We motorists are getting squeezed ever tighter on a daily basis so the more ways we can find to ease the pain the better. When you come to renew your car insurance, guess what? It’s going to have gone up!
With that in mind follow these tips and you could save a lot of money!
1. Never automatically renew each year, insurers do not take depreciation into account when they send an automatic renewal notice, so after a few years you may find you are still paying insurance based on a £10,000 car even if it is only now worth £5,000. Even if you are happy with your current insurers it’s worth spending 20 minutes getting a quote from an online broker before calling your current insurer to see if they can match it. Invariably they will at least offer a better price and that’s money better off in your pocket.
2. Always get a quote from a broker, even if you don’t take up this quote it gives you a good benchmark price and if you subsequently talk to your preferred provider you can use this quote as leverage to get a better price. All insurance companies will try to match or beat a price, they may not be able to, but they will try, they never give you their best price first. For those who don’t like to haggle, if the price they quote is higher than the broker price then all you need to say is “I got a quote from the AA for £xxx, are you able to match it?”
3. Women – don’t assume women only car insurance is cheaper, in my experience it almost always isn’t as other insurers do give women better rates anyway. As an example my wife was with Diamond but got a quote from the AA which was £150 cheaper!, she phoned Diamond back and they dropped their price by £50 but my wife changed to the AA. Men – consider insuring your car with your girlfriend / wife as the primary driver with your self as a named driver.
4. You can cancel and renew at any time so you don’t have to wait until your current insurance expires to shop around, if you have a birthday and turn 21,25,30,35 mid way through your car insurance year then get a new quote, you may be surprised. Other changes that may happen to you that will lower your premiums are starting to store your car in the garage, getting married, having an immobiliser fitted, and even if you get a new job nearer to home and your annual mileage decreases.
5. Combine your policies – if your household has 2 cars then some insurance companies will offer extra discounts if you insure both cars with them, you can also combine other types of insurance with many companies such as home insurance, pet insurance etc. and save even more.
6. If you feel you are a very safe driver then you can increase your excess and get a lower insurance quote. There is some risk with this but the excess offered as standard by insurers is an average, if you feel you are a better than average driver then you may feel it’s a very small risk worth taking.
7. Declare any modifications to your car, different wheels, different exhaust, air filter – anything. It probably wont make much of a difference to the price but if you don’t declare it and have to make a claim then your insurer will not pay if they find out about the modification.
8. Never over estimate the value of your car in the hope that if you do have an accident the insurance company will pay out the value you have listed. Insurance companies only base the quote price on the value you give, in the event of a claim they ignore this value and work out the value for themselves so you will be paying too much in insurance for no benefit.
9. If your car is written off think very carefully about accepting the first offer, as most if not all insurance companies will try to get away with paying out as little as possible on a full claim. In general you should never accept the first offer, don’t be afraid to haggle, they expect it.
10. Some insurance companies give a discount for drivers who have taken a recognised advanced driving course, there aren’t many and it may not make a huge difference but if you have had a few claims and are paying very high premiums then it’s well worth considering.
11. Never pay monthly as this is an area where insurers add a significant hidden charge, if you don’t have the money available to pay it all in one go then getting a loan for 12 months to pay for it will be much cheaper.
12. If you are young (even up to 25), you should consider insuring your car in a parents name (get their consent first of course). You won’t build up no claims discount but in the long run it will be much cheaper. No claims discount is a bit over rated anyway, at age 25 with no no claims discount, many insurers will give you 30% anyway.
13. Buying your insurance on the internet will often get you an additional discount, many insurers now offer 10 to 15 percent discount for online purchases.