Car ownership, for many of us, is a necessity rather than a luxury – our jobs rely on it and our families need us to have it, but it can cost a bundle. From repairs to petrol, cars have a particular way of surprising us with bills we just didn’t expect. On top of all of that, we have the recurring cost of car insurance. Depending on how our no-claims are looking at the end of the year, prices may go up or go down, but we’re constantly looking for the best prices we can get. Thankfully, if we do want the best prices, there are a few things we can do to maximize our chances.
The first thing to consider is what kind of car you’re looking to insure. It’s not just big flash cars that put you into higher insurance brackets, but also the cost of sourcing parts and repairing the car itself. That’s why it’s vitally important if you’re considering purchasing a new car to not just look at the sticker price, but at the insurance group, you could be paying through the nose to get it on the road legally. Another aspect to consider is aftermarket modifications, things like spoilers, body kits or shiny wheel trims are all excuses for your insurer to ramp up your premiums.
Then there’s a whole host of things drivers can do to drive down the cost of their insurance. Keep a note of your mileage across the year and get in touch with your insurer, there’s a very good chance you’re paying for mileage you simply aren’t using, and that’s a fine way to waste money. Driving carefully also lowers your insurance premiums, keeps yourself out of the police’s eye, and avoids getting points on your license to convince your insurer that you’re a responsible driver.
The question we always recommend people ask themselves is whether they truly need fully comprehensive cover. Insurers are keen to push it on us, and many are indeed better off with it, but there’s a large group of motorists that could likely do without it. Take a long look at Third Party, Fire & Theft insurance, it doesn’t cover the cost of repairing your car but ensures that if it’s set alight or stolen you’ll get the money. For younger or particularly confident drivers this may well be a good option and can save you some serious money on your insurance. As an extension of this, many insurers offer a lot of add-ons, these can range from recovery services to courtesy cars, so it’s worth working out whether you need them on your policy.
Finally, we can never recommend enough the use of car insurance comparison websites. There’s currently a great number of them around each promising the best deal, so it’s advisable that you shop around between each of them to find the deal which appeals, you could shave hundreds off the price of your car insurance and end up with better coverage than you had before.
This article was contributed by David Bruce of Befuddled.co.uk, a price comparison website where you can compare energy prices, mobile phones, and broadband deals.