Cheaper car insurance

Photo: Andrea Piacquadio at Pexels

There are a number of ways you may be able to lower your car insurance premium.

Moving to a different area, or perhaps changing your career — but these options are pretty unrealistic for most.

Instead, here are some practical ideas which could help you get cheaper car insurance.

Look after your ‘no-claims’ bonus

A no-claims discount is the best way of cutting car insurance costs over time, so look after it.

It might seem obvious, but by simply driving safely and avoiding accidents your clean driving record is sure to bring down your premiums over time.

Choose your car carefully

As we know, different makes and models of cars come with different insurance premiums, even for the same driver. It’s worth doing your homework before you buy as it can make a big difference to your premium.

Sporty cars can attract a high premium and often a slightly different model or engine can make a big difference in your favour. It will probably save you fuel too.

If you’re after cheap car insurance then a car with a powerful engine is probably not for you

Pay a higher voluntary excess

When you’re obtaining your car insurance quote, you’ll be asked to choose a level of excess – this is the voluntary amount you are happy to pay towards repairs in the event of a claim.

If you set it at, say, £50 for example, your overall premium will be higher than if you have a voluntary excess of £200. The higher the excess, the lower the premium; just make sure you can afford to pay the agreed excess in the event of a claim.

Take out Black Box Car Insurance

With Black Box Car Insurance for young and new drivers, together with safe and responsible driving, you can prove to your insurer that you deserve to get cheaper car insurance.

The black box is installed in the car and used to monitor driver behaviour – quite simply, the safer you drive the cheaper your car insurance could be at renewal time.

It might not make your first car insurance policy cheaper but could apply a discount second time around.

Keep your car is safe and secure

Insurers like to know that the vehicle is likely to be as secure as possible to avoid the risk of theft. This concerns security inside the vehicle, and where it is stored when not being driven.

If your car is fitted with an alarm, immobiliser or another security device, this may help in reducing the cost of insurance. Thatcham Research has categorised alarms – the higher the rating of the security system in your vehicle, the more money you could save on your car insurance.

If the vehicle is kept in a garage overnight, or parked on the driveway of your house, that should result in a saving on your insurance policy. If you can only park the car on the street, you probably won’t see a saving.

Choose the right cover

Sometimes the lowest levels of cover are not always the cheapest. It’s always worth talking through the available options with your insurer or looking at the comparison websites.

Drive fewer miles

A basic principle for car insurers is that the more you drive your car, the more likely it is that you’ll end up in an accident. That’s why if you can reduce your annual mileage, you can help lower the cost of your annual premium.

Just a small change to the way you use your vehicle could lead to long-term savings.

Pay annually rather than monthly

Multiple payments are often more convenient and many of us are happy to pay the extra cash for our cover. However, research has found that paying monthly can add between 6% and 17% to your premium.

If you consider that the added interest costs UK drivers £544m a year, you might feel more inclined to budget in advance and hand over the lump sum at the start of your policy to save cash in the long run.

Consider multi-car insurance

Multi-car insurance covers a number of vehicles registered at the same address and, in most cases, such policies include a discount.

Pay as you go car insurance

If you’re driving less than 6,000 miles per year, paying per mile could save you money compared to standard car insurance.

Pay by Mile car insurance is purchased on a monthly rolling subscription with no cancellation fee. You pay pence per mile plus a monthly parked premium. So, you only pay for the miles you drive and save when you don’t.

Choose modifications carefully

Modifications change the look and performance of cars to suit their owners’ needs, and yet many motorists overlook how the changes could impact their car insurance policy.

Fancy in-car entertainment systems and phone kits increase the chance of your vehicle being broken into, while powerful engines are seen as a risk on the road. The added dangers will push your vehicle into a higher insurance group making cover more expensive.

However, not all modifications will bump up your premium. Fitting a tow bar suggests you’re more likely to drive at slower speeds while you’re hooked up to a caravan or trailer, for example.

If making any modifications from the standard factory specification, it’s important to notify your insurer, as not doing so could leave you uninsured.

Take a driving course

Advanced driving courses are designed to develop drivers’ skills to make them safer motorists.

Although it’s not a good idea to take a course with the sole intention of reducing your premium, passing one may reduce the cost of your policy. Contact your insurance provider before booking a course to check whether the extra lessons will lead to a saving.

Check your declared job title

Insurance providers will charge a higher premium for drivers with stressful jobs or roles that mean you spend significantly more time on the road.

Checking your job title doesn’t mean tweaking your job description to ‘bend the truth’ and avoid a higher premium, especially as this will invalidate your cover. Instead, you should ensure your occupation is updated and accurate – this small task might lead to a cheaper premium.

Is there anything I’ve forgotten? Have your say in the comments section below…

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