Could I save money by buying my insurance in advance?
Research that we carried out indicated that many motorists who are looking for lowcost car insurance might save money by buying their next policy well in advance - up to a month ahead is possible with most insurance companies and although everyone's circumstances are different we found a saving avaraging around £60 for our test group. Your own experiences may of course be entitely different from this! There are two reasons why insurers may offer better discounts:
1) People who buy policies in good time are generally well organised people, and statistically this group is less likely to be involved in accidents, and claims; and
2) Motorists in a rush to get cover in place at the last minute have less time to shop around and so are more likely to accept a high price rather than spend more time looking for the cheapest car insurance.
Can I trust price comparison sites to find me the lowest priced car insurance?
Car insurance comparison services the UK are firmly regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority so they are obliged to act honestly and fairly. However when you buy a policy your contract is with the insurer, not the comparison site. Accidents can happen and before you buy a policy make sure that you really are getting the benefits that you thought you were paying for. The insurer you choose will send you all the policy documents and you should check it carefully.
Also; mass producing quotations means that a comparison site may make various assumpions about you; if these prove to be incorrect it is quite possible for an insurer to demand a higher premium, so don't always assume that the price you are quoted for your car insurance will be the one you pay.
Bear in mind, too, that nearly all of them will only display results from companies that pay them a commission. Most of the big sites are owned partly or wholly by insurance companies so the temptation to push their own products must be high! Click here to compare quotes.
Why should my inclusion on the voters list affect insurance quotes?
When insurers calculate a premium the trust factor is extremely important to them. They want to be confident that you are who you say you are, that your answers on the proposal form are 100% accurate, that you can be relied on to drive carefully. Rightly or wrongly some of them are suspicious of applicants who are not included on the local voter's list, particularly if a 'pay monthly' policy is applied for.
The car insurance proposal form asks for my driving licence details. Should I provide them?
It is possible for insurers to find out a great deal about your driving history from your licence number so a willingness to provide it is a good trust signal which may result in better quotes.
Is it cheaper to buy short term car insurance?
Do you really need to drive all the time? Short term car insurance costs more on a day to day basis but it can be more economical if you only need cover for a short while. You can get quotes for between one and 28 days cover from www.carinsurancefor1day.co.uk.
Why should adding a more experienced driver to my policy reduce my premium?
Car insurance companies like to see experienced drivers with a good accident free record driving your vehicle as well as you. However do bear in mind that this driver should genuinely drive it from time to time; and you must have that person's permission to be included on the policy.
If your named driver has a fault accident whilst driving your car it is your car insurance no claims discount that would be lost, and the named driver would have to report the accident when applying for insurance in the future. So, you could both get increased premiums.
Does my exact job description matter?
When you compare quotes, your job description can be defined in several different ways. Many consumers could find a lower priced policy by tweaking terms that match their occupations to see which ones provide the most economical prices.
If you are, say, a builder, you might also be a plasterer, a bricklayer, a drain layer, and a roofer - or all of them at the same time. When you fill in the quote form these occupations may bring up different quotes and some of them may cost substantially less than others.
Make sure that you are being accurate though. You may well have to confirm this sometime in the future, and insurers do know more about us all than we realise. If you have already told one insurer that you was a chef and another that you worked as a nurse it may raise some eyebrows.
Should I search for comprehensive car insurance prices first, even if I want third party insurance?
Some insurers are wary of people who ask for 3rd party car insurance quotes, and it's sometimes more expensive than comprehensive cover anyway, despite the difference in benefits. When you compare car insurance, get comprehensive quotes first.
Do modifications affect a car insurance quote?
Car insurance companies do not like modifications. Modern cars are carefully designed to be as safe as possible for the occupants and other road users and non standard modifications have been known to have a bad effect on handling and braking, particularly if different engines or suspension systems have been fitted. Even fitting allow wheels, to replace steel ones, can affect a car's carefully calculated balance.
Also, rightly or wrongly, the car insurance companies wonder whether a customer who makes those modifications is suffiently interested in avoiding accidents in it, rather than squeezing the last bit of performance from it.
If you do have a modified motorcar you may be better going for quotes to a broker who specialises in them.
Why should I consider a multi car policy?
A number of insurers do offer good discounts to people who insure several cars at the same address. However these companies may still not offer as good a deal as you could get elsewhere so don't be swayed by the size of the discount. Get more quotes and you may save even more.
Will fitting a dash cam lower my premium?
It might - it's up to individual insurers. However it can be really useful in the event of a disputed claim if you have actual footage of what happened. Given the prevalence of cash for crash car insurance scams this can be extremely important.
Does offering a higher voluntary excess lower quotes?
Remember though that if you have an accident that you're at fault for you will have to pay this, in addition to any compulsory one, so use this tactic carefully.
Is a 'black box' policy worth buying?
For many young or inexperienced drivers a black box; often known as telematic; car insurance policy is the most economical option and they are believed to have been responsible for reducing accidents by providing more incentive for careful driving. Be aware though that a driver who is recorded as breaking some of the criteria, such as exceeding speed limits or braking and cornering harshly, can be heavily penalised.
You may also have additional expenses and inconvenience if you find lower priced car insurance quotes, and switch insurers, since the old tracker will have to be removed and a new one installed.
Make sure you check online reviews of a company that offers you a car insurancepolicy of this kind. Some of them have allegedly had teething problems with false infractions recorded and these can have disastrous consequences, particularly if they result in cover being withdrawn.
Could I save money on insurance by buying a newer car?
A lot of young drivers in particular start off on older and cheaper cars but these often attract higher premiums. Modern vehicles can be packed with safety features such as automatic braking control, collision sensors, crumple zones and many others that reduce the risk of accidents and mitigate the effects if they do occur. As a result these cars earn lower insurance rates. If you are concerned about how safe your car (or one you want to buy) is, a good place to start is Thatcham Research, which carries out testing on different car models and gives them all an insurance rating. The lower the rating, the less you can expect to pay.
Do I need to be concerned about hidden extras in my car insurance premium?
Insurers cannot hide extras. By law they have to be explained clearly and the information has to be easy to find. Some smaller car insurance providers charge a lot of money for cancellation fees, or just changing your address your job description in their records. People who complain about this usually get nowhere with the Insurance Ombudsman if they were provided with this information - but who didn't read it. And most people don't, so make sure you look through the policy details that have to be provided to you before you hand over your money.