Get it covered with these top tips for lower insurance bills
- Credit: supplied
Those popular meerkats are reporting a huge rise in insurance quotes for new cars following the number plate switch from 'unlucky 13' to 63.
Insurance comparison website Comparethemarket.com has studied data from its own website and discovered as much as 21% growth in insurance quotes through its systems relative to the average over the previous 12 months. That, the company says, reflects the highest rise in new car sales since pre-recession 2007.
A contributing factor is that new cars are being sold cheaper, as dealers across the country aim to clear out their 'old' stock to make room for new models only available on 63 plates.
Julie Daniels, from comparethemarket.com, says consumers are wise to take advantage of the lower prices.
'Those that are superstitious can rest easy now that 'unlucky 13' has been replaced, but it's great to see our research revealing British consumers taking note of factors that influence and affect the price they'll pay for a new car.
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'It shows that they are taking charge of their finances and being savvy when it comes to making a purchase. The same attention should be undertaken when considering their car insurance options, which is why we've pulled together some top tips for helping to save money.'
Comparethemarket.com has pulled together a series of tips to help car owners – especially younger drivers for whom insurance can be prohibitively expensive – save money on their car insurance.
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1 Don't modify your car
Don't modify your car with spoilers or fancy wheels because many insurers will load the premium. If you don't tell them about mods, they may refuse to pay out if you make a claim.
2 How much do you actually drive?
Lower mileage means less risk. Simple. Most companies give a break to those who drive less than 7,500 miles a year, so if you take public transport instead of driving to work, your premium will go down.
3 Get rid of the extras
Many comprehensive policies offer a range of optional extras like legal expenses and courtesy cars, but they come at a price. Work out which, if any, you need so that you don't pay for unnecessary cover.
4 Enhance your driving
Take the Driving Standards Agency's Pass Plus test covering various aspects of motoring, including night and motorway driving. It's not free, but if you complete the course you could earn a reduction on your premium.
5 Clear your garage
If your garage is full of junk, clear it out and use it for your car. Insurers like cars kept in garages overnight and this can dramatically cut your premium.
6 Other named drivers
Younger drivers should try adding a low-risk driver, in particular those with an additional record for driving well to their insurance as it can smooth out the average risk and sometimes reduce the premium – even if they won't use the car often. But don't, on no account, add their name as the main driver – this is fraud!
7 Check your job description
Price depends on historic risk assessments, and your occupation plays an important part in this. Small tweaks to your job description could save you cash – as long as it's still a reasonable description of your job.
8 Roadside assistance
The savings are probably small, but new car warranties may provide it at no cost. Likewise, if your company provides generous medical insurance you don't need to pay for it on your car insurance. Review what you really need.
9 Pay up-front
A lump sum can be daunting, but it's usually much cheaper to pay for the whole year in advance if you can. You'll avoid monthly interest charges and could save loads.
10 Get an immobiliser
If your vehicle is not fitted with an approved immobiliser, compare car insurance quotes with and without one fitted. It may be cost-effective over a couple of years to have one installed.
11 Are you part of a professional society?
If you belong to a trade union, a professional group or even a car enthusiasts' web forum, check whether it has negotiated cheap car insurance policies for its members. If it has, include the associated insurer in the list of companies when you compare quotes.