9 Simple Routes to Cheaper Car Insurance

9 Simple Routes to Cheaper Car Insurance

9 Simple Routes to Cheaper Car Insurance

Car insurance is one of the most expensive parts of driving, and it's certainly one of the least exciting. However, there's no way around it: you need a good policy in place if you want to drive safely and legally.

But that doesn't need to mean paying more than you should. Following a few simple tips can help you drive the policy costs down to suit your wallet and your car alike.

1. Limit the Drivers

Although it may be convenient to allow the whole family to drive on the same policy, this can bump up the cost considerably. Make sure only individually named drivers are included, and even then, only include those people who'll drive frequently enough to warrant it.

In particular, don't add a young, inexperienced driver to your main car policy unless there's no alternative. It's far better to let new drivers build up some experience in a cheaper car with its own lower cost insurance.

If you need someone else to drive your car on a one-off occasion, you can add them to the policy temporarily. This may be a little inconvenient compared to an any-driver policy, but it'll save you cash.

2. Choose a Higher Excess

The excess of a policy is the amount of a claim you need to cover yourself before the insurance company starts to pay out. If you choose a higher excess, your premiums will be lower.

Of course, you'll take a hit in the pocket if you do need to claim, but it's a gamble which usually pays off for careful drivers. And if you're involved in an accident caused by someone else, you can claim the full costs back from the other driver, regardless of the excess level you've set.

3. Protect Your No Claim Discount

Most insurers allow you to pass an existing no claim discount over to a new policy. Policies with this option might have a slightly higher headline price than standard, but if you've built up a good discount through years of safe driving, the savings will more than make up for this.

4. Don't Over-Insure Yourself

If you have a relatively old car that isn't worth too much money, it's often a good idea to drop some aspects of your insurance to lower the cost. For example, expensive collision coverage may not be worth paying for, if the replacement value of your car is low compared to your excess level.

But no matter how valuable your car, always strip back your coverage to the legally required basics, and only add back the extras you really need.

5. Upgrade Car Security

Fitting an approved alarm system, an immobilizer, and a tracking device can shave at least five percent off your premiums, thanks to the lower risk for the insurer.

If your car already has these features, make sure you declare them on your insurance forms so that you get the discount applied. And if you have a secure, off-road parking facility, make sure you declare it and use it.

6. Pay Annually

If you can afford to, paying your insurance premium in one annual sum will cost you less in the long run. Most companies treat monthly payments as a form of credit and charge extra for the convenience.

7. Check Your Credit Score

And on a related note, if you have poor credit, your monthly premiums will likely be higher. If you can clean up your record, do so. If not, could you have the policy taken out by another driver with a better credit score?

8. Report Accurate Mileage

The fewer miles you drive, the less you'll pay for your policy. When you're applying for insurance, be as accurate as you can about your average mileage figures.

Don't overestimate how much you drive or you'll needlessly pay more. However, don't under-report your mileage either, or your policy could be declared invalid if you try to claim.

9. Shop Around

Lastly, insurance is a highly competitive business, and different companies try to carve out their own niche in the market. This means the way they price their policies can vary wildly. Depending on your circumstances, the cost of near-identical policies can vary by hundreds of dollars.

Even if you think you've got a great deal, get quotes from other companies to make sure. If you take the first offer you find, you're probably leaving money on the table.

No one enjoys searching for car insurance, but the potential savings available make it worth taking the time to get the right deal.