Choosing the right car insurance policy can be both demanding and costly, but by following some simple steps, you could cut the cost of your cover and find new ways to make the most of your car insurance.
I will begin by stressing that you should never lie on your insurance application to any of the car insurance companies. This would cause your policy to be invalid and could leave you with a hefty bill if you are involved in an accident.
And think twice about the level of insurance you plan to take out. If you require car accident whiplash compensation you will need to make sure your policy covers this.
1. Choosing your car
All cars are assigned an insurance group from 1 to 50 which affects the cost of insuring them, with 50 being the most expensive group. These groups take a number of factors into consideration, including engine size, the value of the car , security etc.
Before you decide which car to buy, look into which insurance group it would fall into and get a quote. Your dream car may come with hidden costs, so consider all of your options.
2. Choosing your level of cover
The minimum level of cover that you are legally required to take out in order to drive on the roads is Third Party. This covers you for causing damage to another person’s vehicle in the event of an accident, while also protecting any passengers involved (including yours). However, your car and possessions are not protected, so it is not ideal if you have an expensive car or sound system.
Third Party was traditionally seen as the cheapest level of insurance on offer, but nowadays this is not always the case and you may be surprised to find that higher levels of cover can be very similar in price, and bizarrely in some cases actually cheaper, so get a few quotes before making a decision.
3. Storing your car
When filling out your online application form you will be asked where your car will be kept over night and while at work, if you declare you will be using it to commute.
If you have a driveway, garage or car park, ensure that you choose the option that applies to you as it is likely to be cheaper than stating that it will be kept on the street.
4. Choosing your Job title
Something else that you may be surprised to learn is that your job title will affect your insurance premium. This is because insurance companies categorise your risk based on your profession. For example, if more marketing executives make a claim than marketing managers, you may be better to choose the latter as it could reduce the cost of your policy.
While it is important to be honest will all aspects of your application, your job might actually fit into more than one of the categories provided. If this is the case, try out a few and see how much you could save.
5. Optional Extras
There are several additional features that are offered by insurers, from legal cover to breakdown cover. Spend some time looking into whether you require these and opt out if you don’t – it could significantly lower your premium.
You will also have to choose from several usages, such as social, domestic and pleasure and commuting. Be honest, but make sure you don’t select something you won’t use. If you use your vehicle for business purposes, always declare this or the policy may be void.
If you are under 25 it is likely that you will pay a higher rate than those aged over 25. Consider adding a second driver with a good track record, even if they don’t plan on using the car very often, as this can even out the average risk and in some cases lower the premium.
However, never do this the other way round by adding somebody else as the main driver on a younger driver’s policy. This is known as fronting and is fraud. If you have to make a claim in these circumstances, your insurance company could check this out, leaving you with a void policy.
6. Apply for a new quote from your existing insurance company
When you have been with an insurer for a year, your policy will usually come to an end if you haven’t told them you wish to renew. Shortly before the policy expires you will be given a renewal quote from your existing insurer, which is usually lower than your previous premium if you didn’t make a claim.
However, you might find that by applying to your existing insurer as a new customer, the price they offer is lower than the renewal quote. This is because insurers tend to offer more competitive rates to new customers in an attempt to attract new custom. If this is the case, simply accept the new quote and save yourself some money!
7. Avoid making modifications and fit security
You must declare any modifications made to your vehicle and the more changes you make (apart from security ones), the more money you will have to pay to cover it. If you fail to inform your insurer of an mods (whether you make them or not) you could invalidate your policy. Modification can be anything that is not part of the original standard vehicle specification, including things like alloy wheels.
Fitting any security such as an alarm or immobiliser could significantly reduce your premium, so it’s definitely something to consider.
8. Lower your mileage
The more you drive, the more your insurance will cost. Where possible try to reduce your mileage. Spend a few minutes working out roughly how many miles you realistically plan to drive.
9. Compare Insurance companies
These days there is a great deal of competition in the insurance market and it could take forever to shop around for the best deal. However, by checking out price comparison website Which4U, you could save time and money by making it easy to compare car insurance prices with a whole range of insurers, from lorry insurance to standard car insurance products listed side-by-side making it simple to find the right cover for you at the cheapest possible price.