Rising premiums to blame for insurance cost jumps

Insurance isn’t getting any cheaper for Americans.

More than a third of Americans spent more on insurance in 2012, mainly due to increasing premiums, according to new research from Bankrate. Significantly fewer spent less on insurance this year.

Research reveals that 37 percent of Americans spent more overall on all kinds of insurance—including  health, life, homeowners, renters and auto—over the past year while only 7 percent spent less. About half (52 percent) said they spent about the same.

Of those who spent more, 62 percent said their spending went up because of rising premiums Other reasons included: the addition of coverage for a new home, vehicle, boat or RV (12 percent); changes in coverage due to family circumstances, such as marriage or addition to the family (9 percent); and a decision by the consumer to boost coverage on an existing policy (4 percent).

“We continue to view rising expenses and stagnant wages as a key financial hurdle for American households,” says Doug Whiteman, insurance analyst at Bankrate.com. “But consumers shouldn’t accept rising insurance premiums without a fight. Compare quotes from at least three other companies, investigate all possible discounts and don’t be afraid to ask your current insurer for a discount. You may be able to get a better deal.”

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