7 ways to improve your finances during Financial Literacy Month

April is tax season, so a lot of people are thinking about their finances these days. But if you’re like most people, you’re probably thinking in the short term: What’s my refund going to be—or how much do I owe? And what is that going to do to my monthly budget?

It’s good to be thinking about those things. It’s also important to look at the bigger picture. Financial Literacy Month, which is also in April, gives you the perfect chance to do just that. Surveys have showed that an alarming number of Americans lack even basic financial knowledge; in an era when we collectively have trillions of dollars in consumer debt, and many people live paycheck to paycheck, that can be a recipe for disaster. But it doesn’t have to be that way! This Financial Literacy Month website, created by nonprofit credit-counseling firm Money Management International, features tools and resources to help you understand your finances better and build a bright financial future. In that spirit, we’ve come up with seven tips that can help you become more savvy with your money. Some are easy things you can do today. Others might take a little more work. But all are worth the effort!

1. Make your saving automatic. It’s important to have money set aside for emergencies—and to save for retirement. But once your paycheck hits your account, it can be a lot easier to just spend it all. The solution? Schedule automatic transfers to a separate account for your emergency fund, your retirement plan, or both. Start with something like 10%. You might even find that you don’t miss it.

2. Pay your credit cards off every month. If you can’t do this now, pay them down until you can. One popular way is the “snowball” method, which in a nutshell, works like this: Make only the minimum payment on all of your debts—except the smallest one. Put as much money as you can toward that. When the smallest debt is paid off, repeat the process and continue until everything is paid!

3. Check your tax withholding. People love getting big tax refunds, but that really means you’ve loaned the government your money over the course of the year—interest-free. For example, instead of a $2,500 refund in April or May, you could have more than $200 extra in your paycheck every single month. Wouldn’t that be nice?

4. Don’t throw away free money. Who would do that? Well, you—if your employer offers a match on your retirement savings and you don’t contribute enough to get the full amount. Say your company matches the first 3% of salary you contribute to a 401(k); you should save as much as you can, but at the very least, you’d want to save that 3%.

5. Pay less for services. Are you paying more than you should for cable, internet or your mobile service? Maybe not—but you won’t know unless you ask. Often, companies have discounts or special packages available, especially if you’re a loyal customer and you haven’t been on a promotional deal for a while.

6. Consider a credit card that rewards you. This can be a great way to earn points toward free travel or other rewards, just for buying the things you would buy anyway. Don’t spend more than you normally would just to get rewards, though. And remember, if you regularly carry a balance, the rewards probably won’t outweigh the interest you’re paying. (Go back to item #2 in our list.)

7. Track your spending for a while—and then review it. You probably spend money on a lot of little things without realizing how much it adds up. Maybe you get takeout for lunch a couple of times a week, or stop for coffee every day on your way to work. Try tracking everything you spend for a month or two. Then, take a look at your habits.

You’ll find areas where you can save, likely without even feeling like you’re making a sacrifice. Insurance is an important tool for your financial well-being, too. Even though it’s easy to think of insuring your car or home as protecting your “stuff,” insurance really protects your finances. After all, insurance can’t prevent your car from being hit by another driver—but it can pay for the repairs, so that money doesn’t come from your pocket.

Take a little time to think about your finances this month, and try one or more of the tips above. As with many things in life, when it comes to money, small steps can have a big impact!

Source: https://www.safeco.com/blog/financial-literacy


We spend a lot of time in our cars, with the average American driver covering over a 1,000 miles a month. That is a lot of driving! With all those miles traveled you may find yourself in the unwanted situation of a car accident at some point in your life.
Read the tips below to learn what you should do if you’re involved in a car accident:
• Stay calm
– Keeping a normal demeanor helps you stay in control of the situation.
• Make sure you and your passengers are OK
– Move as far off the roadway as possible, but stay at the scene of the accident. Warn oncoming traffic by activating your hazard warning lights and/or setting flares.
• Call the police
– Call 911 or the appropriate emergency number to report the accident.
• Contact your insurance company and report the claim
– The sooner your insurance company knows about the accident, the sooner they can start working to resolve your claim.
• Do not admit fault
– Do not discuss the car accident with anyone other than the police and your claims representative.
• Exchange vital information with the other driver involved in the car accident
– Write down the name, address, phone number and license numbers for all drivers and witnesses, particularly those who were not riding in a vehicle involved in the accident. Ask for the insurance companies and policy numbers for drivers involved in the car accident.

source: Progressive

When – and Why – You May Need Umbrella Insurance ⛱

Here are a few cases when an umbrella policy is essential:

• Passenger Injuries
Driving around with friends, it can be easy to get distracted and go a little too fast. If an accident occurs and passengers are seriously injured, medical expenses can add up quickly – potentially totaling more than what an auto policy would cover. Without an umbrella policy, any liability expenses beyond the auto policy limits may be the driver’s responsibility.

• Dog Bites the Neighbor
Responsible dog owners take the time to train and socialize their pets. However, even breeds that aren’t typically associated with aggressive behavior can suddenly act out, despite our best efforts. If a pet badly injures a neighbor, the cost can go into the millions between medical bills and future disability.

• Faulty Furnace
Being a landlord is tricky business. Even with the most responsible management, rental properties can be a minefield of possible claims. If a furnace starts malfunctioning, a tenant may sue for brain damage caused by carbon monoxide poisoning. While all landlords should maintain their property and make repairs as needed, having a safety net in case of a major liability claim is equally important.

source: SafecoInsurance


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It’s good practice to reevaluate your car insurance coverage once or twice a year, because many life changes can adjust your premium payments. The rate you pay for car insurance isn’t set in stone because it’s based on so many factors that can change over time.

Here are the best times to evaluate your car insurance and see if you’re getting the best deal for your needs:

• When you buy a new car
-You have a grace period of about seven to 30 days (depending on your insurance policy) to inform your insurance provider that you bought a new car, but you can also shop for policies before you buy. You must get a policy on your new car by the time your grace period ends, or you risk driving without insurance.

• When your family situation changes
-Changes to your family mean changes to who is on your insurance policy. If you get married, this can affect your insurance rates (generally being married lowers rates). Adding your spouse to your policy can increase or decrease your payments, depending on their driving record. Even if your spouse doesn’t own a car and rarely drives, it might be worth it to add them to your policy to lower your rates.

• When your premiums go up
-If your premiums increase and there have been no changes to your driving record, it’s worth checking to see if you’re getting the best coverage for your money. This might be time to compare your current insurance provider with others to see if you can find a competitive rate.

source: SafecoInsurance


☎ Call us now: 505-807-AUTO(2886)
📩 Email: admin@swfins.com

Vehicle theft prevention tips

Professional thieves can steal any car, but make them work for yours. To prevent thefts, the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) recommends “Layered Protection.” The more layers of protection on your vehicle, the more difficult it is to steal.

The number of layers your vehicle needs varies depending on your vehicle and geographic location. Your budget and personal preferences should determine which anti-theft device is best for you.

Layer #1 — Common Sense

An unlocked vehicle with a key in the ignition is an open invitation to any thief, regardless of which anti-theft device you use. The common sense approach to protection is the simplest and most cost-effective way to thwart would-be thieves.

You should always secure your vehicle, even if parking for brief periods by:

  • Removing your keys from the ignition
  • Locking your doors
  • Closing all your windows
  • Parking in a well-lit area

Layer #2 — Warning Device

The second layer of protection is a visible or audible device that alerts thieves that your vehicle is protected. Popular second layer devices include:

  • Audible alarms
  • Steering wheel locks
  • Steering column collars
  • Brake locks
  • Wheel locks
  • Theft deterrent decals
  • Identification markers in or on vehicle
  • Window etching
  • Laminated glass

Layer #3 — Immobilizing Device

The third layer of protection is a device that prevents thieves from bypassing your ignition and hot-wiring the vehicle.

Popular third layer devices include:

  • Smart keys
  • High security locks & keys
  • Fuse cut-offs
  • Kill switches
  • Starter, ignition and fuel disablement

Layer #4 — Tracking Device

The final layer of protection is a tracking device that emits a signal to a police or monitoring station when the vehicle is reported stolen. Tracking devices are very effective in helping authorities recover stolen vehicles.

Passive and Active Anti-Theft Systems

Passive and active anti-theft devices are the two options available when considering an anti-theft system. Passive devices automatically arm themselves when the vehicle is turned off, the ignition key removed, or a door is shut. No additional action is required. Active devices require some independent physical action before they are set, such as pushing a button, or placing a “lock” over a vehicle component part. This physical action must be repeated every time the anti-theft device is set or it will not function.

(Source: National Insurance Crime Bureau)

The Importance of Regular Car Maintenance

Your car is made up of a number of different parts, and like any well-oiled machine, every part needs to be in tip-top shape to run smoothly. If one part starts to fail, it could affect how the whole car runs. There are a number of things you should do to help keep your car maintained, but do you know why performing certain regular maintenance checks on your car is important? From monitoring fluid levels to testing brakes, understanding your car’s needs can help you identify potential issues.

Monitor Car Fluid Levels

Cars rely on a number of fluids to help keep them running properly. While you may turn to your mechanic during routine maintenance visits, it’s a good idea to perform your own checks in between car inspections. Here’s a roundup of some car fluids to keep an eye on in case they run low, or else they could result in your vehicle not functioning properly.

Oil. Car engines need oil to lubricate the metal in the engine. If you allow the engine to run out of oil completely, friction caused by metal rubbing against each other could produce unnecessary heat and could make the metal meld together.1 If there is still oil present but it appears to be dirty, consider changing it. Dirty oil is thick and erosive, and any contaminants could start to erode the metal in your car.

Transmission fluid. Much like engine oil, transmission fluid helps keep a key part lubricated and functioning properly: the transmission. If transmission fluid runs low, it could result in contaminants forming, and can shorten the transmission’s life.

Coolant. Made up of ethylene or propylene and water, coolant helps to absorb heat and pass it through the radiator. Coolant breaks down over time because of the hot environment it lives in. As a result, the lack of coolant’s rust inhibitors could cause rust to form, blocking any cooling paths and overheating your engine.

Brake fluid. While brake fluid doesn’t get dirty or evaporate, it can potentially absorb moisture from the atmosphere. Since water boils at a lower temperature than brake fluid, it can lead to air forming in your brake lines.

Steering fluid. The power steering fluid helps to make steering easier – if you don’t change it, it could make the steering wheel difficult to turn.

Check Your Tire Pressure and Alignment

If you ever expect to make it from Point A to Point B, you can’t over- or underestimate the amount of air your tires need. Tire pressure that is too high or too low could affect your car’s cornering, braking and stability.6 When you have high tire pressure, less of the tire touches the ground, affecting your car’s traction and stopping distance. Low tire pressure means more of the tire touches the road; the tires could wear out more quickly and the risk of your tires overheating could increase due to friction against the ground. Check your owner’s manual to determine the recommended tire pressure for your car.

It is also important to check your tire alignment to ensure your vehicle’s suspension is performing properly. Bad tire alignment can cause your car to veer toward one direction or even result in vibrations while driving. If you notice your car has uneven tread wear, your vehicle pulls to one side over another, your straightened steering wheel appears off center or you experience vibration through your steering wheel, you should take your car to a service technician.

Perform Routine Brake Checks

Depending on where your morning commute takes you, driving in areas that feature more stop lights and stop signs could mean you are stepping on the brakes more often than if you normally take the highway. Your brakes are a hydraulic system made up of a set of pads that squeeze together when prompted, and run on brake fluid.9 If the pads wear too thin, it makes it harder to slow or stop. Your car likely has a service light that would turn on when it’s time to check your brakes, but don’t just rely on that technology; if you see any leaking fluids, notice how thick or thin your pads have become or hear a grinding sound, it may be time to replace your brakes.Depending on where your morning commute takes you, driving in areas that feature more stop lights and stop signs could mean you are stepping on the brakes more often than if you normally take the highway. Your brakes are a hydraulic system made up of a set of pads that squeeze together when prompted, and run on brake fluid.9 If the pads wear too thin, it makes it harder to slow or stop. Your car likely has a service light that would turn on when it’s time to check your brakes, but don’t just rely on that technology; if you see any leaking fluids, notice how thick or thin your pads have become or hear a grinding sound, it may be time to replace your brakes.

As a car owner, it is your responsibility to regularly maintain your car like you would any other type of property you own. If you ignore your car, it could put your safety at risk.

1 http://auto.howstuffworks.com/car-driving-safety/safety-regulatory-devices/never-changed-oil.htm
2 http://www.meineke.com/blog/often-change-oil/
3 http://www.cartalk.com/content/service-your-car-14
4 http://www.cartalk.com/content/service-your-car-1
5 http://www.dmv.org/how-to-guides/brake-fluid.php
6 http://www.cartalk.com/content/service-your-car-13
7 http://www.cartalk.com/content/service-your-car-13
8 http://www.bridgestonetire.com/tread-and-trend/drivers-ed/tire-alignment
9 http://auto.howstuffworks.com/auto-parts/brakes/brake-tests/5-signs-you-need-your-brakes-checked1.htm
10 http://auto.howstuffworks.com/auto-parts/brakes/brake-tests/5-signs-you-need-your-brakes-checked1.htm

8 steps to preparing for a safe RV adventure

Nothing is more exciting than hitting the road for that epic RV adventure you have been planning for months. But dealing with RV maintenance issues or road side troubles during a trip is a real bummer, so make sure you check and double check your RV systems and route plans before leaving home.

In other words, your grandmother was right…an ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of cure. Here are our eight ounces of prevention, or things you should always do before a trip, to avoid the most common RV travel hiccups.

1. Give those tires a complete check up

Tire trouble is the number one cause of trouble for RV travels, and this is simply because most owners do not practice routine tire maintenance. Inspect your RV tires before every trip, looking for cracks or bubbles in the sidewalls. If the tires don’t look like they are wearing evenly, have them inspected by a professional.

Also use the information printed on the tire to determine age. Most experts would argue that your RV tires should be replaced every 3-5 years, regardless of how many miles you have traveled.

Lastly, check your tire pressure when the tires are cold on each and every traveling day. Over-inflated or under-inflated tires are the primary reasons for blowouts, and this can be easily avoided by taking this simple precaution before hitting the road.

2. Check all the basic systems in the RV and perform all routine maintenance

No one wants to head out for a beach camping trip only to find that the air conditioning is not working properly. Before taking a longer RV trip, you should check every RV system and perform all routine annual maintenance.

Walk the entire outside of your RV, including the roof, and look for any signs of cracking or stress. This is the perfect time to caulk seams and make sure your antennas and satellite dishes are firmly connected. Check the entire plumbing system, filling up your holding tanks to make sure there are no leaks and running all the faucets and showers. Turn on the propane and test your hot water. Clean the air conditioning filter and scrub those coils with a toothbrush to make sure you stay cool even in hot summer temperatures.

All of this should be done well in advance of an RV vacation, so that you have time to schedule any needed repairs.

3. Treat your tow vehicle to a tune up

We have a standing appointment with our mechanic in the spring season before we leave for any extended summer travel. In addition to the basic oil change and fluid top offs, he double-checks our mileage and any upcoming scheduled maintenance. He also carefully examines our belts, filters, and battery.

The bottom line is that we would rather replace the timing belt according to an expert’s advice than have it snap on the side of the road, hundreds of miles from our reliable mechanic. Developing a relationship with a qualified service professional has made our time on the road relatively trouble free, even though we drive thousands of miles from home each year.

4. Know your true rig height and weight

At some point on your journey, you are bound to come across a height or weight restriction. Be prepared in advance, and never, ever make a wild guess about whether you can fit under a bridge. You shouldn’t even rely on rig specs, since some might not take into account your air conditioning unit or antennae.

With help from a buddy, use a measuring tape to calculate the height from the ground to the tallest part of your RV. Then also measure the width of the unit, making sure to notice any protruding pieces on the stairs or awning. Write your measurements down and store them in your vehicle. We also keep them in a notes app on our smartphone.

5. Double check that you have insurance and registration documents, as well as the appropriate coverage

It’s not easy to admit, but we have discovered missing vehicle registration and insurance documents at inopportune times. Papers get lost…it happens. Just make sure to double-check everything at least one week before departing on your trip. That way, you have plenty of time to track down a new copy if necessary.

We also review our roadside assistance and personal effects coverage in order to make sure we are protected in the event of an emergency.

6. Create a basic tool kit to override any automated systems on your RV

Automated tongue jacks, stability jacks, and slide-outs are super convenient. However, anything that is motorized could stop working at any moment. You don’t want to be stuck hundreds of miles from home and not be able to pull your slide in for departure.

Make sure that you know what tools you need to override any of the automated systems on your RV. Practice in advance so you feel confident in manually operating all of the features.

7. Research routes in advance, check any restrictions, and download or print out maps

We are a bit spoiled these days by GPS and smartphones, so sometimes we head out on the road less prepared than we ought to be. When traveling with an RV, you really need to research routes in advance to find out about height, weight, and propane restrictions. There are some highways that restrict recreational vehicles altogether, and some bridges and tunnels do not allow propane tanks. Discovering this information in advance is crucial.

It is also important to download or print out directions in advance, since you can loose satellite or cell connectivity in many remote locations. Having a good old-fashioned atlas on hand is not a bad idea at all. Just make sure you remember how to use it…

8. Prepare your Sticks and Bricks abode for your absence

In all the hustle and bustle of preparing for an RV adventure, it can be easy to forget about your sticks and bricks home. Make arrangements so that your home does not look too empty and quiet while you are away on vacation. Pause newspaper delivery and hold your mail at the post office. Set some lights on timers, and arrange for a couple of neighbors or friends to stop by and check on the property.

You might also check out some of the new smart technology that allows you to control lights and temperature, or even respond to the doorbell, right from your phone no matter where you are in the country.

Big adventures can always bring some bumps in the road, but when you take the proper safety precautions, you increase the likelihood of a smooth, stress-free RV trip.

Happy trails!

source: https://www.progressive.com/lifelanes/adventure/8-steps-preparing-safe-rv-adventure/?fbclid=IwAR3RkhAFH4WiS-yDJzX0YGdt7-dIeo20OmURIz-8vW7BgJkVQZrLKnM3Nt4

Should I Buy a New or Used Car?

Before you decide whether to buy a new or used car, it’s important to consider the reasons you’re making the purchase.

If you’re simply looking for an economical mode of transportation, a used car may be an option. Price isn’t everyone’s top priority, however. Many buyers are willing to pay extra for a car that’s free of mechanical problems. Others like the idea of being a vehicle’s first owner.

Here’s a checklist of seven things to consider before you buy your next car.

1. Is Having the Latest Car Technology Important to You?

Car manufacturers have embraced new technology to improve the driving experience and improve passenger safety. The newer the car, the more high-tech features it’s likely to have. Are you looking for a Bluetooth stereo system that connects to your smartphone? How about a rear-view camera that makes it easier to back up? Do you want an automatic braking system that deploys when a collision is imminent? If so, you should think about buying a new car.

2. How Much Are You Willing to Spend on Car Insurance?

New cars are more costly to repair or replace than used cars. In general, the more you pay for a car, the more it costs to insure. If saving money on insurance is important to you, a used car may work out best. The Insurance Information Institute says agents can estimate how much your insurance will cost before you make your purchase.

3. Do You Want a Car That Enhances Your Image?

Many people view new cars as status symbols.2 Any car can take you from Point A to Point B, but a new car has more cachet. There’s nothing like the gleam of a factory-fresh paint job to turn heads. If impressing friends or business associates is a priority, a new car may be right for you.

4. Are You Prepared to Deal with Maintenance Issues?

While used cars cost less than new ones, they typically require more maintenance. The older the car, the more often you’re likely to visit the repair shop. According to Autotrader.com,3 you can minimize the chances of buying a used car with serious maintenance problems if you first have it inspected by a mechanic and obtain a vehicle history report from companies like Carfax or AutoCheck. No matter how well a car has been maintained, nothing lasts forever. If you dislike upkeep, you may dislike owning a used car.

5. Are You Aware of New Car Depreciation?

A new car begins depreciating in value the moment you drive it away from a dealership. New vehicles typically depreciate between 15 and 25 percent each year over the first five years of ownership.4 It’s not unusual for motorists to owe more on their new cars than they could recover if they resold them. If you’re not prepared to absorb this loss in valuation, you should consider buying a used vehicle.

6. Will a Teenager Be Driving the Car?

The modern safety technology that new cars offer seems made to order for inexperienced teenage drivers. The problem is that new cars are very expensive to insure for teens. That’s because inexperienced drivers are more likely than others to have collisions. If you’re buying a car for a teen, your challenge is to find a car that strikes a good balance between car safety and affordability. For guidance, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provides detailed safety ratings for vehicles manufactured since 2011.

7. How Much Time Are You Willing to Spend Shopping?

The process of buying a new car is fairly simple. You go to a dealership and pick the model you want. The car you choose should be in sound mechanical condition. According to Edmunds.com, new cars come with a limited warranty of at least three years and a power train warranty of at least five years. That means you won’t need to consult a mechanic before making your purchase. In contrast, finding a used car takes more time. You may visit numerous car lots before you find one that meets your standards. If you lack the time, a new car may work out best.

Now that you’ve got some ideas on how to save on your car insurance, you may want to check with your carrier to review your coverage. You can get a quote from Southwest Federal Insurance.

1 http://www.iii.org/press-release/buying-a-new-car-or-truck-consider-auto-insurance-costs-and-protect-your-loan-when-trading-up-091713
2 http://www.msn.com/en-us/autos/research/top-14-status-symbol-cars-at-bargain-prices/ss-AA6AJry
3 http://www.autotrader.com/car-shopping/4-questions-to-help-you-decide-on-a-new-or-used-car-167808
4 https://www.edmunds.com/car-buying/how-fast-does-my-new-car-lose-value-infographic.html
5 https://www.edmunds.com/car-buying/should-i-buy-a-new-car-or-a-used-luxury-car.html

ways to save on your home insurance

By Stephen Donohue and Atlantic Insurance & Benefit Company

This post is part of a series of insurance blogs on Safeco.com showcasing the expertise of local independent agents and aimed at helping you understand insurance coverage and other important issues

If you feel like you’re paying more for homeowners insurance than you used to, you might be right. Over the past 20 years, these rates have increased over 50% – and U.S. homeowners pay an average of $952 annually, according to ValuePenguin, which provides consumers with research and guidance on financial topics.

You want to make sure your home is protected, but you don’t want to pay more than you have to, either. Here are eight things you can do to make sure you get the best deal on homeowners insurance:

Shop around. Rates can vary dramatically from one company to another – and there are hundreds of different insurers that offer homeowners insurance. If you haven’t researched the market in the past 24 months, it makes sense to shop. Your local independent agent can help, and since they aren’t tied to one insurance company, they can offer you plenty of options.

Increase your deductible. Many policies are written with a $500 deductible, but depending on where you live, you could save 10% or more by increasing your deductible to $1,000. This one change can help significantly reduce or even eliminate your annual premium increase altogether. And some people opt for even higher deductibles, all the way up to $5,000 – but they need to be diligent about keeping funds set aside in case they need to file a claim.

Don’t file small claims. If a homeowners claim would cost less than $1,000, it probably doesn’t make sense to file it. Insurance companies track customer claims, and even a claim of a few hundred dollars could cause a client to miss out on “loss-free” discounts.

Don’t file small claims. If a homeowners claim would cost less than $1,000, it probably doesn’t make sense to file it. Insurance companies track customer claims, and even a claim of a few hundred dollars could cause a client to miss out on “loss-free” discounts.

Maintain good credit. In most states, insurers offer discounts to applicants with high credit scores, so keeping a solid credit history can lower your insurance costs. To protect your credit rating, pay your bills on time, keep outstanding balances low, and monitor your credit report regularly.

Review your policy carefully. You likely are eligible for a number of discounts and credits, so make sure you get them! Homeowners often receive discounts for having newer homes, multiple policies with the same company, good credit and a clean claims history. Even your proximity to a fire hydrant might save you money. And if your situation has changed, let your insurer know immediately as you could be eligible for even more discounts.

Look into group insurance discounts. Some organizations offer special insurance programs to employees, usually with discounts of 5% to 10% and features such as payment via payroll deduction. You also may qualify for discounts if you are a member of a union, auto club, alumni association, or professional group.

Improve your home security and safety. Deadbolts, burglar alarms, and other security devices are all ways to keep your home safe and potentially lower your insurance costs. For example, an alarm that connects to police, fire, or other monitoring stations can save you as much as 20% on your homeowners premium.

Keep in mind that different companies offer different discounts, and your options might vary depending on where you live. An local independent agent who knows your market can help you find the best coverage at the best price for your needs.

Now that you’ve got some ideas on how to save on your car insurance, you may want to check with your carrier to review your coverage. You can get a quote from Southwest Federal Insurance.

Driving Safety

Our driving safety tips will help you develop safer habits that can protect you, your passengers and your vehicle.

We give you the facts about safety equipment, and we keep you informed about the most important driving safety tips, including how to handle accidents and emergencies, how to keep your family safe when you’re on the road, and more.

Driving safety tips and resources include:

Cell phone safety

Though we don’t recommend it, if you must use your cell phone while you’re behind the wheel, follow these cell phone driving safety tips.

Safety equipment

Get the facts on seat belts, air bags and head restraints to make sure you’re properly protected every time you hit the road.

Car accident tips

These driving safety tips can help ease your stress if you’re involved in a car accident.

Emergency kit checklist

Make sure you have the right driving safety items in your car before you have a roadside emergency.

IIHS car safety ratings

Certain cars have higher safety ratings. Click the link above to see more on IIHS safety ratings.

Now that you’ve got some ideas on how to save on your car insurance, you may want to check with your carrier to review your coverage. You can get a quote from Southwest Federal Insurance.