Congratulations, you’ve passed your driving test! You are now free to drive off into the sunset on your own!
That is, once you get yourself insured on a car, of course.
Before you can drive off on your own you will have to make sure that your car is insured to allow you to do so. New driver car insurance can be a daunting prospect and we’re sure you’ve heard some horror stories about how much it costs to insure a car as a new driver.
Because you are a new driver, you are a higher risk to insurers. And, it’s a fact that you are more likely to have an accident as a young driver. This means that your insurance is going to be higher. That’s simply a fact that you will have to live with.
However, there are some things that you can do to help get the best insurance, and there are some things you shouldn’t do.
In this article, we look at the car insurance do’s and dont’s for new drivers.
New Driver Insurance Do’s
So, what are some of the things you should do when looking for car insurance as a new driver?
Pick one of the cheaper cars to insure
This might not be ideal, but it’s the most obvious way of getting the best insurance deal. Choosing a car that is cheap to insure is a surefire way of getting cheap insurance. Cars are sorted into insurance groups, ranging from 1 to 50. The cheapest cars to insure are the ones that are in groups 1 to 5. These tend to be city cars with small engines that also don’t cost very much initially.
Think about the level of cover you are going to need
The most expensive type of car insurance is comprehensive car insurance. This covers both your car and other vehicles should you have an accident.
The cheapest type of car insurance is third-party cover. This is the most basic level of cover and only covers claims against you if you’re involved in an accident and injure someone. It also covers the cost of repairs or replacement of the other person’s car, but not yours.
If you want to save as much money as possible monthly then third party is the most obvious option. But you also have to be honest with yourself about how often you plan to drive, what sort of damage to your car you can live with, such as bumps and dents. Otherwise you could end up paying more getting your car repaired than you would for fully comprehensive insurance.
Add security features
Having additional security features can help bring your insurance down by quite a bit. For example, if you have an alarm or an immobiliser. Some cars come with extra safety features but you can buy some to add to your car regardless of what type of car you drive. Also, keeping your car in a driveway or in a garage instead of on the street also lowers the risk of it being stolen, according to insurers.
Research some of the ways you can minimise the risk of getting your car stolen and try and apply as many of those as possible to your car. That way you can lower your insurance and, well, do everything you can to stop your car getting stolen. It’s a win win.
Consider a black box
Okay, they aren’t that cool, but they could save you a fortune in car insurance. A black box, or a telematic, is a box that sits in your and car monitors how you drive and your driving behaviour. It measures things such as speed, braking and sharp turns and judges how much you should pay in insurance on how well you drive.
These black boxes are a good way of cutting the cost of your insurance as the insurance company can base their premiums on your individual driving behaviour rather than the assumption that all young drivers are riskier drivers.
Increase your excess
Paying a higher voluntary excess on top of the compulsory excess you have been quoted can reduce the cost of your insurance. The excess is the amount you would have to pay up front in the event that you make a claim.
However, you should make sure that you can actually pay this excess should you have to make a claim. But if you can, then it’s something worth looking into as it can reduce your insurance by quite a bit.
So there are some of our car insurance do’s for new drivers.
Car insurance dont’s for new drivers
We’ve gone over the do’s, now what are the dont’s?
Don’t modify your car
It might look cool, but car modifications can seriously increase your car insurance. These include things such as alloy wheels and body kits. These sorts of things appeal to young drivers and you can often see these types of cars racing around your town centre.
However, they should be avoided if you want lower insurance. These sorts of modifications can increase your car insurance by hundreds of pounds. If you do want to modify your car then consider if you would replace the modified parts with cheaper ones, otherwise your premiums could be much higher.
Don’t pay monthly
While it may be tempting to stagger the cost of your insurance monthly, it’s usually cheaper to pay for the whole year in advance rather than paying monthly. This is because you will avoid the monthly interest charges and therefore save yourself quite a bit in the long run.
Of course, this is only if you can afford it. That said, putting some money away a month to pay it off the following year isn’t a bad idea. After all, you would have used that money on insurance anyway, and you’re saving yourself a bit of money at the same time.
Don’t always assume third party insurance is the way forward
Okay, we did say that it was the cheapest type of insurance on offer and it is. However, don’t automatically assume that this is always the case. Shop around for different insurance deals and make sure that you are getting the best cover and the best deal.
It won’t be worth it if you don’t do your research and have to spend more money in the long term.
Do not ‘front’
Fronting is illegal, and you shouldn’t do it. What is ‘fronting’?
Fronting is essentially where you put the policy in someone else’s name, say your parents name, and you as the named driver when in fact, you are the main driver. People do this because an older person’s insurance is likely to be considerably less and therefore you won’t have to pay as much. However, this is insurance fraud and your claim could get rejected.
By all means, have someone older as a named driver as this does reduce the insurance, but if you are the main person driving the car, you have to be the main driver on the policy. Otherwise you can get in a lot of trouble and it does count as fraud. It’s not worth it.
In conclusion, there are a few things that you should do, and that you shouldn’t do, when it comes to looking at car insurance for new drivers. It’s always best to look around for the best insurance deal before you decide on one. It is also a good idea to look at things such as black boxes as a way of decreasing your car insurance costs over time. However, it’s also important that you do not do anything to increase your insurance, such as modifying it with expensive additions or putting someone else as the main driver in an attempt to keep costs down.