One of the most common ways to score cheaper insurance quotes is to "bundle" your insurance policies.

When you purchase more than one type of insurance from a single carrier, a bundling discount may be applied that reduces your premiums. While the most commonly bundled products are auto and homeowner policies, you can often bundle other types of property/casualty insurance too.

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When deciding whether to bundle, it pays to do some research. Bundling may save you money in some cases, but it may not in other cases.

Advantages of bundling insurance policies

The percentage discounts depend on the company. On average, insurance companies off a 10% bundling discount off your auto policy and 19% off your home policy

Allstate customers can save up to 30% when bundling their home and auto insurance. Adding another policy, such as motorcycle coverage, can push savings to 35%.

In addition to reducing your premium, many insurers offer savings on deductibles. For example, MetLife Auto & Home's GrandProtect program lets consumers pay only the highest deductible on their bundled policies if multiple assets are damaged. For instance, if a tornado damages your house, car and boat, you will pay one deductible (the highest one). The others are waived.

Convenience is another advantage to bundling. It reduces the amount of paperwork and simplifies policy management. You don't have to deal with multiple insurance companies and there is only one renewal date to remember. If you have a claim, you need to call only one company.

Nonetheless, comparison shop for both bundled and unbundled rates if you're looking for the best deal. Today you can compare quotes on auto insurance and home insurance quickly and easily online. 

Examining bundled insurance

Amy Bach, executive director of the United Policyholders consumer group, says you can often get better rates on auto insurance from companies that specialize in that product.

"It's more profitable for insurers to sell auto than it is to sell home insurance, so there's more competition for your auto business, and shopping around will generally get you a better deal than bundling," she says.

Bach also cautions that some companies are better at insuring cars than homes, so examine the protection level on the home insurance policy before bundling.

Before bundling, Sheppard recommends asking for all available discounts. When comparing prices from different companies, make sure the coverage and deductibles are equal.

And note this: "It is not always in your best interest to shop on price alone," says Bach. "Quality matters when it comes to insurance, just like everything else."