can lower your premium by around 35 percent, which makes doing it understandably appealing. However, the consequences down the road can outweigh the immediate benefits.

How to Avoid Garaging Misrepresentation

The best way to avoid garage misrepresentation is by merely being honest about where you park your car most of the time and always updating your address whenever you relocate.

If you drive a fuel-efficient, smart car, there are even ways that you can connect your car’s location to your insurance provider’s web system or your account with them. This is a great way to avoid unintentionally being dishonest about your garaging address and can be used in case of an emergency where you cannot tell emergency personnel your location. 

Your insurance representative can give you more information on how to connect your car’s location to them or let you know if this is an option with the company. At the very least, they can give you tips on how to best keep them updated with your garaging address. 

Imani Francies
Imani Francies writes and researches for the car insurance comparison site, CarInsurance101.com. She earned a bachelor of arts in film and media and specializes in various forms of media marketing.