Prove you have good driving habits, get a discount on your car insurance premium. That is the idea behind "pay as you drive" devices touted by many insurance companies, but do they deliver?
The devices are installed in your car and gather all kinds of data about the way you drive. It is a worthwhile sharing of information if it leads to substantial savings, but one Scottsdale man says he hasn't seen it.
"I've had State Farm for umpteen years in several states," Stan Borucki said.
That's why Borucki took his agent's advice and installed a driving device in his car. His driving habits would be monitored by a company called InDrive and the results sent to State Farm.
"Going over bumps, left turns, right turns, braking facilities, it monitors several parameters of your driving habits," Borucki said.
After driving with the device for six months, Borucki says InDrive informed him that he was eligible for a premium reduction of about $200 every six months. But Borucki says State Farm only offered him a reduction of $34.
"One of them says it's not their fault, they've sent the data to State Farm. State Farm says they don't much believe in the data," Borucki said.
And Borucki says he hasn't even seen the smaller reduction. His premium has stayed about the same, around $500 every six months. His 2000 Cadillac only has 41,000 miles on it and he says he only drives it around his Scottsdale neighborhood. Why can't he get a larger reduction?
"I don't care who's in error, all I want is the reduction," Borucki said.
Borucki says driving devices have value, but only if insurers respect the data they provide.
"What percentage of the people actually got a discount, and how much was the discount," Borucki asked?
State Farm told CBS 5 News that Borucki misunderstood the emails from InDrive. He was never eligible for a $200 premium reduction related to the device. That amount included several other discounts he was already receiving (i.e. for low miles driven in a year) that were not related to the device.
State Farm says the discount Borucki achieved for having the device was $16 every six months.
They also say, overall, a statewide rate increase has eaten away at some of the savings related to these devices.
Bottom line: State Farm and other insurers offer free trials on these devices, so you may want to consider installing them, but don't have high exceptions for savings.
Copyright 2014 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
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