December is peak car shopping season in Southern California. While you may be able to negotiate a great "end-of-the-year" price on a new ride, you may be losing out to when it comes to car insurance costs.
Financial blog NerdWallet told I-Team consumer investigator Randy that drivers can save up to $859 a year nationwide, according to the blog's report that surveyed a thousand drivers.
In California alone, drivers are paying nearly 34 percent more than they need for car insurance -- the equivalent of $469 a year, according to the survey.
"A lot of them -- 70 percent of them -- had their same carrier for over 4 years," said Jeffrey Chu of NerdWallet.
Leonie Calm has had the same insurance for nine years.
"I have had this for a long, long time," she said.
Yvette Guererro just obtained new insurance.
"I think people just get comfortable, and they don't want to go out of their way," she said.
Instead of getting comfortable, consumer experts say to get busy.
Ask for new insurance quotes from at least three different companies each and every year. Drivers can earn lower rates just by getting older and earning new degrees.
Drivers can also get cheaper coverage by telling their insurance companies they will park in their driveways instead of the garage. Pulling into a garage can cause dings and scratches -- outdoor parking may be less of a liability.
If drivers get a ticket and think they could fight it -- do it -- because points will push rates up. There are even apps like "Fixed" and "Off the Record" which charge a fee to fight your ticket. Users who don't win will get a refund.
If drivers like their current insurance company, they may not have to leave to get a better deal -- they could just present their insurer with competing bids. Chances are, they will offer to match it.
Use NerdWallet's Car Insurance Comparison Tool to compare quotes.