You’ve scrimped and saved, and perhaps are repaying some form of finance in order to buy your first car.
The last thing you want to do is shell out even more is money on insuring it – and it’s likely to be a lot if you’re relatively young into the bargain. But motor insurance is an essential. It’s required by law. The government website makes that much pretty clear.
One of the saving graces, though, is that you still have a number of options to get a cheaper deal on the motor insurance you need.
Here are some tips to help save money:
Level of insurance
- the law says that you need third party insurance as the very minimum – so that you are able to meet claims from other road users who might be injured or have their own car damaged as a result of your driving;
- depending on its value, you might want to extend the cover to third party, fire and theft or comprehensive insurance so that you have some protection against accidental damage to your own car;
- bear in mind that although it gives better and more extensive protection, comprehensive insurance might often prove just as affordable as, or even cheaper than, basic third party insurance;
- different makes and models of car are grouped by insurers into various insurance groups;
- insurance Groups 1-50 are in current use – with the lower the number representing the cheaper the cost of insurance and the higher numbers reserved for more powerful, faster and more expensive cars;
- so, if you want to save money on the cost of insurance, choose your car from the lower range of insurance groups – the website Car Insurance Groups, gives a detailed listing of every make and model of car according to its insurance group;
Age of your car
- the cost of insurance is also directly related to the age of your car – since this is also likely to be an indication of its value and, from the insurer’s point of view, the maximum amount they might have to pay out in the event of a total loss;
- the cheaper your used car, therefore, the cheaper the insurance is likely to be – but this also needs to be balanced out, of course, by the steeper repair and maintenance bills you are likely to pay on an older car;
- if you restrict the use of your car to named drivers only, you are likely to enjoy a discount on the price of the premiums;
- indeed, by adding the name of a more mature, qualified and experienced driver, you may reduce costs still further;
- on no account ask a parent or other family to pretend to be the main driver when it is in fact yourself who owns and uses the car most; this is known as “fronting” and amounts to insurance fraud and is a criminal offence;
- one of the conventional ways of reducing the cost of motor insurance is to share a greater proportion of the risks yourself by agreeing to an additional voluntary excess on top of the compulsory excess your policy is almost certain to include;
- the excess amount is the first part of any successful insurance claim that you are liable for. All motor insurance policies will have a standard compulsory excess - say £50-£100 or £150 - and you can elect to pay an additional voluntary excess amount on top;
- remember, however, that this significantly increases the costs you may have to bear if you subsequently make a claim on your motor insurance.
Finally, vehicles that have been ‘souped up’ will also typically cost more to insure due to the extra risk of them being stolen, as well as the cost of repair or replacement in the event the car is damaged or stolen.
So while you may be tempted by that car with blacked out windows, a spoiler and alloy wheels, remember that these additions could push up your car insurance costs quite dramatically.