GAP Insurance

Comprehensive and collision coverage can be confusing, especially if you just bought a new car. If you decided to forego purchasing GAP insurance, you might want to reconsider, especially if you're depending on your insurance to cover the cost of the car if it's totaled. You could be in for a nasty surprise.

If your car does get totaled, GAP insurance covers what your insurance company doesn't. Generally speaking, the insurance company will cover the cash value of the car. If you just purchased it, there will be some cost left for you to pay. More often than not, this can reach into the thousands. GAP coverage, therefore, covers the gap between your insurance and what you owe on the car.

If you don't have GAP insurance, check with your insurance company to see if they provide it. Most insurers offer GAP protection, or at least its cousin, loan/lease coverage. GAP coverage usually doesn't cost much, a few bucks a month, but it can save your bank account in the end.

You can also purchase GAP protection at the dealership for a larger upfront payment. Keep in mind that while it may cost more, it's a one-time payment and won't haunt you for years to come.